Body of lottery winner reinterred
Sun-Times and Sun-Times Media Wire January 21, 2013 2:23PM
Updated: January 21, 2013 9:49PM
The remains of Urooj Khan were reinterred Monday following an autopsy of the North Side man who died from cyanide poisoning after winning a $1 million lottery jackpot.
His remains were exhumed Friday from a North Side cemetery and autopsied. The examination also involved testing organs such as the liver and stomach contents to determine whether he inhaled or ate the cyanide that killed him back in July.
On Friday afternoon, a Cook County Medical Examiner’s office spokesman said the body was picked up by a funeral service which would handle reinterment.
Dr. Stephen Cina, the chief medical examiner who asked for and won a court order for the exhumation, said the further testing on the remains may help prosecutors if anyone is ever charged in Khan’s death. No one has been named a suspect.
Khan’s death came on the heels of winning a $1 million state lottery jackpot. Initially, his death was ruled from natural causes: hardening of the arteries. Days later, a relative contacted the medical examiner’s office and said the doctor who handled the case should take a closer look.
Only an external exam was conducted in July because there was nothing to indicate his death was suspicious, Cina said.
Further toxicology tests revealed in September — weeks after he was buried — that the 46-year-old Khan had died from a lethal dose of cyanide. In November, his death was reclassified a homicide by the medical examiner’s office.
In recent weeks, Khan’s widow Shabana Ansari, told the Sun-Times she fully supported the exhumation. She said she hopes the follow-up exam will reveal “the truth.”
“I really want them to go for it because I really want to know what exactly happened,” Ansari said. “I wish God will reveal the truth — the sooner the better.”