Coroner releases autopsy, toxicology reports in death of Boulder Hill child

Rules manner of death to be homicide

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YORKVILLE – The Kendall County Coroner's office has released autopsy and toxicology reports related to the death of 6-year-old Kerrigan Rutherford, who was found dead in a home in the 100 block of Boulder Hill Pass in the unicorporated Boulder Hill subdivision July 2.

According to the reports released Thursday, Aug. 13, Kendall County Coroner Jacquie Purcell ordered the public release of the autopsy and toxicology reports from the death investigation as part of an effort for her office to remain committed to transparency on matters of public interest.

"Based on these reports, and information gained throughout the course of the investigation, Coroner Purcell has ruled the cause of death to be due to olanzapine toxicity, and ruled the manner of death to be homicide," coroner's officials wrote in the Thursday news release.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, olanzapine is used to treat symptoms of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder in adults and teenagers 13 years old or older.

Coroner's officials wrote in the autopsy report that Kerrigan was pronounced dead at 1:47 p.m. July 2 and the autopsy occurred at 7 p.m. the same day.

According to the coroner's documents, 720 nanograms per milliliter, or ng/mL, of olanzapine were found in Kerrigan's blood. Plasma concentrations required of olanzapine to effectively treat psychotic episodes range from 20 to 80 ng/mL in adults, according to the toxicology report.

Other pathological findings included cerebral edema, or brain swelling, along with left ventricular hypertrophy, or an enlarged heart, according to the autopsy report. Side effects that have been reported following the use of olanzapine include cardiovascular complications, altered mental state and uncontrolled movements of the extremities, according to the toxicology report.

The only noted evidence of injury listed in the autopsy report was a 1.25 inch bruise on the right leg, according to the coroner's documents.

The update comes after Kendall County Judge Jody Gleason set bond at $250,000 with 10% to apply on Friday for Courtny A. Davidson and James A. Davidson, of the 800 block of Washington Street in Mendota. Courtny Davidson was Kerrigan's mother and James Davidson was Kerrigan's stepfather.

Law enforcement officials alleged in Kendall County court documents that both adults "unintentionally and recklessly performed acts which were likely to cause death or great bodily harm to [Kerrigan]" and gave Kerrigan enough prescription olanzapine pills to cause her death, according to court records.

Courtny Davidson is or has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, according to court records. James Davidson is not or has not been diagnosed with any mental health disorder, per court records.

Mark Shlifka, first assistant state's attorney for Kendall County, said in court on Friday that both adults tried to avoid responsibility for Kerrigan's death and alleged that they were not as forthcoming as they should have been to law enforcement about what happened. In requesting Gleason to set bond to $250,000 each for Courtny and James Davidson, he said the prescription drugs that were found in Kerrigan's system, per toxicology reports, were not meant for her.

"Or for any child at all," Shlifka said.

Coroner's officials wrote in the Thursday news release the office won't provide any further public interpretation of the reports or publicly release any additional information due to the pending investigation.