The role of medicolegal systems in producing geographic variation in suicide rates.


The Psychological Autopsy and Determination of Child Suicides: a Survey of Medical Examiners

This study explored the decision-making processes of medical examiners in the determination of child suicide. 94 American medical examiners completed a survey regarding those factors considered when making a child suicide determination, sources of information used, & considerations in acccident versus suicide classifications. Well-known risk factors such as suicide notes were considered by virtually all […]

Death at the Hands of Police: Suicide or Homicide? (In: Suicide and Law Enforcement, edited by D C Sheehan & J I Warren)

This chapter explores the medical examiner’s investigative process leading to the final manner of death determination in a “death at the hands of police”. A comparison of police shooting cases investigated by several Chief Medical Examiner’s offices in a large metropolitan area reveals that it varies by office & by examiner. The final classification by […]

Irish Coroners’ Attitudes Towards Suicide and its Prevention


Workshop for Coroners

This workshop was for medical examiners & other forensic professionals & was intended to provide criteria towards the determination of verdicts of suicide.

Child Death Review Unit: 2007 Annual Report

This report summarises findings arising from the 395 child deaths that were referred to & reviewed by the BC Child Death Review Unit in 2007. Of these deaths, 215 were sudden-unexpected deaths investigated by the coroner. There were 18 suicides – 11 males & 7 females. The majority of suicides were by youth, age 17 […]

Tracking Tragedy: a Systemic Look at Suicides and Homicides Amongst Mental Health Inpatients


LOSS: a Postvention Model Follow-up Report

Published in “Back to the Future: Refocusing the Image of Suicide,” ed. by J L McIntosh

Research in Progress: Suicide Scene Protocol

Published in “Back to the Future: Refocusing the Image of Suicide,” ed. by J L McIntosh

“Mind your Manners”: Making Manner of Death Determinations

L.O.S.S.: a Postvention Model for AAS Consideration

This document summarizes a discussion of Local Outreach to Suicide Survivors (L.O.S.S.), a postvention response program in Eastern Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Prospective Study of Coroner’s Autopsies in Benin City, Nigeria

A prospective study of 762 cases of coroner’s autopsies carried out over a period of 2 years (1 January 1996 to 31 December 1997) was reviewed. The causes & circumstances of death are defined & classified into natural & unnatural deaths. Suicides are accounted for. (18 refs)

An Active Postvention Program

The Active Postvention Model (APM) described in this article demonstrates how survivors of suicide can be an installation of hope for the newly bereaved & an effective referral resource for support in the grief process. The benefit of active postvention compared to passive postvention results in a dramatic reduction in the elapsed time between death […]

Undiagnosed and Unreported AIDS Deaths: Results From the San Fransisco Medical Examiner

To determine whether AIDS surveillance misses a substantial number of persons who die with unreported AIDS, the authors conducted a cross-sectional survey of decedents examined by the San Francisco Medical Examiner. HIV-infected decedents were found to be more likely than those uninfected to have died of suicide or drug abuse/overdose. To decrease deaths among HIV-infected […]

Death and Injury Prevention – the National Coroners Information System

This presentation discussed the set up of a national database of coronial information, the National Coroners Information System (NCIS). When fully operational, the database will enable the early identification of diffuse disasters & risk factors in death & injury on a national level. The database will assist not only coroners but also researchers & policy […]

Suicide: a Crisis for the Whole Family; Should Suicide Survivors be Managed Differently? (IN: Preventing Youth Suicide: Proceedings of a Conference Held 24-26 July 1990, edited by S McKillop)

This paper focuses on the quality of life of survivors of suicide. It examines previous empirical reports & case studies & develops a framework for the management of these survivors. (30 refs.)

AIDS, Suicide and the Coroner: Making Death Into an Official Account

This paper examines official documents related to the suicide of Herringer’s brother who was infected with HIV. Herringer analyzes the coroner’s Judgment of Inquiry & the investigation that led to the conclusion of suicide as cause of death. The definition of suicide in the Coroner’s Service Policy is provided, which has a heavy emphasis on […]

A Coroner’s View Regarding the ‘Right to Die’ Debate (IN: Suicide in Canada, edited by A A Leenaars, S Wenckstern, I Sakinofsky, R J Dyck, M J Kral & R C Bland)

Coroners & medical examiners are in a unique position to observe the circumstances surrounding death & to give some added perspective on the euthanasia debate. This article describes the Ontario Coroners mandate, & the evolution of the right to die arguement. The author discusses the U.S., Dutch, & Italian experience. The Canadian experience is presented […]

A Comparative Evaluation of Police Suicide Rate Validity

The authors assessed sensitivity, specificity, & predictive value of official police suicide rates compared to municipal workers. From 1950-1990, there were 20 police suicides compared to 12 municipal worker suicides. There was considerable speculation concerning the misclassification of police suicide, but this study was a first attempt to empirically test the validity of police suicide […]

Suicides, Homicides, and Accidental Death: a Comparative Risk Assessment of Police Officers and Municipal Workers

This study employed data from a Buffalo, N.Y., retrospective mortality municipal worker cohort. The data was used to evaluate the risk of suicide, homicide, & accidents among police officers, & compared that risk to other municipal workers. Within the police occupation, suicide was ranked at 50%, compared to municipal workers 14.5%. Overall, police officers had […]

Changes in Classification of Suicide in England and Wales: Time Trends and Associations With Coroners’ Professional Backgrounds

This paper states that the legal definition of suicide in England & Wales (E&W) gives rise to a high proportion of open verdicts & an underestimated suicide rate. Examines whether the ratio between open & suicide verdicts has changed between 1974 & 1991 & whether it varies according to coroner’s qualifications. States that due to […]

The use of air Weapons in Attempted Suicide

The use of airguns in attempted suicide is uncommon. The surface wounds caused by discharged pellets may appear trivial to medical examiners. 3 cases of attempted suicide are described & 9 other cases reported in the medical literature are reviewed. Of the 12 attempts 3 were fatalities. Most of the victims were males. 4 of […]

Coroner Procedure in Ontario

Legal procedures following a suicide death are often the cause of great anxiety for survivors & provoke questions that most caregivers are not equipped to answer. This brief outline of Ontario Coroner procedures defines terms like cause of death, manner of death, psychological autopsy, mode of death criteria (proof of intent, circumstances) & explains procedure […]