After exposing the NFL for suppressing a pattern of brain injuries from concussions, Dr. Bennet Omalu is now exposing alleged police corruption. He resigned his position as chief forensic pathologist in San Joaquin County, California and accused the county’s sheriff of interfering with his work to protect his officers, KQED reported.
Omalu said Sheriff Steve Moore, who also serves by law as the county’s coroner and oversees Omalu’s work, has overridden his authority as a physician and attempts to influence his professional judgement on cases related deaths in police custody and officer involved shootings.
The Nigerian-born doctor and his colleague Dr. Susan Parson, who joins him in resigning, began documenting in March incidents in which the sheriff labeled some death as accidents instead of homicides, apparently to protect law enforcement officers. In a memo, Omalu said he first started noticing the pattern in 2016, which had gotten worse over time. The news outlet said it obtained copies of emails, notes and other correspondence that Parson sent to the San Joaquin County district attorney and board of supervisors after she resigned.
Moore denied that he meddled with forensic autopsy investigations, KQED said. “As coroner I have not interfered. I’ve never changed any cause of death,” he stated, adding that he’s disappointed to learn about Omalu’s resignation because he enjoyed working with him. However, Omalu pointed to several specific cases that contradict the sheriff’s denials. One of them involves Moore withholding information that an officer fired his Taser at a suspect 31 times. The doctor had to reverse the cause of death after receiving the concealed information. The San Joaquin district attorney’s office said it is investigating the allegation in the homicide cases.