HUNTLEIGH, Mo. -- The 27-year-old woman found dead in the bedroom of former Anheuser-Busch Chief Executive August Busch IV died from an accidental overdose of oxycodone, the St. Louis County medical examiner said Wednesday.
Dr. Mary Case, the medical examiner, said in a one-paragraph statement released Wednesday that lethal levels of the painkiller oxycodone caused Adrienne Martin's death on Dec. 19. Sources say she was also found to have cocaine in her system, but Case's statement does not say what role, if any, that played in the death.
"That's all we're prepared to say ... that this is the cause and manner of death," said Suzanne McCune, the medical examiner's forensic administrator.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch broke the story on Sunday that oxycodone was found in Martin's blood.
The information has been turned over to Robert McCulloch, the St. Louis County prosecutor investigating the case.
It remains unclear where Martin got the medication. Family members have said Martin had a prescription for an unrelated drug called Trazodone, which is used for sleep or depression. That drug was found in her system, sources said, but it wasn't mentioned in Case's brief statement.
Christine Trampler, Adrienne Martin's mother, has said her daughter was having trouble sleeping in the months before her death.
Oxycodone is widely recognized by its brand name, OxyContin. It is classified as an opiate analgesic and is said to change the way the brain and nervous system respond to pain, according to the National Institutes of Health.
OxyContin is a slow-release pill, designed to provide pain relief over an extended period. But as a street drug, it is crushed or broken so the user gets the full effect of the painkiller at once, creating a high similar to heroin.
OxyContin has been found in the bloodstreams of several celebrities who died young, including actor Heath Ledger.
Kevin Martin, Adrienne Martin's ex-husband, has told the Post-Dispatch that his wife had a heart disorder known as Long QT syndrome, which involves the electrical activity of the heart. That also wasn't addressed by the medical examiner.
In an interview with the Post-Dispatch last month, Busch said he had been in rehabilitation early in 2010 for depression and unspecified "other issues."
Adrienne Martin had been dating Busch for about two years, and was found with no signs of trauma to her body. Michael Jung, a Busch household employee, called police at 1:12 p.m. on Dec. 19 and said an unresponsive woman wouldn't wake up, according to a 911 call recording. He said he wasn't sure if she was alive because it was "dark back there"; he said he was going to get a light to check.
Emergency responders pronounced Martin dead at 1:26 p.m.
Police have said there were no signs of a cause of death at the scene. They also said the room was dark "due to curtains drawn in the bedroom" and that the room was outfitted with blackout curtains to shield the sun.
Police have said there was nothing at the scene to indicate a cause of death.
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