LA County

Parents of Woman Who Died in Jail File Lawsuit

An autopsy revealed she died of an asthma attack ad police kept her inhaler from her

The parents of a 37-year-old woman who died of an asthma attack in 2014 while in police custody have filed a lawsuit against Los Angeles County and the sheriff's department, claiming a lack of help contributed to their daughter's death.

Unique Moore was serving two months in a women's jail in Lynwood when she had an asthma attack that led to her death on Nov. 2, 2014, according to an autopsy.

"She was my first born, I loved her and I shouldn't have to bury her," said mother Elaine Bridges.

Moore was not allowed to have her plastic inhaler in her cell because authorities said she could have used it as a weapon. Her parents claim that deputies did not do enough or react fast enough to save her.

"She pressed the button and started yelling saying, 'We need help!' and other cell mates in the same module started yelling, 'Hey, someone needs help!'" said lawyer Portasha Moore. "It was upwards of 30 minutes before anyone came."

The autopsy also found that Moore suffered from diabetes, hypertension, bipolar disease, schizophrenia and a history of drug use. These symptoms did not, however, directly cause her death.

The lawsuit claims primarily that deputies took too long to respond to the situation.

Deputies are being given specialized training in order to better deal with situations like this one, officials said.

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