Starke County Coroner-elect Adam Gray has a backup plan for morgue space in case a basic structure cannot be completed before he takes office in January. He told the county commissioners Marshall County Coroner Bill Clevenger uses space at St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Plymouth and is talking to officials there about allowing Starke County to share that space as needed. Gray says the Jasper County coroner is also willing to let Starke County use space there if necessary.
Meanwhile he’s still gathering information about the cost of adding a 20 foot by 20 foot pole building to the west of the Grovertown EMS base at the corner of U.S. 30 and State Road 23 after determining the county does own the land adjacent to the existing building. Such a structure can be built quickly, however concrete will need to be poured before it gets too cold to set. If a suitable space can’t be constructed by January the county’s portable cooler will be placed into storage until it is needed.
Gray also addressed questions that have arisen about possible conflicts between his job as a sheriff’s deputy and his elected position as coroner. He told the commissioners he will name a chief deputy coroner and two other deputies who can respond as necessary when he is on the job for the county. Also Gray says the Marshall and Jasper County coroners will be deputized in Starke County to assist if necessary in order to avoid any sort of conflict of interest should the sheriff’s department be investigating a death. Likewise Gray will be deputized to assist in Marshall and Jasper Counties.