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Lecture 9

FSC239Y5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 9: Homicide, Forensic Anthropology, Exsanguination

Forensic Science
Course Code
Wade Knaap

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Lecture 09: Introduction to Forensic Pathology
Death investigation team
police services
consultants (i.e. forensic anthropologist)
other agencies (i.e. fire marshal's office)
forensic scientists
In Ontario, coroners are medical doctors and usually family practitioners/emerg room physicians.
In other places, may be doctors, lawyers, law enforcement, lay people, forensic pathologists.
Forensic pathologists = medical examiners
In Ontario, medical examiners form report and coroners decide cause of death.
In places with medical examiner system, they decide cause of death instead of coroners.
Medical Death Investigation
only sudden, unexpected death is investigated
coroner overseen by regional supervising coroner and chief coroner for province
five questions to answer
who died?
where did they die?
when did they die?
what was the cause of death?
what was the manner of death?
Additional roles of the coroner...
public safety
outbreak surveillance
public inquests
deaths in custody
pediatric deaths
institutional deaths
workplace deaths
When does a pathologist get involved?
1. When the coroner is unable to answer ANY of the five questions
2. When there is a possibility of involvement of criminal justice systems
Pathologist performs an autopsy for two main reasons:
1. Discovery
2. Documentation
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