Paighton Houston, an Alabama woman who was reported to have texted her family saying she might be in trouble around the time she disappeared in December, died of an accidental drug overdose, the Jefferson County Coroner’s Office said Thursday.
The body of Houston, 29, was found buried behind a home in Hueytown, near Birmingham, on Jan. 3. She had been reported missing on Dec. 21 and was last seen leaving a Birmingham bar with two other people, apparently willingly, police said.
Fredrick Hampton, 50, who authorities said was with Houston on Dec. 20 and disposed of her body, was charged with abuse of a corpse. He was arrested in the Cleveland area Wednesday by U.S. Marshals and other members of a regional law enforcement task force. He has not been charged with her death.
The Jefferson County Coroner’s Office said in a statement that the cause of death was morphine and methamphetamine toxicity and that the manner was an accident.
“This represents an overdose and is classified as a drug-opioid death,” Chief Deputy Coroner Bill Yates said in a statement.
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Hampton was in custody in Ohio pending extradition to Alabama, the Marshals Service said. He was also wanted in Alabama for sex offender registration violations, a sheriff’s official said.