Was Chris Cornell taking ‘the world’s deadliest’ prescription medication?

In speaking out against a medical examiner’s preliminary finding that Chris Cornell died of suicide by hanging, his family said he was not suicidal and suggest that side effects of prescription drugs could have led to his death.


Specifically, they point out that the Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman may have taken “an extra Ativan or two” before his death and wonder if this commonly prescribed anti-anxiety medication affected his actions, People reported. 

Cornell was found in his hotel room at the MGM Grand Detroit following Soundgarden’s performance at the Fox Theatre Wednesday night. According to his wife Vicky, Cornell was slurring his words when she spoke to him on the phone after his show. He admitted to her that he had taken more than his prescribed dose of Ativan. Vicky Cornell said that call prompted her to contact security to ask that they check on him.

Cornell family’s attorney Kirk Pasich said in a statement that the family is “disturbed” by inferences that Cornell knowingly and intentionally took his life. He said such statements shouldn’t be made before the results of toxicology tests come in.

“Without the results of toxicology tests, we do not know what was going on with Chris — or if any substances contributed to his demise,” Pasich said. “Chris, a recovering addict, had a prescription for Ativan and may have taken more Ativan than recommended dosages. The family believes that if Chris took his life, he did not know what he was doing, and that drugs or other substances…

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