Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) October 25, 2012 – Some cases just defy all logic. This is one of those cases.
“It’s a rare thing to hear that a police officer does not know how to perform CPR. Almost unbelievable in fact, but that is what happened in this case. An 11-year-old girl died from an asthma attack, presumably because a police officer refused to help her as he tried to hand a ticket to her mother,” recounted Brooks Schuelke, an Austin personal injury lawyer with Perlmutter & Schuelke, L.L.P. “The mother had been driving the wrong way down a one-way street, trying to get medical help.”
Two years have passed since the death of the young girl. The mother was rushing to the hospital to get help for her daughter, and by mistake, headed the wrong way up a one-way street. She was stopped by a cop who then wanted to ticket her for the offence. She reports that she begged him for help, but that he ran away. Currently, she plans to sue the police officer in civil court. She reports that she is not seeking revenge, but is hoping that something like this will never happen to another parent in the same situation.
Her story is resonating with many parents, particularly those with children with severe allergies or asthma. The incident began when the woman’s daughter was playing in a park. The girl began having an asthma attack; her mother placed her into the car to take her to the hospital. The officer pulled them over, and when asked to perform CPR, he reportedly stated that he did not know how. After the incident, “It actually took the police department several days to find out who the cop was,” said Schuelke.
At trial, the city attorney tried to suggest that the real danger was the asthma attack and the girl’s mother driving the wrong way down a one-way street. The family’s attorney suggested that was nonsense, and that the greater danger was the police officer holding the mother up from getting to the hospital in a timely manner. The young girl died because the officer delayed her mother and would not, or could not, perform life-saving CPR, stated the family attorney.
“What are the chances this mother will win her wrongful death lawsuit?” asked Schuelke. “Assuming they can get around immunity issues, I would say fairly high, as the mother had a medical emergency and a dying daughter. What was that officer thinking when he allegedly refused first aid, ran away and then tried to cover up his involvement in the case? I would think that the jury will not take kindly to such egregious behavior on the part of a member of law enforcement.”
Perlmutter & Schuelke, LLP
1717 W. 6th Street, Suite 375
Austin, Texas 78703-4868
Call (512) 476-4944