KKTV 11 News | Colorado Springs, Pueblo | News

Coroner's Dispute

By: KKTV
By: KKTV

Autopsy results were supposed to be released Friday on the man killed in a shootout with Colorado Springs Police officers.

Thursday morning Jody Lee Balentine got into a high speed chase with police that ended near Fillmore and Cascade Avenue. According to the report, Balentine ran from the scene and when officers caught up to him, he pulled out a gun and began firing on them. The shootout ended in Balentine's death, but it was not clear whether he shot himself, or if he was shot by police.

The autopsy to determine his exact cause of death was set for Friday. But, no results are available because the El Paso County Coroner's Office refused to perform autopsies.

The coroner, Dr. David Bowerman is an elected official. But, he refused to comment on the situation. According to county commissioner Tom Huffman, there is a dispute going on between the coroner and commissioners over how much money his office should get. Huffman said Friday, " the coroner wants to have it his way or no way at all, and that's not how this county runs. We run a tight budget. He has a generous budget, and needs to run his budget properly."

Both sides are trying to work out a contract. Commissioner Huffman says a temporary agreement may be reached next week.


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