Among the 51 deaths was Remington "Remi" Walden, a 4-year-old boy from Bainbridge, Ga., who was killed when a 1999 Grand Cherokee driven by his aunt was hit from behind by a pickup truck in March 2012. The child was on his way to a tennis lesson when the SUV was struck. The fuel tank leaked, engulfing the Jeep in flames and killing the boy, according to a lawsuit filed against Chrysler by his family.

"Numerous witnesses saw Remi struggling to escape and heard him screaming for help," the lawsuit says.

The lawsuit alleges that Chrysler placed the gas tank in a "crush zone" behind the rear axle and knew the location was dangerous, and that the company failed to protect the gas tank against rupturing.

In court papers, Chrysler denied the allegations and said the pickup truck driver's negligence was the sole cause of the boy's injuries.

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