Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Anna Nicole's Son: Death Was Not Natural

The death of Anna Nicole Smith's 20-year-old son, Daniel, in the Bahamas Sunday was not due to natural causes, PEOPLE has learned exclusively.

"The cause of death is not natural," Her Majesty's Coroner Linda P. Virgill tells PEOPLE. "However, we wish to reserve the cause of death at this time pending the toxicologist examination and report for confirmation of cause of death. Friday is the likely release date for the autopsy and toxicology report."

Daniel Smith was found sitting upright in a chair after going to see his mother and his new half-sister in the private Doctors Hospital in Nassau, Reginald Ferguson, assistant commissioner of the Royal Bahamas Police Force, told reporters late Monday.

"It would appear from our report that the mother had gotten up, saw him in the chair and he appeared to be sound asleep. She tried to wake him up, he was unresponsive and she sounded the alarm," Ferguson said.

According to Virgill, a coroner's inquest with a jury will take place, and Anna Nicole Smith will likely be asked for her testimony. "All persons who are relevant witnesses, like his mother and hospital staff and airline personnel who had contact with him, would have to testify," Virgill says. "The inquest would happen late October or early November to determine how, when and by what manner Daniel came to his death."

She continued, "The family wishes to return the body to the United States, but it won't be released until the reports are in."


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