Crime & Courts

Inquiry into boy's death on inflatable not over

Wichita police say they are still investigating the death of a boy who fell from an inflatable amusement ride last week.

A preliminary meeting with the District Attorney's Office on Wednesday did not result in criminal charges, said Tom Stolz, Wichita deputy police chief.

"We are keeping it classified as an accident," Stolz said. "But we have gotten new information, and depending on that information will make another presentation" to the district attorney.

Five-year-old Matthew Branham died March 22 after falling and striking his head on a concrete floor at Pure Entertainment, an indoor amusement center near Kellogg and Tyler.

Police say the child and several older family members were on an inflatable known as King of the Hill when the fall occurred.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission also is investigating the circumstances surrounding the boy's death, according to Patty Davis, a spokeswoman for the agency.

Todd Shadid, a Wichita lawyer representing Matthew's parents, declined comment Wednesday.

Jesse Zogleman, manager of Pure Entertainment, called the incident a "bad situation" but added that his company "was built and brought to Wichita because the people and community of Wichita wanted it."

In an e-mail, Zogleman wrote: "We care about our clients, kids and providing a safe experience. Pure Entertainment has rule, regulations and structure in place so that people do not get hurt.

"Your children, my children and the children of this community will always be safe at Pure Entertainment as long as we follow the rules, play safe and use the attractions with respect."

Related stories from Wichita Eagle

  Comments