Michael Fowler kicks off his campaign to become the county's next coroner Wednesday at the Government Center.
ALBANY A former specialist with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation told supporters Wednesday he intends to run for Dougherty County Coroner.
Michael Fowler said during a campaign rally in front of the Government Center Wednesday that he has worked death investigations for more than 17 years, ranging from the floods of 1994 to the terrorist attacks of 9/11 and that he is uniquely qualified to be the county's next coroner.
The county's current coroner, Emma Quimbley, is up for re-election this year.
"My experience in death investigation began 17 years ago as a death investigation specialist and forensic pathology assistant with the GBI Crime Lab," Fowler said. "...now I want to bring my service and expertise home to the office of Coroner for Dougherty County."
Fowler pledged to work with law enforcement in what he said would be an effort to reduce crime, to raise the expectations and awareness of the office of coroner through his education and experience, to be a role model for students and to ensure integrity and honesty to the office.
Fowler is the first candidate to emerge for the 2012 Dougherty County election cycle. Three county commissioners, the sheriff, the district attorney and the coroner are each up for re-election.
Coroners generally handle deaths that occur within their counties. They are ultimately responsible for determining the cause of death, such as heart attack or a gun shot wound, and manner of death, such as natural causes or homicide.
Coroners have the unique ability to call an "inquest," any time there is a dispute over the cause or manner of death of an individual. During these mini trials, witnesses are called and the coroner serves essentially as a judge.
In addition to their jobs dealing with deaths, the coroner also serves as the ex officio sheriff in the event that the office becomes vacant.
For a complete history on coroners, click HERE.