Timothy P. Gocha

Assistant Professor of Anthropology
Chief Forensic Anthropologist, Clark County Office of the Coroner & Medical Examiner
Expertise: Forensic Anthropology, Skeletal Identification, Human Rights, Migrant Identification and Repatriation


Timothy P. Gocha has more than a decade of experience in forensic anthropology and skeletal biology.

His research focuses on improving methods of human skeletal identification through visual examination of skeletal remains, as well as histological examination of bone and tooth microstructure. Through these avenues, Gocha is helping expand anthropologists' ability to accurately age unidentified remains for near centenarians, which is critical as human lifespan continues to increase in the 21st century.

Gocha also conducts research and helps with anthropological casework related to the humanitarian crisis of migrant deaths along the U.S./Mexico border. He has helped with the exhumation, analysis, identification, and repatriation of migrant remains to their families outside the United States. Gocha has presented on this human rights forensic anthropology work at regional, national, and international conferences, which has also found its way into popular media venues such as The New York Times, National Geographic, BBC, Le Monde, and Univision.


  • Ph.D., Biological Anthropology, Ohio State University
  • M.Sc., Human Osteology & Paleopathology, University of Bradford
  • B.A., Anthropology, Ohio State University

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Timothy P. Gocha In The News

Las Vegas Sun
February 15, 2019
Sometimes they’re buried in unmarked graves. Other times their bodies decompose under the desert’s blaring sun. The mementos carried on their journey—a child’s drawing with a Spanish prayer scribbled on the back, a stuffed animal, a lucha libre mask—are found with them, hinting at who they were before they died.