Annie's Organs - Claim
I, Daniel McCann, and I, Mary Jane Malinchak-McCann, reside together as husband and wife at 7006 Vantage Drive, Alexandria, Virginia 22306. We hereby make claim against:
- State of Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Office of Chief Medical Examiner;
- State of Maryland Chief Medical Examiner, Dr. David R. Fowler; and
- Assistant Medical Examiner for the State of Maryland, Dr. Theodore M. King
for negligence in the post-mortem examination, care, and disposal of our minor daughter Annie's organs, including her heart, brain, kidneys and liver.
Our claim of negligence is based on the unlawful disposal of, misplacement and misappropriation regarding decedent Annie McCann's body parts, and in the relaying of essential information to us, the decedent's parents. This negligent conduct resulted in severe and unremitting emotional distress, manifesting itself in physical harm to both of us.
Our 16-year old daughter, Annie McCann was found dead in Baltimore, Maryland on November 2, 2008. Due to an egregious and well-documented lack of information and cooperation from the Baltimore City Police Department and the Maryland Office of Chief Medical Examiner, and despite our best efforts to obtain information dating back to March 2009, it was not until September 30, 2010 that we were made aware of the circumstances surrounding Annie's autopsy and the negligent misplacement/disposal of her heart, brain, kidneys, and liver, and that they had not been returned to her body before her Christian burial.
We first learned this in a face-to-face meeting on September 30, 2010 with Dr. Theodore M. King, Jr., who worked as an employee of the Office of Chief Medical Examiner and performed the autopsy on our beloved daughter. At this meeting, we were told that Annie’s brain, heart, kidneys, and liver were, in substantial part or in whole, unaccounted for. It appears they were wantonly discarded, as there is no documentation as to their current whereabouts; however, it is certain that they were not put back into her body before her Christian burial.
The negligent handling and callous disposal of Annie's organs, in contravention to civilized custom and the common law right of sepulcher, and with no basis in further forensic analysis into the cause of Annie’s death, or other lawful purpose, has created severe emotional distress for both of us, as the parents and natural guardians of the deceased Annie McCann.
We filed a Notice of Claim with the Maryland State Treasurer in February 2011. It is substantially similar to this claim.
Daniel J. McCann Mary Jane Malinchak-McCann
March 26, 2012 March 26, 2012