Man sues hospital after getting decked by another patient

Kelly Holleran Jun. 25, 2009, 5:00am

A Houston man says he was forced to undergo surgery to his fractured jaw after a patient at Memorial Hermann Beaumont Hospital punched him in the face.

Lou Thompson filed a lawsuit June 18 in Jefferson County District Court against the hospital.

Thompson says he was a patient at Memorial Hermann Beaumont Hospital on June 4 when he was attacked by another patient, identified only as LL.

"LL was attempting to take a swing at a hospital staff member when instead; LL punched Mr. Thompson in the face, severely injuring Mr. Thompson," the complaint says.

After the attack, Thompson was taken to the emergency room where he was treated, according to the complaint.

A subsequent examination revealed Thompson suffered from a fractured mandible, for which he had surgery and had multiple screws and metallic plates inserted in his mouth, the suit states.

Thompson claims he was again forced to undergo surgery when he developed an infection that set in around his lower left premolar.

According to the complaint, Memorial Hermann Beaumont Hospital was allegedly negligent for:

  • Failing to protect Thompson from harm;
  • Failing to provide adequate training to its employees:
  • Failing to provide adequate supervision;
  • Failing to properly restrain violent patient;
  • Failing to implement employee guidelines:
  • Failing to provide a safe environment; and
  • Failing to take affirmative steps to prevent incidents.

    Thompson is seeking unspecified actual, incidental and consequential damages, plus costs, pre- and post-judgment interest at the maximum legal rate and other relief to which he may be entitled.

    Mickey L. Washington and Cletus P. Ernster of Washington and Ernster in Houston will be representing him.

    The case has been assigned to Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd District Court.

    Jefferson County District Court case number: E184-318.

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