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Taylor narrowly beats Hillier in race for Bonneville County coroner

East Idaho Elects

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IDAHO FALLS – Rick Taylor narrowly won the Republican nomination for Bonneville County coroner.

During Tuesday’s primary, Taylor beat his opponent, Barrett Hillier, by about 100 votes. Taylor earned 50% of the vote (7,257 total votes) and Hillier had 7,156 votes.

Taylor will appear on the ballot in November for the third time in the last 10 years.

Taylor tells EastIdahoNews.com he’s pleased with the outcome and is looking forward to continuing to serve the people of Bonneville County.

“I enjoy it. I feel that our office does a good job of what we’re called to do and we’re glad to continue with the opportunity,” Taylor says.

Hillier wasn’t immediately available for comment Wednesday.

A coroner’s job is to work with law enforcement in determining the cause, manner and timeframe of death for bodies that are recovered in an investigation. Earlier this month, Taylor told us a medical knowledge base is required to perform the necessary duties, such as drawing blood for toxicology reports, examining for physical indicators and researching patient records to find contributing factors.

RELATED | Incumbent Rick Taylor running against Barrett Hillier for Bonneville County Coroner

Taylor has been with the Coroner’s Office for 20 years. He was initially appointed as the deputy coroner in 2001 to replace the retiring coroner. He became the coroner in 2012 when his predecessor, Jon Walker, resigned.

Taylor says his focus going forward is to work with the lab and doctors to make them aware of “new street drugs that are out there” and what symptoms point to them.

“The hospital toxicology reports don’t even pick up (some of) them,” he says. “We’re hoping to get a lot done there so that there’s more awareness and capability of treatment … before they become a coroner case.”

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