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Drug Overdose

June 11, 2012 | By Jamie Wetherbe
Tony- and Oscar-winner Liza Minnelli offered a personal message Sunday about her mother, legendary performer Judy Garland , to mark what would have been her 90 th birthday. "Today is a day for celebration. We celebrate the privilege of having had Mama touch all of our lives. She left us with so many feelings we never would have discovered about ourselves until she exquisitely translated them to us with her voice. "She is to be missed deeply, yes… But, what if we never had her?
March 5, 2012 | By Amy Hubbard
John Belushi can be remembered in many ways, a number of them unflattering. It was 30 years ago Monday that the comedian was found dead in Bungalow No. 3 of the Chateau Marmont on Sunset Boulevard. He died of accidental drug overdose, the combined injection of cocaine and heroin called a speedball. Catherine Evelyn Smith, described variously as a groupie, backup singer and -- at the time -- drug dealer , was with him in his final hours and, later, in a National Enquirer story headlined “I Killed John Belushi,” she talked of injecting the comedian with drugs.
March 1, 2012 | By Lisa Girion, Scott Glover and Hailey Branson-Potts, Los Angeles Times
A Rowland Heights doctor accused of recklessly prescribing narcotic painkillers and other addictive drugs has been charged with murder in connection with three fatal overdoses, a rare attempt to hold a physician criminally liable for patients' deaths. Hsiu-Ying "Lisa" Tseng,  42, was arrested Thursday and led handcuffed from her office in a strip mall off the 60 Freeway where authorities say patients — many of them men in their 20s — once came to get prescriptions for drugs as potent as heroin.
February 14, 2012 | By Lisa Girion, Los Angeles Times
Hundreds of parents, teenagers and other concerned residents packed Simi Valley council chambers to demand city officials address a spate of drug overdose deaths. In the front row Monday night sat the parents of children who died of overdoses last month. Susan Klimusko and Melissa Siebers, whose son and daughter, respectively, were buried within a week of each other, wept as they listened and waited a turn at the microphone. A few rows behind, also waiting to speak, was the mother of an overdose victim buried a few plots from Austin Klimusko.
October 27, 2011 | By Hailey Branson-Potts, Los Angeles Times
An Orange County doctor who authorities said brazenly sold prescriptions for pills as potent as heroin out of Starbucks coffeehouses was arrested late Tuesday after being indicted on federal drug charges. Dr. Alvin Ming-Czech Yee, 43, of Mission Viejo routinely wrote prescriptions for oxycodone, sometimes referred to as synthetic heroin, to his patients, a third of whom were 25 or younger, authorities alleged in court papers. Yee sold the prescriptions for cash after cursory examinations that were often conducted in coffeehouses and other unusual locales, court documents state.
September 24, 2011
Vesta Williams Singer of R&B hits in 1980s Vesta Williams, 53, an R&B singer who had hits in the 1980s with "Once Bitten Twice Shy" and "Congratulations," was found dead Thursday evening of a possible drug overdose in an El Segundo hotel room. An autopsy will determine the cause of death, according to Los Angeles County coroner's officials, but they said a drug overdose is suspected. Born Mary Vesta Williams in Coshocton, Ohio, on Dec. 1, 1957, she had hits with "Don't Blow A Good Thing," "Sweet, Sweet Love" and the torch song "Congratulations," in which she emotionally bids goodbye to her ex, about to marry someone else, on his wedding day. Besides her solo work, she was a member of the singing group Wild Honey and was a backup singer for Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight, Anita Baker and others.
July 29, 2011
Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood has been hosting movie premieres for more than 80 years, and most of them have attracted more celebrities and photographers than riot police. Then came Wednesday, when an obscure documentary about an electronic music festival was slated to debut at the venue and a scene reminiscent of the Sunset Strip riots of 1966 broke out. Photos: Disturbance outside the Hollywood film premiere Two people were arrested for shattering a police car's windows during an hours-long confrontation between cops and a huge crowd gathered outside the theater on Hollywood Boulevard.
July 25, 2011 | By Amina Khan, Los Angeles Times / for the Booster Shots blog
Amy Winehouse's tragic death at her home this weekend has left her family as well as fans all over the world mourning the loss. The soulstress, known for such hits as "Rehab," was found dead at her London home Saturday. She joins Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain and others as singers who died at the age of 27. If autopsy results indicate that a drug overdose was involved, Winehouse would be far from the first star to fall because of substance abuse. Often, instead of succumbing to such high-profile killers as cocaine, these celebrities died from a combination of relatively common prescription medications, such as codeine or OxyContin.
July 11, 2011
Jeanne Eagels' performance on Broadway in the 1920s as prostitute Sadie Thompson in the Somerset Maugham melodrama "Rain" won her wide renown. She's just as famous for her diva behavior and her alcohol and drug abuse. Though known for her stage roles, Eagels also made a handful of films. She scored a huge hit with her first talkie, the 1929 Maugham drama "The Letter," which has just come out on DVD. Eagels plays Leslie Crosbie, a married woman on a rubber plantation who shoots her lover.
January 3, 2011 | By Rong-Gong Lin II, Los Angeles Times
The parents of 15-year-old Sasha Rodriguez, who died of an ecstasy overdose after attending a rave, have filed a claim against the management of the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. The parents are seeking $5 million in damages from the Coliseum Commission. The claim, filed Dec. 23 with both the city and county of Los Angeles, is a necessary step before suing in court. The claim says the commission, a joint state, city and county board, did not fulfill its "duties and was negligent in creating and/or allowing others to create a dangerous condition of public property" during the two-day Electric Daisy Carnival rave at the Coliseum in June.
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