Sunday, December 27, 2020

Dr. Frederick P. Hobin, M.D., M.E., R.I.P.: Disciplined Over Secrecy on Michelle O'Connell Autopsy

Controversial former  23rd District Medical Examiner, Dr. Frederick Hobin, M.D., has died.  He was disciplined over the Michelle O'Connell autopsy, after finding she was murdered, then changing his conclusion to suicide under pressure from Sheriff DAVID SHOAR, then changing his conclusion to homicide, while concealing in his own home his his revised report finding that she was shot to death by "another person."  

The New York Times reported in 2017:


The two local medical examiners who sided with Sheriff Shoar experienced their own setbacks in March, when the Florida Medical Examiners Commission accused them of violating state rules in their handling of the O’Connell case.

The panel recommended that Dr. Hobin be suspended for an undetermined period for keeping his amended opinion — that Ms. O’Connell had been “shot by another” — at home, where it was not accessible to the public. Dr. Bulic, the panel said, should be reprimanded for letting people view autopsy photographs of Ms. O’Connell without her family’s permission.

The commission also criticized Dr. Hobin for failing to note the broken jaw in his report. Both doctors can contest that ruling, but so far have not.

Ms. O’Connell’s grave. Her mother says she has grown tired of waiting for the justice she seeks.
Credit...George Etheredge for The New York Times

From the St. Augustine Record:

Dr. Frederick (Fred) P. Hobin 
Dr. Frederick (Fred) P Hobin was born in Passaic, NJ. Fred came into this world on Flag Day 1935. Later, in the Penguin Club, which Fred's father owned, the occasion was blessed with a song by a skinny, young singer named Frank Sinatra. The 19-year-old Sinatra sang Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes to celebrate Fred's birth. Fred grew up in Boston, MA, and received his undergraduate degree from Tufts University and then his medical degree from the University of Vermont. After residency, Fred served as an Army Captain in the Vietnam Evac 85 Hospital for one year. He then began his career in Pathology first in Jacksonville and then Palm Beach County, FL. Fred transitioned into Forensic Pathology where he spent the last twenty plus years of his career as a Medical Examiner in South Florida. He loved the forensic pathology work so much, he did not fully retire until he was 81 years old. Fred married the love of his life Catherine (Cathy), his wife of 58 years. They moved to St Augustine 20 years ago and loved the area and people. Fred is survived by his children Suzanne, Colleen and Rick and his sister Barbara. In addition to loving his career, Fred enjoyed hobbies including glamour photography, music, movies, reading, golf, fishing and travel. His passion for photography lasted more than 50 years. A celebration of life will follow next summer. St. Johns Family Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.Published in St. Augustine Record from Dec. 18 to Dec. 20, 2020.


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