he wrongful death of an Illinois man is making national headlines today after the Cook County medical examiner ruled his death a homicide. The 46-year-old man won $1 million in the Illinois lottery’s “$3 million Cash Jackpot!” game but then died suddenly a few weeks later. The man reportedly woke up one evening screaming after having dinner and going to bed. His family took him to a local hospital where he died.
The hospital officials who examined the Illinois lotto winner could not figure out whether anything was wrong with him, so they determined that his death was arterial sclerotic cardiovascular disease, a condition that includes strokes and heart attacks.
CNN reports that a family member of the man was suspicious and asked examining physicians to look further into the lotto winner’s death. Once in depth toxicology tests were done, authorities found a lethal dose of cyanide in the man’s blood.
Poisoning is an extremely rare way for a Chicago resident to be killed. CBS Chicago reports that the lotto winner was the only person to be poisoned out of the 508 Chicagoans who were murdered last year. One Cook County medical examiner told reporters that he had performed 4,000 autopsies during his career and only had a single poisoning.
Most wrongful death cases in Illinois arise not out of intentional criminal acts such as murder but rather situations such as car accidents and medical negligence. A wrongful death lawsuit can however arise out of an intentional homicide or due to a defective product such a malfunctioning piece of equipment.