Trustee for Prince's Next of Kin Files Wrongful Death Lawsuit

April 24, 2018 06:29 AM

A wrongful death lawsuit has been filed by the trustee for the next of kin of Minnesota music icon Prince.

It names a number of entities, including two Walgreens pharmacies in Minnesota and the medical facility in Illinois where Prince was treated after an emergency landing just days before his death from an accidental overdose at his Paisley Park estate in Chanhassen on April 21, 2016.

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RELATED: No Criminal Charges in Superstar Prince's Fentanyl Overdose Death

The lawsuit was filed Friday night in Cook County, Illinois - one day after Carver County Attorney Mark Metz announced no criminal charges would be filed at the state or federal level in connection to his death.

Friday marked the deadline to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Illinois. The statute of limitations there is two years following a person's death.

Count I of the lawsuit names the Trinity Medical Center and Trinity Regional Health System, Inc. of Rock Island, Ill. Also named are Iowa Health System (d/b/a Unitypoint Health), Nicole Mancha M.D. and an individual identified only as Jane Doe.

The claims spring from an incident that occurred on April 15, 2016. The singer was en route back to the Twin Cities from what ended up being his final show in Atlanta when his plane made an emergency landing in Moline, Ill.

RELATED: Data Made Public Includes Video, Photos of Prince after He was Found Unresponsive at Paisley Park

At the time, Prince's publicist said the musician was suffering from flu-like symptoms. But it has been widely-reported he was given Narcan, an antidote used in suspected opioid overdoses.

The lawsuit alleges that health care officials who came in contact with Prince: "Failed to timely and appropriately diagnose and treat opiate overdose; Failed to provide timely and appropriate counseling for opiate overdose; Failed to timely and appropriately investigate the cause of opiate overdose."

Count II names Walgreens pharmacies in Bloomington and Minnetonka, the Walgreens Company as a whole and a number of individuals again only identified as Jane Doe.

It claims the two Walgreens locations dispensed narcotic prescription medications to Prince on April 14 and 20, 2016, and accuses the pharmacies and its employees of "dispensing medications not valid for a legitimate medical purpose and failing to conduct appropriate drug utilization review."

RELATED: Doctor Who Met with Prince Agrees to $ 30K Settlement for Violating Controlled Substances Act

Count III alleges all the defendants "failed in their duty to exercise reasonable care, failed to follow applicable Illinois and Minnesota law and federal regulations and/or breached the standards of care owed to Prince."

Lawyers for Prince's family did not comment on the specifics of the lawsuit in a statement to ABC News.

"We will have much to say when the time is right," the statement from attorneys George Loucas and John Goetz said.

"We have client interests to protect at the moment, including our theory of the case. What happened to Prince is happening to families across America. Prince's family wishes, through its investigation, to shed additional light on what happened to Prince. At the same time further light on the opiate epidemic will hopefully help the fight to save lives.  

"If Prince's death helps save lives, then all was not lost."

A representative for Unitypoint Health said via email that the company could not comment on the matter.

"UnityPoint Health is unable to comment on pending legal matters," a statement read.

Walgreens had not yet responded to a request for comment Monday afternoon.

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Frank Rajkowski

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