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January 23, 2022

Grand jury questions performance of Alabama coroner

A grand jury alleged that a north Alabama coroner hasn’t fulfilled the duties of his office, including failing to submit blood samples for testing following deaths.

Lauderdale County Coroner George “Butch” Tucker, who could be impeached, was summoned to appear before a judge on Jan. 6 to answer allegations from families who claim he neglected the job, the TimesDaily reported.
Tucker, reached by telephone on Tuesday, declined comment on the grand jury report.

Tucker was elected coroner in 2018 and worked as deputy coroner before that. The grand jury report noted complaints that he had sometimes failed to draw blood samples requested by police and also failed to submit blood samples for analysis by the Department of Forensic Sciences. The report also cited an unnecessary delay in completing a death certificate.

In one case involving a gunshot death, Tucker’s daughter, who serves as a deputy coroner, arrived at the scene of a death without a bag to hold the body of the deceased person and failed to properly seal a bag provided by police, the report said.

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