WICHITA, Kan. — The parents of a woman who drowned in the Missouri River plan to file a lawsuit. Toni Anderson died after she drove her car into the river in January, there was a two-month search for her after she was reported missing.
Wichita TV station KWCH said it confirmed the planned lawsuit with Liz Anderson on Monday.
The Kansas City Star has reported that she raised concerns after watching two videos of last time Toni was seen alive in the early morning hours of Jan. 15.
QuikTrip surveillance video shows her driving the wrong way and sitting at an intersection for nearly 15 minutes before a North Kansas City police officer pulled up behind her. The officer can be heard asking the woman if she had been drinking or taking any medication in dashcam video that was released previously.
“I was working at Chrome tonight,” Toni Anderson told the officer.
“At Chrome, you been drinking?” He asked.
“No,” she responded.
On the video, Toni Anderson seems to think the officer is talking about her taking the wrong street, when in actuality, he was trying to explain she was sitting in the wrong lanes.
“You were heading the wrong way, ” the officer said.
“Well, yeah, I know,” she replied.
“No, no this is a two-way street. You are on the full left side of the street heading into oncoming traffic. It’s not funny,” the officer scolded her after she giggled.
Liz Anderson said she wished the officer had arrested her daughter instead of telling her to go park and collect herself without administering a field sobriety test.
“I can’t say too much, but shame on him,” she said. “He could have saved my daughter’s life. She was hammered. And going the wrong way. Any idiot could say, ‘You’re messed up.’ I feel he was probably giving her a break. But that isn’t what you need to do — you need to serve and protect.”
The Jackson County Medical Examiner’s Office revealed Toni Anderson had drugs and alcohol in her system at the time of her death. It called ethanol, cocaine and amphetamine intoxication contributing factors to her accidental death.
North Kansas City Police say they have reviewed the video and called the officer’s actions “reasonable.”
“We do still stand by our officer,” Major Kevin Freeman said. “Many factors go into a patrol officer’s decisions: When to stop someone, where to pull them over, what they are going to do.”
FOX 4 is still working to gather details about the lawsuit, and will reveal more when it is filed.