Months after the death of Bobbi Kristina Brown, an Atlanta judge issued an order that the 22-year-old’s autopsy results be made public.
USA Today reports that District Attorney Paul Howard wanted the medical examiner’s findings sealed. He cited “public safety and investigative reasons,” as there is an ongoing investigation into Bobbi Kristina’s death. In a press release, the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office announced it received a “court order signed by Judge Newkirk” on March 3.
“[The court order] vacates the former court order to seal medical examiner records. We will comply with the order and release documents as required by the Georgia Open Records Act.”
On Friday, the details surrounding what brought Bobbi Kristina Brown’s life to an end were released by officials. And the findings are indeed tragic.
Emergency responders were summoned to Brown’s home in January 2015, where she was found unresponsive. Initially, it wasn’t clear exactly what had happened to the young woman. It was eventually learned that Bobbi Kristina had been submerged in a bathtub for an indeterminate amount of time. This caused her to slip into a coma from which she would never awaken.
CNN reports the autopsy determined Brown had several drugs in her system before submerging in the tub. The report found Bobbi Kristina’s body tested positive for marijuana, alcohol, morphine, and “a cocaine byproduct.” Bobbi Kristina had also ingested “medications that sedate people and treat anxiety.”
Brown ultimately died of lobar pneumonia, writes ABC News.
“The report…said that the lobar pneumonia was due to her face being immersed ‘in water complicating mixed drug intoxication,’ along with ‘Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy,’ which is brain damage caused by a lack of oxygen.”
The autopsy report concluded that the young woman’s demise was ultimately caused by “immersion associated with drug intoxication.”
ABC News notes that in a sad twist, this information was released on what would have been Bobbi Kristina Brown’s 23rd birthday.
Perhaps the most telling aspect of the official cause of death report is despite the shocking and sad revelation, the information fails to answer a very serious question: Was Bobbi Kristina’s death accidental or intended?
It turns out the medical examiner’s office was unable to determine the exact nature of Brown’s death; it could have been intentional or accidental.
With an ongoing investigation into Brown’s death, this type of information getting released just might hurt any case against an eventual suspect. That is very likely why Howard pushed so hard for the findings to be kept sealed. After all, the lack of conclusive evidence that her death was intentional or caused by a malicious second party could create enough reasonable doubt to result in an acquittal.
Potential criminal case aside, it’s hard to hear the manner in which Bobbi Kristina Brown died and not think of her late mother, iconic recording artist Whitney Houston. Bobbi Kristina’s death parallels that of her mother to an almost eerie degree.
Houston, who passed away at age 48, was found submerged in a hotel bathtub at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. She too had drugs and alcohol in her system, including substances used to treat anxiety. Ultimately, it was determined Whitney died from a combination of “drowning” and “effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use.”
Conspiracy theories by fans and finger pointing by warring family members has brought a lot of negative attention to the deaths of both Whitney Houston and Bobbi Kristina Brown. Mostly overlooked is that Bobbi Brown — who only outlived Whitney by a few short years — must have been suffering tremendous emotional pain after the loss of her mother.
The revelation of drug use might be a larger focus than this empathetic outlook in the coming days.
Today in 1993, Whitney Houston becomes a mother for the first + only time. Happy Birthday Bobbi Kristina Brown. RIP. pic.twitter.com/AYbXOoyCXc— throwback hits/facts (@goldenerahits) March 4, 2016
As of now, Bobbi Kristina’s death is officially classified as “undetermined.” There is simply not enough evidence at present to rule her passing as accidental or intentional.
[Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File]