Autopsy: Woman found dead in ditch died of cocaine, fentanyl, alcohol toxicity

Autopsy: Woman found dead in ditch died of cocaine, fentanyl, alcohol toxicity
The body of 32-year-old Wanda Tiffany Reilly was found in a grassy ditch next to a church on Livingston Chapel Road on September 4. (Source: Facebook) (Wissbaum, Brandon)

COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WECT) - A woman found dead in a ditch near Delco in September died from acute cocaine, fentanyl, and alcohol toxicity, an autopsy report released on Tuesday reveals.

The body of 32-year-old Wanda Tiffany Reilly was found in a grassy ditch next to a church on Livingston Chapel Road on September 4. She was last seen alive “but intoxicated” the day before when she “reportedly ran off down the road,” the autopsy report states. Her body was located around a mile from where she ran off.

Though law enforcement found no signs of foul play, according to the report, the Columbus County Sheriff’s Office initially classified her death as suspicious, adding that it was unclear how she died. The report, however, determined her death was accidental. An inquiry to the sheriff’s office regarding the status of the case was not immediately returned.

The report states Reilly had a history of drug abuse, specifically, methamphetamine and heroin use. A toxicology screening found a cocaine metabolite, fentanyl, and 110 mg/dL of ethanol (equivalent to a .11 percent blood alcohol content) in her blood.

“Cocaine and its metabolites, even in small amounts can cause cardiac arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats), a myocardial infarction (heart attack), and sudden death,” the report states. “Ethanol and fentanyl are both central nervous system depressants with additive effects. Central nervous system depressants can cause pulmonary edema (fluid in the lungs), respiratory depression (decreased breathing), coma, and death.”

“No injuries causative of or contributory to death were identified,” it continues.

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