Bannock County officials recently hired former Ada County Coroner Dotti Owens to advise in the development of the East Idaho Forensic Pathology Center.
In a public meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2023, Bannock County Commissioners Ernie Moser and Jeff Hough signed a professional services contract for Owens to act as a forensic pathology consultant in establishing a facility to conduct autopsies.
The East Idaho Forensic Pathology Center will be a state-of-the-art facility to perform autopsies for 17 counties in eastern Idaho. Currently, all autopsies in Idaho are conducted in Boise.
“This is going to be a huge benefit to the state. Coroners will be able to autopsy cases without the time and financial strain of driving hours to Boise, which I expect will make everyone more efficient,” Owens said.
Owens, who has 16 years of experience in the field, is certified by the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigations at the Diplomat status and holds a Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice.
“I have a lot of ideas to make this a first-rate facility that’s equipped to effectively serve the region’s needs. I’m excited to work together to make this an asset eastern Idaho can be proud of,” Owens said.
In her term as Coroner, Owen’s office became the 6th in the nation to be dually accredited by both the International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners and the National Association of Medical Examiners. Commissioner Hough believes her experience will be uniquely beneficial in getting the East Idaho Forensic Pathology Center accredited.
“Dotti is one of the driving forces in Idaho for improving death investigations throughout the state. Her involvement will not only help this project move faster, but she’ll bring a level of expertise and knowledge above and beyond what we currently have,” Hough said.