SAN FRANCISCO—Former employee of the San Francisco Medical Examiner’s office, filed a lawsuit on July 27, 2020 regarding his suspension turned termination after he denied his boss’ command to change the autopsy report of Public Defender Jeff Adachi, who died in February of 2019. 

Christopher Wirowek’s lawsuit was first released by KPIX on Wednesday, August 6, against the city and county of San Francisco. As claimed by Wirowek, he refused to alter the autopsy report of Jeff Adachi as ordered by City Administrator Naomi Kelly which ultimately led to him being fired. Wirowek has not released what changes were said to be made on the document. 

According to the official lawsuit released by KPIX,  “knowing that it was against the law to knowingly falsify an autopsy report, Mr. Wirowek told Ms. Kelly she could not make changes to the autopsy report and that he would release the report as the doctors wrote it.” A KPIX 5 at City Hall source stated that it is a fact that the city administrator went to the medical examiner’s office to discuss the information that would be released but that no order to change any information was said. Even if an alter was demanded it would not have been possible because the document had already previously been signed by the office’s pathologists.” 

The report done by the Medical Examiner’s office states that the late Public Defender Adachi, 59, died from a mixture of alcohol and cocaine, a reaction that was amplified by his already weak heart. An independent autopsy was completed that concluded that, contrary to the Medical Examiner’s previous findings, that there was not enough alcohol and drugs to cause Adachi’s death but that it instead was solely his pre-existing heart condition. 

Adachi was found in a Telegraph Hill apartment, unconscious,  by paramedics on February 22, 2019. Adachi was with a woman that was not his wife. Photos reveal that the apartment was a mess with an unmade bed, alcohol bottles, and marijuana edibles scattered throughout. 

Adachi and Wirowek did not have a good relationship prior to the death of the public offender. Adachi had previously filed a motion to investigate the credibility of the Medical Examiner’s office just two months before his unexpected death.

Christopher Wirowek is suing the city for unlawful retaliation. The city’s administrator’s office told KPIX 5 that Wirowek’s allegations are “complete fiction”.