Coroner Finds Anne Heche Likely Died of Smoke Inhalation in Crash

“Hopefully my mom is free from pain and beginning to explore what I like to imagine as her eternal freedom,” Heche’s son, Homer Laffoon, said
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Anne Heche, who was taken off life support Monday more than a week after the car accident that left her badly burned and in a coma, likely died from smoke inhalation, the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office announced Wednesday.

The main cause of Heche’s death is listed as “inhalation and thermal injuries,” KTLA reports. Another contributing factor was a “sternal fracture due to blunt trauma,” the coroner’s office stated.

On August 11, Heche’s representatives released a statement saying the actress was “not expected to survive” the night due to a “severe anoxic brain injury,” meaning her brain was deprived of oxygen. She was taken off life support on Monday when an organ recipient was found. No further information has been released regarding Heche’s organ donations.

On Friday, the Los Angeles Police Department officially ended its investigation into the crash and the resulting fire that destroyed a two-story home in Mar Vista.

“As of today, there will be no further investigative efforts made in this case,” LAPD said at the time. “Any information or records that have been requested prior to this turn of events will still be collected as they arrive as a matter of formalities and included in the overall case. When a person suspected of a crime expires, we do not present for filing consideration.”

Heche’s son, Homer Laffoon, 20, wrote in a statement on Sunday, “My brother Atlas and I lost our Mom. After six days of almost unbelievable emotional swings, I am left with a deep, wordless sadness. Hopefully my mom is free from pain and beginning to explore what I like to imagine as her eternal freedom.”


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