Family Sues Residential Treatment Facility Over Death of Loved One

January 02, 2018 10:41 PM

The family of Matthew Nick has filed a lawsuit against the drug and alcohol treatment center Metro Hope Ministries.

The non-profit residential treatment center is located in South Minneapolis.


Nick's family acknowledges that he struggled with addiction for years. He was two months into a seven month program at Metro Hope when he died in the facility in January 2014.  

His sister, Katie Nick, filed a wrongful death suit.  The complaint contends the center didn't take "reasonable steps to ensure Nick's safety and didn't have keys to the communal bathroom, which hindered access and supervision."

According to the lawsuit, Nick was found locked in a bathroom with eight syringes and heroin nearby.

A current patient at the center who doesn't want to be identified feels like the facility offers real help and lasting hope.

"There's no negligence I know that for sure," he said "This is a wonderful place."

Nick's sister said she filed a lawsuit to create awareness. 

"They knew Matt had a methamphetamine habit, knew of his heroin habit," Todd Young, the family's attorney said. "And on the day Matt died they knew he was acting unusual."

Katie Nick said she understands her brother signed a waiver when he entered the center.  She wasn't aware of any other deaths at the same facility, but given that nearly 2,300 Minnesotans have overdosed and died since 2000, she took her fight to save future lives to court.

"I want awareness because this is an epidemic and this is sad," she said. "I just don't want it to happen to other families."

Peter Gregory is an attorney with Bassford Remele, which represents Metro Hope Ministries.

Aas a faith-based drug and alcohol recovery program, Metro Hope Ministries' mission for the past 90 years has been to promote healing and hope for individuals struggling with addiction, particularly for those who have exhausted other treatment options.  Metro Hope has denied the allegations in this lawsuit.  Because the matter is currently in litigation and because of resident confidentiality, Metro Hope is unable to comment further at this time."



Beth McDonough

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