According to a report from MLIVE, two suburban Detroit, Michigan, paramedics who mistakenly declared a woman who had cerebral palsy “dead” can regain their licenses if they pass a national exam. One of the two men was also assigned a reading, a book report, and an essay.
These requirements are part of a settlement between Michael Storms and Scott Rickard of the Southfield (MI) Fire Department (SFD) and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.
On August 23, 2020, Storms and Rickard arrived at the home of 20-year-old Timesha Beauchamp, who had cerebral palsy. Her family reported she was was having respiratory problems, and the paramedics said they couldn’t revive her. A doctor they consulted by phone declared her dead.
However, Beauchamp was found alive at a Detroit funeral home after being in a body bag for several hours. She then died at a hospital in October. A lawyer said she was in grave condition from oxygen deprivation because of the time she spent in the body bag. Her family has since filed a $50 million federal lawsuit.
During a subsequent investigation, the state suspended Storms’ and Rickard’s paramedic licenses. Authorities were especially critical of Storms, saying he repeatedly failed to recognize that Beauchamp was alive and misled the doctor about her vital signs. A monitor “clearly showed” electrical activity, regulators said in August.