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Originally published Friday, February 8, 2013 at 4:19 PM

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Johnie Kirton's cause of death ruled acute methadone intoxication

Former Washington football player Johnie Kirton died at the age of 26 in May, two days after scoring the winning touchdown in an Arena Football League game.

Seattle Times staff reporter

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I am Johnie's Great Uncle. Something that has never been reported, or public, during... MORE
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Former Washington Huskies football player Johnie Kirton died of acute methadone intoxication, according to a recently released report from the Santa Clara (Calif.) County Medical Examiner's office.

Kirton was found dead May 28 in a hotel room in Santa Clara, where he was playing for the San Jose SaberCats of the Arena Football League. He was 26.

No other details of the report were made available. Jesse Montano, an administrative support officer for the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner's office, said the death was ruled an accident. The cause of death had not been released previously due to toxicology tests and a backlog of cases.

Kirton was a record-setting running back at Jackson High in Mill Creek, where he led the state in rushing as a senior in 2003 with 2,675 yards and was named the Gatorade and Associated Press state player of the year.

He played four seasons at Washington as a fullback, tight end and defensive tackle, voted by teammates as one of four team captains in 2008.

Kirton played for the Spokane Shock of the defunct af2 indoor league in 2009 and played from 2010-12 in the Arena Football League with Arizona, Chicago and San Jose.

He scored the winning touchdown in his final game, two days before his death.

Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or bcondotta@seattletimes.com.

On Twitter @bcondotta

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