Family of Houston Rockets scout files wrongful death suit after bicycle accident

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A Houston-area family has filed a lawsuit against a construction company saying their loved one, a personnel scout for the Houston Rockets, was killed while riding his bike in a "dangerously" unfinished section of a sidewalk.

On Oct. 15, Brent "BJ" Johnson lost his life on the stretch of Almeda Parkway and Shadow Creek.

He was loved by his family, friends and the NBA community and traveled the world as part of Basketball Without Borders, the NBA and FIBA's global basketball development and community outreach program.

Johnson was also very involved with the Basketball Africa League. His wife and son told Eyewitness News he was an experienced bicyclist and always wore protective gear. They said that day was no different.

"For something like this to take him out, it's just so unfair, and I don't wish this on anybody else," said Johnson's wife, Claudette Boyance-Johnson. "[He was the] love of my life and still is."

Benny Agosto, the family's lawyer, said they're suing Pulice Construction and believe it all could have been avoided and think the company should have known better.

"This area has exposed gutters, [and] sharp concrete beams in the path," said Agosto. "He had no warning when he hit that area of construction. His front tire got caught [and] he lost his life."

The day after the incident, Agosto said the construction company sectioned off the area. Eyewitness News reached out to Pulice Construction for comment. An attorney representing the company released the following statement Tuesday:

Pulice Construction expresses its condolences to Mr. Johnson's family and friends for this truly unfortunate loss. We do not agree that Pulice Construction is responsible for Mr. Johnson's accident. However, as this matter is now in litigation, we are unable to address any details at this time.

"[This was] a big loss for the community, especially for friends and family," said his wife.

A temporary restraining order has been filed to preserve any evidence at the construction site. The family expects to move forward with a full investigation.

"We definitely do not want this happen to anyone," said the Johnson family. "This is a tough pill to swallow."

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