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By Laura Barcella
May 15, 2019 02:31 PM
It’s been eight years since Morgan Ingram, 20, was mysteriously found dead in her bed in Carbondale, Colorado.
The college student’s Dec. 2011 death was ruled a suicide. But her parents, Steve and Toni Ingram, have long argued that their daughter was not suicidal or even depressed, and that the circumstances surrounding her death don’t add up.
The Ingrams claim their daughter had been stalked for four months before she died — and according to various news reports, they believe her alleged stalker killed her. Though Morgan’s autopsy revealed no signs of bodily trauma, her parents, who found the body, have claimed she was bruised and bloodied.
The parents’ theories will be examined along with other aspects of the case on the special 90-minute season finale of Oxygen’s Accident, Suicide or Murder on Saturday, May 18, at 6 p.m. ET.
The episode includes the insight of forensic investigator Paul Holes, best known for his work on the Golden State Killer case. Holes played a pivotal role in breaking the case open when he uploaded DNA from one of the Golden State crime scenes to a genealogy website in the hopes of finding a match — leading to the subsequent identification and arrest of suspect Joseph DeAngelo. (The DNA evidence allegedly linked DeAngelo to at least 13 murders and 50 rapes across California throughout the 1970s and ‘80s.)
“I was drawn to the case of Morgan Ingram because the initial investigation left many stones unturned, from the stalking allegations to her initial death not [being] looked at as a homicide. … We dug deep to find out what really happened to her,” Holes said of his involvement with the Oxygen special.
According to the Post Independent, after Ingram’s death, an initial autopsy report stated she had died of natural causes as a result of a genetic metabolic disorder called acute intermittent porphyria. However, the coroner changed his report eight months later, stating that Ingram had died by suicide after ingesting an overdose of the prescription drug amitriptyline. (She had not been taking the drug — prescribed to treat various conditions including headaches and depression — at the time of her death, though she had in the past.) [There is no way that a journalist would know this unless someone – probably the same parents who insist their daughter was murdered, told her, so this informaiton should not be considered reliable. Clearly, Morgan had a supply of the drug – SSRIStories Ed]
Since then, a bevy of theories have arisen about the final moments of the bright student who loved animals, ballet and photography. Did she take die by suicide after struggling with months of fear and exhaustion from her alleged stalking? Had she been secretly depressed or suicidal for other reasons? Or was it actually a homicide?
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TRUTH FOR MORGAN
Police reports, autopsy, and toxicology screening for Morgan Ingram
RESOURCES AND LINKS
AUTOPSY AND TOXICOLOGY
The Pathology Group, P.C.
Dean M. Havlik, M.D. Robert A. Kurtzman, D.O. Tara L. Marshall, M.D. 2021 N. 12th Street ● Grand Junction, Colorado 81501 ● (970) 256-6462
REVISED POSTMORTEM EXAMINATION REPORT
Morgan Ingram CASE #: 11-289 Complete Autopsy
IMMEDIATE CAUSE OF DEATH INTERVAL
A. Amitriptyline intoxication Minutes to hours
OTHER SIGNIFICANT CONDITIONS: None
ADDENDUM INFORMATION AND OPINION RECLASSIFICATION
Contrary to the initial representation and documentation of porphyria as a presumptive diagnosis for the decedent, the certainty of the diagnosis of porphyria as the underlying cause of death, and manner of death classification as natural, has been questioned; therefore, additional investigation and medical information from various sources and facilities has been collected and reviewed. A portion of the information sought has included medical records that might assist in including or excluding inherited heart rhythm syndromes or other potential causes of sudden death. Based upon the acquisition of the additional information, additional testing was performed and updated status of the stalking investigation was sought.
Analysis of the decedent’s postmortem toxicology report, specifically the Amitriptyline level, was reconsidered. As noted in the report issued on December 19, 2011, Amitriptyline is subject to postmortem redistribution. The postmortem blood level of Amitriptyline may increase by an average of 3.1 times (range 0.6 to up to 15 times) when compared to antemortem samples. Individuals taking Amitriptyline over long periods of time may experience higher levels than Amitriptyline-naïve patients. The decedent in this case appears to have been first prescribed Amitriptyline in 2003, a time period of 8-9 years of use. The decedent’s postmortem blood concentration of 7909 ng/mL of Amitriptyline and 2833 ng/mL of Nortriptyline is 2.1 times higher than the average fatal Amitriptyline blood concentration of 3.7mg/L (range 2.7 – 4.7) and therefore potentially within the range of the effects of postmortem redistribution. No intact or partially intact pill fragments were identified in the gastric contents during the postmortem examination and gastric contents were not initially submitted for evaluation. The results of the toxicology analysis were reviewed with a toxicologist from AIT Laboratories prior to issuing the report dated December 19, 2011. In consideration of the case review, the gastric contents were sent for analysis on June 6, 2012. The results of the analysis of the gastric contents revealed a 2287440 ng/mL concentration of Amitriptyline. Although the exact number of pills ingested cannot be determined, based upon the stomach content volume and Amitriptyline concentration, approximately 18 tablets of 25 mg Amitriptyline tablets would be necessary to reach such a concentration. The amount of ingested drug is far in excess of the prescribed dosage and far in excess of a typical inadvertent over dosage. A 175 ng/mL concentration Cyclobenzaprine was also found in the stomach contents. The amount consumed is consistent with a deliberate intoxication. The results were reviewed again with a toxicologist from AIT Laboratories. In consideration of the findings, the postmortem blood Amitriptyline level is considered to be a lethal level rather that an artifact of postmortem redistribution. No information gathered thus far provides objective support for an inherited heart rhythm syndrome including an EKG reported on October 8, 2009. No reviewed information unequivocally excludes the diagnosis of porphyria and in fact, according to the medical record, porphyria was considered the tentative working diagnosis for the decedent’s chronic recurrent abdominal pain. Genetic testing was contemplated but was not completed. In consideration of the above findings the cause of death is reclassified as Amitriptyline intoxication due to an ingested Amitriptyline overdose.
With regard to the stalking investigation, there are no objective conclusive findings or reports made available to me by law enforcement or any other source to support an opinion that the death is directly attributable to another person or persons. There was indication that the decedent was concerned and stressed regarding a stalker. There was no indication of any trauma. There has been no objective evidence produced to indicate that another individual was physically present at the time of intoxication. There is no evidence of a struggle or evidence to indicate that the decedent was physically forced to ingest Amitriptyline. Therefore the manner of death is reclassified as suicide. If objective information is produced indicating that the decedent was somehow forced against her will to consume an Amitriptyline overdose and observed until incapacitated the manner of death may be reclassified as homicide.
MANNER OF DEATH: Suicide