Last week, we reported the tragic news that 27-year-old actor Anton Yelchin had passed away after a freak accident involving his own vehicle crushing him to death. The actor was found pinned between his car, a Jeep Grand Cherokee, and his concrete mailbox over the weekend. This tragic death has sparked a class action lawsuit against Jeep's manufacturer, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles.
Deadline obtained a copy of the lawsuit, which alleges that Fiat Chrysler intentionally covered up fatal design flaws and deaths from the defects. The lawsuit was filed by the firm Hagens Berman Sobel Shapiro LLP, which specializes in class action lawsuits, for Deryl Wall, Justine Andollo, Danielle and Joby Hackett. Here's an excerpt from the complaint, which references the tragic death of Anton Yelchin.
"The safety issue is real. Well over 300 accidents have already been reported, causing dozens of serious injuries, and potentially the death of Anton Yelchin, a young Hollywood actor who was crushed to death when his own 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee rolled down his drive and pinned him against his brick mailbox."
Earlier this week, Anton Yelchin's passing was officially ruled an accidental death. There was no evidence of foul play, and the official cause of death was ruled as "blunt traumatic asphyxia." There had been speculation that the actor's vehicle, which had a recall issued against it, rolled down the hill on its own because of this fatal flaw. Here's another excerpt from the lawsuit.
"FCA's unreasonable delay in fixing the defect and its warning letter was obviously too little, too late for Mr. Yelchin, and nearly a million Defective Shifter Vehicles remain in unsuspecting owners' driveways and garages. As a result of this dangerous defect, the Defective Shifter Vehicles are 'unsafe in any driveway' and the value of each Defective Shifter Vehicle has diminished, and it will remain depressed even if an effective fix is eventually applied."
The jury-seeking complaint is also asking for an injunction to stop Fiat Chrysler's alleged deceptive practices, punitive damages for fraud, "immediate installation of a safety override system or replacement of the defective ZF Shifter," a temporary replacement car and compensation for any additional costs owners may have incurred. Anton Yelchin still has a number of new movies yet to be released, including the highly-anticipated Star Trek Beyond, in theaters July 22. It isn't known how many people will be a part of this class action lawsuit at this time. We'll be sure to keep you posted with more updates on this lawsuit and the tragic death of Anton Yelchin.