Jail inmate died of morphine overdose, investigation continues

Edgar County Coroner W. Peter Templeton says the August death of an inmate at the Edgar County Jail was the result of morphine intoxication.

According to Templeton, the toxicology report from the autopsy of Michelle L. Hamilton, 46, Paris, revealed a blood morphine concentration of 398 nanograms/milliliter. The therapeutic range for morphine is 10-80 nanograms/milliliter.

Paris Police arrested Hamilton at 8:30 p.m. Aug. 26 and charged her with possession of controlled substance. She was reported as “alert, coherent and cooperative” at the time of the arrest.

Hamilton was found unresponsive in the jail’s holding cell at 4:41 a.m.  Aug. 27. The Edgar County Special Service Area Ambulance transported Hamilton to the emergency room at Paris Community Hospital where she was pronounced dead at 5:17 a.m.

Templeton said the manner of death remains under investigation by his office and the Illinois State Police.

The coroner’s statement released Sept. 30 was based on the Sept. 25 toxicology report.

The Prairie Press

101 Central Avenue Paris, IL 61944