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Monday, May 2, 2016

Putnam County coroner's investigation continues

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Putnam County Coroner Thomas Miller said Monday after initial interviews with police, he believes there was no criminal wrongdoing on the part of officers in the death of a Brazil man who died following arrest Feb. 25.

Last week, Miller had initiated a coroner's inquest to "investigate the facts and truths" surrounding the death of 25-year-old Bradley Karn, who stopped breathing after he was arrested near Cloverdale following a police pursuit from Brazil.

"I don't see at this stage in the investigation where anything criminal led to his death," Miller told the BannerGraphic.

Although the investigation is still ongoing, Miller has conducted interviews with the 17 officers, from Cloverdale, Greencastle, Brazil, Putnam County, Clay County and the Indiana State Police, who were involved in the man's apprehension.

Even more police, he said, arrived after officers had started CPR and called for medics.

"They all had tunnel vision as to their individual aspect of what happened," Miller said, describing the investigation as a puzzle. "When you put it together, everything fits."

At 10:50 p.m. that night, Karn fled Brazil police following a traffic stop. His flight took him south on S.R. 59 and then east on I-70 into Putnam County. The chase ended at the eastbound 41-mile marker after two sets of stop-sticks were used to deflate the tires of his Oldsmobile and Clay County Sheriff Mike Heaton used a police maneuver to push the vehicle off the roadway.

Preliminary autopsy results show Karn had tested positive for methamphetamine, marijuana and alcohol use on the night of his death. Terre Haute medical examiner, Dr. Roland Kohr, has said Karn's death followed a pattern of occurrence where death follows a combination of circumstances such as drug use and extreme distress combined with restraint. Karn was handcuffed and laying prone when he stopped breathing.

Miller said he has not yet decided on the official cause and manner of the man's death.

"I don't know how he died," the coroner said. "It is still under investigation."

Sarah Lipps is a Greencastle BannerGraphic reporter.

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