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Friday, 12 April 2019 13:25

Business owner charged with workplace manslaughter

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PORTLAND (WGME) - The owner of a Maine home improvement business has been charged with a rare crime in Maine.

The charges of workplace manslaughter, as well as manslaughter, filed against Shawn Purvis stem from the death last December of 30-year-old roofer Alan Loignon.

 

Loignon was Purvis' employee and half brother. 

 

Attorney Michael Bigos is representing the Loignon Estate, which Bigos said plans to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Maine Superior Court.

 

 

"Alan Loignon was a hard worker. And that day, he expected to go up on the roof and have a safe workplace," Bigos said. "As a result of this fall, Mr. Loignon leaves two kids without a father and a fiancee without a future husband."

 

Prosecutors have accused Purvis of recklessly or with criminal negligence causing Loignon's death.

 

"This indictment should send a message to all roofing contractors that they can't hide behind whether their crew is an independent contractor or an employee," Bigos said.

 

Over the past seven years, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Purvis Home Improvement four times for his roofers not wearing fall protection safety harnesses.

 

OSHA issued nearly $44,000 in fines against Purvis for those and other violations.

 

"Purvis Home Improvement was in control of the job site and provided all the safety equipment but didn't have people use it. And as a result, Mr. Loignon fell off the roof and die," Bigos said.

 

The next court appearance for Purvis has yet to be set. If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.