Carbon Monoxide Hotel Deaths
The medical examiner in this case has resigned. Do you think he was at fault? If not who do you think should bear the blame, or is it really just an accident and no one's fault?
Funeral for 11-year-old Boone hotel victim to be held Sunday | www.wsoctv.com
BOONE, N.C. ?
The 11-year-old killed by a poisonous gas will be laid to rest on Sunday, but police told Eyewitness News that his death could have been prevented.
Exactly one week ago, Jeffrey Williams was found dead inside a Boone Best Western ? his mother seriously ill.
Just weeks earlier, Daryl and Shirley Jenkins died in the same room, but their toxicology reports did not make it to the Boone police until after Jeffrey died.
Then the Watauga County Medical Examiner resigned on Friday.
After an elderly couple died in room 225 two months ago, Eyewitness News learned the state toxicology reports were never put at the top of a priority list.
On Saturday night, the state said no one ever told them to expedite the results.
"I don't know why they didn't expedite them, but the thinking at the time was that it was not carbon monoxide," said Chief Police Officer Dana Crawford.
Eyewitness News uncovered this timeline:
Daryl and Shirley Jenkins died on April 16.
The state completed its toxicology report proving carbon monoxide killed Shirley on June 1, but here is where the delay became deadly.
Officers did not receive the report results even though they asked for them weeks earlier, until June 10, two days after another person died in the same room ? 11-year-old Jeffrey Williams.
"It's like he slipped through the cracks," said Jennifer Hunt.
The state said Watauga County Medical Examiner Dr. Brent Hall had that report the week before Williams died.
Hall suddenly resigned on Friday, but he has not answered questions about when he received the report.
The state said on Saturday, "These deaths were a tragedy that should have never happened. The Department of Health and Human Services is continuing to gather the facts."
It said staff had been instructed, "to work with local officials to identify measures to ensure tragedies like this never happen again."