A missing Ramona man who was found dead near his home died from exposure to outdoor elements, not methamphetamine intoxication as medical examiners first believed.
The San Diego County Medical Examiner’s Office released an amended the autopsy for Carl Salayer, 67, on Thursday.
It says his primary cause of death was probable environmental exposure, with Parkinson’s disease and Brugada syndrome listed as contributing factors.
When the medical examiner initially released Salayer’s autopsy findings in early August, they said he was killed by acute methamphetamine intoxication.
However, they discovered the meth detected in his liver was a metabolite from his prescribed medication selegiline – a drug used to treat Parkinson’s.
According to the revised autopsy, selegiline can yield false-positive results, making it appear as though the patient took meth.
"Despite the presence of the methamphetamine, the small amount of it detected in the liver is not felt to have contributed in a significant way to the death," the autopsy says.
Salayer was reported missing on June 17 by his wife. After four days of searching and no results, deputies called off the hunt.
On June 25, a couple living on Chablis Road reported a bad odor lingering near their home, and deputies discovered Salayer’s decomposing corpse in a heavily vegetated field.
His death is still considered an accident, the medical examiner’s office says.