> -----Original Message-----
> From: RuddyUpdate <RuddyUpdate@ruddynews.com>
> To: List Suppressed <List Suppressed>
> Date: Tuesday, January 13, 1998 4:46 AM
> Subject: 3rd Expert Claims Probe of Brown's Death Botched
> |3rd Expert Claims Probe of Brown's Death Botched
> |By Christopher Ruddy
> |FOR THE TRIBUNE-REVIEW
> |January 13, 1998
> |Washington - The head of the Armed Forces Institute of
> |Pathology's forensic photography unit, like two other
> |senior officials before her, has come forward to
> |publicly claim that the military improperly handled the
> |investigation of the death of Commerce Secretary Ron
> |Chief Petty Officer Kathleen Janoski, a 22 year Navy
> |veteran, also says she was told missing evidence of a
> |possible homicide had been purposely destroyed.
> |Janoski, the senior enlisted person at AFIP's
> |Rockville, Md., offices, was present when Brown's body
> |was examined by military pathologists at Dover Air
> |Force Base in Delaware.
> |The examination of Brown's remains took place four days
> |after an Air Force CT-43 jet carrying him and 34 others
> |crashed into a mountainside near Croatia's Dubrovnik
> |airport on April 3, 1996.
> |Janoski had initially declined to be interviewed but
> |changed her mind shortly before a gag order was issued
> |to AFIP staff. She came forward, she said, because AFIP
> |had failed to properly investigate possible wrongdoing
> |by its own officials in the Brown case, and because of
> |the way the military treated two AFIP pathologists, Air
> |Force Lt. Col. Steve Cogswell and Army Lt. Col. David
> |In Tribune-Review articles last month, Cogswell and
> |Hause both went public about a small circular hole
> |found in the very top of Brown's head. Both
> |pathologists contend it looked like a gunshot wound and
> |should have prompted an autopsy. No autopsy was
> |Janoski said she was disturbed by criticism of the
> |lieutenant colonels and suggestions that their actions
> |may be politically motivated. She described both
> |pathologists as "serious professionals" and
> |Partisan politics has nothing to do with the issues at
> |hand, she suggested, noting that she has been a
> |lifelong and active Democrat, beginning with volunteer
> |work for the 1972 presidential campaign of George
> |McGovern. She says she voted for Bill Clinton and is
> |proud to receive a White House Christmas Card each year
> |for having worked as a volunteer at the Clinton White
> |INTERNAL PROBE
> |After Cogswell's allegations first surfaced in the
> |Tribune-Review, AFIP launched an internal investigation
> |of Cogswell and others to find out why and how the
> |information about Brown's head wound got to the press.
> |Janoski said she was stunned that AFIP inquiry focused
> |on the actions of Cogswell when she felt the real issue
> |was AFIP's handling of Brown's death.
> |"The investigation is nothing more than a witch hunt.
> |(AFIP) should be investigating what happened to the
> |missing head X-rays. No one at AFIP seems to care that
> |Brown did not receive an autopsy," Janoski said.
> |On Easter Sunday, 1996, the task of examining Brown's
> |body fell to Col. William Gormley, the highest ranking
> |AFIP officer at Dover that day.
> |While Gormley conducted an external examination of
> |Brown's body, Janoski was busy photographing and
> |documenting his injuries. Brown was still partially
> |clad in a his torn trousers. His body was intact, with
> |chemical burns to his torso and face and several
> |noticeable lacerations on the front, sides and top of
> |his head.
> |As she continued to shoot photos, she noticed a large
> |area of torn skin that left the top of Brown's skull
> |She was startled to find another injury. Dead center in
> |the top of the head she observed what appeared to her
> |to be a gunshot wound: a perfectly circular hole in the
> |"Wow, look at the hole in Ron Brown's head. It looks
> |like a gunshot wound," Janoski recalls exclaiming.
> |Janoski has served as chief of forensic photography for
> |2 (1/2) years, and has, by her account, handled
> |numerous cases involving either gunshots or plane
> |crashes. She received training at the FBI Academy and
> |elsewhere in observing, identifying and photographing
> |gunshot and other wounds.
> |Janoski's comments caused an immediate hubbub in the
> |morgue facility, and several pathologists came over to
> |view the wound.
> |One was Hause, a former Gulf War combat surgeon with
> |significant plane accident and gunshot experience.
> |Hause examined the hole and said it looked like a .45
> |caliber gunshot entry wound.
> |Gormley, who has approximately 25 years of experience
> |in pathology, has said that he, too, identified the
> |wound as a "red flag" and that he consulted with other
> |pathologists present, including Hause and Navy Cmdr.
> |Edward Kilbane.
> |"They agreed it look like an entrance gunshot wound,"
> |Gormley recalled in a recent television interview.
> |In two interviews with the Tribune-Review, Gormley
> |maintained he ruled out the possibility of a gunshot
> |because he observed, on closer inspection, that the
> |circular hole did not penetrate Brown's skull into the
> |brain. He said the brain was not visible, and had a
> |bullet struck Brown's head, it would have penetrated
> |the skull.
