Lawsuits filed in hospital, accident deaths - Odessa American: Courts

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Posted: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 7:00 am | Updated: 9:05 am, Wed Oct 3, 2012.

Two civil lawsuits have been filed in Ector County on multiple deaths, one case of which occurred on a highway and the other in a hospital.

Linda and Jose Araiza filed a lawsuit against Nicole Jean Sheesley after both Sheesley and Linda Araiza were no-billed in an accident that killed three children in a family.

Linda Araiza and Sheesley were the drivers in a deadly May 29 accident on Highway 385, in which Sheesley’s 2008 Ford pickup collided with Linda Araiza’s Dodge Caravan from behind, injuring five and killing three children.

According to the lawsuit, the Araizas claimed Sheesley failed to control her speed, followed too closely and was generally negligent while driving, causing the accident.

The Araizas are seeking damages to cover physical pain and suffering, emotional pain, physical impairment, medical expenses and past and future lost wages, according to the lawsuit, although no specific dollar amount is given.

A lawsuit also was filed against Basin Healthcare Center after an employee at the hospital had surgery and died of a post-operation opioid induced respiratory infection.

According to the lawsuit, 24-year-old Samantha Tijerina had surgery July 28, 2011, to remove her gallbladder at the hospital where she was also an employee. But after the surgery, she was given several pain killers through 12:20 a.m. the next day and was found unresponsive about 4:50 a.m.

Hospital staff then started CPR and called 9-1-1. She was pronounced dead at Medical Center Hospital, according to the lawsuit.

While receiving the medications, Tijerina did not have her vital signs checked once after midnight July 28, the lawsuit claimed, despite hospital staff checking on her multiple times and reporting she was sleeping and snoring.

However, two doctors signed affidavits along with the lawsuit saying that snoring in her situation indicates a serious problem and that the nursing staff failed to properly monitor her before her death.

Tijerina’s family is seeking unspecified damages in connection with her death from Basin Healthcare Center.

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