Forget that strange and dubious story that Amy Winehouse died due to alcohol withdrawal; A coroner has ruled that Amy Winehouse died as the result of drinking too much alcohol.
Winehouse, who was known just as much for her rampant alcoholism and drug abuse as for her singing, was found dead at her home in London on July 23rd. She was 27 years old. Shortly after she died, her father Mitch told everyone who would listen that, though he wasn’t certain about what killed her, she definitely didn’t overdose because she was clean and not drinking at all.
Nevertheless, the soul diva reportedly died with empty vodka bottles in her room and lethal amounts of alcohol in her blood – more than five times the British drunk driving limit and far beyond toxic levels – Coroner Suzanne Greenaway ruled on Wednesday. She gave a verdict of "death by misadventure," saying the singer died of accidental alcohol poisoning when she resumed drinking after weeks of abstinence, according to AP.
"The unintended consequence of such potentially fatal levels (of alcohol) was her sudden and unexpected death," Greenaway said.
Pathologist Suhail Baithun reported that blood and urine samples indicated that Winehouse had consumed a "very large quantity of alcohol" just prior to her death. The level of alcohol in her blood was 416 milligrams per 100 milliliters, he said – a toxic blood alcohol level of 0.4 percent. Elevated levels of alcohol intake as such could have stopped her breathing and sent her into a coma, according to Baithun.
Police Detective Inspector Les Newman, who was called after a security guard found Winehouse, said three empty vodka bottles were found in the bedroom she died in.
Winehouse first rose to prominence with the neo-soul breakthrough of 2006's Back to Black album, which earned five Grammy Awards and catapulted her into superstardom. Toxic relationships, erratic behavior and rampantly recurring tales – with photographic evidence – of drug abuse endlessly overshadowed the singer's talents, which suffered remarkably as a result of her indulgences.
In June, Winehouse cancelled her European comeback tour after she delivered a terribly slurred and insufficient performance in her first show in the Serbian capital, Belgrade. She was booed and jeered off stage, and rightfully so.
Amy's final public appearance came three days before her death, when she briefly joined her goddaughter, singer Dionne Bromfield, on stage at The Roundhouse in Camden, near her home. That performance was barely coherent as well.
Another closed chapter in the book of blinding talent squandered in the face of excess.