Judge hears arguments in suit filed against Lubbock ME

Judge hears arguments in suit filed against Lubbock ME

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

Attorneys spent several hours Friday arguing if the chief medical examiner can be sued as an individual.

Dr. Sam Andrews claims immunity for government employees. The attorneys for Rebecca Ortiz say he is not technically an employee of Lubbock County.

Ortiz's lawsuit is against NAAG, Dr. Sam Andrews and Dr. Sam Matshes. She claims they dismembered her child during an autopsy last fall.

Her attorney argued in court Andrews is only a contractor and not protected by government immunity. He told Judge Ruben Reyes he is not paid by Lubbock County and Lubbock County does not control his daily work.

Andrews' defense cited a previous case involving a contract worker who was performing a government job, where that employee was dismissed from the case.

Ortiz' attorney went on to explain this case is not to complain about an autopsy but "our complaint is that it didn't stop there".

Judge Reyes did not make a ruling Friday.

Ortiz is not only asking for monetary relief but that the tissues of her child be returned to a funeral home to be cremated. NAAG reports the child's remains are in San Diego, preserved for law enforcement.

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