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NYC official: Hoffman died of toxic mix of drugs



NEW YORK (AP) -- A toxic mix of heroin and other drugs killed Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, New York City officials said Friday.

Hoffman died from a mix of heroin, cocaine, amphetamines and benzodiazepines, which are psychoactive drugs, said a spokeswoman for the New York City medical examiner. The death was ruled an accident.

Law enforcement officials have said Hoffman was found Feb. 2 with a needle in his arm, and tests found heroin in samples from at least 50 packets in his Manhattan apartment.

Police had been investigating his death as a suspected drug overdose. An autopsy in February was inconclusive and medical examiners said more tests were needed.

Authorities also found unused syringes, a charred spoon and various prescription medications, including a drug used to treat heroin addiction, a blood-pressure medication and a muscle relaxant.

Hoffman, 46, who won an Oscar for "Capote" and starred in numerous other movies as well as New York stage productions, had been frank about struggling with substance abuse. He told CBS' "60 Minutes" in 2006 that had he used "anything I could get my hands on" before getting clean at age 22. But in interviews last year, he said he'd relapsed, had developed a heroin problem and had gone to rehab for a time.

Investigators have been probing how Hoffman may have obtained the heroin. Tests of the heroin in his apartment have found that it was not cut with a dangerous additive such as fentanyl, a synthetic form of morphine used to intensify the high that has been linked to deaths in other states.

A musician, veteran jazz player Robert Vineberg, has been charged with keeping a heroin stash in a lower Manhattan apartment amid the investigation into Hoffman's death. Vineberg, who has said he was a friend of the Tony Award-nominated Hoffman, hasn't been charged in Hoffman's death and has said he didn't sell him the heroin found in his apartment.

As police followed a tip after Hoffman's death, they said they found about 300 small bags of heroin, worth about $10 apiece on the street, and $1,300 in cash in Vineberg's apartment and music studio.

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HarrisonRW March 01 2014 at 8:21 AM

Just another hollywood idiot. Didn't loose any sleep over his death ! F him !

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Becky February 28 2014 at 4:59 PM

They ruled it as an accident? How the hell do you rule it an accident when that concoction was in his blood - he had to have mixed that all himself - injected it himself and still had bags upon bags of the drugs in his appartment! That was no "Accident" - that was a suiside. They just say that so his kid or whoever could get his insurance money.

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3 replies
larry February 28 2014 at 5:56 PM

You play with fire you may get burned. You do drugs, you may die from overdose. Nuf said.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
jillrev February 28 2014 at 5:56 PM

Drung addiction is a tricky business. Anyone really close to him will have feelings of regret that they didn't confront him harder. Maybe it was too late. The dopamine release in his system became more desireable than the love of a partner and children. Sad. I drag on a bit about him because I think he was a damn great actor. The twit in The Big Lebowski,a great portayal of Capote. On and on in movies whose names escape me at the moment. He wasn't an ******* . He cared about his work,but drugs filled an emotional hole,until the physical addiction killed him. Rest in Peace,PSH.

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INFRWKSNJ February 28 2014 at 5:56 PM

Another good actor and person lost to drugs, what a crime.

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Candy and Bill February 28 2014 at 10:09 PM

a loss and a waste of a preious talented human being. i give my heart to the children and the mother of his children. been on this earth a long time. such suffering and pain from people who have found success and money...but do not have the capability to handle the responsibilty to handle they have attained. God bless you dear one...get ready to repeat a life.

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2 replies
kizziemodo Candy and Bill February 28 2014 at 10:29 PM

Really? you were there - on the couch and discussed what? with who - freakzoid

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SAM Candy and Bill February 28 2014 at 10:38 PM

he was old enough to no better.

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Gloria's Toy February 28 2014 at 5:54 PM

R THEY BLAMING ROBERT VINEBERG FOR HOFFMANS DEATH. WOW DID HE PUT THE NEEDLE IN HIS ARM TOO. SO, BECAUSE ROBERT HAD A HEROIN STASH IN HIM APARTMENT, HE'S GUILTY. LOOK AT ALL THE PEOPLE IN THAT HOUSING APARTMENTS AND YOU'LL FIND THE SAME THING OR MORE..

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1 reply
Terrena Gloria's Toy February 28 2014 at 6:30 PM

I agree he is guilty but at the same time people who facilitate in illegal things are considered guilty under the law the way it is written.

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rforeverfree March 01 2014 at 7:24 AM

and another celebrity junky meets his fate. News?

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tttttttt March 01 2014 at 7:24 AM

This country plays to 'addiction', profits from 'addiction' and supports 'addiction'. What bullshit!

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chrimini3 March 01 2014 at 7:22 AM

He was a junkie. Plain and simple. What about all the other junkies that die everyday? No news there, Oh yeah, they're not famous. This guy had it all and chose to do the drug that ultimately ended his life, sad? Yes. Repeatedly newsworthy? No

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