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Canonsburg woman sues jail over death of unborn son

| Monday, March 11, 2013, 3:36 p.m.

Correctional and medical staffers in the Allegheny County Jail mostly ignored a pregnant Canonsburg woman's pleas for help as she felt her son dying in her womb, the woman claims in a federal lawsuit filed on Saturday.

Loni Mori, 33, was 7½ months pregnant when she was jailed in October 2011, the lawsuit states. West Mifflin police arrested her on drug and theft charges, according to county court records, and her attorney, Elmer Robert Keach, said she has an extensive record of drug-related charges.

Mori started bleeding on Nov. 2, 2011, and continued for several hours, the suit claims.

Keach said the jail was indifferent to Mori's pleas and the health of all inmates.

“There's just a sheer lack of caring and what I call a conspiracy of silence,” he said.

County Solicitor Andrew Szefi and county spokeswoman Amie Downs declined to comment. Dana Phillips, chief operating officer of Allegheny County Correctional Health Services, could not be reached.

Mori, through Keach, declined to comment. She is suing the county, two former jail officials, four guards, Allegheny County Correctional Health Services — the vendor that provides medical services in the jail — and four of its staffers.

Keach also represents the mother of Amy Gillespie, 27, a pregnant inmate who contracted pneumonia in the jail in December 2009 and died in UPMC Mercy on Jan. 13, 2010.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for TribTotal Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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