Remains of 3 victims recovered from collapsed 6-story apartment — city, building owner sued for failing to alert residents about deteriorating structure

Three victims were recently recovered from the six-story, century-old apartment building in Davenport, Iowa, that partially collapsed last weekend, officials reported.

Davenport Police Chief Jeff Bladel announced on Monday that the bodies of three missing men were recovered from the rubble of the collapsed apartment building.

Authorities found the body of 42-year-old Branden Colvin Sr. on Saturday, 51-year-old Ryan Hitchcock on Sunday, and 60-year-old Daniel Prien on Monday.

Officials had previously reported that the men had a “high probability of being home at the time of the collapse.”

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“We don’t have any other information at this time that there are any additional people missing,” Bladel said.

According to Quad-City Times, building resident Dayna Feuerbach filed a lawsuit on Monday against the building’s owner, Andrew Wold, and the city. Feuerbach was able to escape her fifth-floor apartment during the building’s collapse last week.

The lawsuit accused the defendants of common law negligence and negligent infliction of emotional distress.

“When it first happened, I don’t know, I didn’t realize the finality of it,” Feuerbach told the Times days after the incident. “I guess I thought, ‘Well, this is awful, but somehow there’ll be repairs and we’ll go on living back in the building.’ But then we realized pretty soon that that was it, that the building was going to be coming down, but we’d never get back in again and we’d lose everything, and, boy, that realization was awful.”

Wold released a statement on May 30 regarding the collapse, stating that “our thoughts and prayers are with our tenants.” He has not replied to further requests for comment, the Associated Press reported.

Surveillance footage from a nearby building obtained by CNN showed the minutes leading up to the partial collapse. The video captured bent support braces and pieces of brick falling from the building.

A building engineer wrote in a letter on May 24 that the building’s brick façade had separated from the interior wall, noting that it appeared “ready to fall imminently.” The engineer also noticed that the interior wall was becoming unstable and “causing deformation.”

The “brick façade is unlikely to be preserved in place, but it can be brought down in a safe, controlled manner,” the engineer advised.

A permit was issued, and repair work was started on May 25.

A couple of days later, a concerned citizen phoned 911 to alert dispatchers that part of the exterior wall was “bulging out.”

On Monday, Davenport Mayor Mike Matson stated that the city is looking into the emergency call made days before the building’s partial collapse.

“Right now, as I’m sure you can understand, our focus has been on the families of the victims and the ongoing recovering efforts,” Matson said.

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