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Second Amy Winehouse Death Investigation Confirms Results Of The First

January 8, 2013 | Posted by Joseph Lee

Billboard reports that a second investigation into the death of Amy Winehouse has confirmed the results of the first one: she died of accidental alcohol poisoning. This was due to drinking again after a time of not drinking at all.

Coroner Shirley Radcliffe said that she died “as a result of alcohol toxicity” and labeled it as death by misadventure. She said there were no suspicious circumstances. Radcliffe said that Winehouse “voluntarily consumed alcohol – a deliberate act that took an unexpected turn and led to her death.”

Winehouse had problems with drug and alcohol abuse for years. She was found dead on July 23, 2011 in her London home with bottles of vodka around her. Radcliffe says that Winehouse had a blood alcohol level that was five times the legal drinking limit, and over a level that is fatal. That much alcohol could affect the central nervous system to the point that someone could “fall asleep and not wake up.”

Pathologist Michael Sheaff added that Winehouse probably had a respiratory arrest after the alcohol. The level in her blood was 416 milligrams per 100 milliliters, a BAC of 0.4 percent. The UK legal driving limit is 0.08%.

Winehouse’s family were not present at the 45-minute inquest, which was held after the original coroner didn’t have the proper qualifications for the position. She later resigned, as did her husband the senior coroner for inner north London. She was not a registered lawyer in Britain for five years as required.

In the UK, inquests are held when someone dies suddenly, violently or in “disputed circumstances”. The first inquest in 2011 had the same result as this one. This inquest heard testimony from witnesses and experts. These included the bodyguard who found her dead, the police officer who investigated and the doctor who treated Winehouse as she tried to quit drugs and alcohol.

Dr. Christina Romete said Winehouse was “a highly intelligent individual, very determined and willful,” who didn’t follow orders and denied that she need psychological help. She said that Winehouse gave up drugs after a time of taking heroin, crack cocaine and marijuana, but was still having trouble with drinking. She would abstain for a time then drink heavily. She started drinking a few days before her death after not touching it for almost two weeks.

Romete, who saw her the day before she died, said: “She said she started drinking again because she felt bored. I asked Amy if she was going to stop drinking that evening, and she said she did not know.

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Joseph Lee

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