Woman Died Trying to Escape Morgue Freezer: Lawsuit - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Woman Died Trying to Escape Morgue Freezer: Lawsuit

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NBC -- The family of a woman who may have frozen to death after being pronounced dead and placed in a morgue is moving forward with a lawsuit against the hospital.

Maria de Jesus Arroyo, 80, was pronounced dead in July 2010 after suffering a heart attack. A few days later, she was found in a half unzipped body bag, face down with a broken nose and cuts and bruises to her face, according to court papers.

"She was put into that body bag while she was alive," said the family's attorney, Scott Schutzman. "The cold from the hospital morgue woke her up and she was fighting her way out when she died."

Arroyo's family filed a lawsuit against White Memorial Medical Center in Boyle Heights alleging wrongful death.

Hospital officials denied the claims, but expressed their condolences to the family. 

"We followed all proper protocols in this matter and are confident that once the facts of the case are reviewed we will prevail in court," officials said in a statement.

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