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Thursday, May 23, 2024 | Back issues
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Woman Who Miscarried After Traffic Stop Awarded $750,000 In Damages

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (CN) - A woman who miscarried when officers refused to get her medical help during a traffic stop settled her lawsuit for $750,000.

Sofia Salva sued in Federal Court claiming wrongful death and personal injury from the 2006 traffic stop.

Kansas City police Officers Melody Spencer and Kevin Schnell stopped Salva for having fake temporary tags, court documents state. During the stop, Salva repeatedly told the officers she was pregnant, bleeding and needed to go to the hospital.

The officers claimed they believed Salva was lying, and refused to take her to the hospital. They arrested her on outstanding warrants. Salva spent the night in jail and miscarried the next morning.

Spencer and Schnell were fired along with a jail worker. Another jail worker got a warning. The story drew national headlines after Salva sued and the videotape of her arrest was released.

Spencer and Schnell have appealed their firings in Jackson County Court. Salva, who now lives in Omaha, has four other children, whom she lost to child services after two incidents in 2002, including one in which three of the children were found locked in the family's apartment alone. Salva will get $700,000 for personal injury damages and $50,000 for the wrongful death of her unborn child.

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