Mahoning County Coroner’s new hire thankful for opportunity

Brian Hunter was hired as Mahoning County Coroner's new investigator

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – For the first time in more than a decade, Brian Hunter is once again working in the medical field.

Hunter, who worked for more than a dozen years as a practicing osteopathic physician, is the newest investigator for the Mahoning County Coroner’s office.

“There’s no question that I have a tremendous amount of training to do,” Hunter said.

Hunter surrendered his license several years ago after being cited by the State of Ohio Medical Board in 2003 for Medicaid fraud and drug and alcohol dependency.

Hunter said he believed that surrendering his license was “the right thing to do.”

“What I did was wrong,” he said.

Hunter admitted that his downward spiral began in 1995 when both his father and a best friend died the same year, and he never sought help for his depression.

“I was living an unproductive lifestyle, partying too much,” he said.

According to Medical Board records, Hunter pleaded guilty to submitting charges to the state for Medicaid services he never provided — using the money to help pay for his drugs. He was ultimately sentenced to probation for two years.

“I hated who I’d become. I didn’t like who I’d become, and fortunately for me, I made up my mind that this is it,” he said.

Hunter said he has been clean and sober since then and had been working in real estate locally when he learned the investigator’s position, which pays¬†$25,000 a year, was available.

Mahoning County Coroner Dr. David Kennedy said he considered Hunter’s past, but he said Hunter is very qualified for the job.

“I had some thoughts about it, but I think the benefits far outweigh the risk,” he said.

Kennedy said he thinks Hunter has earned a second chance.

“He would be a good fit for the office. I thought we’d be able to kind of make a coup and use him as opposed to somebody just out of college without any experience,” he said.

While Hunter will be on probation like any other new hire, he calls the opportunity a “gift” and a chance to keep moving forward.

WKBN 27 First News provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. No links will be permitted. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s