Lawsuit Against 911 Operators Will Proceed

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – After hearing arguments, the Michigan Supreme Court won’t intervene in a lawsuit that blames two 911 operators for the death of a Detroit woman.

The court in a brief order Thursday says a decision by the state appeals court will stand. It means a lawsuit can go forward in Wayne County court.

In 2006, a 5-year-old boy called 911, saying his mother had collapsed. The operator, Sharon Nichols, thought it was a prank.  She accued young Robert Turner of “playing games” and failed to send help. Another operator, Terri Sutton, sent police three hours later but also scolded the boy.

The child’s mother, 46-year-old Sherrill Turner, died from a heart ailment.

The Turners’ relatives sued, claiming wrongful death and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The operators had claimed they were immune to lawsuits.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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