Family sues convenience store over bath salts
An Indiana family is blaming a convenience store for the death of a family member who had taken bath salts.
Daniel Franklin's death changed everything for his three children, his fiance and his sister.
"I'm furious. I want to go and put a sign on their lawn that says, 'Hey...they killed my brother'," Michelle Franklin said.
Daniel Franklin was 33 when he died on the Muncie bypass after wrecking his motorcycle last May. Before the accident, he ingested illegal bath salts, a product that gives a high similar to cocaine.
His family says the drug quickly changed the fun-loving, stay-at-home father.
"So paranoid, so tense and angry," said Michelle of her brother.
Now, his widow is suing Harpreet and Sukhwinder Singh and others who operated and worked at a Muncie convenience store where they say Franklin bought the bath salts.
"They should be taken off the shelf," said Franklin's fiance, Toni Estes, "and never be able to sell them again."
"I want them gone. They should never have been available for purchase," Michelle said.
Police agreed and weeks after Daniel died, they raided a handful Muncie convenience stores and arrested the Singhs and other suspects for selling the stuff.
Franklin's family's attorney says "there are several different legal arguments here. Product liability is just one of them."
Attorney B. Joseph Davis of Muncie says even though bath salts have a warning label, they are still defective products and makers and sellers know it.
"All of these individual entities know this product is being consumed, even though it says 'not for human consumption.' So it's clear there is deceptive labeling," Davis said.
And the fact Daniel Franklin took bath salts knowingly, Davis says, doesn't hurt the family's case.
"People are buying this. They don't know what they're buying. It would be safer to purchase dynamite. Then you at least know what you're buying," Davis said.
"He was a good person and they killed him," Michelle Franklin said.
The Singhs could not be reached for comment.