Fremont County Coroner releases quarterly Commission report; accidental deaths on rise

(Lander, WY) – Fremont County Coroner Larry Degraw provided the 3rd Quarter Summary Coroner’s report at the October 12th Fremont County Commissioners’ Meeting.

To date, there have been a total of 381 recorded deaths for Fremont County, 124 of which were Coroner cases, up 11 from last year.

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42% of the Coroner cases were “non-natural” in manner, meaning they were accidental, homicide, suicide, or undetermined.

Of these non-natural deaths, 38 were accidental, 11 were suicide, and two were homicide.

In total there was a 10% rise in non-natural Coroner case deaths compared to this time last year.

In terms of the accidental deaths, 15 were motor-vehicle related, six were falls, ten were direct drug/alcohol toxicity, three were from fires, two from asphyxiation, one from drowning, and one from hypothermia.

Of the 15 vehicular deaths, which is up four cases from this time in 2020, nine were drug and/or alcohol related, two were pedestrians, two were ATV related, and two were motorcyclists.

The report also indicates that the safety restraints in six of the eight vehicles equipped with them were not in use.

Drug and alcohol related deaths account for 30% of the Coroner cases so far this year (compared to 34% in 2020), and 73% of the non-natural deaths (compared to 46% in 2020).

The report goes on to state that drugs and alcohol were involved in both homicides, three of the eleven suicides, and 21 of the 38 accidental deaths.

In terms of the drug and/or alcohol related deaths, 24 involved alcohol, 10 involved methamphetamine, five involved cannabis, four involved Fentanyl, and three involved non-Fentanyl opiates.

“Although Fentanyl is on the rise and is a major concern, methamphetamine accounts for over two times more deaths,” Degraw stated at the end of the report.

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