JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - Mark LeVaughn is Mississippi's new chief medical examiner. Coming from Buffalo, New York, he already has his work cut out for him.
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - LeVaughn comes into an office which is no stranger to a backlog of cases and a limited number of staff.
Back in early January, the state hired a chief medical examiner, but due to health reasons, he was unable to accept the position.
Now, with LeVaughn in place, he says the office will not have the backlog and plans to develop closer relationships with law enforcement agencies.
"I think the greatest challenge as the chief is to have unity with the coroner's in the state, gain their trust and to also gain the trust of the families of the patients that we deal with and the law enforcement officers" said LeVaughn. "And my main goal at this point in time is to manage our case load better and not dwell on what happened in the past and to move forward in a positive way."
To put this in perspective, on average 15 to 17-hundred autopsy cases pass through the medical examiners office each year. The goal of the department is to hire five forensic pathologists to be placed in regional offices across the state to help ease that work load.