Published: Fri, April 06, 2018
Medical | By Jackie Banks

Things We Know About the Discovery of CDC Employee Dr. Timothy Cunningham

Things We Know About the Discovery of CDC Employee Dr. Timothy Cunningham

The Atlanta Police Department, the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office and the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department will release further details during a news conference Thursday afternoon.

Police previously said there was no evidence of foul play, but that it couldn't be ruled out. One popular rumor was that he was a whistle-blower who had warned others at the CDC that the vaccine used for the flu season had caused some of the high number of deaths from the illness.

"We may never be able to tell you how he got into the river", Maj.

Cunningham was identified today by dental records, officials said, and the autopsy was completed on Wednesday. The scientist was wearing his favorite running shoes, O'Connor added.

Anxious neighbors formed search teams in effort to find 35-year-old Timothy Jerrell Cunningham who was last seen February 12th. Co-workers said that the day he left work, Cunningham had gotten news that he was passed over for a new position and was upset about it.

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After Cunningham's disappearance, police offered $10,000 as a reward for any clues regarding Cunningham's whereabouts. In his home, they found his keys, phone, wallet containing his credit and debit cards and identification, and they even found his passport. O'Connor said the department's missing person investigation could come to a close in the next few weeks. They said the state of the body found in the river was consistent with it being there since mid-February.

The manner of death has not been determined at this time, the medical examiner said. "In fact, he received an early promotion/exceptional proficiency promotion to Commander effective July 1, 2017, in recognition of his exemplary performance in the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS)", the CDC said in a March 12 statement.

His CDC biography says he was a "team lead" with the Division of Population Health and had deployed for several public health emergencies "including Superstorm Sandy, Ebola, and Zika".

Cunningham's father told The New York Times in February that he'd been anxious about his son recently because he didn't seem like his usual self in conversation. "I can't tell you that he was jogging, but those two things together seem to indicate that that's a possibility".

When they arrived at his house a few days later, Cunningham's parents said, they knew something was wrong because his Tibetan spaniel was unattended.

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