Posted: Mar 22, 2012 4:49 PM by Irina Cates (KPAX News)
Updated: Mar 23, 2012 10:33 AM
MISSOULA - The doctors performing the autopsy on Sherry Arnold are the only two state medical examiners in Montana. They are forensic pathologists who work on trying to figure out how someone died.
They perform autopsies for federal and state law enforcement agencies. The crime lab administrators say the two medical examiners perform about 215 autopsies each year, which breaks down to one autopsy every other day.
"They take samples, they document everything through photographs or dental records and they provide the lab itself with samples to test for toxicology, DNA or other further scientific testing," Montana State Crime Lab Administrator Dave McAlpin said.
One of the doctors at the lab also specializes in forensic anthropology which helps in determining the cause of death by examining bones.