OGDEN — More details have emerged in the allegations in a wrongful death lawsuit against Ogden School District.
In new filings in 2nd District Court, the suit now alleges Horace Mann Elementary School officials essentially ignored first-grade student Jose Eduardo Flores Bedolla for possibly two hours or more when he complained of illness Oct. 29, 2010.
Officials left a message with a relative to come take him home, it reads, instead of letting a respiratory therapist examine him or giving any thought to summoning an ambulance.
The suit claims when a teacher, who was also a respiratory therapist, noticed the 7-year-old’s poor condition and offered to check his vital signs, she was told “not to touch him,” the suit states.
A school custodian did assist the boy, removing Bedolla’s shirt when he was sweating and helping him as he appeared too weak to walk by himself.
The boy ended up sitting on a bench alone outside the school office, where he was visible to faculty and staff.
He was there “for well over an hour, possibly over two hours,” sometimes crying, the suit alleges, while exhibiting symptoms such as vomiting and reaching for adults as he asked to be held.
Numerous students saw him on the bench, some expressing concern as he was cold to the touch “and bluish in color.”
Eventually, his older sister came into the school on 9th Street at 1300 East to pick up the boy, carrying him to his mother waiting in a car.
They drove for McKay-Dee Hospital, dialing 911 en route, and were met by paramedics at the Smith’s parking lot at 12th Street and Harrison Boulevard.
There, the boy was loaded into an ambulance and taken to McKay-Dee’s emergency room.
“At the ER, Eduardo was hypoxic (short of oxygen) and died when his heart arrested,” the lawsuit states.
The suit filed in June by his mother, Maria Flores, names the school district, then-Superintendent Noel Zabriskie, school Principal Ross Lunceford and Lunceford’s administrative assistant, Suzanne Durrant, as defendants, plus John and Jane Doe defendants yet to be named who might have involvement.
The boy had hypoplastic left heart syndrome, which occurs when the left side of the heart is critically underdeveloped.
The suit contends Ogden School District knew of the boy’s condition but failed to formulate health and emergency care plans for him.
As it did in June, the Utah Attorney General’s Office filed a response last week to the new allegations, listing simple denials, but no case law or other detail.
Flores is seeking in excess of $300,000 in damages. The case remains in the motion and discovery phase, pending without date before 2nd District Judge Mark DeCaria.