The Coroner's Office is required to investigate the facts and circumstances of all sudden, violent, traumatic or unexpected deaths that occur within the County. This includes deaths from apparent “natural diseases”, but where the individual had no recent physician of record or documented history of an existing medical condition that could credibly have caused the sudden death. Under these circumstances, it becomes the Coroner’s responsibility to determine how and why an individual died. The Coroner is also responsible for determining the individual’s identity and notifying the next of kin. A Coroner’s investigation will always include examination of the deceased, but may or may not include:
- Interviews with family members, doctors and/or witnesses
- Photography of the deceased and/or the scene where death occurred
- Autopsy of the body of the deceased
- Toxicology testing of the deceased
- Collecting and holding any personal property from (or about) the deceased person that the Coroner feels may assist with the investigation.