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Lombardi Law Firm

An Autopsy, An Essential Evidentiary Tool

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An 18-month-old boy was reportedly found unconscious at an in-home day care business in Waterloo, Iowa. The baby was identified in the KCCI article as Brody Harrelson of Waterloo. This may or may not be a wrongful death case. It may just be a case of sudden infant death syndrome. One of my sons had infant sleep apnea and at that time I did a lot of research on infant apnea. The investigation by the police will need to be conducted along with an autopsy by the Iowa Medical Examiner’s office. Once the cause of death is established it will be clearer whether or not a wrongful death claim exists and if so against who or what company.


This is why, to my clients, I stress having an autopsy performed. An autopsy is an essential evidentiary tool to establish (to prove) the cause of death. Proving the cause of a person dying is an essential element of a wrongful death claim (a personal injury that results in a death). Without one you would be asking the judge or jury to merely speculate about how the person died and what cause the person, in this case an infant, to stop breathing. If an autopsy is not performed any claim would be speculative. 

For more information read “Death of toddler at day care investigation” by KCCI News.

Attorney Lombardi's Note: I queued up a video about wrongful death claims.

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