United States family blames cruise company for toddler's death

By Andres Manuel Rodriguez Public Domain https

Michael Winkleman, the lawyer for the family of Chloe Wiegand, told reporters on Tuesday that the girl's grandfather had placed her along a ledge of windows where she could look out and hadn't realized one of those windows was open.

Michael Winkleman, the family's lawyer, told NBC: "We've all had that experience where someone walks into a glass door thinking it's not there".

Salvatore Anello, the child's grandfather, is now under investigation and could face criminal charges of negligence, the New York Post reports.

1-year-old Chloe Wiegand died after falling from a Royal Caribbean cruise ship in Puerto Rico. He was literally crying saying 'I thought it was like she was at a hockey game.

The grandfather described what happened to Winkleman in a tear-filled conversation in which he could barely speak, the attorney said.

18-month-old Chloe Wiegand died Monday after she fell onto the concrete deck from the 11th story of the Freedom of the Seas.

The Daily Mail posted the new image on July 9, showing the open window, investigators, police tape, and other people.

Since she loved banging on the glass, Winkleman said, "he takes her over to the windows, he thinks it's all glass and there is a wood railing right here and he puts her up on there thinking she's going to bang on the glass and it's going to be great and she goes to bang on the glass and the next thing he knows she's gone". But Winkleman said it wasn't as if Chloe's grandfather was dangling the child and dropped her.

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"Why would you ever, in a kids play area, put windows that passengers can open?"

The family alleges that one of the windows in the wall had been opened, and when the young child went to press herself against it, she fell to her death.

Royal Caribbean declined Business Insider's request for comment on Winkleman's account, though the company said on Monday that it was "deeply saddened" by the incident. "Why would you think that in a kids' play area. there's going to be this hidden danger?"

Anello held Chloe on the rail and she leaned forward to bang on the middle glass pane.

There is surveillance video of the incident and he said his team is working to get a copy of it.

The girl is the daughter of IN police officer Alan Wiegand and his wife, Kimberly.

Mr Winkleman added that he felt there was "significant blame on the cruise line" as he thought it appeared to be a case of negligence.

A message was left Tuesday with police in Puerto Rico seeking comment on Winkleman's account of the events leading up to the child's fatal fall. In a statement, the department offered their "sincerest condolences" and asked the community to pray for Officer Wiegand and his family.

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