By David Madden

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A lawsuit has been filed in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court alleging that a nursing care facility in the city put two women together in the same room last year and that one killed the other.

Staffers at Resources for Human Development put Kathleen McEwan together with Geraldine Cherry a month before McEwan died last June.

The suit contends that RHD failed to inform McEwan’s family members for a week and a half after her death, and buried her during that time.

But that was not before a post-mortem found McEwan’s death was far from natural.

“Various items, including rope and some candy wrappers were found down her throat, and she was suffocated,” says McEwan family attorney Nancy Winkler.

Cherry, with a history of criminal and mental issues, has been charged with killing McEwan (see related story), who had been a victim of several strokes.

But Cherry is not a defendant in the civil action — only facility staffers and management are.  RHD officials did not return a call seeking comment on the lawsuit.

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