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Web posted on:
Friday, May 21, 1999 3:54:07 PM EST

Today's buzz stories:


Dana Plato's death ruled suicide

OKLAHOMA CITY (CNN) -- Actress Dana Plato's death has been ruled a suicide by the State Medical Examiners office.

Plato had "too high a level of drugs in her system and stomach for her death to be anything but a suicide," said Ray Blackeney, the office's director of operations.

Investigators say they originally suspected that the death of the former "Diff'rent Strokes" star was due to an accidental overdose.

The deputy medical examiner released a statement that indicated Plato's blood had fatal concentrations of the painkillers carisoprodol and hydrocodone/acetaminophen. It also stated there was the equivalent of seven tablets of carisoprodol still in her stomach.

Plato did not leave a suicide note, but medical examiners say they based their ruling on the drug concentrations, a past history of suicidal gestures and findings documented by the investigation.

The 34-year-old Plato was visiting her fiance's parents in Moore, Oklahoma, when she died on May 8.

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Sharon Stone gives up guns

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Actress Sharon Stone is urging Americans with guns to follow her lead, and give up their guns as she recently did. She says Los Angeles police officers removed a shotgun and three handguns from her home at her request last week.

Stone's spokeswoman says the actress had kept them for several years for her own protection. She says they'll be destroyed and hopes others will do the same.

Stone, who once played a gunslinger in "The Quick and the Dead," said through a statement that she was motivated to abandon her guns by her anguish over the Columbine High School shooting in Littleton, Colorado that left 15 people dead.

"Our world has changed and our children are in danger. I choose to surrender my right to bear arms in exchange for the peace of mind of doing the right thing," Stone wrote.

"We as a nation are in pain. And, as always, we have the opportunity to change our world into a safer, more loving, more thoughtful environment for our children."

Stone's announcement came a month after the Columbine attack and coincided with a shooting at a high school in Conyers, Georgia that injured six students.

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Ricky Martin, top of the pops

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- The first all-English album by Puerto Rican heartthrob Ricky Martin debuted in first place on the U.S. pop music charts.

The self-titled album released May 11. So far, it has sold 661,000 copies, making it the best-ever album debut by a Hispanic artist on the mainstream Billboard charts.

"Not for a very long time have we seen a new artist with the star power of Ricky Martin. We played his video, and the next day it was among the most requested," said MTV Programming Chief Tom Calderone.

The album's first single, "Livin' La Vida Loca," is the top pop and Latin music single as well.

Check the Billboard top 10 singles and the World Beat Top 30 album chart for more top releases.

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New Jagger baby?

NEW YORK (CNN) -- Mick Jagger's girlfriend gave birth on Monday in New York, a source told Reuters News service. But mouthpieces for the Rolling Stones singer and Brazilian model are keeping quiet.

A spokesman for St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital says 29-year-old Luciana Morad left the hospital with her baby boy Lucas. Neither Morad's spokesman nor Jagger's spokeswoman would comment on the birth.

Britain's Sun tabloid reported earlier this week that DNA tests would determine whether Jagger is the father. "Once he is totally satisfied the boy is his, he fully intends to be a good father," a source was quoted as telling the Sun.

Jagger, 55, already has six children from previous marriages. His second wife, Texan model Jerry Hall, filed for divorce after finding out about his affair with Morad.

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Hugh Grant says yes to kids, not yet to marriage

(CNN) -- British actor Hugh Grant used to swear that he wouldn't have kids. They're too "messy," he would say. But it appears he's turned the corner.

"I must get down to it," Grant told USA Weekend.

The reason for this change of heart?

"Age -- and Christmases. It's too humiliating to Christmas without children. All my friends and relations have them, and I'm this sad old spinster," the 38-year-old says.

Grant admitted the issue has come up with his girlfriend, actress-model Elizabeth Hurley. While he calls her "the only woman on the planet for me," Grant said marriage is "not on the horizon."

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Reuters contributed to this report.

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