A 9-year-old boy died after choking at school while he was eating, and his mother is looking for answers.
Jonathan Jewth died on Wednesday, nine days after the choking incident at P.S. 47, and will be laid to rest on Saturday.
An attorney for his mother, Khemwati Jewth, told NBC New York in a statement that "she has been kept in the dark by P.S. 47 as to specifically what happened to her son. They have provided her with scant information regarding the disastrous event that has transpired and until now she is relying on information provided by individuals who claim to have witnessed some or all of the events.”
Jonathan’s mother is planning to file a notice of claim next week, announcing her intention to sue, in hopes of learning more about what happened to the fourth-grader.
Witnesses have indicated that the emergency response of school employees was “unskilled, unqualified and chaotic,” according to Jewth's attorney, Howard Frederick.
NBC New York has confirmed the incident occurred on Dec. 5 at P.S. 47 in the Bronx.
Witnesses have told investigators for the family that Jonathan was eating a meatball sandwich and leaving the cafeteria when he started choking.
One witness said three school employees, including a school nurse, were attempting to revive him using a defibrillator, flipping him from side to side, and performing CPR, according to the family attorney.
The witness "was shaken by what she observed and felt it necessary to yell instruction to the staff because they clearly did not know what they were doing,” the attorney's statement said.
It is not clear how long it took before 911 was called; there is a discrepancy between the school's record and EMS dispatch information.
A school report given to the boy's mother said the choking incident began at 12:15 p.m. and NYPD was called at 12:16 p.m., according to the family attorney.
NBC New York has found that the 911 call reached EMS dispatchers at 12:29 p.m. and EMS and fire crews were on scene four minutes later, the FDNY said.
The boy was rushed to Jacobi Medical Center in critical condition, arriving at 12:48 p.m.
He died nine days later.
“Ms. Jewth is committed to finding the truth and has indicated that she will not rest until she knows exactly what happened to her only child,” said the attorney’s statement.
Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott said in a statement that "tragically, a student passed away and my heart goes out to the family and the school community," but the Department of Education did not discuss the details of the case.