Sunday, February 28, 2010

Greenville, South Carolina: Ryan Emory, 16, Killed in jump from Ambulance

Ryan Emory, Age 16

Teen Killed In Jump From Ambulance; Lawsuit Filed

Suit Filed On Anniversary Of 16-Year-Old's Death

POSTED: 11:16 am EDT March 23, 2011
UPDATED: 8:30 pm EDT March 23, 2011

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- WYFF News 4 has learned that the family of an autistic teenager who died a year ago after jumping out of a moving ambulance has filed a lawsuit against the ownership of Greenville Memorial Hospital.

Ryan Emory, 16, died on February 28, 2010 while being transferred by ambulance to a hospital in Columbia. Greenville Health Corporation owns Greenville Memorial Hospital and the hospital's Mobile Care Ambulance service.

Shortly after Ryan’s death, his mother, Shelley Hodge, said two local psychiatric hospitals had refused to admit him and that’s why he was being transported to Columbia.

According to the lawsuit, Ryan was admitted to the emergency department of Greenville Memorial Hospital on Feb. 26. Emergency department records said that Emory became “extremely agitated and volatile and displayed symptoms of aggression,” and that Ryan said he was going to “hurt himself and exhibited outbursts of anger, crying and screaming when he was informed he was to be transferred to William S. Hall Psychiatric Institute,” according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit says that despite Ryan and his mother’s objections, arrangements were made to transfer him. The lawsuit says that the transfer form indicated known risks with the transfer and identified “security” as accompanying personnel.

The suit alleges that during transport, Ryan was allowed to release himself from the stretcher, open the back door of the ambulance and fall from the ambulance into Interstate 85.
Ryan died of multiple head and body trauma and cardiac arrest.

The wrongful death lawsuit alleges gross negligence and recklessness and seeks compensation for “conscious pain and suffering of Ryan prior to his death, as well as for his necessary funeral and burial expense and cost of probate.” The family is seeking a jury trial.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Brooklyn, New York: Tavon Turpin, 11, dies in fire after being left alone

Eleven-year-old autistic boy dies in fire; grandmother charged for leaving him alone

BY Oren Yaniv, Erin Durkin and Jonathan Lemire

Originally Published:Tuesday, February 16th 2010, 12:16 PM
Updated: Tuesday, February 16th 2010, 11:21 PM

An autistic 11-year-old boy who can barely speak died in a fire that he set Tuesday when his grandmother left him alone in her Brooklyn apartment, officials and witnesses said.

Tavon Turpin used matches or a lighter to ignite the blaze in a hallway closet while his grandmother, Melinda McLain, 59, had gone to a deli near the Coney Island apartment, police said.

The grandmother was hit with criminal charges for leaving home without Tavon, who recently sparked a small fire by cooking a cell phone in a microwave, police and FDNY sources said.

"The kid didn't have a chance," said neighbor Wigberto Figueroa, 34. "It's so sad."

Tavon, who lived with McLain in Coney Islands's Ocean Towers, set the blaze around noon. Firefighters tried to revive the boy after pulling him from the 15th-floor flat, but he couldn't be saved.

McLain returned home, saw Tavon's lifeless body and broke down, weeping.

She was arrested Tuesday night at Coney Island Hospital, where she was being treated for smoke inhalation and asthma. Cops charged her with reckless endangerment and endangering the welfare of a child, police sources said.

"She loved that boy," said neighbor Allen Pearsall, 48. "That little boy was this lady's life. None of us are perfect."

Four years ago in the same complex, a 7-year-old boy playing with a lighter sparked an inferno that killed three others. Ricardo (Rico) Clark, 16, and his two cousins, Jahgiria Sheffer, 10, and Jahnae O'Pharrow, 3, died after being trapped in their bedrooms.

Hours before Tuesday's fire, a 60-year-old grandmother died after surging flames trapped her inside her Queens apartment.

The blaze tore through the living room of Deborah Kelly's 17th-floor apartment in Lefrak City building just before 3 a.m., blocking the front door, witnesses said.The cause of that fire remains under investigation, but doesn't appear suspicious, FDNY officials said.

Neighbors said Kelly, a mother of two, had lived in the building for about 12 years. She shared her apartment with a daughter and a granddaughter. They weren't home at the time of the fire, neighbors said.

"She was a very lovely person," neighbor Loretta Henderson said. "They're a close family. It's sad."