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The dissection of a dead body by a medical examiner or physician authorized by law to do so in order to determine the cause and time of a death that appears to have resulted from other than natural causes.

This postmortem examination, required by law, is ordered by the local Coroner when a person is suspected to have died by violent or unnatural means. The consent of the decedent's next of kin is not necessary for an authorized autopsy to be held. The medical findings must be presented at an inquest and might be used as evidence in a police investigation and a subsequent criminal prosecution.


Forensic Science.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
"In spite of the anxiety that post-mortems cause to bereaved people we have concluded that there would be extensive practical difficulties which would overwhelm the appeal system if post-mortems remained within scope," a Justice Ministry document said.
Bray is accused of operating the CCTV equipment to cause the post-mortem examination to be replayed on February 8.
After the incident, a team of wildlife experts and doctors investigated the matter and doctors team conducted a post-mortem.
"If the parties involved can agree that one post-mortem only is required, this will lessen the stress and grief during an already traumatic time.
The post Second post-mortem expected on couple murdered in Strovolos appeared first on Cyprus Mail .
The bereaved family and relatives took the body to the CMCH casualty department but a post-mortem examination was delayed because, according to medical superintendent Dr Daheri, the mandatory inquest report from the police station concerned was not immediately available.
New Delhi: A Singapore doctor who performed a post-mortem examination on an Indian gang-rape victim is to testify via videolink Monday in the trial of five men accused of her murder, a defence lawyer said.
The medic's actions were found to be misleading, dishonest and liable to bring his profession into disrepute over parts of his handling of the post-mortem on Mr Tomlinson.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "A post-mortem examination concluded that cause of death was severe leg injuries."
The judge agreed to the request and a new date for the post-mortem will be announced in few days.
The full details behind the suspension of post-mortem examinations at the Cardiff mortuary emerged yesterday as police said no action would be taken against the hospital.
THE family of G20 protest victim Ian Tomlinson has asked the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) to investigate claims that a police officer misled a pathologist carrying out a post-mortem on his body, a spokesman for the organisation said.