Salon victim's family seeks damages

Family members of the ex-wife of Scott Dekraai, the man charged with killing eight people in a Seal Beach salon, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against him Friday seeking unspecified damages.

Joseph and Geraldine Burke, the parents of shooting victim Michelle Fournier, filed the lawsuit in Orange County Superior Court. The lawsuit also names Dekraai's 8-year-old son as a plaintiff.

Attorney Eric Traut said he believed the lawsuit was the first filed by a victim's family in the wake of the Oct. 12 shooting at Salon Meritage, the worst mass killing in Orange County history. In addition to the general damages, the lawsuit seeks coverage of funeral and burial expenses.

Early this week, the family of salon employee Christy Wilson also sued Dekraai, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Traut said if Dekraai, a Huntington Beach resident, does not respond to the lawsuit within 30 days, he will file a writ of attachment to prevent Dekraai from moving or transferring assets.

The lawsuit states that Dekraai "contemplated and carefully planned" the killings and described the other victims to police as "collateral damage."

"He was clearly aware of the consequences of his actions, which included robbing his 8-year-old of a loving and caring mother, and leaving an extended family with an indelible void in each of their lives forever," the lawsuit reads.

Dekraai's son, who was caught in the middle of a bitter custody battle at the time of the shooting, is staying with family, according to Traut.

Twitter: @MichaelMillerHB

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