A year and a half after the tragic death of a 3 year-old girl, Honolulu police say there’s no evidence of criminal wrongdoing on the part of the dentist who was performing a procedure on the girl when she fell into a coma, and later died.
Although the girl’s mother settled a civil suit she says she wants justice.
3 year-old Finley boyle died in January 2014 after a trip to the dentist turned terribly wrong.
She was supposed to get four root canals but ended up in a coma she never awoke from.
Her mother Ashley believes the criminal justice system should take action.
primarily because she believes the dental work wasn’t even necessary.
“You’re bringing my child in for work that doesn’t need to be done. You’re willing to put her life at risk with these sedative medications for fraudulent work,” said Finley’s mother Ashley Boyle.
Honolulu police told us in a written statement they initially opened an unattended death investigation, but it’s now closed without charges since the autopsy ruled the case accidental due to a combination of sedatives and anesthesia.
Ashley told us she only spoke to police once, and thought the case was still actively in the hands of prosecutors.
A legal expert tells us prosecuting such cases is difficult.
“When you’re talking about negligence, you’re talking about people making mistakes. It’s almost like punishing a child or a anybody for making a mistake that they didn’t really intend on making. So when we’re talking about criminal negligence, you can charge them, but proving it is so difficult,” said UH Law School Professor Ken Lawson.
“She advertised herself as a pediatric dentist. I didn’t realize a parent could have done more research and realize that she was not,” said Boyle.
Boyle says she’s still hoping something will be done.
“If that doesn’t stop everybody and make someone hold this woman accountable for what she did then what would I take?” asked Boyle.
The dentist involved in the case is no longer working and her practice is closed.
Even though police have closed their case, prosecutors could still decide to press charges.