Tags: US | Obit | Brittany | Murphy

Coroner Completes Brittany Murphy Autopsy

Monday, 21 Dec 2009 06:44 PM

The Los Angeles County coroner's office says it has completed an autopsy of Brittany Murphy but will defer releasing a cause of death until after toxicology tests are complete.

It says there was no evidence of trauma to Murphy's body.

Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter says the autopsy was completed Monday.

Murphy died Sunday after collapsing in the bathroom of her Hollywood Hills home. Winter says her family told coroner's investigators she had been suffering from flu-like symptoms in the days before her death.

The 32-year-old appeared in films such as "Clueless," "8 Mile" and "Girl, Interrupted."

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Brittany Murphy was ill with flulike symptoms in the days before she died, and prescription medications have been taken from her home, coroner's officials said Monday.

The details emerged as authorities tried to determine what killed the 32-year-old star of films such as "Clueless" and "8 Mile" who collapsed Sunday in the bathroom of her Hollywood Hills home.

Paramedics tried to revive her, but she was pronounced dead at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. The hospital said she died of cardiac arrest.

"We went to the scene to see if there was anything that suggests foul play, and there wasn't," Los Angeles police Detective Wendi Berndt said.

Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said an autopsy was under way to determine what her caused of death, but it appeared to be natural causes.

The illness, reported to officials by her family, could have contributed to her death, but it will be weeks before a final determination is made, he said.

Investigators were getting more information about the illness and Murphy's medical history from her doctor. Toxicology tests also will be performed, perhaps delaying the official determination of her cause of death by at least six weeks.

Funeral arrangements have not been announced.

"The sudden loss of our beloved Brittany is a terrible tragedy," Murphy's husband Simon Monjack, a screenwriter, and her family wrote in a statement. "She was our daughter, our wife, our love, and a shining star."

Murphy's death put "Saturday Night Live" in an awkward spot.

Two weeks ago, the NBC show aired a sketch during "Weekend Update" in which cast member Abby Elliott did an impression of Murphy, who had recently been fired from a film project. The impression portrayed Murphy as spacey and living in the past.

After Murphy's death, the sketch disappeared from Hulu.com, an online video repository co-owned by NBC Universal. A publicist for "Saturday Night Live" didn't respond to requests for comment.

Murphy moved to Los Angeles with her mother, Sharon, in the early 1990s. Her career started with small roles in television series, commercials and movies. Her part in "Clueless" led to larger projects.

She is also known for her role in "Girl, Interrupted" and voiced the character Luanne Platter for more than 200 episodes of Fox's animated series "King of the Hill."

Her role in "8 Mile" led to wide recognition.

"That was the difference between people knowing my first and last name as opposed to not," she told AP in 2003.


AP Writers Matt Sedensky in Miami and Thomas Watkins in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

© Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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