A Philadelphia Common Pleas jury sent a message to Philadelphia landlords yesterday, returning a $6.6 million verdict against the Wharton Center for negligence that led to a 1996 fire and forced plaintiff Yvonne Withers to jump to safety, plaintiffs counsel Rand Spear said.

After Judge C. Darnell Jones molded the verdict to an amount agreed to by the parties prior to the jury’s decision, however, the message will not be as strong. The court confirmed that the award will be reduced to $893,451.50.

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