Contractor pleads guilty in 2016 death of Sioux Falls worker

A representative of Hultgren Construction admitted guilt Thursday for the 2016 building collapse in downtown Sioux Falls. (Photo courtesy of KSFY)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - A construction company accused of breaking federal law in the death of a worker during a 2016 building collapse in downtown Sioux Falls has pleaded guilty.

A representative of Hultgren Construction entered the guilty plea Thursday to a federal charge willful violation of the Occupational Safety and Health Act resulting in the death of an employee.

The collapse as employees were removing a load bearing wall between the former Copper Lounge building and Skelly's Pub killed Ethan McMahon.

Hultgren Construction faces up to five years of probation and a $500,000 fine. Company official Brian Bauer told a judge that the business does not have the ability to pay any fines.

Insurers for the company said last month they will pay more than $4 million to settle lawsuits in the aftermath.

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