Episodes

ep193 North to Alaska

Alaska Medical Examiner The State Medical Examiner Office is responsible for conducting the medical/legal investigative work related to unanticipated, sudden or violent deaths. This includes determining cause and manner of death and providing consultation to law enforcement and the courts. The State Medical Examiner’s Office conducts autopsies, provides court testimony when necessary, and assists with...

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ep192 I had to identify my husband’s head – a survivor’s story

A thousand questions littered my brain.  The three letter word everyone waited for was lodged in my throat.  My stomach wanted to heave.  My knees buckled.  Arms supported mine.  I was a marionette.  They waited patiently but no words came. The procedure was repeated.  I again faced the decomposing, torn mask of a face that used to smile at me, at a...

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ep191 From Surgical Tech to MDI

In this episode, I talk with Malory, a new Medicolegal Death Investigator. Malory knew she wanted to be a Coroner Investigator at 16 years old. Her career path took her down the Surgical Technologist route but the investigation dream still smoldered inside.  Then, 20 years later, she was able to see her dream realized.  I talk...

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ep190 [pt2] Written Statements-Investigative Psychological Approach

Handwriting is more than a personality-type indicator. Handwriting is brain writing; the communication transaction concludes with a tangible time-stamped view of a person’s inner thoughts and emotions Twenty Reasons why to use handwriting as a supplement to pre-employment screens, interviewing for internal positions, forensic interviews, recruiting screens, and investigations. Dr. Doscher’s method …is noninvasive …is...

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ep189 [pt1} Written Statements-Investigative Psychological Approach

Handwriting is more than a personality-type indicator. Handwriting is brain writing; the communication transaction concludes with a tangible time-stamped view of a person’s inner thoughts and emotions Twenty Reasons why to use handwriting as a supplement to pre-employment screens, interviewing for internal positions, forensic interviews, recruiting screens, and investigations. Dr. Doscher’s method …is noninvasive …is...

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ep188 Forensic Science Academy

Forensic Training Unlimited/Forensic Science Academy What is Forensic Training Unlimited? Forensic Training Unlimited and their flagship program, the Forensic Science Academy, provide hands-on training, seminars, workshops, online courses, and webinars. These courses are specific to students who are looking for forensic experience and training. The training students receive will help them enhance their formal education...

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ep187 Hyperthermia Death {Case Studies}

Hyperthermia is elevated body temperature due to failed thermoregulation that occurs when a body produces or absorbs more heat than it dissipates. The determination of the cause of death from exposure to extreme temperatures is a diagnosis of exclusion. Because both clinical and autopsy findings are nonspecific, a thorough investigation of the background and scene, evaluation of temporally relevant environmental...

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ep186 Training Yourself in Body Recovery

FORENSIC ARCHAEOLOGY Forensic archaeology is the application of archaeology (the study of past cultures and activities) to legal investigations. The skills and methods used by archaeologists to find and interpret buried or hidden sites of past activity have direct application to modern forensic investigations. In North America, forensic archaeology is often considered to be a specialization of...

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ep185 Forensic Anthropology

Forensic anthropology is the analysis of skeletal, badly decomposed, or otherwise, unidentified human remains, and is important in both legal and humanitarian contexts. Forensic anthropologists apply standard scientific techniques developed in physical anthropology to analyze human remains, and to aid in the detection of crime. In addition to assisting in locating and recovering human skeletal remains, forensic...

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ep184 New Medicolegal Investigator Certification

Medicolegal Death Investigator Certification The Medicolegal Death Investigator certificate is designed to give the graduate a recognized credential that can translate into greater recognition within their respective field.  Successful completion of the exam demonstrates the student has an understanding of the death investigation process and has met the minimum knowledge standard.  The scope of knowledge...

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ep183 Texting Tragedy

Excerpt from C.OD.E   (A Real Story) Josie answered the familiar notes of an incoming call. “9-1-1. What is your emergency?” “Accident. I need help. There’s been an accident.” “Okay sir, stay calm. Are you hurt? Were you in the accident?” “No ma’am. I just drove up on it. Looks like it just happened. Single car....

