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Chicago Lottery Winner Poisoned After Winning Jackpot

By Samantha Abernethy in News on Jan 7, 2013 9:20PM

A medical examiner has ruled the July death of a lottery jackpot winner was a homicide after discovering cyanide in the man's system.

Urooj Khan, 46, won $1 million on a scratch-off ticket in June 2012. He opted for a lump sum and took home $425,000 on July 19. The next day he died, and no autopsy was performed.

The Cook County Medical Examiner's Office told the Associated Press that at the time the office did not perform autopsies on those more than 45 years old unless a death is suspicious.

The Associated Press writes:

A basic toxicology screening for opiates, cocaine and carbon monoxide came back negative, and the death was ruled a result of the narrowing and hardening of coronary arteries.

A relative asked authorities to investigate further, and the medical examiner tested for "all the major drugs of use, all the common prescription drugs and also included I believe strychnine and cyanide in there just in case something came up."

The Cook County Medical Examiner Stephen Cina said a death from cyanide is unusual. "I've had one, maybe two cases out of 4,500 autopsies I've done."