Court says woman can proceed with Chicago lawsuit

April 27, 2012

Associated Press

A federal appeals court in Chicago has ruled a California woman who survived a seven-story fall from a public housing tower can proceed with her lawsuit against the Chicago Police Department.

Christina Eilman was released from police custody in May 2006 after her arrest on a train platform at Midway International Airport. After her release, Eilman was abducted, sexually assaulted and fell from a seventh floor window of a public housing building.

In his ruling, Judge Frank Easterbrook wrote police "might as well have released her into the lions' den at the Brookfield Zoo."

Family members say they told police Eilman suffered from bipolar disorder and asked them to take her to a nearby hospital psychiatric unit.

Marvin Powell of Chicago was convicted of kidnapping Eilman. He was paroled Wednesday.