Once it has been determined that a death has occurred, the scene is secured by Police or Fire/EMS personnel and the Coroner's Office is notified. When the Coroner or her Deputy arrives on scene, his or her first duty is to pronounce the individual deceased. Next the Coroner's Office will work in conjunction with whatever law enforcement entity is present in order to process the scene jointly. Processing includes photographs, collection of evidence and/or personal property and on-scene interviews if possible and practical. In many cases, evidence obtained at the scene may be critical to the outcome of the investigation. The time involved in processing the scene varies widely; from hours to even days.
If the individual is deceased at the scene, he or she remains at the scene until such time removal will not jeopardize the processing and collection of evidence. This can be difficult for family members who want their loved one tended to as quickly as possible. Every effort is made to remove the decedent from the scene as soon as possible. Each death scene is unique and may require special considerations.
If you have any questions, please contact the Coroner's Office at (309) 888-5210.