Meyerkord & Kurth has recently filed a wrongful death claim on behalf of a local St. Louis man who is seeking damages from a local hospital and treating physicians for the role they played in the murder-suicide of his three young children and wife.
In a tragic case that has been garnering ample attention throughout the local and national media, a St. Louis woman who was prematurely released from psychiatric care at Mercy Hospital St. Louis fatally shot her three children before turning the gun on herself. The children's ages were 8, 6, and 3.
Although this is such a tragic and shocking case, it becomes even more difficult to swallow when one considers the fact that the incident could have been prevented. As alleged by the woman's husband, the hospital and treating healthcare providers failed to uphold a standard of care when they released the woman shortly after her intake evaluation, stating that she would begin her outpatient care the following morning. Unfortunately, the woman went home with her husband and children. The next morning while her husband was at work, she shot her three children and herself.
What is so concerning about this particular tragedy is that the hospital and the physicians failed in variety of capacities. First, they failed to consult with the woman's husband about her mental condition and about her planned intake into outpatient care – the woman had reportedly told her husband that no further treatment was required. They also failed to consult with her psychiatrists and therapist – one of whom referred her to inpatient care. Ultimately, however, it was their failure during the intake evaluation that led them to release her despite the fact that she posed a significant danger to herself and to others.
The evidence in this case is also quite strong. In short, the woman had been battling with mental illness and with increased depression and bipolar disorder in the days prior to her intake evaluation. She was off her anti-depressant medication and expressed suicidal ideations. By failing to perform a thorough evaluation, failing to consult her mental healthcare providers and husband, and failing to determine the severity of her condition, the hospital ultimately failed in their duties to provide an appropriate level of care. As a result, the man has suffered immense and profound losses.
Although no amount of compensation can fill the void that this tragedy has created in the St. Louis man's life, a wrongful death claim can serve as the vehicle for the man to obtain a sense of justice. It may also prove valuable in ensuring that these mistakes are not made in the future and that more people are not harmed. By working with the St. Louis personal injury attorneys at Meyerkord & Kurth, the man will have the experienced, aggressive, and passionate legal support he needs to navigate these difficult proceedings. A firm that stands tall on behalf of injured victims and families who have suffered incredible losses, our firm is here to guide local residents across the state of Missouri through the personal injury, medical malpractice, or wrongful death claim process step by step. You can read more about this story here.