Report: CBS Dropped From GREAT WHITE Nightclub Fire Lawsuit

The Associated Press is reporting that attorneys representing families of some of the 100 people killed in the West Warwick nightclub fire as well a number who were injured have agreed to drop CBS Broadcasting Inc. as a defendant in one of the lawsuits filed in the aftermath.

Lawyers for both sides signed a stipulation dropping the claims against CBS. The stipulation was entered into the court record on Monday.

Max Wistow, one of the lawyers representing the plaintiffs, would not comment on the decision to dismiss CBS, but said the attorneys planned to name another defendant in its place.

He would not name the expected defendant.

This lawsuit includes more than 200 plaintiffs, the largest number of any of the suits filed stemming from the fire.

CBS had been named in several of the suits. Brian Butler, a cameraman for CBS-affiliate Channel 12 in Providence, was at the club recording tape for a story on building safety when the fire began.

His footage showed the blaze beginning when pyrotechnics were shot off during a concert by GREAT WHITE, and the ensuing chaos. In addition to the 100 killed, the Feb. 20, 2003, fire injured more than 200 others.

The blaze began when sparks from the pyrotechnics that were part of the band GREAT WHITE's show ignited flammable foam placed near the stage as soundproofing.

Several suits — including the one from which CBS has now been dismissed — alleged Butler blocked an exit while he filmed, potentially increasing the death toll.

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