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Death Investigation

  • Coordinator: Cindy Taylor-Patch
  • Length of course: 40 hours
  • Course hours: 0800 - 1630 hours
  • Dates: August 8 -12, 2016
  • Location: Vermont Fire Academy
  • Tuition: $69.00 for commuters (includes lunch), $245.0 for attendees staying overnight (includes lodging and all meals)
  • Registration: Fax the in-service registration form (Word or PDF) to 802-483-2343 or email it to our registrar at gail.williams@vermont.gov

PLEASE NOTE: Due to the nature of the subject material the class contains graphic content.  This course is limited to sworn law enforcement officers ONLY who have been designated by their agency to conduct death investigations. Full-time certification and at least 3 years of experience are required.

“Few things in our democracy are as important as ensuring that citizens have confidence in their institutions in a crisis.  For many individuals the death of a loved one is just such a crisis.  Ensuring that the proper steps and procedures are taken at the scene of that death to reassure family members that the death was a natural one, a suicide, or a homicide is a key element in maintaining citizen confidence in local officials.”              
                                                                    - Jeanne M. Adkins
                                                                      Death Investigation: A Guide for the Scene Investigator
                                                                      U.S. Department of Justice.

This 40-hour course is designed to provide basic information for officers who are new to, or who want to learn more about, death investigation.

Topics in this course of instruction include:

  • The manner, mechanism and cause of deaths
  •  A review of various types of deaths
  • Autopsy and role of, and interfacing, with the Medical Examiner’s Office
  • Bloodstain Evidence
  • Fire related deaths and hazmat concerns
  • Missing person’s investigations
  • Child and infant Deaths
  • Major crime investigation and evidence
  • Computer forensic analysis and death investigations
  • Case reviews
  • And much more.

Instructors for this course included members of the Office of the Vermont Chief Medical Examiner as well as Vermont State Detectives, members of the Vermont State Police Crime Scene Search Team and Vermont Fish and Wildlife Wardens.