The family of Chris Cornell questions the Detroit coroner's conclusion that the late Soundgarden singer committed suicide in a hotel room on Thursday (May 18) following a concert by his group. In a letter from Cornell family attorney Kirk Pasich and Cornell's grieving wife, Vicky Cornell, they say that they are "disturbed at inferences that Chris knowingly and intentionally took his life," suggesting that the 52-year-old grunge icon may have taken an accidental overdose of anxiety medications, which in high doses can be lethal.
The statement from Pasich and Vicky Cornell explains that, "without the results of toxicology tests, we do not know what was going on with Chris — or if any substances contributed to his demise. 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 may have affected his actions. Pasich adds that some medical literature indicates that "Ativan can cause paranoid or suicidal thoughts, slurred speech and impaired judgment."