Medical Examiner

The Calhoun County Medical Examiner’s office is responsible for investigating sudden or violent deaths and for providing accurate determinations of the causes of these deaths. The medical examiner is a licensed physician and is contractual with the Calhoun County Public Health Department.
The Medical Examiner program is required by Michigan Law to investigate deaths that are sudden, suspicious, unexpected, violent, accidental, occur in jails or prisons, or happen without medical attention within a 48-hour period. The medical examiner has the authority to order an autopsy at any time it is deemed necessary to determine or confirm the cause and manner of death.
In accordance with the standards of the National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME), a medical examiner will respond to the scene for the following situations:
  • Deaths due to violence
  • Known or suspected non-natural deaths
  • Unexpected or unexplained deaths when in apparent good health
  • Unexpected or unexplained deaths of infants and children
  • Deaths occurring under unusual or suspicious circumstances
  • Deaths of persons in custody
  • Deaths known or suspected to be caused by diseases constituting a threat to public health
  • Deaths of persons not under the care of a physician
Secondly, we anticipate that more postmortem examinations will be ordered that have been in the past. Postmortem examinations will be conducted in the following types of cases:
  • The death is known or suspected to have been caused by apparent criminal violence.
  • The death is unexpected and unexplained in an infant or child.
  • The death is associated with police action.
  • The death is apparently non-natural and in custody of a local, state, or federal institution.
  • The death is due to acute workplace injury.
  • The death is caused by apparent electrocution.
  • The death is by apparent intoxication by alcohol, drugs, or poison.
  • The death is caused by unwitnessed or suspected drowning.
  • The body is unidentified and the autopsy may aid in identification.
  • The body is skeletonized.
  • The body is charred.
  • The forensic pathologist deems a forensic autopsy is necessary to determine cause or manner of death, or document injuries/disease, or collect evidence.
  • The deceased is involved in a motor vehicle incident and an autopsy is necessary to document injuries and/or determine the cause of death.
Visit the Medical Examiner's Office website at for more information on:
  • The purpose of the medical examiner's office serves.
  • The different services they provide.
  • How the process works for families.
  • How to request autopsy reports, etc.