Whitney Houston’s family ‘saddened’ by coroner's cocaine finding
"We are saddened to learn of the toxicology results, although we are glad to now have closure," said Patricia Houston, the singer's sister-in-law and manager, in a statement to the Associated Press.
In a recent interview with Oprah Winfrey, Patricia Houston described the frantic efforts to revive Whitney Houston at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Feb. 11 after she was discovered unresponsive, submerged in the bathtub of her suite.
Patricia Houston told Winfrey she raced to Houston's room after hearing an assistant screaming and crying. She found her brother Ray over Houston, frantically trying to revive her. Houston was out of the bathtub and on the floor, she said, but Patricia Houston said she was unsure how she got there.
"The paramedics were coming in at that point. I said, 'Ray, let it go.' He was so out of breath. I felt so badly for him," Patricia Houston said, according to a transcript of the interview.
She was able to see Houston before paramedics arrived moments later.
"She had a peaceful look on her face," Patricia Houston said.
The coroner's report released Thursday determined that Whitney Houston died accidentally as the result of drowning. The coroner said heart disease and cocaine use were also factors. Toxicology tests showed a cocktail of drugs in the pop star's system. Traces of marijuana, Xanax, Flexeril and Benadryl were also found, but officials concluded that those drugs did not contribute to her death.
Houston was in Los Angeles to take part in pre-Grammy events and had planned to attend a party for her longtime mentor Clive Davis at the hotel.
Davis, who discovered Houston and shepherded her recording career, declined through a spokeswoman to comment on the coroner's report.
-- Richard Winton and Randy Lewis
Photo: Singer Whitney Houston performs at the 2011 Clive Davis Pre-Grammy Gala and Salute to Industry Icons Honoring David Geffen at the Beverly Hilton on Feb. 13. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times