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Arizona court agrees family can sue DPS over incorrect death report

PHOENIX — The Arizona Court of Appeals is reviving a lawsuit filed by the
family of a young woman who were incorrectly told by Arizona state police that
she had died in a car accident.

The court ruled Tuesday that Maria and Jose Guerra and their daughter April can
sue the Department of Public Safety for negligence for the July 2010 mix-up that
led officers to tell the parents that the then-19-year-old had been killed.

Instead, it was one of April’s friends, 21-year-old Marlena Cantu, who was
killed in the rollover accident. Cantu’s parents stood vigil at the Phoenix
hospital where she was reportedly being treated.

The Maricopa County Medical Examiner’s Office didn’t discover the mix-up until
six days later.

A trial court had thrown out the Guerra’s lawsuit.


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