High Bail Set For Building Collapse Crane Operator

High Bail Set For Building Collapse Crane Operator

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PHILADELPHIA -

Bail was set at more than $1.5 million Wednesday morning for the man who was operating an excavator during the deadly building collapse earlier this month in Center City.

Sean Benschop, 42, is charged with six counts of involuntary manslaughter, 13 counts of reckless endangerment, and causing a catastrophe in the June 5 collapse at 22nd and Market streets.

Benschop allegedly had pain killers and marijuana in his system at the time.

He was in court Wednesday for what was supposed to be a preliminary hearing. But the hearing itself has been postponed until Sept. 17, and it's expected to be "a protracted matter."

FOX 29's Steve Keeley reported from the courthouse Wednesday morning that Benschop's wife was in court with him.

The head of the Homicide Unit for the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office handled the case and argued against bail, saying Benschop was a flight risk. He has allegedly used five or six different names and birth dates during prior arrests.

An issue with Benschop's immigration status was discussed at sidebar during the hearing.

In the end, he received bail, but it's set at $150,000 for each involuntary manslaughter count and $50,000 for each reckless endangerment count, so he'll need about $155,000 to be released on bail.

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