ZURIK: Lafourche coroner misses deadline to qualify for election

Published: Aug. 14, 2023 at 11:09 AM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Lafourche Parish will get a new coroner next year, after the current coroner, Dr. John King missed the deadline to qualify for the election.

Two sources tell FOX 8 that King showed up after the 4:30 p.m. deadline last Thursday hoping to qualify, however, the building was closed for the day.

King was the subject of a series of FOX 8 investigations surrounding his charges for performing autopsies. FOX 8 found King charged up to $500 per autopsy, earning himself an additional $54,000 in 2022 on top of his salary. However, questions surrounded whether King was allowed to collect that money since the parish council never approved the payments.

More: Coroner accused of padding paycheck with potentially unnecessary autopsies

Sources told FOX 8 that King had a quota and wanted to perform 10 autopsies a month to earn additional income. Following FOX 8′s investigations, Louisiana State Police launched a criminal investigation into King’s autopsy fees. That investigation has since been turned over to the Lafourche Parish District Attorney’s office.

Kayla Breaux, the only candidate to qualify in time, will run unopposed. She told FOX 8 she used to work for the coroner’s office and sees her run as an opportunity to make “positive, much-needed changes.”

FOX 8 reached out to King for comment but didn’t hear back.

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