Media Release Information


All information on this page has been requested by media.
 
For all media requesting information: e-mail to
[email protected] . Note that this information will be updated periodically Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., media should check back here for updates.

The postmortem report is confidential in the State of Washington (RCW 68.50.105). For family members of the deceased requesting information about obtaining postmortem reports, please call the Medical Examiner's Office at (509) 477-2296 or e-mail to [email protected].   

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:


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SPOKANE COUNTY, November 13, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who died as the result of an incident in the 8600 block of Whitehouse in Spokane, WA on November 9, 2017.

Name: Robert E. Bossard
Age: 61 Years    
Cause of Death: Gunshot wound to head
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, November 13, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the individual who was found in Liberty Lake, WA on November 11, 2017.

Name: Kyle Kenji Van Liew
Age: 16 Years    
Cause of Death: Gunshot wound of the chest
Manner: Suicide


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SPOKANE COUNTY, November 13, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who died as the result of an incident near Holland and Colton in Spokane, WA on November 11, 2017.

Name: Melissa L. Tolliver
Age: 42 Years    
Cause of Death: Blunt head, chest and abdominal injuries
Contributory Factors: Blunt pelvic and extremity injuries
Manner: Vehicular Accident

The determination of manner of death (natural, homicide, suicide, accident, or undetermined) is for the purposes of the death certificate only. The Medical Examiner criteria for manner of death is not the same as the prosecutor's legal determination. For example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as "accident" by the Medical Examiner. The prosecutor may pursue a legal charge of "vehicular homicide", if the legal definition is met. Any determination by the Medical Examiner of suicide, accident or homicide in no way limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate to whatever extent they deem appropriate or necessary
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SPOKANE COUNTY, November 7, 2017 at  3:00 p.m.

Media is currently reporting on a possible homicide investigation in Spokane Valley, WA. At present time this office has not been called to this possible scene and currently has no information regarding this case. Information will be posted to this page once it becomes available.

*******Update 11/08/2017 at 140 p.m.

SPOKANE COUNTY, November 8, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who died as the result of an incident in the 18000 Block of Bridgeport in Spokane Valley, WA on November 7, 2017.

Name: Jamie Bradshaw
Age: 37 Years
Cause: Multiple stab wounds
Manner: Homicide

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SPOKANE COUNTY, October 26, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who died at Sacred Heart Medical Center on October 26, 2017 as the result of an incident at State Route 27 and Grace in Spokane County, WA on October 26, 2017.

Name: Valerie M Daly
Age: 35 Years
Cause: Blunt head, neck, chest, abdominal and pelvic injuries
Manner: Vehicular Accident

The determination of manner of death (natural, homicide, suicide, accident, or undetermined) is for the purposes of the death certificate only. The Medical Examiner criteria for manner of death is not the same as the prosecutor's legal determination. For example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as "accident" by the Medical Examiner. The prosecutor may pursue a legal charge of "vehicular homicide", if the legal definition is met. Any determination by the Medical Examiner of suicide, accident or homicide in no way limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate to whatever extent they deem appropriate or necessary

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October 25, 2017 - Media has made inquiries regarding a man who was found deceased on Spokane Falls Blvd. in Spokane, WA on October 25, 2017. At this time there is no information available. Once information is available it will be posted on this page.

------------Update 10/27/17 at 8:20 a.m.

The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity of the man who was found deceased on Spokane Falls Blvd. in Spokane, WA on October 25, 2017.

Name: Karl Ortman
Age: 32 Years
Cause: Pending Toxicology
Manner: Pending

Pending - is a temporary designation for cause and/or manner when additional investigation, information and/or test results are required for certification. Pending is amended once all information and test results are received.


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October 25, 2017 - Media has made inquiries regarding a woman who was found deceased at the Bowl and Pitcher area of Riverside State Park in Spokane, WA on October 23, 2017. At this time there is no information available. Once information is available it will be posted on this page.

------------Update 10/25/17 at 2:01 p.m.

The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who was found deceased at the Bowl and Pitcher area of Riverside State Park in Spokane, WA on October 23, 2017.

Name: Deborah Jane Keith
Age: 67 Years
Cause: Multiple Blunt Injuries
Manner: Suicide

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SPOKANE COUNTY, October 24, 2017 – The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the cause and manner of death of the woman who died as the result of an incident in the 2900 block of E. 27th in Spokane, WA on October 20, 2017

Name: Tunishia Martin
Age: 28 Years
Cause: Smoke Inhalation
Manner: Accident

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10.12.17 1:30 p.m.- Media has made inquiries about a 2nd individual who died as the result of an incident in the 3900 block of N. Market in Spokane, WA on 10/8/2017. Autopsy is ongoing today. Once information is available it will be posted on this page.

----------------------Update10/13/2017 @ 7:55 am

Spokane County, October 13, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of a second individual who died at Sacred Heart Medical Center on October 12,2017 as the result of an incident in the 3900 block of N. Market on October 8,2017.

Name: Sheera Cunningham
Age: 41 Years
Cause: Blunt chest, abdominal and pelvic injuries
Manner: Vehicular Accident

The determination of manner of death (natural, homicide, suicide, accident, or undetermined) is for the purposes of the death certificate only. The Medical Examiner criteria for manner of death is not the same as the prosecutor's legal determination. For example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as "accident" by the Medical Examiner. The prosecutor may pursue a legal charge of "vehicular homicide", if the legal definition is met. Any determination by the Medical Examiner of suicide, accident or homicide in no way limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate to whatever extent they deem appropriate or necessary.
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Spokane County, October 11, 2017 -
The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the individual who died on October 10, 2017 at Sacred Heart Medical Center, as the result of an incident near Sprague and Washington, in Spokane, WA on October 8, 2017

Name: Carl Lewis Sims
Age: 32 Years
Cause of Death: Multi-organ system failure due to hemorrhagic shock due to gunshot wound of the left buttock and thigh
Manner: Homicide
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10.9.2017 2:59 p.m. -Media has made inquiries regarding an individual who died as the result of an incident in the 3900 block of N. Market in Spokane, WA on 10/8/2017. Autopsy isongoing today, no identification has been confirmed. Once information isavailable it will be posted on this page.

--------------------Update10/11/2017 at 10:49am

Spokane County, October 11, 2017 -
TheSpokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause andmanner of death of the individual who died as the result of an incident in the3900 block of N. Market in Spokane, WA on 10/08/2017

Name: Julius Bradford Cooper
Age: 38
Cause of Death: multiple bilateral rib fractures with hemothoraces due to crush injury to chest
Manner: Vehicular Accident

The determination of manner of death (natural, homicide, suicide, accident, orundetermined) is for the purposes of the death certificate only. The MedicalExaminer criteria for manner of death is not the same as the prosecutor's legaldetermination. For example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as"accident" by the Medical Examiner. The prosecutor may pursue a legalcharge of "vehicular homicide", if the legal definition is met. Anydetermination by the Medical Examiner of suicide, accident or homicide in noway limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate to whatever extentthey deem appropriate or necessary.
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10.5.2017 12:55 p.m. - Mediais making inquiries of an individual who died as the result of an incident inthe 2300 block of Wellesley in Spokane, WA on 10/4/2017. This office has no information at this time. Autopsy is ongoing today, once information is available it will be posted on this page.

-------------------Update10/06/2017 at 3:35pm

Spokane County, October 6, 2017 -
TheSpokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the individual who died as the result of an incident at 2301 West Wellesley Ave on 10/04/2017

Name: ChadCochell
Age: 34
Cause of Death: Rifleand shotgun wounds of the chest and upper extremities
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, September 28, 2017 -
The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the individual who died as the result of an incident in the 500 block of E. Holland in Spokane, WA on September 26, 2017.

Name: Jack H.Hellstrom
Age: 19
Cause of Death: Blunt head, chest, pelvic and extremity injuries
Manner: Vehicular Accident
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SPOKANE COUNTY, September 18, 2017 -
The Spokane CountyMedical Examiner has confirmed the identity of the remains found at Brooks and Thorpe in Medical Lake, WA on May 3, 2017.

Name: Chuan Yang
Age: 28 Years
Cause of Death: Gunshot wound of the head
Manner: Pending further investigation
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9.18.17 8:00 a.m. - Media is making inquiries of a decedent who was found in the Four Lakes area, this office has no information at this time. Autopsy is ongoing today, onceinformation is available it will be posted on this page.

---------Update 9/18/17at 518 p.m.
TheSpokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause andmanner of death of the man found at Four Lakes in Medical Lake, WA on September 15, 2017.

Name: Cameron Lewis Smith
Age: 45 Years
Cause of Death: Gunshot wounds
Manner: Homicide
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9.15.17 4:07 p.m.- Media is reporting a fatal shooting near Dean and Nettleton in Spokane, WA. At this time this office has no information regarding this situation. Update 9.18.17 8:00 a.m. - autopsy of this decedent is ongoing today, once information is available it will be posted on this page.
 
---------Update 9/18/17at 515 p.m.
TheSpokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause andmanner of death of the man who died as the result of an incident in the 2400 block of W. Dean in Spokane, WA on September 15, 2017.

Name: David Kenneth Chester
Age: 48 Years
Cause of Death:Gunshot wounds
Manner: Homicide
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FREEMAN HIGH SCHOOLSHOOTING: Many Media outlets are requesting identification and cause of death information for the individual who died at Freeman High School. At this time,no information is available from this office. Information will be released tonext of kin prior to any publication for media.

---------Update 9/14/17at 449 p.m.
The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause andmanner of death of the young man who died a the result of a shooting at Freeman High School in Rockford, WA on September 13, 2017.

Name: Samuel David Strahan
Age: 15 Years
Cause of Death:Two gunshot wounds, head and abdomen
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, September11, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause of death of the man who died as the result of an incident at 8th and S. Browne in Spokane, WA on September 8, 2017.

Name:  Luke D. McNutt
Age: 24 Years
Cause of Death: Extensive fractures of the base and vault of the skull with brain lacerations due to blunt impact to head
Contributory Factors: Extremity fractures, rib fractures, liver lacerations
Manner: Suicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, September 11, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity and the cause of death of the woman who died as the result of an incident in the 26000 block of East Appleway in Spokane, WA on September 7,2017.

Name: Jacquelyn M. Steeve
Age: 35 Years
Cause of Death: Transection of aorta with bilateral hemothoraces due to blunt impact to torso
Contributory Factors: Right lower extremity amputation, subtotal left lower extremity amputation
Manner: Vehicular Accident
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 28, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who died as the result of an incident on W.6th in Airway Heights, WA on August 25, 2017.

Name: Terry Toner
Age: 53 Years
Cause of Death:Right subdural hemorrhage and diffuse subarachnoid hemorrhage of brain due to blunt impact to head
Contributory Factors:Dilated cardiomyopathy, blunt impact-caused soft tissue hemorrhage
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 28, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who died at Sacred Heart Medical Center on August 25, 2017 as the result of an incident at the 7600 block of N. Division St. in Spokane, WA on August 16, 2017.

Name: Yelena A.Ivanov
Age: 45 Years
Cause of Death:Hypoxic encephalopathy due to mechanical compression of the chest with rib fractures
Contributory Factors:Diffuse hemorrhage with hypotension, trauma caused ischemic colon
Manner: Vehicular Accident

The determination of manner of death (natural, homicide, suicide, accident, or undetermined) is for purposes of the death certificate only. The Medical Examiner criteria for manner of death is not the same as the prosecutor's legaldetermination. For example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as"accident" by the Medical Examiner. The prosecutor may pursue a legal charge of "vehicular homicide", if the legal definition is met. Medical Examiner manner of death certification is for generation of publichealth data. Any determination by the Medical Examiner of suicide, accident orhomicide in no way limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate towhatever extent they deem appropriate or necessary.
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 17, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who died as the result of an incident on Washington St. in Spokane, WA on August 15, 2017.

Name: Jose Ismael Hernandez
Age: 24 Years
Cause of Death:Gunshot wound to abdomen
Manner: Pending
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 14, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the woman who was found on W. Columbia in Spokane, WA on August 8, 2017.

Name: Susan D.Schilling
Age: 38 Years
Cause of Death: Hanging
Manner: Suicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 10, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the woman who died as the result of and incident on 3rd and Division Spokane, WA on August 7, 2017.

Name: Patti Jo Hill
Age: 50 Years
Cause of Death: Bilateral rib fractures due to blunt impact to chest
Contributory Factors: Mechanical compression of chest and neck
Manner: Accident

Death Certification
The death certificateis a Washington State Health Department Document, NOT a Medical Examiner or Coroner document, the death certification process includes manner of death classifications of (Accident, Homicide, Natural, Suicide, Undetermined),intended to describe the action associated with a death, if any, for public health department vital statistics purposes. The manner of death as used by the Office of the Medical Examiner does not address presence or absence of intent, culpability or justification of any action associated with a death and therefore any determination by the Medical Examiner of Suicide, Accident or Homicide in noway limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate to whatever extentthey deem appropriate or necessary; nor is the manner of death as determined by a Medical Examiner the same as the prosecutor's legal determination, for example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as "accident" by the MedicalExaminer, however the prosecutor may pursue a legal charge of "vehicular homicide".
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 10,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who was found at the Hamilton Street Bridge in Spokane, WA on August 7, 2017.
     