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ep182 PTS with or without the D

Police work and in particular, death investigation,   is one of the most stressful jobs in this country. Day after day, investigators see the worst of humanity; absorb the world’s negativity, and come home to families who love them. How can you not expect this to have an effect on your mind, body, and soul? Not to...

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ep181 Ask a Coroner

One thing you can count on in life is the fact that you are going to die. How’s that for a buzzkill? Most people diligently ignore the reality of their future demise. Thinking about death somehow seems wrong. Luckily, a real-life coroner challenged a few thousand internet strangers to do the thinking for you. The...

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ep180 TotalEM

TOTAL EM is a project devoted to increasing emergency medicine knowledge both to providers and the public.  As demonstrated by previous studies, it can take too long for information to reach the bedside.  The Leaky Pipe model has been suggested as reasons why this happens. They want to do their part to help shorten the period of time...

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ep179 By Dawns Early Light – The Ashley Freeman and Lauria Bible Case

On December 29, 1999, high school friends Lauria Jaylene Bible and Ashley Renae Freeman spent the evening together celebrating Freeman’s sixteenth birthday. Bible received permission from her parents to spend the night at Freeman’s home. Earlier that day, the girls had spent time at a local pizza restaurant with Kathy Freeman. At approximately 5:30 am on December 30, 1999, a passerby...

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ep178 Working with OPO’s

Coroner and Medical Examiner Offices play an important role in the organ and tissue donation process. Since all unexpected deaths require Coroner or Medical Examiner review, their cooperation and support is vital for ensuring successful organ and tissue donations, benefiting thousands of transplant recipients each year. What is an OPO? In the United States, an organ...

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ep177 Resident-to-resident incidents

A prevalent concern, but under-recognized, a public health problem of distressing and harmful resident-to-resident interactions in dementia in long-term care homes (LTC) (such as nursing homes and assisted living residences), is a major issue facing many countries today.  This increase can, in part, be attributed to the growing population of older adults from the Baby...

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ep176-Psychology of Moms Who Kill Their Children

The act of killing one’s child is unthinkable for any parent, but owing to long-standing cultural, emotional and biological factors, a mother who kills her offspring has the power to inspire special shock and revulsion. Such a mother is seen as someone who is not only guilty of a crime but has violated a law of...

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ep175 Murdering Moms – Real Stories

Filicide is the deliberate act of a parent killing their own child. The word filicide derives from the Latin words filius meaning “son” or filia meaning daughter, and the suffix -cide meaning to kill, murder, or cause death. “Filicide” may refer both to the parent who killed his or her child, as well as to the criminal act that the parent committed. Episode   In this...

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174 Professional Legal Investigators

Medicolegal / Death Investigation can provide a contextual view of the empirical evidence in both death and non-death cases. We have found that the use of a full medicolegal / death investigation is underutilized – from the investigator to the forensic pathologist. Associates in Forensic Investigations specialize in the expert medicolegal consultation and legal investigation...

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173 When Personal Problems Affect Our Jobs

No matter what anyone else says, no matter what we tell ourselves, trying to leave our personal problems at the door just doesn’t work. They follow us inside. Every. Single. Time. Whether we want to leave work problems at the job site, or problems at home inside our four walls, we can’t escape the things...

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172 Investigating Shaken Baby Death

The term “shaken baby syndrome” (SBS) was developed to explain those instances in which severe intracranial trauma occurred in the absence of signs of external head trauma. SBS is the severe intentional application of violent force (shaking) in one or more episodes, resulting in intracranial injuries to the child. Physical abuse of children by shaking...

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171 Suicide Journals – The writings of a 14 year old boy

Not every suicide will have notes, it is estimated that only  25–30% of suicides are accompanied by a note.But it is important an investigator look for writings in journals; both in written pages and electronic applications in cell phones and computers. Many times a final note will not be left but past writing which indicates suicidal...

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170 Warming up a Cold Case

Subsequent to the original murder case Cain vs. Abel, there has always been a small percentage of murders that were unsolved for a variety of case-specific reasons. There have also always been detectives who’d occasionally look back at “the one that got away,” but the idea of dedicating a group of professionals to work solely...

