Medical Examiner

Mission Statement
The Spokane County Medical Examiner's Office is a regional center dedicated to excellence in public service by providing professional, scientific, and compassionate forensic death investigation services.

Responsibilities of a Medical Examiner System
The following is a list of responsibilities handled by your Medical Examiner's Office:
  • Determine the cause and manner of death. Manner of death is one of five categories on a death certificate. Homicide, suicide, natural, accident, and undetermined. Undetermined is used when the category is unknown or two categories can't be distinguished.
  • Ensure the integrity, to the best of our ability, of the personal property of decedents.
  • Exonerate the innocent.
  • Identify and collect evidence properly.
  • Identify the dead with a high degree of certainty using scientific forensic methods.
  • Perform investigations at the scene of death.
  • Prepare and plan for mass casualty incidents.
  • Provide expert legal testimony in criminal and civil matters.
  • Provide for disposition of unclaimed, indigent citizens, according to state law.
  • Recognize dangerous features of consumer products and report those to federal government.
  • Recognize unsuspected homicides.
  • Sign death certificates in all cases of unnatural death, and many cases of natural death.
  • Treat grieving family members with compassion.