Chilling photo from toddler’s cruise death
THE parents of a toddler who plunged to her death from a cruise ship window are suing for millions as they release a chilling pic of where she fell.
Chloe Wiegand was being held by her grandad near to a window, 46 metres from a concrete deck below, when she slipped.
But her distraught family insist the blame lies with the "negligent" cruise line, which they are now reportedly launching legal action against.
The chilling image was taken by a criminal investigator and is now being used in a negligence suit accusing Royal Caribbean of breaching safety standards.
It shows the view from peering over the top of a wooden railing, which Chloe's grandad Sam had been balancing the tot on when she slipped and fell as the ship was docked in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
It also shows a significant space between the wooden railing and a large, glass window that could be completely opened.
Salvatore "Sam" Anello is facing up to six years in prison after he was charged with criminal neglect.
But Chloe's parents, Alan and Kimberly Schultz, are sticking by him as he insists nothing is worse than "what has already happened."
The devastated family have instead filed a suit against Royal Caribbean to get to the bottom of why the 11th storey window was allegedly left open.
It is reported that if their claim is successful, the grieving family will receive "unlimited" damages for "pain and mental suffering", as the tot died on American soil - rather than when the ship was at sea.
But the family's lawyer said it was impossible to "put a figure" on grief, adding: "Four simple words - caution these windows open - and we wouldn't be talking about his.
"A sticker, a decal with the Royal Caribbean logo, anything, and Chloe is still with us."
The family will claim in court that little Chloe was being "closely supervised" by her grandad at the time of her death.
They will insist Mr Anello was "unaware" one of the large panes of glass surrounding the ship's 11th floor had been slid open when he carried his granddaughter over to the railings.
The lawsuit alleges the window was the only open one "among dozens" and there was no clear indication that it had been opened.
The case also claims a 46cm gap between the wooden railing and the open window made it even more difficult for the horrified grandad to reach over and grab the toddler as she plunged to her death.
They also allege Mr Anello being colourblind made it difficult for him to distinguish between the glass and the open window.
Chloe's family have always insisted she liked to bang on glass as she did at her brother's hockey games, which is why her grandad had perched her on the wooden railing.
And in November it was reported that there is video evidence supporting the family's claim that Mr Anello was unaware the window was open - a potential bombshell for both the case against her distraught grandad and the family's Royal Caribbean suit.
Royal Caribbean has refused to comment further but described Chloe's death as a "tragic incident".
This article originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission