Employment Opportunity

Chief Deputy Coroner

Island County Coroner, Coupeville, Washington

Salary: Depends on Qualifications

Final Filing Date: January 27, 2019

The Chief Deputy Coroner conducts investigations to determine the cause and manner of death and the identity of decedents in cases under the Coroner's jurisdiction, and does other related work as required. As an appointed position under RCW 36.16.070, the Chief Deputy Coroner may perform any act which his or her principal is authorized to perform.

Duties and Requirements Click to read more


  • Receives reports of death from physicians, law enforcement agencies, hospital personnel, and other persons; determines whether the case is within the legal jurisdiction of the Coroner.
  • Initiates investigation at the scene of death to determine if death is due to homicide, suicide, accident, or from non-traumatic causes; secures physical, scientific, and pathological evidence such as clothing, weapons, drugs, bodily fluids, specimens, and liver temperatures; photographs physical evidence and the scene of death.
  • Processes all autopsy, toxicology and medical samples/reports.
  • Fingerprints decedent; attempts to verify the identity of the decedent; interviews witnesses; locates and notifies relatives of the death; requests identification specialists for assistance in criminal or special cases.
  • Speaks with physicians regarding the decedent's medical history; checks medical records and other sources to gather information necessary to ascertain the cause of death.
  • When needed, orders autopsies or requests other services from toxicologists, bacteriologists, and other skilled examiners to aid in determining an exact cause of death.
  • Testifies in court; prepares and writes reports clearly and concisely.
  • Maintains confidential case files.
  • Provides sensitive and compassionate communication with the family of the deceased.
  • Provides clerical, administrative and laboratory technician tasks as needed.


Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • Knowledge of procedures for gathering information and interviewing techniques; investigative principles and techniques and basic rules of evidence; physiology, anatomy and medical terminology used in describing cause of death.
  • Must possess a keen sense of observation and be able to record those observations accurately, clearly and legibly using written notes and computer software.
  • Must be able to interact and communicate with members of the medical profession, the law enforcement community and the public in a professional manner.
  • Must be able to work both independently and as part of a team.
  • Knowledge of photography and video. Familiarity with flash equipment and digital photography/computer interfacing.
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule and be on call any day or time of the week including holidays.
  • Ability to tolerate a high stress environment while understanding and maintaining the dignity of the deceased human being.
  • Preferred: physical strength sufficient to help lift, move or reposition bodies.
Education, Experience & Certifications
  • Minimum: High School Diploma or GED with college-level coursework in anatomy, physiology, forensic science techniques, medical terminology and communications.
  • Preferred: Forensic experience and a four-year degree in medical/legal discipline or related field.
  • Preferred: Certification by the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (ABMDI).

Do you have the Education Required? See available on-line and campus-based degree programs now!

How to apply: Apply online

Posted: January 10, 2018

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