LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The parents of a 16-year-old special needs boy have filed a lawsuit claiming negligence at the hands of the LAUSD resulted in the drowning death of the teen.

Erick Ortiz, a sophomore at Garfield High School, drowned on June 4 in a pool in the 500 block of South Atlantic Boulevard in East Los Angeles, the sheriff’s department said.

The boy was on a class trip to Atlantic Park with about 200 other students when he was “left alone and unattended” and wandered over to a pool.

“The LAUSD knew that the child could not be left alone for even a second and the child had a full time Teaching Assistant assigned to him since 2012,” said family attorney Louis Carrillo, who filed the lawsuit Wednesday.

The sheriff’s department said Ortiz was seen jumping into the deep end of the pool — 12 feet deep —  and coming out at least twice – before diving in a third time.

A lifeguard spotted Ortiz in distress and pulled him out and administered CPR with two other life guards.

Ortiz was transported to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The LAUSD released the following statement following the incident:

“The District extends heartfelt condolences to the family on its tragic loss.  The District will continue to cooperate with the ongoing law enforcement investigation.”

It was unclear what damages the Ortiz family was seeking.



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