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College of Community and Public Affairs Non-Credit Courses, Programs and Events

Medicolegal Death Investigation  

Course Overview
This course provides an overview of forensic and medicolegal issues as they relate to the investigation of an individual’s death. Content includes how deaths are investigated in the United States, postmortem changes, common injury patterns and findings, cause and manner of death, special types of death investigations, and working with families. There are no prerequisites to register.

Course Objectives
Upon completion of this course, students will:
  1. Evaluate the effectiveness of the coroner versus medical examiner death investigation systems in the United States, and differentiate among different types of death investigators.
  2. Differentiate the manners of death (natural, accidental, suicide, homicide), as well as the postmortem changes.
  3. Discuss the death investigation process, including the need for competence regarding cultural and religious death rituals and beliefs.
  4. Compare and contrast different types of injuries.
  5. Interpret the role of the death investigator in deaths due to poisoning, fire, drowning, asphyxia.
  6. Analyze causes of child and elder death seen by death investigators.
  7. Interpret the role of the death investigator in mass fatality and high profile deaths.
  8. Critique the process of death review teams.

Instructor Biography
Mr. Lunn is a medical investigator and criminologist in the Denver metro area with extensive experience in the investigation of violent and high profile deaths having been an invited speaker at local, state and national trainings. In service to the profession, Mr. Lunn is the current Vice President for the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (ABMDI), a Director for the Forensic Specialties Accreditation Board (FSAB), is active on multiple committees for the National Association of Medical Examiners (NAME), and is appointed to multiple federal initiatives related to medicolegal death investigation.

Mr. Lunn did his undergraduate studies at Iowa State University and earned his Master of Science from Regis University. Mr. Lunn is a former paramedic, and is currently Board Certified as a medicolegal death investigator. He is also the author of the forthcoming book Essentials of Medicolegal Death Investigation.

Course Requirements
  • Internet access
  • Email
  • One of the following browsers: Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Internet Explorer (9.0 or above), Google Chrome, Safari
  • Adobe PDF plug-in (a free download obtained at


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