ORLANDO, Fla. — A Florida family filed a complaint with a state disciplinary board on Friday alleging that a medical examiner covered up a homicide by a police officer whose dashboard camera in May recorded him pursuing and running over a 38-year-old black man.
The family of the victim, Marlon Brown, also sent letters to Florida Gov. Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi, according to family attorney Ben Crump. The family is asking for an independent investigation into Brown’s death and the handling of the autopsy by Volusia County Medical Examiner Marie Herrmann, who ruled the death an accident.
“I believe it’s a cover-up. The medical examiner’s report is not what we’re seeing on the videotape,” said Brown’s former wife, Krystal Brown, 38, a licensed practical nurse and occupational therapist in DeLand who is the mother of Brown’s two adolescent children.
In her investigative report, Herrmann found no evidence the police car pursuing Brown struck him, but rather that Brown slipped and fell and the patrol car came to rest on top of him. Herrmann ruled that Brown died of accidental mechanical asphyxia, according to the complaint.
The complaint comes after an assistant medical examiner, Dr. Shiping Bao, who conducted the autopsy on Brown, told Krystal Brown and Crump that he concluded the killing was a “traumatic homicide.” Bao told them he was overruled by Herrmann, his boss, who took over the completion of the autopsy, according to the complaint filed with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s medical examiner commission.
Bao subsequently was terminated by Herrmann.