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Attorney: Irish Beating Victim Did Not Catch ‘Superbug’

Natasha McShane

Natasha McShane, 24, was brutally beaten with a baseball bat on North Damen Avenue in April 2010. (Credit: CBS)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — She survived a brutal attack here in Chicago, then went home to Northern Ireland to recover.

This city never stopped caring about Natasha McShane. So when a published report surfaced saying her father, Liam, fears she’s near death because of an infection, people were alarmed.

It turns out, the story is false, family attorney John Colbert told CBS 2’s Kristyn Hartman.

The attorney actually woke McShane’s father in Northern Ireland on Thursday to verify a story making the rounds. Liam McShane was quoted as saying his daughter was near death after contracting a “superbug.” Not so, Colbert said.

“He has no concerns about the care his daughter is getting presently,” he said.

Natasha has been through so much in recent months. In April, when she was studying in Chicago, a man attacked her and a friend with a baseball bat during a robbery. It was life-threatening.

The city held fund-raisers to help her family with mounting medical costs here. And by July, when she left for home to continue treatment, Natasha was talking, walking and eating with assistance.

But Natasha had a “setback” following surgery to replace a part of her skull, her grandfather, Joe McShane, said. An infection set in, and doctors treated it with antibiotics.

That was months ago. Colbert, the family attorney, says there’s no super bug now, though the young woman faces an uphill battle.

The family is “hoping and praying that something will click … that will help her,” Joe McShane said.

Natasha has suffered seizures and she’s lost speaking ability.

Colbert says there is some speculation on the McShane family’s part that had Natasha stayed in the U.S., she might not have lost ground in her recovery. But that recovery is still progressing — contrary to the recent reports.