Jeep Dealership Denies Fault in Anton Yelchin Death
The local dealership that sold Anton Yelchin the jeep that fatally pinned him to his house’s gate is alleging that the actor was responsible for his own death.
On Wednesday, California-based Valencia CJD filed a response to the wrongful death lawsuit filed by Yelchin’s family. The dealership is claiming that Yelchin’s “misuse” of the car caused his death.
In court documents obtained by PEOPLE, the car company alleges that Yelchin’s death was the result of his “misuse, misapplication or damage of the product or modification, repair and/or maintenance of the product involved.”
Despite the voluntary recall of the vehicle in 2016 due to a gearshift design that made it difficult to tell what gear the car was in, the dealership claims that the car was up to regulation at the time it was sold to Yelchin.
“All products produced by the defendant were in conformity with the existing state-of-the-art, and as a result, this defendant’s products were not defective in any manner,” states the documents.
A lawyer for Yelchin did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Valencia CJD also alleges that Yelchin’s parents did not preserve the vehicle as it was at the time of the accident, therefore compromising important evidence.
According to the documents, the dealership is requesting that the case be dismissed with prejudice.
The response comes just two months after Yelchin’s parents filed the wrongful death lawsuit.
The Star Trek Beyond actor died of accidental blunt traumatic asphyxia after he was pinned between his car and the gate of his home in Studio City, California. Yelchin’s 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee rolled backward down the steep driveway. He was 27.