Batavia man files lawsuit against Harley Davidson, local dealer after deadly motorcycle crash

Raven Brown
Updated: May 03, 2021 06:09 PM
Created: May 03, 2021 04:43 PM

BATAVIA, N.Y. (WHEC) — A Batavia man is suing Harley Davidson Motor Company, Stan’s Harley-Davidson’s in Batavia and Robert Bosch.

“It’s my biggest thought is loss,” Harold Morris said. “I want to make sure nobody else goes through it."

11 months ago long-time avid motorcyclist Harold Morris's life changed forever.

“I was in the hospital out of Erie, PA for four weeks,” Morris said. “I don't remember a thing. Absolutely no memory from the accident."

Last June, Morris and his partner, Pamela SinClair, of Caledonia, were involved in a crash in Pennsylvania while riding a 2019 Harley-Davidson trike motorcycle.

Morris was driving when he says it malfunctioned, left the roadway, struck an embankment, and overturned, killing SinClair.  

“She was a very generous, caring woman who really loved the family, loved to travel with me and just enjoy life,” Morris said. 

Morris's attorney, Paul Edelstein, said the trike was bought in December 2018 at Stan’s in Batavia and malfunctioned two months later, causing it to swerve and eject Morris and SinClair, but at that time they weren't seriously hurt.

Then in 2019, Edelstein said a safety recall was put out from Harley Davidson regarding the trike's traction control software, manufactured by Robert Bosch LLC, which could cause activation of the rear brake, leading to an unexpected change of direction. 

“We do not have an answer from Harley-Davidson as to what happened in this case,” Edelstein said. “We believe we know the answer. We filed a complaint that lays out the allegations but we think they know everything. We also think there are a lot of people out there that may have more information there was more than 12,000 of these trikes put on the market and we don't know everybody else who may have had the same experience Harold has."

Edelstein said Morris took the motorcycle in after the recall was issued with a claim for them to pay the medical bills from the first accident.

“Harley-Davidson’s attorneys said, ‘not our problem we don't think it had anything to do with this recall’” Edelstein said. “And they gave him back the trike. Unfortunately, a few short months later the exact same situation happened again."

Morris, a rider for 40 years, has not gotten back on one since the accident and hopes this suit brings change.

“I hope for all of the parties involved to accept the responsibility and to make sure none of their other customers experience the same problems, difficulties tragedy that myself and the SinCair’s have,” Morris said. 

Attorney for Stan’s Harley released the following statement:

"Stan’s Harley-Davidson has been providing countless customers with quality service since they first opened their doors in 1958. Stan’s Harley-Davidson stands behind the service they provided Mr. Morris. We will not try this case in the media and feel that plaintiff counsel’s efforts to do so create a disservice to his client, all parties and the community of jurors."

Diane Orosz, Esq.

A spokesperson for Harley-Davidson Motor Company sent News10NBC a statement saying: "Harley-Davidson does not comment on pending litigation."

A Bosch spokesperson issued a similar statement saying: "As a matter of policy, Bosch does not comment concerning topics in litigation."

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