A Grand Rapids non-profit organization, Families United for Justice, reports that it is investigating misfeasance in the filing of records by the Kent County medical examiner's office that has had the effect of preventing the disclosure of documents that are evidence of misconduct by that office. Some of these errors include putting the wrong name and date on an autopsy report so that it is incorrectly filed. As a result the report does not turn up when it is requested under the correct name and date.
This is a serious matter, because (as we have reported here and here) the current medical examiner, Dr. Stephen Cohle, has a conflict of interest between his duty to the public and his extensive private business ties with Spectrum Health Corporation, whom he is obligated to investigate when suspicious deaths occur in that company's various hospitals and healthcare facilities. Moreover, Cohle's conflict is more than apparent. He has exonerated his big client, Spectrum Health, from wrongdoing in suspicious deaths at one of its facilities based upon incomplete and erroneous autopsies (which because of these filing errors have not been available for public examination). At least two members of the Kent County Board of Commissioners thought Cohle's conflict of interest was serious enough to vote against renewing his term as medical examiner.
Therefore, Phyllis Jennings, director of Families United for Justice, whose father was one of the people who died under those suspicious circumstances, has asked that anyone who knows about such misfiled records at either the Kent County medical examiner's office, Spectrum Health, Kent County Community Hospital (which Spectrum manages), or Cohle's private firm Laboratory Pathologists P.C. to assist her organization's investigation. You can send information and documents to:
Families United for Justice, P.O. Box 140975, Grand Rapids, Michigan 49514-0975.