Suit charges homeless woman denied care

Nov. 21, 2012 at 3:54 PM

ST. LOUIS, Nov. 21 (UPI) -- A St. Louis family is suing two local hospitals after their homeless relative was denied care and later died in police custody from a blood clot.

Anna Brown, 29, went to St. Mary's Health Center complaining of severe pain in her legs so bad she could not walk Sept. 21, 2011. Her family says doctors there called police when Brown refused to leave without getting more care.

About an hour after police removed Brown from the St. Mary's emergency room she collapsed in a jail cell and died. An autopsy found she had blood clots in her legs that moved to her lungs and killer her, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch said Wednesday.

Brown's family is also suing St. Louis University Hospital, where Brown had previously sought treatment for the pain in her legs.

Brown's mother, Dorothy Davis, filed suit charging "reckless indifference" to the woman's health in St. Louis Circuit Court on behalf of her daughter's two children, 3 and 12, whom Davis has cared for since her daughter became homeless.

A spokeswoman for St. Mary's hospital released a statement declining comment. A spokesman for St. Louis University Hospital said lawyers there hadn't received the documentation and also declined comment.

Surveillance video obtained by the Post-Dispatch shows a doctor at St. Mary's telling a police officer he believed Brown was a "drug seeker" and asked to have her removed.

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