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Hotel pool where teen was electrocuted was not cleared to be open, Harris County says

HOUSTON – A hotel pool in north Harris County where a teenager was electrocuted and died over the weekend should not have been open, according to exclusive documents obtained by KPRC 2.

Saturday, family members say 15-year-old Khaleel Marcos Reynolds was swimming at a pool at North Villa Hotel and Banquet Hall off the north freeway near Richey. While in the water, he touched an exposed wire from an interior light and was electrocuted, officials said. Reynolds later died at a hospital. At the time, Harris County Precinct 4 Constable’s deputies said someone had removed the interior light from its housing, leaving the wires exposed.

Harris County told KPRC 2 Tuesday that the hotel never had a permit for its pool. 

Inspection records from Harris County Health Department showed the hotel failed its initial inspection in July 2018. Numerous violations were found including an exposed lighting fixture, according to the health department. Records show the hotel reapplied for a permit in December 2018 but failed to meet the requirements and was ordered to remain closed.

An attorney for Khaleel’s family said a “wonderful teenager was taken way too early which was entirely preventable and due to the hotel’s negligence.”

Health inspectors returned to the property Monday and an inspection showed numerous violations were still present and the closing of the pool should be upheld.