Judge Rejects City’s Effort to End Teen Death Lawsuit Linked to Poor 911 Response

Ron Plush
Ron Plush, father of Kyle Plush, and his sister-in-law Jody listen to comments from Mayor John Cranley during the City Council's law and public safety committee on the response to the death of student Kyle Plush.
Image: Kareem Elgazzar/The Cincinnati Enquirer via AP

The lawsuit’s goals are to determine what went wrong when police were unable to locate Kyle Plush after he made two 911 calls and to make sure it doesn’t happen again, the family said.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

By Dan Sewell

CINCINNATI — An Ohio judge decided Wednesday to move forward with a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family of a 16-year-old student who died after being trapped by a fold-up vehicle seat despite making two 911 calls.

Hamilton County Judge Robert Ruehlman rejected a motion to dismiss the suit filed by the city of Cincinnati. Ruehlman heard legal arguments last month.

The suit, filed last year, charges the city, a former city official and four city employees with actions it alleges led to Kyle Plush’s 2018 death. The lawsuit’s goals are to determine what went wrong when police were unable to locate him and to make sure it doesn’t happen again, the family said.

The city contends that the employees are protected by governmental immunity and that the lawsuit lacks merit. The city also says it has improved its 911 response system and continues to make improvements.

A trial date has been set tentatively for March 30.

Plush was apparently pinned by a foldaway seat in his family’s van and suffocated in a parking lot near his school.

Kyle’s father Ron discovered his body nearly six hours after his son’s first 911 call, when Kyle warned: “I’m going to die soon.”

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