Saturday, May 26, 2018

Whitney Houston was underwater in tub, authorities say

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Whitney Houston was underwater and apparently unconscious when she was pulled from a Beverly Hills hotel bathtub, and she had prescription drugs in her room, authorities said Monday.

Two days after her death, Houston's body was taken to a Los Angeles-area airport to be flown to New Jersey, where her family was making arrangements for a funeral at the end of the week.

An autopsy was done Sunday, and authorities said there were no indications of foul play and no obvious signs of trauma on Houston's body. It could be weeks, however, before the coroner's office completes toxicology tests to establish her cause of death.

The 48-year-old singer had struggled for years with cocaine, marijuana and pills, and her behavior had become erratic.

Houston was found Saturday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel by a member of her staff about 3:30 p.m., just hours before she was supposed to appear at a pre-Grammy Awards gala, police Lt. Mark Rosen said.

She was pulled from the tub by members of her staff, and hotel security was promptly notified, Rosen said. She was pronounced dead about a half-hour later.

"As of right now, it's not a criminal investigation," Rosen said, declining to release further details. "We have concluded our portion of the investigation at the hotel."

Los Angeles County coroner's assistant chief Ed Winter said there were bottles of prescription medicine in the room. He would not give details except to say: "There weren't a lot of prescription bottles. You probably have just as many prescription bottles in your medicine cabinet."

The coroner's office released the body to the family Monday morning. Later, a police convoy accompanied two vehicles into a Van Nuys Airport hangar, and a private, twin-engine jet rolled out of the hangar and took off shortly after 3 p.m.

Two people who spoke with Houston's family said the singer would be taken to New Jersey.

The two, who spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to speak for the family, said Houston's relatives raised the possibility of a wake Thursday and a funeral Friday at Newark's Prudential Center, an arena that can seat about 18,000 people.

Houston was born in Newark and raised in nearby East Orange. She began singing as a child at Newark's New Hope Baptist Church, where her mother, Grammy-winning gospel singer Cissy Houston, led the music program for many years.

Comments
Turks feel pinch from currency slide ahead of polls

Turks feel pinch from currency slide ahead of polls

Many in Turkey are feeling the pinch as the Turkish lira lost more than 20 percent of its value against the dollar since the start of the year.
Updated: 1 hour ago
Summit or not, giant gulf separates US-NKorea on nukes

Summit or not, giant gulf separates US-NKorea on nukes

Summit or not, giant gulf separates US and North Korea on nukes
Updated: 1 hour ago
Ireland: Exit polls predict win for repealing abortion ban

Ireland: Exit polls predict win for repealing abortion ban

Official counting is set to begin in Ireland's historic abortion rights referendum, with two exit polls predicting an overwhelming victory for those seeking to end the country's strict ban
Updated: 1 hour ago
Ireland: Exit polls predict win for repealing abortion ban

Ireland: Exit polls predict win for repealing abortion ban

Official counting is set to begin in Ireland's historic abortion rights referendum, with two exit polls predicting an overwhelming victory for those seeking to end the country's strict ban
Updated: 1 hour ago

AP Top News at 4:20 a.m. EDT

AP Top News at 4:20 a.m. EDT
Updated: 1 hour ago
The Latest: Death toll from cyclone in Oman climbs to 3

The Latest: Death toll from cyclone in Oman climbs to 3

Police in Oman say Cyclone Mekunu has killed at least three people in the Gulf sultanate
Updated: 2 hours ago
Family: Virginia police shooting video raises more questions

Family: Virginia police shooting video raises more questions

The family of a young, black Virginia man who was fatally shot by police while naked and unarmed says the release of body-camera footage has brought more questions than answers
Updated: 2 hours ago
Palin's son seeks to bar media in assault proceedings

Palin's son seeks to bar media in assault proceedings

The eldest son of former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is seeking to bar the media from covering court hearings after he was accused of assaulting his father last year
Updated: 2 hours ago
Father, son plead guilty to fraud involving secretive sect

Father, son plead guilty to fraud involving secretive sect

A father and son have pleaded guilty to wire fraud related to an unemployment benefits scheme that former congregants in a secretive sect say was part of a plan to keep money flowing into the church
Updated: 2 hours ago
Police: Suspected gunman spoke online about demon possession

Police: Suspected gunman spoke online about demon possession

Authorities say a Facebook page in which a man claims his television is possessed by the devil belongs to the man suspected of shooting three people at an Oklahoma City restaurant before being killed by two armed bystanders.
Updated: 2 hours ago