The Cranberries lead singer Dolores O’Riordan drowned after drinking, inquest finds


Updated

September 06, 2018 21:43:00

The Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan died accidentally from drowning because of alcohol intoxication, a British coroner says.

Key points:

  • The coroner says O’Riordan’s death was a “tragic accident”
  • The singer did not leave a note and there was no evidence of self harm
  • O’Riordan had one of the most distinctive voices of the 90s

A police officer told the inquest at Westminster Coroner’s Court on Thursday that O’Riordan was found submerged in her bathtub at a London hotel on January 15.

The 46-year-old did not leave a note and there was no evidence of self-harm.

Five miniature alcohol bottles and a bottle of champagne were found in the room, and toxicology tests revealed a blood alcohol level four times the legal limit for driving.

Coroner Shirley Radcliffe said O’Riordan died from drowning due to alcohol intoxication.

“There’s no evidence that this was anything other than a tragic accident,” she said.

Inquests are held in Britain to determine the facts in sudden, violent or unexplained deaths. O’Riordan’s inquest was held on what would have been her 47th birthday.

The Cranberries formed in the Irish city of Limerick at the end of the 1980s and had international hits in the ’90s with songs including Dream, Linger and Zombie.

The Irish group, which combined indie guitar with O’Riordan’s distinctive Irish lilt, was one of the most successful bands of the 1990s, selling more than 40 million records.

O’Riordan, who had three children, had recently divorced from former Duran Duran tour manager Don Burton at the time of her death.

Her publicist Lindsey Holmes said O’Riordan died after travelling to London for a short recording session.

The singer struggled at times with fame after the spectacular success of The Cranberries’ 1993 debut album Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We?, cutting short a tour in 1996 citing exhaustion and disillusionment.

She left the Cranberries in 2003 and recorded two solo albums, before the band reformed in 2009.

In 2015 O’Riordan pleaded guilty to headbutting and spitting at an Irish police officer following an alleged incident on a plane.

Medical records given to the court indicated she was mentally ill at the time of the altercation.

After her court hearing, O’Riordan urged other people suffering mental illness to seek help.

The Cranberries, the second best selling Irish band after U2, released the acoustic album Something Else in 2017 before cancelling a number of concerts in North American and Europe, saying O’Riordan was suffering from back problems.

She had also spoken in interviews about being sexually abused as a child, her battles with depression and a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.

After her death, O’Riordan’s bandmates mourned her as “an extraordinary talent”.

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said that “for anyone who grew up in Ireland in the 1990s, Dolores O’Riordan was the voice of a generation”.

AP/ABC

Topics:

music,

arts-and-entertainment,

death,

england,

ireland

First posted

September 06, 2018 21:25:40



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