Anne Arundel Co. reaches $2.5M settlement with family of teen who died after eating glove

The parents of an autistic 17-year-old who choked on a glove at school have reached a $2.5 million dollar settlement with the school system in Anne Arundel County, Maryland.

Bowen Levy’s parents filed a federal suit against the school system last year, saying its negligence is responsible for their son’s November 2019 death. The family said Bowen had a compulsive condition that caused him to swallow and eat nonfood items.

“Bowen’s death has had an enormous impact on many, but nowhere has that impact been more massive than on his beloved family. We recognize that nothing that occurs from here forward will ever fill the void in their lives,” AACPS said in a statement.

“He should not have died. The school system is committed to working with the Levy family and the community to make sure no student is ever placed at risk like Bowen was on Nov. 5, 2019.”

The school system said it cooperated with investigators and is making reforms to the educational environment, including:

  • Visually inspecting all areas where PSP (Pica Safety Protocol) students frequent to ensure nonedible items are not accessible by PSP students
  • Routinely vacuuming or sweeping the areas to remove items on the floor
  • Placing locks on cabinets, closets and doors that contain possible pica objects
  • Providing access to pica-acceptable items during down times
  • Blocking PSP students engaged in pica behavior (blocking is a strategy involving placing your hand on top of the student’s hand to prevent the student from placing the nonfood item into their mouth)
  • 1:1 supervision of any student subject to the PSP, and whose IEP/504 Plan stipulates supervision in accordance with all applicable special education laws
  • Documentation of Pica-related incidents for PSP students, kept in accordance with each student’s IEP/504 and in compliance with all applicable special education laws

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Will Vitka

William Vitka is a Digital Editor and reporter for He's been in the news industry for over a decade. Before joining WTOP, he worked for CBS News, Stuff Magazine, The New York Post and wrote a variety of books—about a dozen of them, with more to come.

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