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Autopsy: Minnesota lottery director died of overdose

Mar 26, 2004, 8:39 am

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Minnesota LotteryMinnesota Lottery: Autopsy: Minnesota lottery director died of overdose

The longtime director of the Minnesota State Lottery, who committed suicide in January during a legislative review of the lottery's operations, died from an overdose of pain medication, a final autopsy report found.

Earlier reports had said he died of hypothermia in freezing weather after cutting his wrists.

Toxicology tests show that George Andersen took a fatal dose of hydrocodone, more commonly known as Vicodin, the medical examiner's office said Thursday.

Andersen, 53, was found lying outside his home the morning of Jan. 27. His wrists had been cut and a knife was near the body. The cold might have contributed to Andersen's death, but the primary cause was the pills, said Dr. Kelly Mills, assistant medical examiner.

A family spokesman, Michael Keyser, said the family was unaware the pills were in the house and didn't know how Andersen obtained them.

Andersen had met with legislative auditors about a review of the lottery the day before he was found dead. He told relatives he feared he would be fired after the report was released. Andersen had been the only director in the lottery's 14-year history.

The audit was released last month and found mismanagement but no illegal activity.


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