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Family of teen who died at basketball practice reaches $10 million settlement with school, lawyer says

Imani Bell died following an outdoor high school basketball practice on a hot afternoon in August of 2019.

CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. — The family of Imani Bell, a teen who died following an outdoor high school basketball practice, reached a $10 million settlement with the Clayton County Public Schools, the attorney announced Tuesday. 

Imani Bell died following an outdoor high school basketball practice on a hot afternoon in August of 2019.  

The settlement stems from a civil case the family filed last year and the attorney said it is believed to be the largest of its kind. 

Bell was a junior at Elite Scholars Academy at the time of her death. She was taking part in a varsity basketball team-mandated outdoor practice when she collapsed after running up the football stadium steps. 

The temperature during the practice, according to the Bell family's attorneys was between 96 and 99 degrees Fahrenheit, and the heat index put the temperature at between 101 and 106.

The parents and the attorney spoke during press conference. You can watch a replay of it here: 

In 2019, 11Alive News received a copy of Imani Bell's autopsy report from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. The report indicates that the primary cause of Imani's death was the result of a heart attack brought on by physical exertion in a high heat environment

Imani had no underlying health issues contributing to her death according to the lawsuit. 

Last year, two basketball coaches were charged with murder in the case. The indictment charged Larosa Maria Walker-Asekere and Dwight Broom Palmer with second-degree murder, second-degree child cruelty, involuntary manslaughter and reckless conduct. The two were released on bond and 11Alive is working to learn if a trial date has been set. 

The attorney's and the parents of Imani applauded Clayton County Public Schools for "doing the right thing" with the record settlement. 11Alive has reached out to them for a comment. 

Bell's family started the Keep Imani Foundation last year as a way to honor her memory. They said the foundation, which will be funded in part by proceeds from the settlement, will provide scholarships to deserving students. On Tuesday, the Elite Sports Academy gymnasium will be renamed in Imani's honor.

"I don't want her to be forgotten. Every day we think about her," Imani's mother said. 

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