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Doctor Venu Gopal is the Chief Forensic Pathologist for the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office.

He began his career with Fresno County in 1992.  He received his medical license after graduating from Bangalore Medical University, Kamataka State, India.  He came to the United States in the 80’s and completed his residency in Pathology at St. Vincent’s Medical Center of Richmond, Staten Island, NY.    

Doctor Gopal is well known throughout the medical community and is considered a leading authority in his field.  He is the co-chair for PDRC (Pediatric Death Review Committee), a member of the Traumatic Audit Committee and Elder Abuse Committee.  He teaches Anatomy, physiology and forensic aspects of an autopsy to paramedics, nurses, anatomy students, criminology students and medical assistants.  He periodically hosts Emergency Room doctors during their residency for their forensic training requirements.  

On average, Fresno County has 7,500 deaths per year.  Of those, roughly 4,000 are reported to the Coroner’s Office.  This produces an average of 1,000 death investigations that require a doctor’s exam.  Doctor Gopal’s work ethic is unmatched.  It is not uncommon for him to work seven days a week for months at a time.  He contributes to our mission through exceptional dedication, initiative, passion, motivation and the high level of service he provides to the citizens of Fresno County.

In 2020, Dr. Gopal served as the Coroner Office’s lone forensic pathologist because our other forensic pathologist retired at the end of 2019.  Dr. Gopal performed approximately 350 autopsies and 500 external exams.  Due to his age and pre-existing medical conditions, Dr. Gopal says working through the COVID pandemic has been quite an experience.

“This was really a personal challenge for me.  There were a lot of concerns on my part and my family because I am a physician like anybody else.  So keeping that in mind I did my work diligently.  We had a lot of ups and downs in this present situation, but we didn’t want the public to suffer in any manner.  I was just doing my duty, what I am supposed to do.  So far it has all worked out and having done all this and in the end being recognized this way it will definitely help me to do some more,” said Dr. Gopal.

Doctor Gopal is also very involved in his community.   He dedicates a large portion of his free time to his temple and holds a position within the temple that requires his daily involvement.  His hard work and dedication to his profession and the community we serve is an example for others to follow.       

 

Contact Information

Tony Botti
Public Information Officer
(559) 600-8137
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