NEWBURGH, N.Y. (AP) — The father of three children who drowned in upstate New York when their mother drove her minivan into the Hudson River is suing a city and county for $40 million each.
The Times Herald-Record of Middletown reports Jean Pierre has filed a notice of claim alleging the city of Newburgh permitted a dangerous condition at its waterfront boat ramp that allowed LaShanda Armstrong to drive her van into the river on the night of April 12.
Armstrong and three of her four children, Landen Pierre, 5, Lance Pierre, 2, and 11-month-old Laianna Pierre, drowned in the tragic plunge. Her 10-year-old son, La'Shaun, escaped through a window and swam to safety.
Before Amstrong loaded her kids into the van that she would eventually drive into the Hudson, she cryptically announced her plans in a Facebook post.
MidHudsonNews.com first posted the message, which was sent from Lashanda Armstrong's BlackBerry. It says: "I'm so sorry everyone forgive me please for what I'm gonna do.... This Is It!!!!"
Pierre, Armstrong's estranged boyfriend, claims Orange County's Department of Child Protective Services had the responsibility to monitor the 25-year-old woman.
County officials haven't commented on the pending lawsuit. An attorney for the private law firm representing the city wasn't available for comment Monday.