Whitney Houston coroner's report details drug signs, liquor, drowning

Whitney Houston speaks during the 51st Annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 8, 2009, in Los Angeles. Kevin Winter

Whitney Houston speaks during the 51st Annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 8, 2009, in Los Angeles.
Kevin Winter
(CBS/AP) The latest coroner's report paints a picture of the hotel room where Whitney Houston died, detailing her final hours. The Beverly Hilton hotel room contained something tragically familiar for the singer: signs of cocaine and its paraphernalia.

Complete Coverage: Death of pop diva
Pictures: Whitney Houston
Read more: Houston's autopsy: White powder, spoon, rolled paper found in room

The drug was found throughout Houston's body, according to an autopsy report released Wednesday that gave the most detailed account yet of how the Grammy-winning singer died just hours before she was to appear at a pre-Grammy Awards party.

By the time an assistant found her face down in a bathtub on the afternoon of Feb. 11, Houston had likely been dead for at least an hour. The water was so hot it scalded part of her body. The bathroom floor was flooded, and the bedroom carpet was soaked with water, according to the report.

Nearby, on the bathroom counter, investigators found a small spoon described by investigators as having a "crystal like substance" in it and in a drawer they discovered a white powdery substance. The dozen prescription drug bottles found in Houston's suite of the Beverly Hilton Hotel led investigators to initially suspect she died of an overdose, but after further examination and toxicology results, they concluded she drowned accidentally. Heart disease, which caused a 60 percent blockage in one of her arteries, and cocaine use were listed as contributing factors.

Investigators found an open bottle of champagne on the mini-bar and an open can of beer on a table, along with several loose tablets and a bottle of supplements. According to the report, officials found a "plethora of prescription medication bottles."

Houston was found wearing a brown wig at the time of her death. She also had dental implants. Her body was described as "well built, muscular and fairly well nourished."

Toxicology results also showed Houston had marijuana, Xanax, the muscle relaxant Flexeril, and the allergy medication Benadryl in her system, but none are considered factors in her death.

The grim accounting of the room where Houston died and what investigators found provide a sad footnote to the singer's life, showing the impact drugs took on her. An investigator noted a hole in the singer's nose, listed under "history of substance abuse."

Houston, 48, had a sore throat and her assistant suggested she take a bath to get ready for the Clive Davis' pre-Grammy bash. The assistant left to pick up some items at a department store and by the time she returned, Houston was submerged in the tub, which was overflowing and had soaked the carpet in another room.

Efforts were made to revive the Houston, including using a defibrillator, according to the report.

Coroner's officials declined to discuss details in the report, including whether toxicology results showing the level of cocaine in Houston's body could be used to determine how recently she took the drug. The office has said there were signs of recent and chronic use by the singer.

Beverly Hills police have been awaiting the report before closing the case, although the agency has said there are no signs of foul play in Houston's death.

The singer had battled addiction for years, but friends and family have said she appeared committed to making a comeback in the months before her death.

Houston will be seen in the new movie, "Sparkle," due out later this year.

A trailer released Monday featured Houston prominently in her role as the matriarch of a family of girls who form a singing group and struggle with fame and addiction.

Read the full coroner's report here.

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