The Coroner’s Office (EPCCO) serves El Paso County by investigating all sudden, unexpected, and non-natural deaths. While many natural deaths can be certified by the decedent’s physician, approximately one quarter of deaths require further investigation to determine cause and manner of death and ensure public health and safety.

Colorado Revised Statute (C.R.S.) 30-10-606 describes the roles and responsibilities of the coroner in investigating deaths. A complete forensic investigation provides the cause and manner of how an individual died. The investigation can assist in settling insurance and estate claims as well as the implementation of civil and criminal actions.

Although criminal death investigations constitute a small portion of those handled by the Coroner, these deaths are studied in great detail because of the legal consequences involved. Questions which seem irrelevant in the initial hours after death may become significant in the following months. The Coroner works in cooperation with law enforcement but conducts a separate and unbiased investigation. Both the surviving family and general public can gain peace of mind knowing that a complete medicolegal death investigation was performed.

The public health dimension of the Coroner’s function is designed to isolate and determine causes of sudden and unexpected deaths. Identifying cause and manner is a critical component of ensuring public health and safety. When an infectious agent or toxin is implicated in a death, persons in physical contact with the deceased are notified so that they can receive any necessary medical treatment.

The El Paso County Coroner’s Office determines the cause of death in any of the following circumstances:

  • When death occurs in a hospital less than 24 hours after admission
  • When no physician is in attendance, or the physician in attendance is unable to certify the cause of death
  • When the death is sudden and occurs in an accident while the person is deemed to be otherwise in good health
  • When a disease is involved that may be hazardous or contagious, or that may constitute a threat to the health of the general public
  • Any death that occurs while the decedent was in custody of law enforcement officials or while incarcerated in a public institution
  • A death involves thermal, chemical, or radiation injury, or criminal abortion
  • Suicide, external violence, unexplained cause, or suspicious circumstances

Deaths that occur under hospice care, that are expected (as in the case of decline from a terminal illness), or that occur under prolonged hospital admittance typically do not warrant a forensic autopsy.

The Office of the County Coroner was established by the Constitution of the State of Colorado. EPCCO (the El Paso County Coroner’s Office) is funded through the El Paso County General Fund.

A Coroner is elected by, and serves, the citizens of their county. Our County Coroner is responsible for the investigation and certification of all deaths that fall under El Paso County’s jurisdiction.

Learn more about the County Coroner.

In addition to the elected Coroner, EPCCO is staffed by forensic pathologists, medicolegal death investigators, dieners, a histologist, and forensic toxicologists. El Paso County has the only on-site forensic toxicology lab in Colorado.


Dr. Leon Kelly


(719) 390-2450 Telephone

(719) 390-2462 Fax


The Coroner’s Office

2741 E. Las Vegas St.

Colorado Springs, CO. 80906

Autopsy Report Request

Autopsy reports are public record under the Colorado Public Records Act, § 30-10-601. There are no charges to request a copy.

Annual Coroner’s Report

The Coroner’s Office (EPCCO) serves El Paso County by investigating all sudden, unexpected, and non-natural deaths. Click the button below to view our annual reports.


Click the button below to be taken to our Frequently Asked Questions. It will answer many of the most common inquiries we encounter.