Anniversary of Michelle O’Connell’s death
Statement from Commander Charles Mulligan
St Johns County Sheriff’s Office
Community Affairs Bureau
It is not surprising that on the 4th anniversary of Michelle O’Connell’s death, members of her family have orchestrated news events to again draw attention to this tragedy.
Families of suicide victims often go to great lengths to try and demonstrate that their loved one did not take their own life and we have great compassion for these families.
The fact is, the classification of this incident is “suicide” following independent rulings from three (3) Medical Examiner’s, who ruled the death a suicide, and the Governor appointed State Attorney who also found no legal standing to pursue the death as the result of a criminal event.
Aside from the legal findings, The Florida Department of Law Enforcement continues their internal affairs investigation of Agent Rusty Rodgers which began nearly 1 1/2 years ago; additionally, Agent Rodgers continues to be the subject of a criminal investigation by State Attorney William Cervone regarding potential “official misconduct” relating to this case. Finally, FDLE and Agent Rodgers are both defendants in civil cases, one case filed by Michele O’Connell’s brother and the other filed by Deputy Jeremy Banks.
We will refrain from speaking about this case in any detail until the above items are completed.