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NV high court strikes down coroner inquest process

NV high court strikes down coroner inquest process

CREATED Oct 25, 2012

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- The Nevada Supreme Court says Clark County's process for reviewing officer-involved deaths is unconstitutional.

The justices say in a ruling issued Thursday that the so-called "coroner's inquest" procedure doesn't infringe on appealing parties' due process rights. But they take issue that justices of the peace must be the presiding officer in the inquests.

Justices note that the Legislature has the exclusive constitutional authority to determine the jurisdiction of a justice of the peace.

They say that because Clark County's code doesn't allow for anyone but a justice of the peace to serve as presiding officer, the code is intruding on the Legislature's authority.

The coroner's inquest process has been on hold since 2010 amid legal challenges.