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Course Catalog

Suicide Investigation   

Proving suicide can be a daunting task for the investigator due to factors such as family denials, scene interference, insurance issues, and the basic stigma surrounding an intentional self-inflicted death. This course is specifically designed to help you overcome these difficulties by providing you with the skills necessary to thoroughly and properly investigate the death and to recognize and document all indicators of suicide. Your thorough investigation can be the sole basis for a Medical Examiner/Coroner to rule the manner-of-death as suicide.

The reasons one decides to take his or her own life can be psychological, biological, social or a combination of the three. We will explore each of these reasons in-depth. We will also cover the physical possibility of suicide – i.e. could the deceased have physically killed themselves, the most common methods employed, and the development of intent.

Classroom lectures and “case analysis” exercises will be used to teach you the proper steps to take when investigating suspected suicides. You will also be given a number of recommendations for dealing with the family of the victim of suicide.

Topics Include

  • Reasons for family denial of suicide
  • Dealing with the family of the decedent
  • Determining the physical possibility of suicide
  • Developing and detailing all indications of intent on the part of the decedent
  • Developing motive
  • The most common methods of suicide
  • Importance of determining the body position when a firearm is utilized
  • Differentiating between an intentional hanging and an autoerotic death
  • Reasons why a person may commit suicide
  • The biological, psychological and sociological perspectives of suicide


Patrol officers, newly assigned and seasoned detectives, investigations supervisors, crime scene technicians, medical examiner and coroner investigators, and military investigative personnel.

The course is restricted to active sworn and non-sworn law enforcement and medical examiner personnel.

Course Length

16 hours

What Our Students Are Saying

  • “Our instructor made the class! A very graphic and tough course, but instructor was both knowledgeable and added comic relief.” – Ptl.
  • “This was a very informative class. There are not many like this that cover the investigation aspect of suicide. The case studies are very useful.” – Ofc. S.K.
  • “Best class I’ve attended at our state training center.” – Sgt. M.G.
  • “Very well-presented class.” – Det. R.B.
  • “Thank you for an interesting class. Instructor did a great job at balancing out lecture and cases.” – C.S.I. A.C.
  • “I learned something new from each section and class participation. It was all beneficial. This is the best teacher I’ve ever had at our state training center.” – T.S.


Schedule Changes

This schedule is subject to change without notice. If you have not received an official confirmation email prior to the first day of class, please contact us at (904) 620-4786 or before traveling or making airline reservations.

Registration and Fees

Full payment must accompany all registrations. You may register online and pay with your Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express credit card, or you may download a Registration Form and mail it to IPTM with a check.

Cancellation/Refund Policy

Complete the Cancellation Request Form and return it to IPTM. No telephone cancellations will be accepted. A 20% administrative fee will be assessed to all refunds if the cancellation request is received within 14 days of the course start date. In lieu of a refund, student substitutions can be made or a credit can be issued for a future course. No refunds will be given for no-shows. If materials for an online course were sent to the student, the appropriate materials and shipping costs will be deducted from the refund amount. Materials may be returned to IPTM in their original condition at the student's expense. Once IPTM has received and inspected them, the refund will be processed.

Due to the automated format of online independent study courses and Videos on Demand (VoDs), no refunds or substitutions can be made after registration.

Course Confirmations

A minimum number of registrations must be received for an in-person class to run as scheduled. When the minimum criterion has been met, written confirmation will be emailed to you. Please do not travel or make airline reservations until you receive written notification confirming that the course will run as scheduled.

Transportation and Lodging

Most locations are served by several major airlines. Transportation, food and lodging are the responsibility of the student. For information on training locations, please visit our Locations page or call us at (904) 620-4786. For courses in Jacksonville, the University of North Florida maintains a list of area hotels on the Campus Travel Management page.

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