CCTV:Morgue workers dragged body like bag of trash

Morgue workers dragged Ropell McBeth's body down the stairs and tossed it into van like bag of trash
A shocking video captured two callous city workers hauling the corpse of a Bronx man like he was a "bag of trash" - even dragging the body down a cement staircase.

The disturbing security camera footage is at the center of a suit filed by Ropell McBeth's sister against the medical examiner's office.

She says her 54-year-old brother, a formerly homeless schizophrenic, endured "incredible hardship" before he died at an assisted-living facility this year.

"He was mistreated in life, and humiliated by these men in death," Sandy McBeth-Tuitt, 52, told the Daily News.

"They treated my brother like he wasn't even a person, but garbage. They should be ashamed of themselves."
The five-minute video shows two mortuary technicians dragging the body bag out of the fourth-floor apartment, dropping it twice in the hallway.

They pulled the 190-pound load onto an elevator. When they emerged, one peered around a corner as if to see if anyone was looking.

Then the duo dragged McBeth down the hall and out of the building door, sliding him down a flight of stairs.

Finally, after struggling to lift the bag, they roughly swung it into their van.

The mortuary was called to the East Tremont facility after McBeth-Tuitt discovered her brother's body on his bathroom floor. He died of complications from his medication.

"I was already in shock over losing the man who helped raise me, and then these careless men showed up," she said, claiming they told her to "get out of the way" at one point.

Still grieving weeks later, she got a call from the building super, who told her about the footage the cameras recorded.

"What are you doing to my brother?" she cried when she first saw it. "You have to be animals to handle a man that way!"

She complained to the medical examiner's office, which sent an apology.
"Please accept my apologies for the way [my] staff handled your brother, as I stated before it is not our policy and procedure to handle the remains in that manner," Director of Mortuary Services Robert Kearney wrote.

He said "write ups" were issued for the technicians and placed in their files.

Ellen Borakove, a spokeswoman for the office, said she could not comment on the suit. In general, though, she said mortuary technicians assess the removal of bodies on a case-by-case basis.

The city Law Department said in a statement that "the medical examiner treats all bodily remains with respect."

McBeth-Tuitt doesn't buy it.

"They didn't treat my brother with an ounce of respect," she said.

"He had a hard life, and didn't deserve to be treated like a bag of trash after his death. I'll be thinking of what they did to him the rest of my life."


Read more: www.nydailynews.com
- video encodings still in process -