> |Soon after the Tribune-Review published a photograph of
> |the wound as well as photos of X-rays that showed the
> |skull had been penetrated, Gormley changed his story.
> |During a television appearance, he admitted that the
> |photo and X-ray indeed showed the skull was penetrated
> |and brown's brain was visible.
> |Gormley noted it had been more than a year and a half
> |since the Brown crash, and said he had simply forgotten
> |what the wound looked like. In his initial report on
> |the examination, Gormley noted the bullet had
> |penetrated the skull. He maintained that the hole
> |definitely wasn't a gunshot wound because X-rays showed
> |no slug or metal fragments in the head, and there was
> |no exit wound.
> |In a recent press statement, AFIP said extensive
> |"forensic tests" disproved a bullet theory. Janoski
> |said she was present for the entire examination and she
> |did not observe any forensic tests, such those for
> |gunpowder residue around the wound.
> |MISSING X-RAYS
> |In addition to pictures of the corpse itself, Janoski
> |took photos of the original head and body X-rays while
> |they were pinned to a lightbox.
> |After her slide film was developed, Janoski said she
> |stored the images, which are typically used by
> |pathologists for lectures and are not part of the
> |official case file, in her office desk.
> |Almost six months later, Janoski said she was prompted
> |to review the film after Brown's name surfaced during a
> |discussion with Jean Marie Sentell, a naval criminal
> |investigator assigned to the AFIP. Sentell had also
> |been present when Brown's body was examined.
> |Janoski alleges Sentell told her the original X-rays of
> |Brown's head had been replaced in the case file.
> |Janoski said she remembers that Sentell specifically
> |told her "the first head X-ray that showed a 'lead
> |snowstorm' was destroyed, and a second X-ray, that was
> |less dense, was taken."
> |Janoski said she had to ask, "What are you talking
> |about?" in reference to Sentell's phrase "lead
> |snowstorm." According to Janoski, Sentell explained
> |that a lead snowstorm is the description of a pattern
> |of metal fragments that appears on an X-ray after a
> |bullet has disintegrated inside a body.
> |Janoski said Sentell did not say who destroyed the X-
> |Sentell did not respond to repeated Tribune-Review
> |phone messages seeking comment, even after being
> |informed of Janoski's statements. An AFIP spokesman
> |said Sentell declined to be interviewed.
> |After the conversation with Sentell, Janoski said she
> |rummaged through her own desk and found the slide film
> |she had taken of the original head X-rays. She gave the
> |film to Cogswell to review.
> |Cogswell contends the original frontal X-ray of Brown's
> |head indeed showed an apparent "lead snowstorm" of
> |metal fragments in brown's head. Cogswell has stated
> |that the suspicious hole and the X-ray should have
> |prompted AFIP to notify the FBI that Brown's death was
> |a possible homicide.
> |Cogswell, too, has alleged that he heard that the first
> |X-rays were destroyed.
> |Still curious about the matter, Janoski pulled out
> |Brown's official case file and discovered that the file
> |contained only 15 X-rays of Brown, none of which were
> |of the skull. She found neither of the original X-rays
> |that she had photographed on the lightbox.
> |Janoski said she became terrified when she realized
> |that "I possessed the only physical evidence that
> |those X-rays ever existed."
> |AFIP director Col. Michael Dickerson has acknowledged
> |that all skull X-rays of Brown are missing from the
> |case file.
> |Gormley has stated that the initial head X-rays did
> |show possible fragments that concerned him at the time,
> |but that Brown's head was X-rayed again and he
> |discovered the pattern of fragments on the initial
> |X-ray was actually caused by a defect in the
> |reusable film cartridge.
> |The new images did not show any fragments in the head,
> |but they, like the originals photographed by Janoski,
> |have disappeared.
> |One of the pathologists involved questions the timing
> |of AFIP's explanation.
> |"I find it interesting that this explanation about the
> |film cartridge defect came after Lt. Col Cogswell made
> |his allegations, and not at the time we were at Dover,"
> |said Hause.
> |Hause, who made these comments to the Tribune-Review
> |before a gag order had been placed on AFIP staff, said
> |he does not recall ever being told there was problem
> |with the X-rays.
> |Janoski noted that the photos she took of other Brown
> |X-rays on the light box did not show any such pattern.
> |Gormley and AFIP have not offered any explanation for
> |how the X-rays disappeared. Gormley referred calls to
> |AFIP spokesman Chris Kelly, who said that Gormley
> |would not grant an additional interview.
> |In recent days, Janoski was contacted and asked if she
> |stood by her earlier comments. She said she did and
> |added that AFIP officials are determined to "turn Lt.
> |Col. Cogswell into scapegoat."
> |She said AFIP investigators recently presented her with
> |a list questions that focused on how the photographic
> |images had found their way to the press.
> |"I was never advised of my rights, and the tone and
> |manner... was threatening and coercive," she said.
> |Janoski reiterated to the Tribune-Review that she had
> |done nothing improper, and that AFIP should be
> |concentrating on why Ron Brown "did not receive a
> |proper death investigation."
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