A woman is filing a wrongful death lawsuit after her sister died from injuries that were reportedly sustained during an arrest. According to reports, officers from Sherman, Texas, pulled the woman's sister over when she failed to indicate before changing lanes. The alleged actions of the officers after the stop are what have led the sister to file the wrongful death claim.
When the police officers stopped the woman, they placed both her and her passenger in the backseat of the police car. While in the backseat, the woman is believed to have put a small amount of cocaine in her mouth which she then attempted to swallow. According to the passenger's statement, one officer saw the woman attempting to swallow something and began trying to prevent her from doing so.
According to the witness's statement, the officer supposedly began hitting her with an open fist and then held a flashlight against her neck in an attempt to force her to spit out the substance. Allegedly, the woman then passed out due to the pressure on her neck and was then removed from the car by the officers. After removing the woman from the car, one of the officers reportedly stunned her with his Taser gun.
According to the lawsuit filed by the woman's sister, she was left lying on the ground for approximately 20 minutes before the officers called for medical assistance. When the emergency medical personnel arrived, they took her to a local Texas hospital where she was placed on life support. Less than a month later, she died while still in the hospital.
Losing a loved one to seemingly preventable circumstances is never easy. Losing a loved one due to the negligent actions of others is even more difficult. While no amount of money can ease the pain of a loss, the compensation received from a successfully litigated wrongful death suit can sometimes make the transition into life after the loss more bearable for the family.
Source: Houston Chronicle, "Lawsuit describes woman's disturbing death outside Texas cop car", Carol Christian, May 28, 2014