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Family speaks out on allegations involving Lauderdale County Coroner

Published: Dec. 8, 2021 at 9:38 PM CST
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LAUDERDALE CO., Ala. (WAFF) - The Lauderdale county coroner is facing impeachment after he allegedly neglected his duties.

While many people are getting in the holiday spirit, this year one Shoals family is still left without one gift: the answer to how their loved one died last July.

“He was so young. He was 28. He didn’t have anything wrong that we would expect to happen,” said Brittany White.

28-year-old Robert Blaine Smith died in July 2020. Now almost two Christmases without her brother.

“Nobody had my back like my big brother,” said White.

White still doesn’t know how he died

They were waiting on a toxicology report from the Lauderdale County coroner.

“So we trusted that. He told us it would be probably about six to eight weeks to get the reports back so we waited,” said White.

But they never received it.

“It’s hard not knowing what happened and not knowing how we could have prevented it or anything that we could have done different to help him,” said White.

Blaine allegedly fell victim to what they say is the Lauderdale County coroner’s, Butch Tucker’s willful neglect of duty.

Tucker is facing impeachment over allegations of willfully neglecting his duties.

According to court documents from the grand jury report, the coroner never sent Smith’s blood sample to the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences.

They found ten other instances of neglect too.

“A year and a half later we’re thinking well maybe we’ll get those results. Maybe we’ll find out what happened and knowing that we’ll never know, it’s painful,” said White.

A pain for their family, that will never go away.

“We’re disappointed that he is who we had to trust with something so delegate and something as huge as person’s life,” said White.

His hearing is set for January 6th, 2022.

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