California school district to pay $15.75 million to settle suit over student asthma attack death

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A California school district has agreed to pay more than $15 million to the family of a student who died in 2019 after she had an asthma attack on campus, the family’s attorneys announced. 

The Yucaipa-Calimesa Joint Unified School District in Southern California will pay Edith Sepulveda $15.75 million and adopt new safety protocols to settle a lawsuit over the death of her 13-year-old daughter Adilene Carrasco. 

According to the lawsuit, Carrasco had a known history of asthma attacks at school. Two such attacks had been documented in an online database and her student profile, which teachers are required to review, indicated she had asthma, according to the lawsuit. 

On Oct. 31, 2019, Carrasco’s eighth grade science class at Mesa View Middle School held a “pumpkin chuckin’ contest” activity on the school’s field to celebrate Halloween. Students walked approximately 366 yards from the classroom to the field. Part of the walk involved going down a hill on a long ramp, according to the suit. 

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