$12M Settlement in Lawrence Apartment Fire

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) _ The families of three people killed in a 2005 apartment fire in Lawrence as well as several people who escaped with injuries will share a $12 million settlement.

The Lawrence Journal World reported on its Web site that the plaintiffs' attorneys said yesterday that the settlement had been reached with Boardwalk Apartments, LC, and Terrace Management Services, of Kansas City, Mo.

They had faced three wrongful death lawsuits filed by family members of the three victims _ Jose Gonzalez, Yolanda Riddle and Nicole Bingham. The company also faced six other lawsuits by people who were injured.

The lead attorney for the plaintiffs, Mike Ketchmark, said the lawsuits were combined as a part of the settlement.

The lawsuits claimed that the complex lacked an adequate fire suppression system, fire alarm system and escape routes.

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