The Los Angeles County Department of the Coroner, now known as the Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner, is responsible for investigation of all deaths in Los Angeles County due to unknown or suspicious circumstances.The current Chief Medical Examiner-Coroner is Dr. Jonathan Lucas, who assumed the role in June, 2017.
Office for The Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner is located at 1104 N. Mission Ave. adjoining Los Angeles County General Hospital. Its headquarters is in the original Los Angeles County General Hospital, built in the early 1900s.
Because of the number of high profile deaths in Los Angeles County, Public Information Officers Craig Harvey and Ed Winter coordinate with the media.
Los Angeles County Medical Examiners have presided over the investigations of the deaths of numerous well-known individuals such as Michael Jackson, Whitney Huston and Brittany Murphy.
During his tenure (1967-1982) former Coroner Thomas Noguchi became known as the "Coroner to the Stars", having presided over the autopsies of, among others, Marilyn Monroe, Robert F. Kennedy, Natalie Wood, John Belushi and Sharon Tate.
Investigations Division Edit
Deaths that fall under the jurisdiction of the Medical Examiner-Coroner are investigated by the investigations division. These deaths may require that a Coroner's Investigator is dispatched to the scene of the death. Investigators will, for example, interview witnesses and first responders, photograph the scene, collect evidence, make identifications, secure the victims valuables. Investigators prepare reports that are forwarded to the Forensic Medicine Division for use in the determination of the cause of death.
The Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner's Investigators are certified California Peace Officers with powers of arrest and even use-of-force if the situation requires it.
Forensic Medicine Division Edit
The division’s main responsibility is to determine the cause of death for the Coroner’s cases by performing autopsies and by looking for evidence on the victim.
Skeletons in the Closet Edit
The Coroner's Office operates a small shop, Skeletons in the Closet, which funds its drunk driving abatement program, the only coroner's office in the world to do so. The shop sells a range of merchandise, including t-shirts, beach towels, videos, refrigerator magnets, office supplies and more which feature the Coroner's office seal, crime tape motifs and body outlines.
The Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner in the Major Crimes Universe Edit
As in reality, the Coroner's Office conducts autopsies when an individual dies as the result of a crime or in unknown circumstances.