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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: June 1, 2017 02:22 PM
From: Representative Nick Miccarelli
To: All House members
Subject: Co-sponsor Memo: Discovery of Corpse
In the near future, I plan to introduce legislation that would require a person to notify authorities of a death, or of the discovery of a body. Incredibly, under most circumstances, there is no legal obligation to do so under current law.

I was made aware of this fact when a constituent came to me to discuss the circumstances of her late
brother's death. He passed away in his apartment that he shared with his girlfriend, and his body remained
there for several days. During that time, his family was looking for him. They asked the girlfriend, who
was still in the apartment, about his whereabouts. She told them that he had left, but wouldn't say where
he was supposed to have gone. The family did not learn that he had died until nearly two weeks after his
death. The girlfriend was not charged with a crime because she was an ordinary citizen with no special
duty to report (as opposed to a law enforcement or a medical professional, for instance), and she had
neither participated in the death nor abused the corpse.

My legislation would make it a misdemeanor to fail to notify a 911 system, physician or other medical
professional, law enforcement agency or a funeral home of a death or the discovery of a body, unless the
person knows or has reason to believe that the death has already been reported.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this legislation.

Introduced as HB1621