The U.S. Embassy told her family the cause of death was ruled a heart attack, but Will Cox said he's suspicious because of a recent spate of deaths at Dominican resorts in recent months.
Leyla Cox of Staten Island had traveled to the popular tourist destination on Wednesday, June 5 for her birthday and never returned, SILive.com reported. "I believe if my mother had not been in the Dominican Republic, or even if she had been anywhere else in the world, she would still be alive today".
Now, according to media reports, investigators are centering their focus on whether bootleg alcohol is responsible for the tourists' deaths, as numerous victims reported nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea consistent with methanol poisoning immediately before they passed away.
"I am overwhelmed and confused and in shock", he told the Advance.
"With everything going on in the news right now, we think she's a casualty of what's been happening", he said.
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Leyla was supposed to return home on June 12.
At least seven American tourists have mysteriously died while vacationing at resorts in the Dominican Republic in the past year, and authorities are now zeroing in on what they believe to be the cause: illegal bootleg alcohol.
William said he had asked whether Dominican authorities were able to give him a tube of his mother's blood along with her ashes so that his family could get her blood tested in the United States.
Cox was staying with the Excellence Resort in Punta Cana.
Edward Nathael Holmes, 63, and Cynthia Day, 49, were found at the Bahia Principle Hotel at the resort of Playa Nueva Romana on the southeast coast.
Four of the deaths have occurred at the same resort-Bahia Principe in Punta Cana, according to earlier reports.
Investigators are looking into counterfeit alcohol as the reason behind a string of mysterious deaths in the Dominican Republic.