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    Housewives' Slain Fiancé May Have Suffered From Blood Disorder

    Kandi Burruss, Ashley Jewell Prince Williams/Getty Images

    The preliminary autopsy results are in, and there was a surprising finding regarding the slaying of Real Housewives of Atlanta's Ashley "A.J." Jewell.

    Dr. Kelly Rose of the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office tells E! News that Kandi Burruss' on-off fiancé may have suffered from the blood disorder sickle-cell anemia, which could have contributed to his death during a bar fight outside an Atlanta strip club.

    "Preliminary results are suggestive of [sickle-cell]," said Rose.

    Jewell, whose wedding-planning travails with the Grammy-winning Burruss were chronicled in the second season of Housewives, sustained a severe blow to the head in the Oct. 2 brawl at the Body Tap Club, the ATL hot spot he co-owned.

    Sickle-cell anemia is a lifelong disorder that affects red blood cells. According to the medical examiner, the condition may have restricted the body's oxygen supply and exacerbated his injuries.

    "The altercation played a role in that, and his underlying disease process contributed to his overall demise," Rose says. "In certain states of stress, the red cells actually become deformed. They deliver oxygen to all parts of your body, but when they have this sickle shape, there’s a backup or plug-in that happens. It's especially bad in your lungs."

    The coroner says that a final report is forthcoming and will state the official cause of death and all contributing factors.

    A club employee, Frederick Richardson, has been charged with voluntary manslaughter and is currently being held in an Atlanta jail without bond. A court date has been scheduled for Oct. 20.


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