Authorities Testing For Cyanide After Death Of Research Institute Employee

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Police are investigating the death of a female employee at Magee Women’s Research Institute.

There were plenty of police cars parked outside the facility on Craft Avenue Thursday night.

It is where a female employee was found dead at her desk on Wednesday. The Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office identifies her as 34-year-old Nicole Kotchey of Ross Township.

Police returned to the facility because they apparently had more questions for which they had no immediate answers.

Among the police cars on scene: the City Mobile Crime Unit.

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office confirms that among the possible causes of death they are considering: cyanide.

They’ve ordered tests to determine if cyanide played a role. Those tests are not yet available.

The recent trial of Pitt researcher Robert Ferrante in the cyanide death of his wife raised public awareness about the effects of cyanide. But in this case, investigators have yet to establish cyanide was a factor or whether the death was accidental, homicide or suicide.

The District Attorney’s office also released the following statement:

“City police and the medical examiner are investigating the death of a woman in which cyanide may have played a role. However, the medical examiner has not determined either a cause or manner of death.”

The fact that neither cause nor manner of death has been determined indicates this investigation has a long way to go.

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