Mesa County encompasses an area over 3300 square miles which consists of desert, agricultural and mountain areas. Mesa County is home to more than 120,000 people in 12 communities. The largest of these is Grand Junction, followed by Fruita and Palisade. Other towns and unincorporated areas of the County include Clifton, Fruitvale, De Beque, Collbran, Mesa, Mack, Loma, Gateway, Glade Park and Whitewater.
The Coroner or an Investigator/Deputy Coroner is on duty 24 hours a day, 365 days a year The Coroner's mission is to satisfy the legal requirements of the office in an expeditious manner, to determine the cause and manner of a death of person (s) in Mesa County who have died under any of the following circumstances:
From disease which may be hazardous or contagious or which may constitute a threat to the health of the general public;
- From external violence, an unexplained cause, or under suspicious circumstances;
- Where no physician is in attendance, or where, though in attendance, the physician is unable to certify the cause of death;
- From thermal, chemical, or radiation injury;
- From criminal abortion;
- While in the custody of law enforcement officials or while incarcerated in a public institution;
- When the death was sudden and happened to a person who was in good health;
- From an industrial accident; or
- When death occurs in a hospital less than 24 hours after admission or after any invasive procedure.
The Coroner’s Office, through a medicolegal discipline, investigates and establishes the manner of death as: Natural, Accident, Homicide, Suicide or Undetermined. An autopsy may be required depending upon the circumstances of the death. The Coroner’s Office will contact family members, police agencies, health care professionals, and the public through the media, assist mortuaries in facilitating the prompt release of a decedent for a funeral or other arrangements for the family. No matter what the situation might be, someone is always available to respond to a call or be accessible for a family that has a question or needs help. The Coroner or an Investigator/Deputy Coroner is on duty 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. In conjunction with coverage of Mesa County, the office works in conjunction with 10 local and federal law enforcement agencies and the 21st Judicial District.
With a Level II Trauma Center at St. Mary’s Hospital in Grand Junction, the office covers and assists on death investigations from other counties in Colorado as well as from Eastern Utah, Northwestern New Mexico and Northeastern Arizona. Coroner staff can and will testify in civil and criminal proceedings on death investigations.
If you should desire an autopsy report, we request you contact our office in writing. Please include the name of the decedent, the date of death, if known, and a phone number so we may contact you with the information. There is no cost to the family for the first report. Any other copies or requests require a $30.00 fee which must be paid in advance. Autopsy reports may take anywhere from four weeks to twelve weeks depending upon the nature of the case and any additional testing that may be performed.