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Funeral Delays Expected

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Funeral directors in Tulsa say funerals could be delayed if the state Medical Examiner's office stops performing autopsies in Tulsa. Oklahoma chief medical examiner Dr. Jeffery Gofton has said plans are being considered to stop performing autopsies at the Tulsa branch of the medical examiner's office as a way to cut costs

David Dopp of Fitzgerald Funeral Services says if a person dies in the evening an autopsy sometimes is done the next morning so the body can be returned to the family that afternoon.

He says if all autopsies are moved to Oklahoma City it could delay the funeral by several days.

Tulsa Police are also concerned about ending autopsies in the Tulsa office. Tulsa Police Corporal Gene Watkins says in a homicide case detectives would have to drive to Oklahoma City for numerous aspects of an investigation, including fingerprinting.
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