North Carolina Lawyers Weekly reporter Phillip Bantz covered Administrative Law Judge Randall May's recent order overturning the medical examiner’s manner of death determination following a trial. The ruling marks at least the second time in as many years that May has reversed the chief medical examiner’s findings in a death investigation. Ward and Smith attorneys Charles Ellis and Hayley Wells represented the families in both cases. The full article can be accessed with a Lawyers Weekly subscription here.
From the article:
Hayley Wells of Ward and Smith in Asheville worked on the Santimore case and now represents Tuggle’s widow. She said the two cases share “some frighteningly similar aspects.” “The medical examiner is not fulfilling its statutory duty to investigate the manner of death,” she said. “I think Judge May’s order makes it pretty clear that there seems to be a failure to comport with that statutory duty and a failure to investigate. We’ve seen that in both of these cases.”