The mother of a 24-year-old woman who died after an abortion in July filed a wrongful death lawsuit Monday against Planned Parenthood of Illinois and Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
Tonya Reaves died at Northwestern July 20 after she began to hemorrhage at a Planned Parenthood clinic located at 18 S. Michigan Ave., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's office. Reaves, of the 1500 block of North Kildare Avenue, was pronounced dead at 11:20 p.m.
An autopsy found she died of a hemorrhage following a cervical dilation and evacuation performed during an intrauterine pregnancy, according to the medical examiner's office. Her death was ruled an accident.
Dorsey Johns, Reaves' mother, claims staff at the Planned Parenthood clinic "carelessly performed" the elective abortion and failed to properly monitor and assess her daughter's condition after the procedure, according to the suit filed in Cook County Circuit Court.
The suit further claims the clinic did not do enough to stop Reaves' bleeding, and that staff members failed to adequately warn an on-call doctor about the potentially life-threatening condition.
Calls to local and national Planned Parenthood offices seeking comment on the suit were not immediately returned Monday evening.
Johns is also suing Northwestern in connection with her daughter's death, claiming doctors there tore an artery while performing a hysterectomy on Reeves -- one of two surgeries she underwent after she was transferred to the hospital about 5:30 p.m. The suit also blames Northwestern for failing to stop Reaves' excessive bleeding, the suit said.
Carole Brite, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Illinois, released a statement expressing condolences to Reaves' family immediately following the her death.
"Our hearts go out to the loved ones of this patient," the statement said. "While legal abortion services in the United States have a very high safety record, a tragedy such as this is devastating to loved ones and we offer our deepest sympathies."
A Northwestern Hospital spokesperson declined to comment on the suit Monday evening, citing policy not to comment on pending litigation.
The suit seeks at least $120,000 in damages, including compensation for Reaves' surviving one-year-old son.