KOKOMO, Ind. (AP) -- A central Indiana coroner is asking county officials for help so he can clear a backlog of cases.
Howard County Coroner Jay Price is asking county leaders to increase funding for his office by more than $30,000 to cover the costs of autopsies and lab tests.
"The cases keep increasing each year," Price told the Kokomo Tribune (http://bit.ly/LBzg4b ) "It's something we can't predict."
The coroner's office investigates a variety of cases, including unattended deaths, anyone who dies at a hospital within 24 hours of being admitted, accidental deaths, homicides, emergency room deaths and deaths of infants. Price says he currently has 105 cases awaiting final disposition.
The cause of death in most of those cases has been determined, but he still needs to write reports on each case.
Price has been the first full-time coroner in Howard County for two years. He said would like a full-time deputy and a full-time secretary, but the county is in the midst of a hiring freeze.
He currently has four part-time deputies.
Price had to request additional funding last year. He said he's trying to compile data on the number of cases to bolster his request for additional funding this year but is having difficulty finding time to do the research.
"I close one case and I get two or three more," Price said.
Information from: Kokomo Tribune, http://www.ktonline .
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