It’s been nearly a year since Prince died from an accidental drug overdose at his Minneapolis estate, yet investigators still haven’t interviewed a key associate or asked a grand jury to consider whether criminal charges are warranted, according to an official.
Prince was 57 when he was found alone and unresponsive in an elevator at his Paisley Park home on April 21.
Authorities later said he died of an overdose of fentanyl, a powerful synthetic drug.
They still don’t know the origin of those drugs and there has been no indication that they are poised to hold anyone responsible anytime soon.
On Monday, search warrants executed by local authorities are due to be unsealed, likely including one from the first search of Paisley Park.
Investigators’ actions in the hours immediately after his death aren’t entirely known, and search warrants – aside from one that was accidentally and briefly made public – have been sealed.
The search warrant that was briefly public notes that first responders started CPR on Prince before determining he was dead.
Authorities conducted a second search more than two weeks after Prince died and recovered more evidence, including many of the counterfeit pills, the official said. Criminal justice experts say the slow pace of the investigation doesn’t necessarily mean it’s in trouble or that no one will ever be charged.
They cite the complexity of tracking illegally obtained pills, the need to be sure before they issue subpoenas, and the high stakes for investigators and prosecutors, who don’t want to suffer an embarrassing defeat in a high-profile trial.
Investigators have said little about the case over the last year, other than it is active. They have explored whether doctors illegally prescribed opioids that were meant to go to Prince and whether the fentanyl that killed him came from a black-market source online or on the street.