An Oxnard teenager who collapsed and fell into a coma last school year during a basketball game has filed a lawsuit alleging that school district officials failed to provide adequate medical care at the sporting event.
The lawsuit was filed last month in Los Angeles County Superior Court on behalf of 16-year-old Donte Nunnery of Rio Mesa High School. Donte collapsed on the gym floor at Agoura High during the Dec. 30 junior varsity game.
He stopped breathing and had to be resuscitated by paramedics. He remained in a coma until January.
Donte spent about six months recovering in area hospitals before returning to his Oxnard home in June.
Rio Mesa High, Agoura High, the Oxnard Union High School District and the Las Virgenes Unified School District are named as defendants in the lawsuit.
The suit alleges that school officials were not prepared to handle a medical emergency, and as result Donte went without treatment for nearly 11 minutes after his collapse.
According to the suit, Donte suffered life-threatening injuries, including extreme mental anguish and permanent brain damage and disabilities. The lawsuit seeks $20 million in damages.
"We're looking at what this young man is going to need for the rest of his life," said Oxnard attorney Samuel Heredia, who is representing the Nunnery family. "It has been a tremendous burden on the family and they are having to foot the bill."
Officials of the school districts could not be reached Wednesday for comment.
Although Donte is back home and attends special education classes at Rio Mesa High, family members say there's still a long way to go until he fully recovers.
"It's looking better all the time," said his father, James C. Nunnery. "He's young and strong, and the doctors seem to think he can pull out of it."