Coroner Found Coke, MDMA, and Heroin in Carrie Fisher's System

The LA County coroner said that sleep apnea and a "combination of other factors" contributed to the actress's death.

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Jun 19 2017, 5:24pm

Photo of Fisher in 2016 by Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images for Wizard World

Last December, Carrie Fisher went into cardiac arrest on a flight from London to LA and passed away shortly after. She was only 60 years old. Now, a newly released coroner's report shows that the Star Wars star had cocaine, heroin, and MDMA in her system at her time of death, according to the Associated Press.

The LA County coroner says that sleep apnea and a "combination of other factors"—including arterial buildup—contributed to her death, but no specific cause could be determined. It's unclear how much of a role the drugs played.

Fisher was very open and honest about her ongoing struggle with substance abuse and addiction. "I couldn't stop, or stay stopped," she wrote in her 1987 semi-autobiographical novel, Postcards from the Edge. "It was never my fantasy to have a drug problem. I'd say, 'Oh, fuck it, I haven't done anything for a couple of months, why not? Let's celebrate not doing them by doing them.' I got into trouble each time. I hated myself. I just beat myself up. It was very painful."

Fisher's daughter, Billie Lourd, released a statement to PEOPLE about the coroner's findings.

"My mom battled drug addiction and mental illness her entire life. She ultimately died of it. She was purposefully open in all of her work about the social stigmas surrounding these diseases," Lourd said. "She talked about the shame that torments people and their families confronted by these diseases. I know my mom, she'd want her death to encourage people to be open about their struggles."

Fisher is best known for her role in the Star Wars franchise, but between her stand-out supporting roles in films like When Harry Met Sally, acerbic writing chops, and lifelong commitment to mental health advocacy, she left behind a legacy far greater than Princess Leia.

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