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The Kansas City Star - April 13, 1999

Family Of Girl Killed By Postal Truck Sues

Mark Morris
The Kansas City Star

The family of a 3-year-old girl who was killed last year when a U.S. Postal Service truck slammed into her West Side apartment building sued the U.S. government and the building’s owner Monday.

Lawyer Anita Porte Robb said she filed the wrongful-death and personal injury lawsuit on behalf of the family after the Postal Service denied an administrative claim for damages.

“Our investigation will seek to determine whether this tragedy occurred because of poor driver training, inadequate maintenance, improper loading or a combination of those factors,” Robb said.

Robb said the family also sued the building’s owner, Richard Keller, because of previous accidents at the structure at 615 W. 20th St. She described the property as “unfit and unsafe.”

The building was demolished after the accident.

A spokesman for U.S. Attorney Stephen L. Hill Jr., who will represent the Postal Service, declined comment Monday.

Neither Keller nor his lawyer could be reached for comment Monday.

Andrea Nicole Salazar was killed on April 21, 1998, when a postal truck crashed into her building after the driver had jumped out.

The driver, Sinclair L. Taylor, was acquitted in December of careless driving in Jackson County Circuit Court. He said he tried but was unable to stop the truck.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages for Andrea’s mother, Jenny Salazar, and brother, Dario Salazar, both of whom were asleep in the same room with the girl when the accident occurred.

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