This doesn’t seem very just to us…
The New York State Court of Appeals just made a ruling that coroners are allowed to remove the brain from a dead body without having to tell the deceased’s family.
The decision came after the case of Jesse Shipley, a 17-year-old in Staten Island who died in a car accident back in 2005.
After his death and funeral, Jesse’s classmates went on a school trip to the city mortuary and saw his brain on display in formalin, a kind of preservative agent.
We’re not sure why the school funded such a morbid trip, but regardless, Jesse’s parents Andre and Korisha Shipley found out that their dead son’s brain was not buried with the rest of his body and promptly sued the city for emotional distress and neglect.
Well, in Appellate court, the Shipleys originally won $1 million in damages, but after the city appealed the decision, the ruling, which finally came in on Wednesday, more than 10 years after the accident, said that Jesse’s parents had no legal basis to sue because medical examiner’s don’t have to tell you squat.
Our hearts are with Jesse’s friends who had to see his disembodied brain floating around over a decade ago, and even more so with his family who just got screwed over in court.
Hopefully knowing that the court of public opinion is siding with them helps in some way.
[Image via University at Buffalo.]