In the case of the death of an 18-month-old girl who fell to her death from an open window of a Royal Caribbean cruise ship last year, the case prosecution and defense have agreed on a plea deal that will result in the conviction of her grandfather for negligent homicide.
Salvatore Anello, originally pleaded “not guilty” when he was charged last October by Puerto Rican Authorities. In February he announced that he would plead guilty so that his family can move on from the tragic event.
The plea deal that was agreed upon and settled on Thursday, October 15, 200 includes “…no jail time and no admission of facts” according to Michael Winkleman, one of the family’s attorneys. He went on to state that, “…it was decided the plea deal is in the best interests of the family so that they can close this horrible chapter and turn their focus to mourning Chloe and fighting for cruise passenger safety by raising awareness about the need for all common carriers to adhere to window fall prevention laws designed to protect children from falling from windows,”.
The family alleges that the cruise ship company is at fault for the tragic death of their child. In an interview last July on “Today“, Chloe’s mother, Kimberly Wiegand stated that Royal Caribbean was to blame “for not having a safer situation” regarding the safety standards of the 11th-floor pool deck. “There are a million things that could’ve been done to make that safer,” she said. “I know my mom was asking people, ‘Why on earth is there a window open on the 11th floor without a screen or anything?'”
The company contends that the grandfather “unquestionably” knew that the window was in-fact open. (NBC)
“When he arrives at the open window, and while Chloe is on the floor, Mr. Anello leans his upper-torso over the wooden railing and out of the window frame for approximately eight seconds,” the company asserts. “Because Mr. Anello had himself leaned out the window, he was well aware that the window is open.”
Winkleman says that the pictures the company is referring to as proof were “misleading.”
A civil lawsuit against the company is still ongoing.