The Georgia teenager who was first denied a heart transplant due to “non-compliance” and then given one in 2013, died Tuesday in a car crash while trying to flee from police, authorities say.
According to CBS, the police chase occurred after 17-year-old Anthony Tremayne Stokes kicked in the door of an elderly woman’s home in Roswell and fired his weapon. Police allege he fled the scene in a stolen Honda Accord. When authorities spotted him and tried to make a traffic stop, Stokes sped away.
Stokes hit another vehicle and a pedestrian before crashing into a bank sign, Rosewell police say. Police cut him out of the vehicle and he died a short time later at a nearby hospital.
The police chase comes nearly two years after Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston refused to put Stokes — who was suffering from an enlarged heart — on a transplant waiting list. Stokes’ family claimed the doctors denied the transplant because of the teenager’s bad grades and troubled past. Doctors, however, believed the then 15-year-old wouldn’t comply with the medication plan and follow-up treatments.
Weeks later, the decision was reversed. With the help of the Georgia chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the family’s concerns were heard and the hospital placed the teenager on a waiting list.
Back in 2013, Stokes was quoted telling a reporter at WSB-TV in Atlanta that the heart transplant would improve his behavior.
“So I can live a second chance. Get a second chance and do things I want to do,” Stokes said.
In addition to his latest bout of trouble with the law, online court records show Stokes was also arrested in January and charged with criminal attempt and possession of a tool for the commission of a crime.
The hospital at the center of the heart transplant controversy refused to answer questions about Stokes, instead sending this statement to the NY Daily News: “We cannot provide any additional information about this tragic situation. We are deeply saddened by this loss.”
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