The R. Rex Parris Law Firm filed a suit on behalf of the family of a resident at the Sunrise Sterling Canyon Assisted Living of Valencia and its parent company in relation to the events leading up to her death on August 24, 2011
The suit was filed in Superior Court on behalf of Ronald Corn seeking medical and related expenses, punitive and exemplary damages and attorneys' fees from defendants.
In July 2007, 89-year-old Loretta R. Hooker (Decedent) became a resident at Sunrise because she needed assistance with the activities of daily living due to dementia, generalized weakness and fragility. She could walk short distances with the aid of a walker, but needed frequent reminders to use her walker for support because she was unstable and had a history of falling after forgetting to use the walker. Ms. Hooker required assistance with dressing, toileting and personal hygiene. Sunrise designated her a "non-ambulatory" resident because she was unable to leave (or re-enter) the building without assistance.
Over time, Ms. Hooker's dementia progressed.
On August 17, 2011, Mr. Corn arrived at Sunrise to visit his mother and he found her outside on the concrete patio alone and under the hot summer sun with no shade or supervision. She was in obvious discomfort, appeared weak and was sweating profusely. Mr. Corn immediately brought her inside the facility and urged her to drink plenty of fluids.
Mr. Corn went to Sunrise on August 24, 2011 to report his concerns about the patio incident to Mr. McKie, the Executive Director. He planned to visit his mother right after that meeting. The temperature that day was over 100 degrees. While waiting to speak with Mr. McKie, a staff member asked Mr. Corn to follow him to the same outside patio area where they found Ms. Hooker again sitting alone on the concrete patio in the sun. This time however she was unresponsive, drenched with perspiration and in obvious respiratory distress. 911 was called and Ms. Hooker was transported to the Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital emergency room in full cardiac arrest. Upon arrival at the hospital, Ms. Hooker received emergency treatment including placement of ice packs under her arms, neck and groin.
Despite the heroic efforts of emergency room staff, Ms. Hooker died of heat stroke shortly after arriving at the hospital. Her body temperature was 103.3 degrees at the time of her death. The autopsy report attributed her death to environmental heat exposure.
Ms. Hooker's death was the direct result of defendant Sunrise's failure to monitor, observe, protect and keep Ms. Hooker out of harm's way, alleges Robert A. Parris of the R. Rex Parris Law Firm.
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Sunrise Sterling Canyon Assisted Center Accused of Elder Abuse, Negligence and Wrongful Death by the R. Rex Parris Law Firm