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Valentine's Day Suit Seeks Justice for Family Who Lost Sons

A local couple that pled with the community to come together against drunk driving as they lived through their first holiday season without two of their young sons, has filed a lawsuit over the crash that destroyed their family.

Associates and Bruce L. Scheiner, Attorneys for the Injured, filed the suit against George W. Butler III on behalf of Maria Del Rosario Bustamante and Juan Luis Martinez on Thursday in Lee County Circuit Court.

Two of the couple’s three young sons were killed and the third critically injured when an accused drunk driver smashed into her car as she traveled to Fort Myers Beach. The Jan. 14, 2007 crash occurred on San Carlos Boulevard near Pine Ridge Road.

Jesus Martinez, 6, and Jordy Martinez, 15-months, were killed in the accident. Juan Luis Martinez, 12, who was sitting between his brothers in the backseat, survived but continues to deal with serious injuries as a result of the crash, which left the seat belt buried in his abdomen.

The parents have been devastated by the accident but have reached out to speak against the perils of drunk driving, most recently in several holiday media reports focusing on the struggling local chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

“Surely there is no loss felt more acutely nor a pain suffered more deeply than a parents’ loss of a child,” said their attorney, Bruce L. Scheiner, of the suit, which was filed on Valentine’s Day. “This is a tragic case of a drunk on the road costing a parent not one, but two children and leaving them to attempt to pick up the pieces with a third son, now critically injured and mourning the loss of his two young brothers.”

The suit requests a trial by jury and compensation in unspecified amounts for medical bills, pain and suffering, disability, disfigurement, mental anguish, loss of the capacity for the enjoyment of life, expenses of hospitalization, medical and nursing care and treatment, and loss of earnings.

Butler, 33, is in Lee County Jail, where he continues to await trial on six felonies and 13 misdemeanors, including negligent homicide, DUI manslaughter and hit and run, leaving the scene of an accident.

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