Please note this individual has been identified however the Medical Examiner's Office has been unable to locate next of kin for this man, if anyone is aware of information regarding this individual's family, please contact the Spokane County Medical Examiner at (509) 477-2296

Name: Wayne Robbins
Age: 55 Years
Cause of Death: Multiple bilateral rib fractures due to blunt impact to chest
Manner: Pending                                                        

**********Update 11/6/17

Manner of death updated to Accident

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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 9,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner has confirmed the identity of the man who was found at 3rd and Arthur in Spokane, WA on August 5,2017.

Name: Kent Willcocks
Age: 55 Years
Cause of Death: Pending toxicology
Manner: Pending  

*********Update 11/6/17

Cause of Death: Possible hyperthermia with dehydration

Contributory factors: Methamphetamine toxicity

Manner: Accident


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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 9,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the woman who was found at Cannon Park in Spokane, WA on August 5, 2017.

Name: Carey J.Farnsworth
Age: 46 Years
Cause of Death:Pulmonary artery thromboembolism due to deep venous thrombophlebitis
Manner: Natural
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SPOKANE COUNTY, August 8,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who died as the result of an incident on 12th and Freya in Spokane, WA on August 4, 2017.

Name: Michael E.Gonia
Age: 50 Years
Cause of Death:Transection of the right carotid artery due to blunt impact neck injury
Manner: Accident
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SPOKANE COUNTY, July 21,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the woman who died as the result of an incident on E. Laurel Rd. in Elk, WA on July 19, 2017.

Name: Carrie Hathaway
Age: 59 Years
Cause of Death: Pending Carbon Monoxide testing
Manner: Pending
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SPOKANE COUNTY, July 20,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who died as the result of an incident on N.Sipple Rd. in Spokane Valley, WA on July 18, 2017.

Name: Bobby Kihara
Age: 70 Years
Cause of Death:Gunshot wound of the head
Circumstances remain under investigation
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SPOKANE COUNTY, July 19,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the woman who died as the result of an incident on N.Sipple Rd. in Spokane Valley, WA on July 18, 2017.

Name: Joy Kihara
Age: 67 Years
Cause of Death: Perforating, intermediate range gunshot wound to head
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, July 19, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the woman who died as the result of an incident on W.Graham Rd. in Medical Lake, WA on July 14, 2017.

Name: Bobbie Jo McKee
Age: 49 Years
Cause of Death: Multiple bilateral rib fractures due to crush injury to chest
Contributory Factors: Splenic laceration, left femur fracture
Manner: Accident
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SPOKANE COUNTY, July 17,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who died as the result of an incident on E. Desmet in Spokane, WA on July 13, 2017.

Name: Brandon Bailey
Age: 31 Years
Cause of Death: Perforating gunshot wound to head
Manner: Suicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, July 3,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who died atSacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane, WA on July 3, 2017.

Name: Daniel Craven
Age: 53 Years
Cause of Death: Multiple gunshot wounds
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, June 29,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who was found at Fairchild Air Force Base in Spokane, WA on June 27, 2017.

Name: Nolan Joseph Fournier
Age: 20 Years
Cause of Death:Hanging by ligature
Manner: Suicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, June 28,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who was found near 2nd and Pine in Spokane,WA on June 27, 2017.

Name: Baptiste W.Mathias
Age: 41 Years
Cause of Death: Pending
Manner: Pending
** Update September 1, 2017- Cause of Death updated to Diabetic Ketoacidosis; Manner updated to Natural
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SPOKANE COUNTY, June 6,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who was found near the 1100 block of N. Division in Spokane, WA on June 5, 2017.

Name: Steven J.Hackett
Age: 27 Years
Cause of Death: Pending (No internal evidence of injury)
Manner: Pending
**Update September 12, 2017- Cause of Death updated to alcoholic ketoacidosis with dehydration; Manner updated to Natural
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SPOKANE COUNTY, May 26,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the  identity of the woman who was found in the 3900 Block of Lane Park Rd, in Mead, WA on March 10, 2017.

Name: Brenda Louise Brown
Age: 49 Years
Cause of Death: Pending
Manner: Pending
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SPOKANE COUNTY, March 27,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who was found in the Spokane River in Spokane, WA on March 20, 2017.

Name: Zan Denise Salerno
Age: 62 Years
Cause of Death: Basilar skull fracture due to blunt impact to head
Contributory Factors: Drowning and hypothermia
Manner: Suicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, March 16,2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the woman who died as the result of an incident on Stanley Road in Medical Lake, WA on March 14,2017.

Name: Cherie Wilson
Age: 62 Years
Cause of Death: Smoke inhalation
Manner: Pending fire investigation
** Update May 10, 2017- Manner of death has been updated to Accident
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SPOKANECOUNTY, March 8, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who died as the result of an incident on Leslie Lane in Colbert, WA on March 7, 2017.

