Coroner still waiting on Palmer’s results

Published 1:07 am Friday, August 31, 2007

NATCHEZ — Coroner James Lee is still awaiting test results in the case of Natchez physician Dr. Barbara Lynn Palmer.

Palmer died July 13, reportedly of bacterial septicemia.

Lee said Thursday that Palmer’s cause of death never changed, as reported earlier in this newspaper. It had always been listed as septicemia.

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The manner of death, also unchanged, is listed as “undetermined,” Lee said.

“The cause of death is what someone dies of,” Lee said. “The manner of death is accidental, homicide, suicide, undetermined or natural.”

Lee said he was waiting on tests from the state medical examiner’s office before reviewing the manner of death.

The examiner’s office has referred all questions regarding Palmer’s case to Lee.

Lee ordered a second autopsy roughly a month ago after the initial anatomical autopsy, he said.

“In a forensic autopsy, tests and procedures are more in-depth than the autopsy in the hospital,” Lee said. “You go more into detail to study a cause of death and what may have happened.”

Lee said he talked with the state medical examiner last week.

“He said he would get with me as soon as he knows something,” Lee said. “We’re just waiting.”

No case has been opened at the Adams County Sheriff’s Office to look into Palmer’s death, nor will there be unless test results come back questionable, Sheriff Ronny Brown has said.

Palmer, 51, died at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson.