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Husband contemplating wrongful death lawsuit for wife's death

Saying good-bye to a loved one in New York and elsewhere weighs heavy on the lives and hearts of those involved. Friends and family must learn to deal with their new lives. One particular family has recently been dealing with this unfortunate situation and may soon be filing a wrongful death lawsuit.

A 31-year-old woman in the Virginia Beach City Jail died last summer after choking on a plastic jail bracelet. According to the woman's husband, employees at the jail are to blame for her death. The alleged negligence consisted of failure on the part of jail staffers to ensure she was suitably monitored and received proper care.

The woman was sent to jail for 10 days for contempt of court after she arrived to court for a traffic offense case drunk. Her blood alcohol level was allegedly twice the legal limit when she was placed in a holding cell.

Initially, the woman was put in a cell with another person and reportedly began shaking and hallucinating. She was put in an observation cell where she apparently choked on her jail bracelet and died. Medical experts say that her behavior may have been the result of alcohol withdrawal.

The jail says they have instituted a key change. They have installed monitoring rooms to allow deputies to observe inmates who are suicidal, mentally ill or who have used alcohol or drugs.

When the negligence of a third party contributes to the death of another person, family members may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. The woman's husband has filed a "notice of claim," which often means a lawsuit will be filed.

Filing a wrongful death lawsuit may give the family some closure and often provides necessary payments to cover lost wages, medical bills, funeral expenses and more.

Source: Daily Press, "York husband claims Virginia Beach jail caused wife's death in choking incident," Peter Dujardin, Mar. 17, 2012

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