Former hotel manager files lawsuit against town of Boone

Former hotel manager files lawsuit against town of Boone

BOONE, NC (WBTV) - A former Boone hotel operator is filing a lawsuit accusing the town or Boone of malicious prosecution and other offenses in a deadly carbon monoxide case.

Barry Damon Mallatere, former manager of the Best Western hotel in Boone, is seeking damages for claims that his constitutional rights were maliciously initiated by the town.

Mallatere says he has not been able to find gainful employment in his field after the public accusations he faced, according to a complaint. The Charlotte Observer first posted about the complaint Monday in a wrongful death lawsuit involving the hotel.

RELATED: Family of Rock Hill boy who died at Best Western hotel reaches high-priced settlement

The family of 11-year-old Jeffrey Williams, who died in 2013 from carbon monoxide poisoning at a Best Western hotel in Boone, agreed to settle a wrongful death lawsuit against the hotel chain and other parties for $12 million.

Jeffrey and his mother, Jeannie Williams stayed at the hotel in June 2013. Jeffrey died and his mother suffered serious injuries from carbon monoxide leaked from a swimming pool heating system.

Hotel staff reportedly failed to inform the Williams that another couple died in the same hotel room two months earlier. Mallatere says employees were directed to seek four indictments against him in front of the Watauga County Grand Jury that were inaccurate.

Mallatere is claiming he suffered $100,000 in damages.

Click here to read the full complaint.

The "Defendant instituted the action with malice, as defined by North Carolina law, in that Defendant lacked probable cause to seek the indictments against the Plaintiff," the complaint states. Charges were dismissed against Mallatere in March 2016.

The Williams made the following statement in regards to the settlement:

"We hope this lawsuit will continue to shine light on the need for carbon monoxide detectors in every hotel room where there is a source.  It's very difficult to putting my thoughts into sentences about this...  We miss Jeffrey everyday..."

Following Jeffrey's death, the Williams family founded The Jeffrey Lee Williams Foundation. The mission of the foundation is to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.

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