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We are on the move

We are on the move.  We have moved into our new facility and moving forward and upward.  The new location combines three locations into one. The training center, audio-video production,  and business office all in one location.  Upcoming Training March 19-21, 2018 Medicolegal Death Investigation Level-1  (Classroom) April 14th, 2018 Medicolegal Death Investigation Online Academy...

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Las Vegas Shooting | Trauma Recovery Yoga

  When Joyce Bosen was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder in 2012 after losing her son, a doctor prescribed medication. When it didn’t help, she turned to yoga. Now she’s helping the first responders who saved lives the night of the Oct. 1 shooting and Clark County coroner’s office employees who dealt with its horrific...

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Blue Monday 🙁

A few years ago, the third Monday in January was labeled Blue Monday by many experts in the mental health field. But no matter what day of the week it occurs on, Anita Agers-Brooks, common trauma expert, and author of Getting Through What You Can’t Get Over, believes the third week is a good barometer to...

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The Psychology of Death Investigation

In order to determine the direction of an investigation and to prioritize leads, if necessary, death investigators must establish the manner of a death: natural, accident, homicide or suicide. The most overlooked aspect of death investigation is the psychological dimension, which can provide unique leads, correct false assumptions, enhance investigative awareness, and solve cases in...

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Iam911

911 Call Takers and Dispatchers are often the first investigators involved in death calls 911 emergency dispatchers often are the first people contacted when emergency assistance is needed.  They’re responsible for determining the nature of the calls they receive, as well as the location of the callers. They also are responsible for monitoring the location...

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KUSA 9News – Attacks Colorado Coroners | Bonus Episode

According to a recent Gallup poll, only 32% of Americans say they have a “fair amount” of trust with news media, (website HERE.)   KUSA Chanel 9 in Colorado has demonstrated they are an example of why Americans are lacking trust in Media.  A 9News staff reporter by the name of Kevin Vaughan has decided to go on...

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Thin Line C.O.D.E

  C.O.D.E. addresses this reality in a real, raw, and relevant way, telling stories inspired by true events and authentic cases.   Horrific accidents, savage beatings, murder, suicide, autoerotic deaths, overdoses, burned and mutilated bodies: these are nearly every day occurrences for the extraordinary women and men who work in emergency services fields. These selfless...

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HRD Dogs

Cadaver dogs. Also known as human remains detection dogs,  have been trained to smell death. Specifically, the dogs are trained to smell decomposition, which means they can locate body parts, tissue, blood, and bone A trained human cadaver dog will not signal a living person or an animal (except pigs), but it will signal a recently deceased,...

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Psychological Autopsy | Living and Dead

Psychological autopsy is one of the most valuable tools of research on completed suicide as well as many other types of death. The method involves collecting all available information on the deceased via structured interviews of family members, relatives or friends as well as attending health care personnel. In addition, information is collected from available...

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Is it okay not to be okay?

The burden of dealing with tragedies associated with the day-to-day duties of police officers, coroners, and medicolegal death investigators, often remains unspoken and follows the officers into their off-duty and personal lives. Failure to recognize and provide an acceptable outlet for the disappointment and frustration felt by officers and investigators  at the end of their...

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Crime Scene Phone Apps

The number of forensic apps available for mobile phones appears to be growing with many current technologies focusing on document and evidence collection. As death investigators we many times cannot afford bigger equipment, but now these apps bring the otherwise ‘out of reach’ technology into every investigator’s pocket. Crime scene investigators are using smartphone apps...

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Hoarding Behavior

Hoarding is a psychological condition that results in a person accumulating an enormous amount of trash and things of little-to-no value, or worse, more animals than can be properly cared for. Hoarding of any kind can pose several dangers to the occupant and neighbors, and certainly to animals if they are involved. These hazards can be deadly, and...

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Infant Loss Resources | Affiliate Instructors

Infant Loss Resources serves as a source of information and support for healthcare professionals, childcare providers, parent educators, and police and other emergency workers who are the first to respond to a family who has experienced an infant death. Ongoing educational programs are presented both to students and working professionals throughout Missouri, and in surrounding counties...

