Metro-East News

Woman found dead in Washington Park died of overdose, coroner says

A woman found dead in Washington Park in March had multiple drugs in her system at her time of death, including cocaine and opiates, according to a St. Clair County Coroner’s toxicology report.

Nortisha R. Ball, 27, was found in the afternoon of March 11 in a ditch near 38th Street and Bunkum Road. Coroner Calvin Dye Sr. said an accidental overdose caused her death.

Investigators found traces of opiates, including morphine and codeine, in her system, according to the report.

The cocaine might have been laced with levamisole, a drug used to treat parasitic infections in animals, according to the DEA. Levamisole is often mixed with cocaine.

A group of children found Ball’s body in the ditch near some woods. They went to a nearby store and called police, according to a Washington Park police officer’s report.

Investigators found no sign of blunt force trauma. Police found Ball’s body fully clothed but missing one shoe, the report stated.

Ball once testified in the trial of Aaron “Chill” Jackson, who was convicted in the 2010 murder of Washington Park Mayor John Thornton. Washington Park Police Chief Tony Tomlinson said in March he believed Ball’s death and testimony were unrelated.

Kelsey Landis: 618-239-2110, @kelseylandis