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Romanucci & Blandin, Crowder & Scoggins and Dowd & Dowd file civil lawsuit against Ashley Furniture for severe burns suffered in fire caused by faulty product

December 11, 2023

Romanucci & Blandin, LLC, and co-counsel Dowd & Dowd P.C. and Crowder & Scoggins LTD have filed a civil lawsuit for catastrophic injuries suffered by plaintiff Jeffrey Jones in a fire that originated with a faulty LED battery in a recliner sold by Ashley Furniture and Affordable Furniture STL. The devastating fire took place in Mr. Jones’ apartment in the City of St. Louis on May 13, 2023, causing him extensive full-thickness burns to his head, face, neck, back and arms up to twenty percent of his body, as well as the need for hospitalization and intubation for his smoke inhalation injuries. He had purchased the recliner in October of 2022 from Affordable Furniture in St. Louis. The recliner is branded as a “Party Time Dual Power Reclining Loveseat” and was subject to a recall because of the faulty LED lighting feature. That evening, the battery for the feature overheated, causing a fire to erupt, which destroyed Mr. Jones’ residence while flames blocked the only exit to his apartment, trapping him to fight for his life. Prior to the fire, Mr. Jones, who is a proud U.S. veteran, had a history of being brave and being the problem solver for his friends and family. Now, the pain, suffering, disfigurement, and trauma from that fire have changed his life forever, and this lawsuit seeks accountability for that harm by Ashley Furniture and Affordable Furniture.

The Petition was filed in the Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis and alleges that Ashley Furniture was aware of at least five other fires caused by the defective battery in the recliners. The Petition also alleges that Ashley Furniture knew or should have known about the defective recliner and should have taken the necessary steps to ensure consumer safety. On June 8, 2023, Ashley Furniture recalled more than 250,000 items of furniture from the Party Time collection due to the defective LED battery.

The plaintiff is Jeffrey Jones. The defendants are Ashley Furniture Industries LLC and Affordable Furniture STL LLC. The Petition includes four counts: Strict Liability – Product Defect, Strict Liability – Failure to Warn, Product Liability - Negligent Design and/or Failure to Warn, and Product Liability - Negligently Supplying a Dangerous Instrumentality.

The plaintiff is represented by Romanucci & Blandin LLC Attorney Patrick J. Driscoll and others, Mark Scoggins and Jordan Augustine of Crowder & Scoggins, LTD; and Doug Dowd and Clayton Dowd of Dowd & Dowd P.C. in St. Louis.

Separately, the plaintiff’s attorneys reported this dangerous product with the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (Report #20231204-3FC4D-2147343657).

“It makes me feel helpless and weak. I couldn’t breathe for myself or walk on my own after I got burned. For the first time in my life, I had no control of my body or my life. Please understand I am grateful for being alive, and for the care I received in the hospital. But my body is not the same, my mind is not the same and I’m so ashamed that I couldn’t save myself. The man in me tried all I could to stop the fire. I really did. I see the way my friends and family look at me. Heads down, no eye contact. I loved looking in the mirror before. Now I see ugly. People say, Jeff, you look good for what you have been through, but to me, it sounds like lies,” said Plaintiff Jeffrey Jones.

To learn more about dangerous product liability cases, visit our defective products practice area page

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