Missing woman killed in accident, family notified 7 days later

One family says officials did not notify them of their relative's death until a week after it happened.

- A local woman reported missing by her family was later discovered to have died in a car crash a day earlier. So why did it take so long for her loved ones to get word?

Leslie Griffin says she lives less than three miles from 10 Mile and Lahser, where her beloved Aunt, 74-year-old Barbara Williams, was killed in a car accident on Labor Day. Family members were not notified by Southfield police until Monday this week.

"This is totally unacceptable that we had to wait this long, and that we had to file a missing persons report -- she was not missing," Griffin said.

Detroit police released a missing persons report Saturday after Barbara's family says she didn't show up for her job as a security guard at the General Motors tech center.

"We heard a lot of conflicting reports first of all," Griffin said. "We heard that she could've possibly have been in some danger."

Griffin says Williams had her driver’s license and other identification at the time of the accident.

"We are very disheartened that it took this long to come to that revelation," she said.

Southfield police tell FOX 2 that Williams was transported to Southfield Providence Hospital by the fire department and later pronounced dead.

A couple police officers visited the hospital to follow up soon after the accident and say they were told by members of the hospital that hospital workers would notify the family.

Officials at Providence say they are still determining who is at fault, saying in a statement, "Our deepest sympathies go out to the family. While we can't discuss specifics of this matter due to patient confidentiality, we are investigating."

Williams' niece says the miscommunication has caused her family even more grief.

"We've just come to the place where we're starting to know what has happened, so that gives us a little peace in this situation, but for the last 8 or 9 days, we've been totally at an unrest," Griffin said.

The family is in the process of hiring an attorney, and hopes that their ordeal doesn't happen to anyone else.

"We don't know who is responsible right now, so we don't want to speculate, but we just want people who are in authority to be more mindful of family members," Griffin said.

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