Coroner: Woman died from inhaling smoke and soot in Sunday fire

A woman whose body was discovered while firefighters were trying to put out a fire on North 49th Street died of carbon monoxide poisoning from inhaling smoke and soot, according to the preliminary report issued Monday by the East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner’s Office.

Dr. Beau Clark, the parish coroner, said the carbon monoxide level in the blood of Doris Antwine, 72, was well above the level considered lethal.

“Seeing that high number is not surprising in this situation,” Clark said.

While there was no visible signs of trauma on Antwine, the coroner said he will not rule in the manner of death, whether it was accidental or a homicide, until officials finish their investigation into the fire.

Robert Combs, spokesman for the Baton Rouge Fire Department, said the origin and cause of the fire was still undetermined as of Monday afternoon.

Firefighters found Antwine’s body among the charred remains of the house she rented at 1211 N. 49th St. Neighbors estimate the fire began at about 3 a.m. Sunday.