Coroner: Philip Seymour Hoffman's Autopsy "Inconclusive"

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Feb. 5 2014 1:32 PM

Coroner: Philip Seymour Hoffman's Autopsy "Inconclusive"

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Philip Seymour Hoffman at a party following the premiere of 'World Traveler' at Serena in the Chelsea Hotel in New York City in 2002

Photo by Scott Gries/ImageDirect

The world had to wait an extra day to learn the results of Philip Seymour Hoffman's autopsy—and we'll have to wait at least a few more before we know anything more definitive, via USA Today:

The results of an autopsy of Philip Seymour Hoffman's body were inconclusive, and more tests must be conducted to determine what caused his death, a spokeswoman for the New York City medical examiner's office said Wednesday. There is no timetable for the undisclosed tests, she said.
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The results were originally supposed to be released yesterday, but were delayed while the investigation continued. Given how police say they found the actor's body—on the bathroom floor of his apartment with a syringe in his left arm and bags believed to contain heroin nearby—the working theory has obviously been a drug overdose. But we won't know anything for sure until the next round of tests.

In the meantime, police reportedly arrested four suspects "in connection" with Hoffman's death late last night. Although, to be clear, that information—while widely reported—is coming off-the-record from NYPD police sources who have provided few details on how the suspects may be tied to Hoffman and/or the drugs found in his apartment. (The strongest evidence to surface appears to be that one of the suspects is said to have had Hoffman's phone number stored in his cell phone.) CNN, meanwhile, reports that police recovered "350 tiny plastic bags of what is believed to be heroin" during the Tuesday night raid, but that the bags were branded "black list" and "red bull"—aka not the "ace of spades" or "ace of hearts" brands that were allegedly found in Hoffman's apartment.

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Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City.