Community Outreach

The Caddo Parish Coroner’s Office has implemented several training programs that are available to the community. In an effort to assist with the local universities and hospitals, our office has developed an Intern Training Program and a Resident Training Program.

It is our desire that those interested in Medicolegal Death Investigation are afforded the opportunity to enhance their learning in their field of study.

Internship Program

The Caddo Parish Coroner’s Office offers an Internship Program for those interested in pursuing a career in the death investigation field.

In order to participate in this program, applicants must be at least 18 years of age and must complete a waiver. Applicants will undergo a very thorough process before being accepted, including a background check and multiple interviews. Due to the privacy and sensitivity of our cases, our office is very limited as to how may interns may be accepted. It is preferable for individuals to only apply if seriously interested and/or actively pursuing a death investigation career or similar (such as in college currently studying for that field etc). It is asked that individuals also only apply for an internship if able to devote a large amount of time and flexibility to the program. Internships normally last 2 – 4 weeks and generally occur only during the summer, however this does vary.

If you are interested in applying, please consider the nature of the career field you are pursuing and how much time you can be available for the internship. If you meet these requirements, you will first need to complete an Internship Application at our office. Applications are kept on file for approximately one year and are reviewed at the beginning of the next internship program (usually summer).  Any applicants who are selected for the internship will be contacted by our office for further processes. There is no need to follow up with our office regarding internship as we will reach out to the applicant if they are approved for further consideration.

During participation in the program:

  1. Interns will be exposed to the inner working of the administrative office, including filing, paperwork, phone conversations etc.
  2. Interns will be exposed to field work, including certain scenes as allowed.
  3. Any information gathered through any investigation and/or witnessed by the intern must be kept confidential.
  4. At the discretion of the Coroner or Coroner Investigator, the intern may be allowed to enter a traumatic scene, however they will be required to follow all instructions given for their safety and the security of the scene.
  5. Interns must be punctual and respectful of the investigators’ multiple duties and busy schedules.
  6. Interns must me appropriately dressed and exhibit appropriate behavior and conversation.
  7. Interns are NOT allowed to carry a firearm, even if he/she has a valid permit.

An Intern Shares Her Summer Experience:

Hi! My name is Emily and I just completed a five (5) week internship with the Caddo Parish Coroner’s Office. During this internship, I was able to follow the investigators on their shifts and participate in filing reports, scene investigations, external body examinations and even observe autopsies. I was also able to interact with other agencies such as the Shreveport Police Department, Caddo Parish Sheriff’s office, LSU’s pathology department, crime scene technicians and other local agencies to learn about their roles in each case. I also learned from each group about various aspects of the specific scenes, such as firearms analysis, disease diagnosis, photography and impression evidence. I learned that this profession can be very stressful at times and takes courage to do this job. Nevertheless in the end it can be very rewarding to know that you helped the family of the deceased find the peace they need to carry on with their lives. Lastly, I learned that this is exactly what I want to do for the rest of my life.

Something to note: As an intern, you will be exposed to a lot so be prepared. You will investigate everything from in patient deaths to multiple traumas. This is not for the weak of heart or stomach, but it will be one of the most amazing experiences of your life.

Resident Training

The Caddo Parish Coroner’s Office offers training and education to medical school graduates who are training in specialized areas of medicine as part of their residency program.

Please contact our office for details related to this program.

Educational Lectures

Dr. Todd Thoma, Coroner of Caddo Parish Coroner’s Office, is involved in the community and is available for educational lectures and trainings. This includes, but is not limited to professional organizations, seminars, community meetings, school lectures, and group training sessions.

If you desire to schedule Dr. Thoma for one of your next events you can call the office at 318.226.6881 and speak with a member of the office staff. They will be happy to check his availability and perhaps we will see you in the next educational lecture with the coroner.