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A veteran died of a stroke after Veterans Affairs police beat him because he refused to wait any longer for treatment at a VA hospital in California. Now his widow is suing the government over the brutality that led to his death. Jonathan Montano had been at the Department of Veterans Affairs hospital in Loma Linda, Calif. for four hours with a shunt (a needle apparatus) in his arm, awaiting dialysis. Tired of biding his time, he decided to head to a different VA hospital in Long Beach, and asked his wife Norma to get the car. But instead of allowing the patient to leave – with the shunt still in his arm so the Long Beach staff wouldn’t have to insert a new one – Loma Linda nurses called VA police, who beat him to keep him from leaving, Courthouse News Service reported, citing the lawsuit by Norma Montano.
Norma, who had been waiting in the car for her husband, went inside after he did not leave the hospital. There, she was told Jonathan had suffered a stroke and was in the emergency department. Upon arriving in the ER, a doctor told her Jonathan “had fallen down and suffered a stroke, an untrue statement,” she says in the complaint.
But later on, a nurse pulled Norma aside and told her what had really happened: that police had thrown her husband to the ground, that hospital staff were lying to her and that it wasn’t right what the VA cops had done, CNS reported.
The incident occurred on May 25, 2011, and Jonathan died of complications from the stroke two-and-a-half weeks later, on June 11. He was 65. The couple had been married for 44 years.