Heroin paraphernalia was found with the body of Layne Staley, the singer of the grunge rock group Alice In Chains, police said yesterday (April 21). Authorities said the 34-year-old Staley lay dead in
Heroin paraphernalia was found with the body of Layne Staley, the singer of the grunge rock group Alice In Chains, police said yesterday (April 21). Authorities said the 34-year-old Staley lay dead in his north Seattle apartment for two weeks, his body surrounded by heroin-injection paraphernalia, before a relative discovered him.
Foul play was not suspected, and there was to be no criminal investigation, Seattle Police spokesman Duane Fish said. "There was nothing suspicious about the death. It appears to be overdose or possibly a natural death," he said.
Staley's body was reported found Friday, but the presence of drug paraphernalia and estimated time of death were not initially released. An autopsy was conducted on Saturday, but the cause of death won't be confirmed for weeks because toxin tests were being conducted, the King County Medical Examiner's office said.
Some 200 friends and fans, including Staley's surviving bandmates, held a candlelight vigil Saturday night at the Seattle Center. "We are mourning his passing and request that you honor our privacy," Staley's family said in a statement. "We have no further comment at this time."
Alongside Pearl Jam, Nirvana, and Soundgarden, Alice In Chains rose to prominence in the early '90s Seattle heyday of grunge rock. The group's first album, "Facelift," was released by Columbia in 1990, and subsequent albums such as 1992's "Dirt" and 1994's "Jar of Flies" gained Alice In Chains an international following.
Staley frequently struggled with drug abuse, and his lyrics often reflected the battle: "What's my drug of choice? / Well, what you got? / I don't go broke and I do it a lot," he sang in "Junkhead," from "Dirt." His problems ultimately derailed the band following the release of a 1995 self-titled album, the final full-length the group would put to tape. In recent years, Columbia cleared through its archives to release the boxed set "Music Bank" as well as a greatest-hits and live album.
Copyright 2002 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.