#IfIDIEinPoliceCustody “Should CA Coroners report to the Sheriff in each county? Even in Officer involved deaths?”

An important read from Daily Kos

“Ever wonder so few officer involved deaths are ruled a Homicide in CA? Here might be the reason why: In 48 Counties in CA Coroners are staff in the Sheriffs Department. They are Law enforcement.  Even worse one private for profit company does nearly 25% of CA Counties autopsy’s.  Seriously, Do you think any of the Coroners (public Sheriffs Dept Employees or private for profit company’s) would ever determine a law enforcement caused death as a Homicide?

First there are no National Standards for this type of work:

With no national oversight of forensic pathologists or standards that dictate who can do autopsy work  http://californiawatch.org/…
Most Sheriffs in CA Determine the manner of Death for all deaths in their county.
Manner of death, which is printed on death certificates, is a far more subjective conclusion. All deaths fall into one of five categories: natural, accident, homicide, suicide and undetermined.
In 48 of California’s 58 counties, the sheriff decides the manner of death. The state has only two medical examiner offices (in San Diego and San Francisco counties), though the Los Angeles County coroner’s office operates under a forensic pathologist’s direction.

The combined “sheriff-coroner” setup is different from much of the country, where coroners officially are independent from law enforcement.

Whether affiliated with police or not, most elected officials who oversee death investigations have little to no medical training  http://californiawatch.org/…”

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