Bobbi Kristina Brown's Death From Pneumonia Caused by Drug Intoxication, Water Immersion

By McCarton Ackerman 03/07/16

A judge has allowed the release of Brown's toxicology report on what would have been her 23rd birthday. 

Drug Intoxication, Water Immersion Led To Bobbi Kristina Brown's Death From Pneumonia
Photo via Shutterstock

The official report from a Georgia medical examiner has confirmed that drug intoxication and water immersion led to Bobbi Kristina Brown's death from pneumonia and brain damage.

Brown was found unresponsive in her Atlanta home in January 2015, and after being placed on life support for several months, the 22-year-old died in hospice care on July 26. A report released on Friday by the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office noted that numerous drugs were found in Brown’s system, including marijuana, alcohol, morphine, anti-anxiety medications and a cocaine byproduct. The cause of her death was eerily similar to that of her mother, Whitney Houston, who passed away in 2012 from an accidental drowning partially fueled by cocaine use.

The medical examiner’s office was unable to determine if the morphine found in Brown’s system was indicative of heroin use. (Heroin metabolizes to morphine.) It was also unable to determine “whether her death was due to intentional or accidental causes.”

Of particular note in the report is that Brown’s body showed signs of injury during her autopsy. The report notes dozens of “well-healed scars on the head and neck, torso, and extremities,” bruises on her arms and thighs, and depressions in her skull. Brown was also consider “under-nourished” at the time of her death, having weighed just 95 pounds.

Her estate has filed a $10 million wrongful death lawsuit against her boyfriend, Nick Gordon, alleging that his physical abuse caused her death. The lawsuit claims Gordon went on an all-night “cocaine and drinking binge” that led to him beat her, then give her a “toxic cocktail” that rendered her unconscious. It’s unclear whether Brown’s injuries reported in the autopsy are the result of physical abuse or spending months in a vegetative state.

Gordon has denied all of the allegations against him, but has struggled ever since Brown was first found unconscious. During a March 2015 interview on Dr. Phil, he appeared mentally unstable and threatened to kill himself if her conditioned worsened. He checked himself into rehab shortly after the interview. The ongoing fighting with Brown’s family, which included them banning him from her funeral, has reportedly taken a toll on him.

Kristina’s father, Bobby Brown, reportedly checked into a California rehab clinic last month to address issues with alcohol and cocaine. His attorney denied the rehab rumors, but declined to comment when asked if the “My Prerogative” singer was receiving any form of treatment. Bobby’s last confirmed rehab stint took place in August 2012.

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McCarton Ackerman is a freelance writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. He has been a contributor for The Fix since October 2011, writing on a wide range of topics ranging from medical marijuana in Colorado to the world's sexiest drug smugglers. Follow him on Linkedin and Twitter.