310 West 19th Street, #410
Cheyenne, Wyoming 82001
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The Coroner's Role in Society and Medicine
Death is a social and legal event, as well as a biological event, and as in many other social and legal events, there are judgments or rulings
to be made and certain formalities to be attended to. The Coroner serves the living, and is the advocate for the dead.
The office in our culture dates back to old English law. When a person died, the Crown would confiscate his estate. The Crown agent was known
as the “Crowner.” Eventually the position changed from confiscating the estate to investigation of the death “in the public interest.”
The Coroner operates at the interface between law and medicine. By statue, the Coroner is a Law Enforcement Office and this is the role the
public usually sees. Homicides and death related to criminal activities tend to attract the most attention.
In Wyoming, the Coroner investigates deaths due to the following reasons:
- Violent or Criminal action
- Apparent suicide
- Apparent drug or chemical overdose or toxicity
- The deceased was unattended or had not see a Physician within six months prior to death
- Apparent child abuse causes
- The deceased was a prisoner, trustee, inmate or patient of any county or state corrections facility or state hospital.
- If the cause is unknown
In addition, due to Insurance benefits to survivors, (or loss of benefits in some cases), some hospital deaths are also investigated for possible
therapeutic misadventure deaths. Hazards to the public are also important.
The Coroner is responsible to notify the next of kin of a death.
2009 Year End Report
2007 Year End Report