Coroner cases remain down so far in 2020; new pathologist completes first local autopsy

Fremont County Coroner Mark Stratmoen delivered his monthly update to Fremont County Commissioners on September 8th.

The Coroner’s office reported that the overall number of cases in 2020 are slightly down compared to this time in 2019. There have been 99 coroner cases so far this year, compared to 106 at this time in 2019.

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55 of the 99 coroner cases have been natural deaths, lower than the 62 reported at this time last year.

There have been 6 fewer accidental deaths this year for a total of 23. Suicides continue to rise in 2020 with 14 so far compared to 9 last year. 3 homicides have been reported this year, down from 5 at the same time last year. Currently, there are 2 cases that are pending investigation.

4 fewer traffic fatalities have been reported for a total of 5 so far in 2020.


Stratmoen also shared that Forensic Pathologist Dr. Randall Frost has officially started performing autopsies here in Fremont County.

County 10 shared in a post earlier this summer that Bexar County’s retiring Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Randall Frost was in the process of moving to Lander from Texas, and had agreed to do Fremont County autopsies.

Stratmoen, Chief Deputy Coroner Erin Ivie, and Operations Deputy Tony Simmer spent a portion of the summer with the County to prepare the Lander facility for autopsies. Following the completion of Dr. Frost’s first one on August 28th, it’s noted that some supplies were needed and adjustments. However, “the facility functioned well for the purposes,” Stratmoen said.

An item needed is a scale, which including shipping will cost $926. “I had not budgeted for that, but anticipate that by doing autopsies locally, we can compensate for the expense elsewhere.”

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