Updated 9:50 p.m. Friday
CHAMPAIGN — Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said an autopsy done Friday on a man found dead on a street in west Champaign provided incomplete results.
Champaign County sheriff’s Lt. Ed Ogle said police were called to the 2300 block of Briar Hill Drive about 1:30 a.m. Friday after a man scooping snow reported finding the man in the street.
Northrup identified him as E. Allen Verchota III, 50, who lived at 2120 Briar Hill Drive.
“At this time, we have not ruled out exposure to the harsh wintery conditions late (Thursday) evening, Mr. Verchota’s pre-existing medical conditions, or a combination of both as the cause of his death,” Northrup said on Friday night.
Northrup said additional tests are pending, and a final cause of death will be determined after a review of these tests.
He said the results of the additional tests will not be available for several weeks.
Northrup said he does not suspect any foul play at this time.
Mr. Verchota was an attorney with an office in Champaign. He had been licensed to practice since 1988 but hadn’t been working recently.
Ogle said deputies suspect that Mr. Verchota had been drinking and may have been outdoors for several hours before being found. They found beer near him which had been purchased at the Walgreens at the Crossing, a few blocks to the east, about 7:45 p.m. The sales receipt indicated he had also purchased a stocking cap and a prescription, Ogle said.
The air temperature was 10 degrees when police were called, but winds made it feel much colder.
Northrup said Mr. Verchota was wearing a couple of jackets and what appeared to be workout pants. There were hats found nearby, but Northrup said he wasn’t sure if they belonged to Mr. Verchota. There were no obvious signs of trauma to him.