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Sage Stallone died of artery disease; drugs played no role

August 30, 2012 |  5:10 pm

Stallone

The L.A. County coroner's office has concluded that Sage Stallone, the son of Sylvester Stallone, died of coronary artery disease, commonly known as hardening of the arteries.

The coroner declared death by natural causes and the toxicology test came back "negative except for  a sub-therapeutic level of hydrocodone." Coroner's chief Craig Harvey said the drug played no role in his death.

The LAPD's North Hollywood Division went to Sage Stallone's home, where he was found dead in July, but the case was reassigned to the elite Robbery-Homicide Division. The division often handles cases that are high-profile or demand resources unavailable to divisional detectives.

A housekeeper found the body of Sage Stallone. According to several sources, pill bottles were found at the residence and investigators were trying to determine their source and whether they had any role in the death.

Born May 5, 1976, in Los Angeles, Sage Moonblood Stallone was the first son of Stallone and actress Sasha Czack. He began his acting career in "Rocky V," the 1990 installment of the "Rocky" movie franchise. As a 14-year-old, he played Rocky Balboa Jr., son of his father's Rocky Balboa character.

Young Stallone again appeared with his father in "Daylight" in 1996 and had roles in nine other movies and short films. His most recent appearance was in a 2011 television documentary on the "Rocky" films.

In addition to acting, Sage Stallone was a co-founder with film editor Bob Murawski of Grindhouse Releasing, which specializes in the theatrical and video releases of restored B movies from the 1970s and '80s.

The company's catalog includes "An American Hippie in Israel," "I Drink Your Blood" and "Cannibal Holocaust." Its latest release was 2010's "Gone With the Pope."

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— Richard Winton and Andrew Blankstein

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Photo: Sylvester Stallone, left, wife, Jennifer Flavin, and son Sage Stallone at the premiere of "Daylight" in 1996. Credit: Kevork Djansezian / Associated Press

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