Originally created 03/07/03

Widow sues Tigers over death of husband at park



DETROIT -- The widow of a man who died of a heart attack at a Detroit Tigers' game claims the team did not train its employees to handle a medical emergency and did not have lifesaving equipment available.

Alice Camp of the Detroit suburb of Clinton Township filed a lawsuit Wednesday against Detroit Tigers Inc. in Wayne County Circuit Court over the death of her husband.

Bill Camp had a heart attack at a Tigers-Mariners game at Comerica Park in 2000.

Nearby medical professionals from Mount Clemens General Hospital, who were attending the game, began emergency treatment, the lawsuit said.

They asked stadium employees for medical equipment, including a heart defibrillator, but received only a stretcher that had straps but no buckles, according to the lawsuit.

The straps were tied around Bill Camp, but failed to hold him securely to the stretcher, the suit said. He was taken to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The lawsuit said the Tigers organization gave the impression that its employees could handle medical emergencies at the stadium.

Prior to the April 12 game at which Bill Camp died, the Tigers purchased an 8-pound portable heart starter and a larger model defibrillator that were to be installed in the park's nurse's station.

Also, the retailer that sold the heart device issued a press release saying the stadium would have a defibrillator in place for this year's home opener on April 11.

"We have not seen the lawsuit, so obviously, we're not on a position to comment," Tigers spokesman Cliff Russell said Thursday.

Alice Camp said she suffered "severe emotional distress and trauma" due to witnessing her husband's death and is asking for damages in excess of $25,000, lawyers' fees and court costs.

Also named in the suit are Olympia Entertainment Inc. and Olympia Entertainment Tiger Ballpark Inc.