According to the Associated Press, Pop singer Michael Jackson is being sued by the family of a woman who died two years ago, claiming the gravely ill patient was moved to make room for the pop star when he arrived with flu symptoms. The complaint, claiming abuse of celebrity status, was filed against Jackson and Marian Medical Center in Santa Maria on Thursday, the second anniversary of the death of Manuela Gomez Ruiz, 73. It seeks unspecified damages. A statement from the medical center said the suit is without merit and is “another frivolous claim to generate publicity.” The statement also expressed sympathy for the Ruiz family’s loss, said she received exceptional care and added: “Patient care and safety is always our priority.” AP also reports that the family had previously complained publicly that Ruiz, who had suffered a heart attack and was on life support, was suddenly moved to make way for Jackson. Ruiz suffered a second heart attack and died later that day. The suit alleges intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of emotional distress, elder abuse, false imprisonment and conspiracy by Jackson, Marian Medical Center and Catholic Healthcare West, which owns the hospital.
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