1 year later: Woman visits construction site for the first time - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU


1 year later: Woman visits construction site for the first time where husband died

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The Bautista family mourns the loss of Ricardo Bautista in the exact spot where he died one year ago (FOX5). The Bautista family mourns the loss of Ricardo Bautista in the exact spot where he died one year ago (FOX5).

It has been one year since the death of a man killed in a construction accident at Tivoli Village. On Tuesday morning, for the first time, his wife visited the spot where he died and announced that she is still fighting for the justice her husband deserves.

Ricardo Bautista was 30-years-old when the scaffold he was working on fell apart. OSHA fined Performance Builders for two serious violations that resulted in his death. The fines, which totaled $7,000, indicate Performance Builders failed to lock the scaffold in place. Since the accident, OSHA has cited Performance Builders multiple times for continuing to ignore the same safety codes.

Jacquelyne Bautista cried when construction workers showed her the exact spot where her husband fell and died. She and her three sons were surrounded by friends and dozens of employees in the construction industry who wanted to show their support.

"It was very emotional because it was the first time that I made it, seeing the spot where he took his last breath. It's heartbreaking," she said. "For me and my kids, it hasn't been a year. For us it's like it just happened yesterday."

Ricardo Jr., the couple's oldest son, has taken the news the hardest. The 7-year-old cried at a memorial mass for his father later that night.

"He's still asking, 'Mom? Where's dad?'" the mother said. "He said, 'Mom. I want to see my dad for the last time.'"

Jacquelyne Bautista wore a yellow shirt throughout the day that reads #ShameonPerformanceBuilders and #DestroyingFamilies on the front and reads #JusticeforRicardoBautista on the back. Protesters have criticized Performance Builders for failing to correct the safety issues that led to her husband's death.

Tim Carlton, a representative with the Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters, said he will continue to keep a promise he made to her and her family.

"We gave a promise to Jacquelyne a year ago that we wouldn't forget it and we won't forget the reason why it happened. We're going to continue to battle. We're not going to go away," Carlton said. "Contractors like Performance Builders cut corners. Cut safety."

"When she told me she wanted to see where her husband took his last breath, it took my breath away," he continued. "It made me realize how strong she is and how much family support she has."

FOX5 reached out to the owner of Performance Builders, Randy Sorensen, to ask how his safety practices and enforcement have changed over the past year, but he did not respond.

In the days leading up to the scaffold collapse, OSHA investigators wrote Sorensen was on site but ignored at least one of the safety violations that led to Bautista’s death.

“(Sorensen) could have identified the cut brace that was on ground level and in plain view,” read the report.

OSHA agreed to change multiple policies as a result of a FOX5 investigation into the way it has handled cases involving Performance Builders. The construction company originally paid $5,600 worth of fines less than a month after Bautista's death for repeated problems at a different job site. Performance Builders is now facing $44,000 worth of fines for "willful" violations because of an unsafe scaffold at a third job site.

A lawyer for the Bautista family said he will be filing a lawsuit against Performance Builders by the end of the year.

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