Iowa’s new state medical examiner says she will work to reorganize and bringback integrity to the office. Dr. Julia Goodin had been the chief medicalexaminer in Alabama. Goodin takes over the post that was mired incontroversy which led to the resignation of Dr. Thomas Bennett in October of1997. Goodin turned down the job the first time it was offered to her. Shewished to see some changes in the operation, and now says there is progress.The changes included moving the office from the jurisdiction of the PublicSafety Department to the Department of Public Health. The legislature hasalso approved funding for a deputy examiner. Goodin says adding the deputyexaminer is important in allowing the department to handle the volume ofcases it faces. Goodin says she will also work on a new system for storingevidence and files from the various autopsies completed by the department. The controversy surrounding Bennett involved several “shaken baby” cases.Goodin says she can’t comment on those cases, but says she will handle allcases the same. Department of Public Health Director Stephen Gleason saysthe lengthy search for a new medical examiner has created a backlog ofcases. Gleason says he hopes Goodin and her new staff can catch up with thatbacklog over the next six months.
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