Lawsuit over fatal Bridgeport fire goes before state Supreme Court

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HARTFORD — The Connecticut Supreme Court will decide whether Bridgeport officials can be sued for failing to inspect a public housing building before a fire that killed a mother and her three young children in 2009.

Tiana Black, her 4-year-old twin daughters and her 5-year-old son died in the fire at the P.T. Barnum complex, which is run by the city’s Housing Authority.

Black’s mother, Twila Williams, filed a wrongful death lawsuit in 2010, alleging city officials failed to inspect the apartment and fire code violations may have slowed the family’s response in fleeing the fire.

A trial court judge dismissed claims in the lawsuit against city officials in 2013, but the state Appellate Court overturned that ruling.

The state Supreme Court is set to hear arguments in the case Thursday.