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Inquest ordered into death of Tukwila man | King County Sheriff

King County Executive Dow Constantine today ordered an inquest into the death of Victor Duffy, who died following a confrontation with Tukwila Police at the home of his parents on June 30, 2012.

The King County Medical Examiner’s Office has listed the cause as sudden death associated with excited delirium and following physical restraint. The manner of death is listed as undetermined.

King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg recommended the inquest after his office reviewed materials from the Kent Police Department, which conducted the investigation.

Inquests are fact-finding hearings conducted before a six-member jury. Under a standing Executive Order they are routinely called to determine the causes and circumstances of any death involving a member of any law enforcement agency within King County while in the performance of his or her duties.

Inquests provide transparency into law enforcement actions so the public may have all the facts established in a court of law. The ordering of an inquest should carry no other implication. Inquest jurors answer a series of interrogatories to determine the significant factual issues involved in the case, and it is not their purpose to determine whether any person or agency is civilly or criminally liable.

The order signed by the Executive requests King County District Court Presiding Judge Corinna Harn to assign a judge to set a date and conduct the inquest.

The ordering of inquests is a function vested in the county executive under the King County Code.

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