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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 118709
Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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What are the procedures to exhume a body when new evidence

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What are the procedures to exhume a body when new evidence suspects poison?
There are two procedures that can be used or this. First, the heirs of the deceased can give written consent to the police and/or medical examiner's office to exhume the body. Second, if the heirs (executor/administrator) will not give such permission, then the police would have to get a warrant from the court to dig up the body or the family, if the police are not involved would have to file a civil suit to have the body dug up and sent to their private medical examiner.

The police would need probable cause, which is something more than a hunch, to show that there is a likelihood a crime was committed. Same with anyone who has to sue to get the court order as they would need some type of proof there was a poisoning in order for the court to order this.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Did you receive my reply? I don't see it here so I'm not sure if it came through. Please let me know so I can post again, if necessary.

Sorry, I did not see any reply. Can you please post it again using reply to expert?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I guess my original reply was lost due to my inexperience with this site. Here goes -- first, I should tell you that I'm an Amazon best selling myster writer, so I'm researching for Bitter Chocolate, the second book in the Hot Chocolate series.


The situation is as follows... 32 years ago an elderly woman was suffering greatly from Addisonian crisis. Severe abdominal pain, low blood pressure and other symptons that eventually lead to coma and death.


Fast forward to today when a detective discovers evidence that shows the daughter administered poison to end her mother's suffering. That is probably cause to have the body exhumed, isn't it?


In this case, does the detective go before a judge, stte the facts to get permission to exhume the body? What does the judge issue? Do family members have to give permission?


Thanks so much for all your help. I appreciate it -- I try to make everything realistic backed by facts, so you're helping me greatly.

It depends on what that evidence was, but when you say evidence, if he has some physical proof, then that is sufficient for them to go to court to exhume (providing the daughter who committed this act is still alive).
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hello Paul,


Yes, there is physical proof, and yes, the daughter is alive.


What does the court issue to move forward to exhume the body? What is that piece of paper called? I don't know the terminology and want to get it correct.


Also, can I mention you in my Thank You section of the book as my subject matter expert (SME)?


I will respect your privacy if you do not, but if you do, I will mention the site and your name.




Dawn Ireland



The court issues a "warrant" or "order to the police or person seeking to exhume the body. We prefer to not be named as individual experts in print, thank you for asking.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you so much for your help. I appreciate you. When Bitter Chocolate hits the streets, I'll let you know.

Thank you.