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Family files wrongful death lawsuit after death of Nebraska girl

The family of a Nebraska girl has filed a wrongful death lawsuit after her boyfriend pleaded no contest to her murder. The family says it wants answers from the local police department as well as the mental health facility where the boyfriend was supposed to be in custody. The amount of financial compensation the family is seeking from the wrongful death suit will be adjudicated during the course of the trial.

Several calls to 911 were made during the last two months of the 19-year-old's life. Her mother called after finding bruises on her daughter's upper body. The girl herself called numerous times, telling police she was afraid of her boyfriend after he held her against her will. The boyfriend communicated with an officer, revealing feelings and thoughts of violent actions stemming from the gang-related death of his father. He was voluntarily placed in protective custody with the mental health facility.

The family alleges that the facility did not conduct an evaluation of the man's mental condition within the state-mandated 36 hours of his admittance. Sometime previously, he had been diagnosed with several mental disorders, but he was in the facility for four days without an assessment. The family also asserts that the police did not give specific information to the facility as to his admission. The day of the girl's death, the man left the facility, met with the girl, killed her and went back to the mental facility. Records show he left the facility to discard evidence in a dumpster and, upon his return, asked an employee to wash the clothes he was wearing.

Police found the girl's body and arrested the boyfriend. After his conviction, he was sentenced to more than 30 years in prison. Neither the mental health facility nor the police department would comment regarding the wrongful death lawsuit. If the accusations by the Nebraska girl's family are supported by appropriate evidence of negligence, both named parties may be found responsible for monetary damages.

Source: omaha.com, "Mental health evaluation for teen's killer may have prevented her death, family says", Alissa Skelton, June 20, 2015

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