ASSOCIATED PRESS ALLEGEDLY RECEIVED REDACTED COPY OF FUDDY AUTOPSY REPORT
by Sharon Rondeau
(Apr. 3, 2014) — At 5:03 p.m. EDT, 11:00 a.m., Hawaii time, The Post & Email contacted the Maui Police Department to ask for a copy of an autopsy report as a member of the media.
The woman who courteously handled our call informed us that autopsy reports are not “public records” and cannot be disclosed except to a family member of the deceased or with written authorization from a family member.
Online resources regarding “death records” in Hawaii appear to corroborate her statement. A website detailing government records reports that in Hawaii, “Obtaining copies of Hawaii death records is extremely complicated and keep in mind that Hawaii privacy laws dictate that death records are kept confidential for 75 years.”
“Autopsies,” specifically, are not identified in the records cited in HRS 338-18, which governs the release of birth, death, marriage and other “vital event” records.
We first contacted the County of Honolulu Medical Examiner‘s office but were informed that each county has its own medical examiner. The person with whom we spoke was familiar with the death of the person whose autopsy report we were seeking, Loretta Fuddy, and advised us to call the Maui Police Department, since Fuddy’s death and autopsy reportedly occurred in Maui County.
Fuddy was director of the Hawaii Department of Health until her death on December 11, 2013, after the plane in which she was traveling on business was forced to make a water landing. Of the nine people aboard, including the pilot, Fuddy was the only person to lose her life. The most significant injury was to the pilot, Clyde Kawasaki, who suffered a concussion.
On March 10, The Washington Times reported that the Associated Press received a copy of the autopsy report, but it is unknown by what means the news organization acquired it. Regarding its contents, The Times stated that “Maui County cites privacy laws for redacting significant portions of the report.”
According to The Times, the report states that Fuddy was “markedly afraid” as the group of passengers floated in the water in life jackets awaiting help following the water landing. On January 10, the AP reported that the autopsy revealed that Fuddy had died of cardiac arrhythmia.
Fuddy was reportedly the person who oversaw the copying of Obama’s long-form birth certificate at the Health Department in late April 2011, after which it was allegedly scanned and posted on the White House website. In March 2012, the image was declared a “computer-generated forgery” by the Maricopa County Cold Case Posse.
A “universe shattering” revelation is expected in the near future from Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio regarding a separate investigation his department has conducted stemming from that of the Cold Case Posse.
Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news. She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.