Annie McCann’s 2008 death remains controversial. It was deemed a suicide by law enforcement shortly after she perished, the cause cited as ingestion of a lethal amount of lidocaine. Lidocaine is an ingredient in the local antiseptic sold by the giant drug manufacturer Bayer under the name Bactine. The 16-year-old had a spray container of Bactine with her when she died. She was using it to prevent infection in her recently pierced ears.
McCann’s parents have never believed she took her own life. Besides the idea that someone ready to commit suicide probably wouldn’t care about preventing ear infection from piercing, they find the lidocaine cause unlikely. (Bayer also has contended that the amount found in her system could “not have killed her.”) The McCanns believe, like the funeral home that worked on Annie’s body, that she may have been raped and beaten. However, requests by the family to obtain the results from the rape kit have been denied. Deborah Roberts explores the case on ABC 20/20, which airs Fridays at 10pm.