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Pro Wrestler Axl Rotten died of reported drug overdose

By Alex Butler   |   Feb. 17, 2016 at 3:56 PM

BALTIMORE, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Baltimore's own Axl Rotten died of an accidental drug overdose in a McDonald's bathroom, according to reports.

The 44-year-old, born Brian Knighton, rose to fame in the 1990s through the professional wrestling circuit.

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Rotten "was found unconscious and not breathing Feb. 4 on the bathroom floor of a McDonald's in Linthicum," according to the Baltimore Sun.

Rotten had pulled down an infant changing table, where he had put his drug paraphernalia, including a "burnt tablespoon with a crystalline residue," the Sun reported. Police also suspected an unlabeled pill bottle, found on the scene, to contain heroin, according to the report.

"WWE is saddened to learn of reports that Brian Knighton, best known for competing in ECW as Axl Rotten from 1993 to 1999, has passed away. WWE extends its condolences to Knighton's family, friends and fans," the wrestling company said in a statement after his death.

Rotten tweeted on the same day as his passing.

WWE is saddened to learn of the passing of Axl Rotten.

Posted by WWE on Thursday, February 4, 2016

"The way I do things may not be the way you do things but you will find out there is only 1 way. My away! #AxlsTruth," Rotten said.

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