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Coroner: No indication mold killed Brittany Murphy or Simon Monjack

By Alan Duke, CNN
There has been online speculation that mold contributed to the deaths of actress Brittany Murphy and her husband.
There has been online speculation that mold contributed to the deaths of actress Brittany Murphy and her husband.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Inspection found no mold in home before Murphy's death
  • Coroner's office found "no indicators" of mold having a role in the two deaths
  • Murphy and Monjack died in the same room, five months apart
  • Autopsies found that pneumonia was the main factor in each death
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Los Angeles, California (CNN) -- A coroner's investigator dismissed online speculation that the pneumonia deaths of actress Brittany Murphy and her husband, Simon Monjack, may both have been related to viral mold inside their Los Angeles home.

"There were no indicators that it was from mold," Los Angeles County Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said Monday.

Murphy, 32, and Monjack, 39, died five months apart in the same bedroom of the home they shared with the actress' mother, Sharon Murphy, in Hollywood Hills.

The preliminary autopsy concluded that Monjack's death May 23 was caused by acute pneumonia and severe anemia, "just like Brittany," Winter said last week.

Murphy died December 20 from a combination of pneumonia, an iron deficiency and multiple drug intoxication, a coroner said. The drugs involved were legal and are used to treat respiratory infections, according to an autopsy.

Winter said Monjack, his mother-in-law and their lawyer all talked to him about a possible mold problem in the home during the investigation into Brittany's death.

Murphy, however, issued a statement Monday saying that she has "never been personally asked by the Coroner or anyone from the Health Department to come and inspect my home for mold."

Winter called that "an absolute lie," but Murphy's publicist, Roger Neal, stood by the statement, calling it "100 percent factual."

The home apparently was tested by "a well-respected company" for dangerous mold just two months before Murphy's death, according to Neal.

"Simon Monjack received the report and assured Brittany and Sharon Murphy that there was no mold danger and it was safe to stay in the house," Neal said.

Monjack, a British screenwriter, married Murphy in 2007.

She was an often bubbly, free-spirited actress who appeared in films such as "Clueless," "8 Mile," "Don't Say a Word" and "Girl, Interrupted."

She also lent her voice to animated works, including the movie "Happy Feet" -- in which she also sang -- and a regular role on the animated TV series "King of the Hill."

 
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