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Police probing death of US Doctor in VI waters - CoP Matthews

- Says body of Dr Joseph Horgan will be released after investigation & autopsy
According to a statement from the Commissioner of Police (CoP), Michael B. Matthews, the body of Dr Horgan was retrieved from the waters of the Virgin Islands (VI) on December 20, 2018, and after the pronouncement of death, his remains were secured in the Territory’s morgue facilities located in the new Peebles Hospital. Photo: VINO/File
Dr. Hogan in happier times with family. Photo: Local 10 News
Dr. Hogan in happier times with family. Photo: Local 10 News
US family members have since cried out over not being able to retrieve the body of the Doctor due to VI laws prohibiting the release without an autopsy. Photo: Local 10 News
US family members have since cried out over not being able to retrieve the body of the Doctor due to VI laws prohibiting the release without an autopsy. Photo: Local 10 News
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – Following the death of a Broward County, Florida Cardiologist, Dr Joseph Horgan after he allegedly fell from his yacht while vacationing here in the Virgin Islands (VI), the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF) says they are now probing his death.

According to a statement from the Commissioner of Police (CoP), Michael B. Matthews, the body of Dr Horgan was retrieved from the waters of the Virgin Islands (VI) on December 20, 2018, and after the pronouncement of death, his remains were secured in the Territory’s morgue facilities located in the new Peebles Hospital.

US family members have since cried out over not being able to retrieve the body of the Doctor due to VI laws prohibiting the release without an autopsy.

Investigation

According to the statement, “As an investigative authority, the Force conducts comprehensive investigations under the judicial requirements of the British Virgin Islands, to ensure the accurate cause of death can be determined.”

The Commissioner of Police noted that while investigations have begun for the unfortunate death, in order to conclude said investigation it is necessary to obtain medical records of the deceased from the United States.

“These records have been requested and the Force has been liaising with the family of Dr Horgan hoping to receive these urgently. These historical records are vital to the investigation process into determining the circumstances of the death of Dr Horgan,” Mr Matthews said.

 “At the immediate conclusion of the investigation, a file, inclusive of the medical records of the deceased which remain outstanding, will be presented to the Coroner’s Office and it will be necessary for an autopsy to take place,” he said.

“The autopsy will only be scheduled upon the completion of the investigations, per standard protocols. This investigative process, which also includes the collection of statements of witnesses, assists the pathologist in determining the cause of death and opine on the manner of death if necessary.”

Family members had cried out to US media, Local 10 News, that a pending autopsy was the cause of the hold up in retrieving the body.

The family claimed to have made several offers including paying for the mortician’s tickets so they can have the body at an early date, since according to them, the medical examiner was on vacation .

 "As if my father's death wasn't enough and tragic, we assumed that they would do the autopsy and his body would be returned to us in a few days,” son Jason Horgan said.

More Procedure

 “We learned that because of certain British Virgin Island laws and because of the holidays, as of right now, it stands that nothing will be done with him until January 3rd when the medical examiner is back from vacation," his son told the news outlet.

RVIPF says further, more legal and official procedures are required before the body of Dr Horgan’s is released to the family.

“We recognize this is an extremely distressing time for the family and we will continue to work diligently to have this matter concluded at the earliest and keep the family of Dr Horgan informed throughout,” Mr Matthews said.

The force extended deepest sympathies to the family and friends of Dr Horgan over his death.

8 Responses to “Police probing death of US Doctor in VI waters - CoP Matthews ”

  • Guest (28/12/2018, 09:05) Like (13) Dislike (3) Reply
    Everyone knows the process. It is the process all over the world. But some how news stories in the USA aka “fake news city” seems to think that his should not apply this time or are rushing to bypass this process.
  • Lamblike Beast (28/12/2018, 10:53) Like (10) Dislike (2) Reply
    Thry need to respect the process.
  • two cents (28/12/2018, 11:01) Like (11) Dislike (3) Reply
    You would think the family would welcome the autopsy and want to know the cause of death.
  • OZYMANDIAS (28/12/2018, 13:52) Like (3) Dislike (9) Reply
    Def got to check them wypipo. They think we so inept they come to the BVI to kill off their family member.
  • Zone (28/12/2018, 16:33) Like (1) Dislike (6) Reply
    Wonderful cause they come here to kill there spouse all the time an get away,saying it’s a accident
  • Concerned (30/12/2018, 03:19) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Thank god there looking at this more closely. This man should never had died like this.. he was to good of a man to have whent like this. And why ??? Was he sailing alone back to Florida? ??? I pray for him every night. I have a lot of sympathy for the family, but I want to know for sure, How did this happen to him. Mae the good lord help the investigation to please find out the truth.
    • EdZ (31/12/2018, 09:59) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Wonder why the investigating team is BVI as opposed to USVI? The Miami Herald reports that his body was found "in the waters off Buck Island". Buck island is in US St. Croix. I think anyone who has viewed several reports about this would have lots of questions. As a BVI catamaran sailor myself, I see several open issues that should be resolved. And, what's the hurry for body transport anyway?
      • Concerned (31/12/2018, 13:17) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
        Edz, you have the wrong Buck Island. There's more than one Buck island, the man's body was found in B.V..I , BUCK ISLAND


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