Sixty-three-year-old Deannella Bletson of Portland died in April 1997.
She was stabbed 17 times.
On the day she died, Mrs. Bletson reportedly dead bolted her door and locked a heavy, metal security screen to keep her son Harrison, a crack cocaine user away.
The suit says a U S West telephone worker got a ladder from his truck, held it steady while Harrison climbed to a 2nd floor window and then left.
U S West officials tells KOMO 4 News, Harrison had a drivers' license with that address. They declined to comment on the suit in detail, but said the repairman was a 31-year employee with an excellent record.
The man who filed the suit, Frederick Bletson of Everett, says he is convinced that his mother would still be alive if the U.S. worker had not helped Harrison get in.
He says the worker didn't knock at the door, trying to find out if anyone was home, or take any other precaution.
By Bryan Johnson