Corey Haim Death Shocker: Bad Heart, Pneumonia Killed Him; Mom Flushed Meds

License to Drive star died of natural causes and drugs were not a factor in his death, according to the final coroner's report

By Josh Grossberg and Natalie Finn May 05, 2010 12:05 AMTags
Corey HaimRon Galella/Getty Images

As his mom maintained all along, Corey Haim died of natural causes.

So ruled the Los Angeles county coroner, which released its final report on the late teen idol's March 10 death.

While prescription medications were found at the scene—and toxicology results showed evidence of eight drugs, including marijuana and cold medicine, in his system—the drugs did not play a role in Haim's demise, according to coroner spokesman Craig Harvey.

Instead, the 38-year-old Lost Boy star succumbed to a combination of pneumonia and a bad heart. His mother told investigators that he had been in bed with a fever and a cough all day.

Investigators apparently could have found more meds at the scene, however, if not for Judy Haim's decision to flush some of her son's pills.

It's not what you're thinking, though.

According to the report, when Haim's mom returned from the hospital, she flushed the remainder of most of his prescriptions down the toilet, "because she didn't want anyone else to get a hold of the medication and she didn't know the police would be responding to her residence."

Alas, history of drug use plus sudden death at 38 equals a visit from the cops.

Sadly, per the detailed coroner's report, Haim's mother had to witness him "shake in all directions," eyes rolling back in his head, before he became unresponsive. She then performed CPR until paramedics arrived, Judy  told authorities.

Coroner's investigator Kimberley Arnold stated that she found mostly empty prescription bottles at the residence, as well as four tablets of olanzapine, which is used to treat depression and other mental disorders; Rx eye drops; and Bystolic, a Beta-blocker used to treat high blood pressure; as well as various cold medications.

The specific causes of death were listed as pneumonia, diffuse avleolar damage, or breathing difficulty, and cardiomypathy with coronary arteiosclerosisa, typically a genetic condition that results in thickening of the lower heart muscle.

His medical history included a heart murmur diagnosed many years ago and possible high blood pressure. Haim was also a smoker, the report stated.

See the complete coroner's report.

(Originally published May 4, 2010, at 1:37 p.m. PT)


Take a look back at the License To Drive star's life in our Remembering Corey Haim gallery.