Settlement With Denver Health Reached in Emily Rae Rice Case

Nearly two-and-a-half years after her death while in the custody of the Denver jail, the family of Emily Rae Rice have reached a settlement with Denver Health Medical Center. After a car accident in February of 2006 in which Rice was driving intoxicated, Denver Health treated the 24 year old and determined that she was healthy enough to go to jail. In actuality she had suffered massive internal injuries to her spleen and liver, injuries that went undetected and untreated at the hospital, and later bled to death while in the jail, where she received no treatment despite repeated cries for help.

“The death of Emily Rice was tragic and unnecessary,” Rice family attorney Darold Killmer said. “We are proud to have secured several significant policy changes to ensure that patients – and especially patients in custody at the jail – receive the quality health care to which the are entitled.”

Those changes – called “Emily’s Rights” – are to include enhanced training for employees at the jail and the hospital as well as the assurance the patients transferred from Denver Health into custody will have their vital signs more closely monitored. Denver Health also agreed to pay the family of Emily Rice $4 million dollars. Emily’s family still has claims unsettled against the City of Denver as well as seventeen Deputies, Sergeants and Captains in the Denver Sheriff’s Department.

For Westword’s original piece on Emily’s death, click here. -- Adam Cayton-Holland

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