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Court says suit over woman frozen alive at hospital can proceed

LOS ANGELES » An appeals court says a family can proceed with a lawsuit that claims a woman was frozen alive in a Los Angeles hospital freezer after she was mistakenly declared dead.

The Los Angeles Times says the ruling came Wednesday in a medical malpractice case against White Memorial Medical Center.

Eighty-year-old Maria de Jesus Arroyo was placed in the freezer in July 2010.

Her body was later found face down, with a broken nose and cuts and bruises to her face. The family initially sued for mishandling of the body but refiled the case two years ago after a pathologist concluded the woman most likely injured herself in a failed struggle to get out of the freezer.

A call to the hospital Wednesday seeking comment wasn’t immediately returned.

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