Employment Opportunity

Deputy Coroner

Island County Coroner, Coupeville, Washington

Salary: $23.49 Hourly

Final Filing Date: January 21, 2021

This position deals with confidential and highly sensitive information. This position collects evidence for legal investigations, assuming technical responsibility for histology, cytology, radiology, photography, evidence collection, identification, and disposition. Prepares the examination room, bodies for autopsy, cares for all pre-autopsy details, ensures proper supplies and inventories and ensures the cleanliness of all areas of the morgue and office. This position will conduct investigations and assist the forensic pathologist with performing autopsies to determine cause of death, manner of death, time of death and identification of decedent under the supervision of the Coroner. May perform general clerical and family assistance support. Extensive oral contacts and communications in person and over the phone. Written communication via email, correspondence, and fax. Extensive technical report writing. Prepare office correspondence. Contacts will occur with office staff, other county employees and agencies, other local, state and federal agencies, the public and grieving families.

Duties and Requirements Click to read more


  • Receive and process notifications of death. Respond to the death scene when deemed necessary. Determine if case falls under Coroner’s jurisdiction and then determine if there is a need for an autopsy and/or other case dictated procedures.
  • Conduct death scene investigations to determine the circumstances surrounding death, time of death, identification of decedent and probable cause of death. Collect medical and psychiatric records along with demographic information.
  • Transport, secure, store and transfer human remains. Transport, secure, store and transfer evidence.
  • Locate and notify next-of-kin of the death. Release decedents to funeral services.
  • Assist with forensic autopsies including preparation of the morgue and the body. Assist with collection and preservation of biological evidence for criminal and civil cases. Prepare body for release and other technical medical tasks.
  • Write comprehensive investigation reports to support establishment of cause of death, manner of death, time of death and identification of decedent.
  • Maintain morgue’s cleanliness. Maintain appropriate supplies and instruments.
  • Perform general clerical functions, including but not limited to; case files, logs, records maintenance and office correspondence.
  • Consult and collaborate with other agencies. Testify in court regarding cause of death, manner of death, time of death and identification of decedent.
  • Participate in staff meetings. Provide work guidance and plans of action.
  • Attend trainings. Maintain up to date codes and legal changes pertaining to the Office.
  • Prepare for and obtain professional certification through the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • Ability to maintain confidential and highly sensitive information.
  • Knowledge of applicable laws and standard practices related to the duties of the Coroner’s Office. Know and use applicable HIPAA regulations and state laws concerning confidentiality.
  • Have interpersonal skills that will allow you to effectively deal with grieving families and other parties requiring services. Be able to develop and maintain good working relations with Office staff, other county employees, other agencies, the public and the media.
  • Have the ability to conduct investigations, assist with autopsies and assist in determining the cause of death, manner of death, time of death and identification of decedent.
  • Have excellent communication skills, both orally and written. Able to prepare thorough, organized and clearly presented investigation reports. Able to convey medical and technical information in a manner that is understandable to the audience.
  • Work well independently as well as in a cooperative environment. Be able to multi-task in work environment and meet deadlines.
  • Able to exercise judgement and discretion of sensitive or confidential matters.
  • Possess and maintain a valid driver’s license.
  • Be able to operate a computer with office and case associated software. Be able to operate standard office equipment.
  • Be able to use instruments necessary to perform forensic autopsies, external examinations and collection of evidence.
  • Be able to use photographic and video equipment for documentation of investigations.
  • Be able to use equipment necessary to make the recovery of decedents from varying environments.
  • Be able to use proper personal protective gear for extended periods and in hazardous conditions.
  • Safely drive a vehicle.
Education, Experience & Certifications
  • A two-year degree from an accredited college or university in biology, physiology, forensic studies, anatomy or medical disciplines.
  • One-year experience in death investigation or any combination of education and experience that provides the skills to successfully perform the duties of this position.
  • Familiar with applicable Washington State and Federal statutes.
  • Obtain basic knowledge of medicolegal death investigations and maintain continuing education.
Working Conditions:
  • This is a full time position and may require work hours in excess of 8 hours per day. The Coroner’s Office is a 24 hours per day/7 days per week/ 365 days a year service in which you may be asked to assist in any situation, at all different hours and days, including but not limited to: weekends, holidays and overnights as the cases dictate.
  • May be exposed to extreme weather conditions during scene investigations. May encounter physical hazards or obstacles to reach scenes.
  • Must be able to tolerate the physical and emotional exposure encountered at death scenes: including decomposed bodies, contagious diseases, vermin and other difficult exposures common to death scenes.
  • Must be able to lift/carry up to 50 pounds.
  • Must be able to tolerate exposure to working with a formalin and other chemicals.
  • Must be able to tolerate the usage of personal protective equipment.
  • Will require travel for training, commute to other agencies and investigation sites which may include remote areas.
  • Must be able to observe, abide by and set example of all county and Office policies, goals, and objectives.
  • Must be able to work well and complete duties under stress and deadlines while attending to multiple duties simultaneously.
  • Must be able to tolerate prolonged computer related exposure, ability to sit or stand at a workstation for long periods.

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

How to apply: Apply online

Posted: January 8, 2021

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