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JOB TITLE:

Deputy Coroner - PT

JOB CODE:

984

DEPARTMENT:

Coroner’s Office

UNION:

00

FLSA STATUS:

Non-Exempt

GRADE:



POSITION SUMMARY:

Serves as an assistant and representative to the Coroner. Is a liaison with various agencies (law enforcement, health care, fire/EMS services, Health Department and other governmental agencies) pertinent to the type of case reviewed and investigated. Works under the direction and discretion of the Coroner, Chief Deputy Coroner and First Deputy Coroner and performs work assigned by them.

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Conducts professional forensic investigations by scientific, thorough and systematic on-scene and telephone inquiries, into all sudden, unexpected, accidental, violent or unexplained deaths; To determine the cause, manner and reason of the death and further to determine if the death may have been a result of a criminal act, criminal neglect, civil neglect by persons other than the deceased, or by suicide.
  • Requests, receives and compiles all pertinent reports of death from on-scene investigating law-enforcement personnel, Physicians, Nurses, allied health professionals, to determine the level of investigation needed to complete the case.
  • Responds to scenes (place of death) and conducts physical examination of the decedent and surrounding area to form a basis of the determination of preliminary cause and manner of death. Identifies wounds, defects or evidence of injury/trauma on, or about the body. Photographs the decedent, scene and collects pertinent evidence found on or near the body.
  • Transports decedent(s) from the place of death to the Forensic Facility.
  • Orders examination(s): Autopsy, Odontology, anthropology, x-ray studies or other professional services: Toxicology, DNA and fingerprinting, as deemed necessary and appropriate.
  • When possible, attends autopsy and relates all findings of the investigation (photos, medications, past medical history and evidence) to the forensic pathologist performing the autopsy.
  • Shall draw toxicology (blood, urine, vitreous humor) on decedents not autopsied but with possible alcohol or drug involvement or history of use or carbon monoxide poisonings.
  • Shall complete a thorough and accurate Coroner’s Report, within thirty (30) days, after interviewing law enforcement, family members of the deceased, medical staff or others involved in the investigation and reviewing all physical findings such as: autopsy, toxicology, Odontology, x-ray, evidence or other services ordered or performed.
  • Properly certifies the cause and manner of death and prepares/completes the death certificate.
  • Shall maintain (or assist management) all appropriate documents, records and statistics which pertain to the operation of the Office of the Coroner.
  • Shall be available to assist other Deputy Coroners’ in any way, particularly on difficult or multi-victim cases.
  • Shall assist the First/Chief Deputy Coroner to answer inquires or complaints from the public, family members of the deceased, law enforcement officials, health care professionals, attorneys, funeral directors or others, regarding actions taken by the Coroner or staff members of the Coroner’s Office.
  • Shall notify the Department of Health when a death is suspected or due to contagious disease(s) and may constitute a possible public health hazard. Additionally, the Health Department shall be notified with-in twenty-four (24) hours of a sudden unexpected infant death.
  • Shall perform (or assures) follow-up reporting to: Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (motor vehicle deaths), U.S. FDA Med Watch (medical product defects), U.S. Product Safety Commission (consumer product defects/hazards), PA and Bucks County Children and Youth Agency (abused children and child death review team) and elder abuse reporting.
  • Shall authorize (or assist in) cremation permit requests by area funeral directors.
  • Shall investigate, follow up, and compile information on unidentified dead persons.
  • Investigate and arrange for disposition of unclaimed decedents.
  • Follow standard policies for the efficient operations of the Coroner’s Office.
  • Maintain county morgue: over see the building, cleanliness, evidence and supplies.
  • Issue and execute subpoena as necessary.
  • Assist the First/Chief Deputy and Coroner with press releases or press conferences.
  • Shall be responsible for after-hours on-call at a minimum of two (2) twelve hour shifts a week.
  • Make suggestions to management regarding changes in investigative procedures.
  • Researches purchases of needed equipment, as directed by management.
  • Prepares photographs when requested for purchase and insures payment is received prior to the release of photos to the purchaser.
  • Other duties may be assigned.

QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. Any combination of experience and training which affords the applicant an opportunity to gain the above listed knowledge, skill and ability.

  • At least two (2) years experience in the field of forensic death investigation or similar schooling.
  • Pennsylvania’s ‘Basic Coroner’s Education Course’ certification preferred.
  • Must attend and pass the Pennsylvania ‘Basic Coroner’s Education Course’ and complete a minimum of eight (8) hours of continuing education yearly (as required by Pennsylvania law).
  • Must have knowledge of the recognized medical causes of death (to include gross anatomy and toxicology results).
  • Perform fingerprinting, gunshot residue testing, fluoroscopy (x-ray) usage, draw toxicology specimens and learn other evidence based testing procedures, as needed.
  • Possess a valid Pennsylvania motor vehicle operator’s license.
  • Any combination of experience and training that affords the applicant an opportunity to gain the above listed knowledge, skill and ability.

PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit.  The employee frequently is required to stand; walk; reach with hands and arms; and talk and hear.  The employee is occasionally required to use hands to finger, handle or feel objects, tools or controls.  The employee must occasionally lift and/or move a minimum of up to 100 pounds.  Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and the ability to adjust focus.

WORK ENVIRONMENT: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Must have the ability to work in a highly stressful and highly confidential work setting. Additionally, the ability to work with dead bodies, often involving decomposed or mutilated corpses. Demonstrated ability to work with a variety of medical and law enforcement officials. 

The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

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Human Resources - Bucks County Courthouse Complex
50 North Main Street
Doylestown, PA 18901
Monday through Friday 7:30 am to 5:00 pm
Phone: 215-348-6546

Neshaminy Manor
1660 Easton Road
Warrington, PA. 18976
Monday through Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
Phone: 215-345-3205

The County of Bucks is an Equal Opportunity Employer and has an EEO Utilization Report that is available through the Human Resources office or online.  Click Here for the Bucks County EEO Utilization Report.