Name: Dean J.Bellamy
Age: 47 Years
Cause of Death:Gunshot wound to the head
Manner: Pending further investigation and crime lab analysis
** Update April 12, 2017- Manner of death has been updated to Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, February 28, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the child who died as the result of an incident on Wellesley in Spokane, WA on February 27, 2017.

Name: Caiden James Henry
Age: 9 Months
Cause of Death: Bilateral subdural hemorrhage due to blunt impact to head
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, February 13, 2017
- The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who died as the result of an incident on Division and Euclid in Spokane, WA on February 11, 2017.

Name: Craig K.Rust
Age: 60 Years
Cause of Death: Blunt head, chest and abdominal injuries
Contributory Factors: Blunt extremity injuries
Manner: Accident
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SPOKANE COUNTY, January 25, 2017 - The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed the identity of the man who dies as the result of an incident on E.Crown Street in Spokane, WA on January 24, 2017.

Name: Brandon Michael Busby
Age: 31 Years
Cause of Death: Gunshot Wounds
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, January 23, 2017 – The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the child who died as the result of an incident on 4th and Walnut in Spokane, WA on January 22, 2017.

Name: Latoya M.T.Bables-Paradise
Age: 3 Years
Cause of Death: Smoke Inhalation
Manner: Accident
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SPOKANE COUNTY, January 18, 2017 – The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who died as the result of an incident on 4th and Walnut in Spokane, WA on January 15, 2017.

Name: Dexter Martin Dumarce
Age: 33 years
Cause of Death: Gunshot wounds (4)
Manner: Homicide
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SPOKANE COUNTY, January 9, 2017 – The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the individuals who died as the result of an incident in Medical Lake, WA on January 7, 2017.

Name: Jacob Michael Normandin  Age: 14 years
Cause of Death: left hemothorax due to transection of aorta due to blunt impact
Contributory Factors: lacerations of spleen and left kidney
Manner: Accident

Name: Melissa Kelly Normandin
Age: 45 Years    
Cause of Death: fractures of base and vault of skull with brain lacerations due to blunt impact to head
Contributory Factors: aortic transection
Manner: Accident
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SPOKAN COUNTY, January 6, 2017– The Spokane County Medical Examiner’s Office has confirmed the identity and the cause and manner of death of the man who died as the result of an incident on S. Geiger in Spokane, WA on January 5, 2017.

Name: Beau Brown
Age: 28 years
Cause of Death:Crush injury of the head
Manner: Accident



Definitions:

Cause of Death:
Cause of Death is used to indicate the medical cause of death, listing the disease(s) or injuries that caused death. Specific cause of death information is recorded on the death certificate and is entered into the Washington State Vital Statistic system.

Manner of Death:
Manner of Death is a statistical classification on the death certificate, the way in which death is categorized per the Washington State Department of Health (Accident, Homicide, Natural, Suicide, Undetermined).

Death Certification:
The Death certificate is a Washington State Health Department Document, NOT a Medical Examiner or Coroner document, the death certification process includes manner of death classification of (Accident, Homicide, Natural, Suicide, Undetermined), intended to describe the action associated with a death, if any, for public health department vital statistics purposes. The manner of death as used by the Office of the Medical Examiner does not address presence or absence of intent, culpability or justification of any action associated with a death and therefore any determination by the Medical Examiner of Suicide, Accident or Homicide in no way limits the ability of law enforcement to investigate to whatever extent they deem appropriate or necessary; nor is the manner of death as determined by a Medical Examiner the same as the prosecutor's legal determination, for example, most motor vehicle deaths are classified as "accident " by the Medical Examiner, however the prosecutor may pursue a legal charge of "vehicular homicide".

Accident - is defined as a death other than natural, where there is no evidence of intent, i.e. unintentional.

Homicide - is defined as a death due to the acts of another.

Natural - is defined as a death solely by organic disease. If natural death is hastened by injury (such as a fall), the manner of death will not be considered natural.

Pending - is a temporary designation for cause and/or manner when additional investigation, information and/or test results are required for certification. Pending is amended once all information and test results are received.

Undetermined - is the manner of death assigned when there is insufficient evidence or information to assign to accident, homicide, suicide or natural categories, or when 2 plausible manners are equally likely.

* When a death is un-witnessed the date of discovery is recorded as the date of death.

* See the Medical Examiner's Annual Report for details regarding causes and manner of death is Spokane County.


The postmortem report is confidential in the State of Washington (RCW 68.50.105). For information about obtaining postmortem reports, please call the Medical Examiner's Office at (509) 477-2296 or e-mail to [email protected].