No Sign Of Suicide, Trauma In Prince's Home-Alone Death: 'Weeks' Before Drug Test Results

  • by: Alan Duke

The autopsy of Prince took three hours Friday in a Ramsey, Minnesota, morgue as investigators searched for the cause of the music legend's sudden death. His body was released to his family Friday afternoon, according to a coroner's spokeswoman.

A conclusion on his cause of death are pending the return of toxicology results, she said. The medical examiner ordered a "full spectrum" of tests about what drugs might be in Prince's blood and organ tissues, she said.

"There were no obvious signs of trauma on the body at all," Carver County Sheriff Jim Olson said. "We have no reason to be live at this point that this was a suicide."

Prince was home alone until someone who had been unable to reach him Thursday morning went to his Paisley Park studio and found him unresponsive in an elevator, the sheriff said. He was last seen seen alive when someone dropped him off at home at about 8 p.m. Wednesday night, the sheriff said. He was fully dressed when he was found in the elevator on the first floor, he said.

Results of the exam conducted by chief medical examiner Dr. A. Quinn Strobl will not be made public until "all results are obtained," which could take "weeks," according to a statement from the Midwest Medical Examiner's office.

"As part of the complete exam, relevant information regarding Mr. Nelson's medical and social history will be gathered. Anything which could be relevant to the investigation will be taken into consideration." the statement said. "Gathering the results will take several days and the results of the full toxicology scan could likely take weeks."

The Carver County, Minnesota, sheriff will hold a news conference Friday at 3pCT/4pET to discuss the investigation.

Prince Rogers Nelson, 57, was found unresponsive in an elevator at his home-studio complex known as Paisly Park Thursday morning. Paramedics were unabe to revive him and he was pronounced dead 25 minutes later.

Read the full transcript of the 911 call

Celebrity news website TMZ is quoting undentified sources saying that the medical emergency that Prince suffered during a flight a week earlier was an overdose of Percocet and not a case of the flu, his publicist claimed. The TMZ report said paramedics used a "save drug" at the Moline airport to counter the powerful opioid's affect. His private jet made an unplanned stop in Moline while on the flight from Atlanta, where he had just performed, to his home in Minnesota.

  Alan Duke

Editor-in-Chief Alan Duke co-founded Lead Stories after ending a 26-year career with CNN, where he mainly covered entertainment, current affairs and politics. Duke closely covered domestic terrorism cases for CNN, including the Oklahoma City federal building bombing, the UNABOMBER and search for Southeast bomber Eric Robert Rudolph. CNN moved Duke to Los Angeles in 2009 to cover the entertainment beat. Duke also co-hosted a daily podcast with former HLN host Nancy Grace, "Crime Stories with Nancy Grace" and hosted the podcast series "Stan Lee's World: His Real Life Battle with Heroes & Villains." You'll also see Duke in many news documentaries, including on the Reelz channel, CNN and HLN.

Read more about or contact Alan Duke

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