Then, Dr. Stephen Boudreau, a medical examiner in the case, informed a prosecutor that the state laboratory couldn't find the tissue sample, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.
"I've been trying to go through the slide files to try and find the mislabeled slide, but there are hundreds in each year, and it could be anywhere.
What a mess!
Boudreau wrote in an email to a Lee County prosecutor.
The coroner requested an autopsy because of the circumstances and Boudreau, the medical examiner, determined that the teenager died of bacterial pneumonia and septicemia, an infection.
"In my opinion, active medical treatment in the early stages of this condition should have been curative.
Mr. Burdette, with all likelihood, would have survived," Boudreau
wrote in a letter.