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BoneID.net and 31 Genders

BoneID is a visual guide for forensic anthropologists, law enforcement, naturalists, and the simply curious. This site’s extensive and easy-to-use database will help you identify bones from many common species regardless of your academic training.” The need for an online osteological database became apparent due to the overwhelming amount of faunal material– mistaken to be...

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Death and Transgender – The Laws v. Reality

This year a law goes in effect in California that will require Coroners and  Medical Examiners to record the gender the deceased ‘wants to be’ rather than what the actual physiologic gender is. Many other states will likely follow.  This means the deceased can have an intact penis proudly displayed under his skirt and still...

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Using unconventional technology in death investigations

Technology has advanced the ease and quality of life immeasurably. Smartphones are handheld computers that can surf the internet; deliver emails, texts, and phone calls; take videos and pictures; make dinner reservations and track your every movement through various apps. Our cars can almost drive themselves with lane change warnings; infrared cameras; heads-up displays, cruise...

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WaukBoard

Have you ever had to do a removal from a tight space or crowded house.  Cots wont’ fit and back boards get heavy.  In this episode I introduce you to a better way. The WauK® board is lighter and narrower than standard cots. With a 500‑pound capacity, this lightweight 30‑pound tool gives funeral directors and coroners...

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LIVE Q and A – STS-Conflict-Culture

This episode is a recording of a live Q and A session that was held for the MLDI online Academy.  It’s interesting because we are able to talk with Anita Brooks on the topic of Secondary Traumatic Stress, Conflict Resolution, and culture issues. Joining us are two Academy students who participate in the discussion. Five...

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Controlling Odor

A decomposing body goes through four stages: autolysis, bloat, active decay, and skeletonization. During the second stage, trapped gases that are generated primarily by bacteria in the intestinal tract begin to build up and release odors. “A dead body, specifically a human corpse has a rank and pungent smell mixed with a tinge of sickening sweetness. Imagine a rotting piece of meat with a...

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Thin Lines, New York Standards, and Training

New York updates Coroner Standards A new law signed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday requires elected county coroners across the state to complete medical-legal investigation courses prior to taking office. This makes New York the 17th state to require training for coroners, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while...

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Solar Eclipse and Opioids

How Does a Heroin Overdose Kill? Heroin is one of the most addictive drugs in the world, and thousands will die every year from a heroin overdose. Used for centuries for anything from a cough to pain relief, the potential for addiction and death was not fully realized until 1900. Heroin was made illegal in...

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Opioid Epidemic – How is it effecting you?

Soaring numbers of overdose deaths are adding to woes already plaguing medical examiner and coroner offices, resulting in a shortage of places to store bodies and long delays in autopsies and toxicology testing. The Connecticut medical examiner’s office has considered renting a refrigerated truck to store extra bodies because its storage area has neared capacity...

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Fire Scene Incident Command

As death investigators, a time will come when you must work a death related to a structure fire.  You have a job to do and evidence needs to be secured and protected. However, in these circumstances command and access issues can arise and “egos” can disrupt the calm flow of an investigation. One way, and...

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Part 2 -Dealing with the “jerk” at work –

Workplace Bullying is repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators. It is abusive conduct that is :   Workplace Bullying Is driven by perpetrators’ need to control the targeted individual(s). Is initiated by bullies who choose their targets, timing, location, and methods. Is a set of acts of commission...

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Dealing with the “jerk” at work – Part 1

Workplace Bullying is repeated, health-harming mistreatment of one or more persons (the targets) by one or more perpetrators. It is abusive conduct that is :   Workplace Bullying Is driven by perpetrators’ need to control the targeted individual(s). Is initiated by bullies who choose their targets, timing, location, and methods. Is a set of acts of commission...

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Science Used in Death Investigations

In the job of investigating death, the investigator may use the resources of several different sciences to help determine many aspects of the death and subsequent  investigation. It is sometimes necessary to bring in expertise from outside an agency. The field of forensic science is so broad today no agency will have every form of specialty...

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