Any death that could have been prevented can leave family members devastated and in search of answers. It's important that Texans facing this kind of struggle know that legal remedies may be available through a wrongful death lawsuit.
Readers in Houston will be relieved that three people accused of negligence in the 2007 death of a woman have been held accountable in civil court. The three were charged after the woman was found dead after giving birth to a stillborn baby. The woman's parents were apparently not allowed to see her, but when they did, they saw that she was on the brink of death.
The parents asked the woman's husband to take her to the hospital, but he refused. The woman also refused to go to the hospital due to her and her husband's religious beliefs. The religion required the woman to do as her husband said at all times, which included not going to the hospital when, according to investigators, she developed sepsis and an infection.
According to the victim's friend, the two midwives who were hired to deliver the child were not qualified. The friend also stated that the husband had blamed the baby's death on "generational sin" on the part of his wife's family, and that the death was God's punishment. The civil court jury ruled 12-0, finding the husband, his brother and a woman who apparently acted as a midwife liable for negligence.
The decision makes the husband and his brother responsible for damages to the victim's parents in the amount of $40 million each, while the midwife is responsible for $20 million.
Source: Fox 4 News, "Jury Awards Over $100M to Parents of Misty Horner in Wrongful Death Suit," Jason M. Vaughn and Tess Koppelman, Dec. 21, 2012