Seattle To Pay Nearly $2 Million Settlement Over Death Of Man Allegedly Wrongly Named On 911 ‘Blacklist’

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Seattle has reached a settlement agreement of $1.86 million with the family of a man who died after suffering a heart attack. The city’s first responders had a delayed response due to the victim being wrongfully blacklisted, The Seattle Times reported Monday.

William Yurek, 48, died at his home after suffering a heart attack in October 2021. Responding to Yurek’s son’s 911 call, medics arrived but were told to wait for police before entering. When Yurek’s condition worsened, his son called again and was told help was on the way, even though first responders had been outside the house for 13 minutes, according to The Seattle Times.

“Once inside, medics did everything they could to save Will’s life,” Mark Lindquist, the family’s attorney, said in a news release. “The family has always been grateful to the medics who broke protocol to go in and do their best.”

“From the beginning, the family wanted the city to take responsibility. That’s happened,” Lindquist told The Seattle Times.

The delay was due to Yurek’s address being on an outdated “blacklist” of individuals deemed hostile to first responders, per The Seattle Times. The previous tenant of Yurek’s unit — where the family had moved in only a few years prior to his death — was reportedly on this list.

The family filed a lawsuit against the city, alleging negligence on the city’s part for not maintaining an updated list and requiring police escorts for medics when the Police Department was understaffed, The Seattle Times reported. (RELATED: Listen To Frantic 911 Call For Lisa Marie Presley’s Cardiac Arrest)

Following the lawsuit, the city reportedly revised its guidelines on “caution notes.” Caution notes now expire after 365 days and must be verified after every alarm dispatched to the address, Seattle city attorney’s office spokesperson Tim Robinson said, according to the outlet.

Yurek’s four children will reportedly be beneficiaries of the settlement, with funds for the minors secured until adulthood.