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Athens woman found dead in parking lot died from medical reasons

Kimberly Patricia Cope

By Joe Johnson

A 40-year-old Athens woman whose body was found nearly three months ago in the parking lot of a Baxter Street restaurant died from a medical condition that was exacerbated by drug use, according to Athens-Clarke County Coroner Sonny Wilson.

Kimberly Patricia Cope’s body was found early the morning of Jan. 2 by a jogger in the parking lot of Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers at 795 Baxter St. Wilson said the body displayed no signs of trauma. Cope had lived in a nearby apartment on Baxter Street.

Wilson said he recently received a report from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation's State Crime Lab the indicated Cope's death was "heart-related complicated by drug use."

The autopsy found drugs in Cope's blood, Wilson said, adding that the woman had hypertension and an enlarged heart.

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