‘Very unfortunate’ that mom has to wait to see son’s body, coroner says
Published Wednesday, July 22, 2015 5:41PM PDT
Last Updated Wednesday, July 22, 2015 7:48PM PDT
The family of a young Surrey man who was killed by police last weekend will be able to see his body, but not until a forensic autopsy is complete.
It’s been five days since 20-year-old Hudson Brooks was fatally shot by the RCMP, but his tearful mother is still waiting to see him.
“They tell me his body’s not presentable,” Jennifer Brooks told CTV News in a tearful interview Tuesday. “I can’t hold his hand.”
The B.C. Coroners Service said the delay is common in potential homicide cases that could end up in court, including police-involved shootings.
Spokeswoman Barb McClintock said the body must undergo an autopsy with a forensic pathologist before the family is allowed in.
“This is a very unfortunate thing that happens,” McClintock said. “The pathologist wants that body to have been touched and disturbed absolutely as little as possible.”
Once the autopsy is complete, the body will be released to a funeral home and the family will be able to work out a viewing with staff, McClintock said.
“We do understand how hard it is for families to have to wait,” she added.
Brooks’s son was unarmed when he was killed just after 2 a.m. Saturday. Few details have been confirmed, but the RCMP said officers at the scene were responding to reports of a suicidal man screaming outside a police station.
Brooks told CTV News her son was not suicidal, and she doesn’t understand what could have made him so distraught.
“He was my beautiful boy,” she said. “I want to know what happened. I want justice.”
B.C.’s police watchdog, the Independent Investigations Office, is probing the incident.
One Mountie also suffered a minor gunshot wound, but the IIO has confirmed only RCMP-issued weapons were recovered from the scene.
Neither the RCMP nor IIO has suggested Brooks’s son pulled the trigger.
With a report from CTV Vancouver’s Lisa Rossington