Azure crane owner seeks mistrial in civil case

Lawyer says James Lomma cannot attend the trial while he recovers from a car accident
May 29, 2014 04:10PM

The owner of the crane that collapsed at the Azure Condominium on the Upper East Side in 2008, killing two people, is seeking a mistrial in a civil case brought by victims.

On Wednesday, a lawyer for James Lomma said  his client was unable to appear in court due to severe injuries suffered in a recent car accident. The attorney, Glenn Fuerth, said Lomma needs eight to 12 weeks to recover, the New York Post reported.

“As an individual party to this action, Mr. Lomma would be severely prejudiced if the court were to deny the instant motion and allow the trial to proceed despite Mr. Lomma’s inability to attend,” Fuerth said.

The plaintiffs in the case say the poor state of construction equipment on the job site illustrates Lomma had “reckless disregard” for human life, reports the Post.

In 2012, Lomma was acquitted of all charges against him in a criminal case brought by the Manhattan District Attorney’s office. In that case, defense attorneys successfully argued that the crane operator was to blame for improperly operating the machine. [NYP]Tom DiChristopher