Report: Prince Died Amid Efforts to Break Addiction
Prince died a day before he had a scheduled meeting with a California doctor in an attempt to break an addiction to painkillers, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported Wednesday.
The music icon’s representatives contacted Dr. Howard Kornfeld, on April 20, the day before he died for emergency help, according to attorney William Mauzy, who represents Kornfeld’s family. Prince was “dealing with a grave medical emergency,” Mauzy told the Star Tribune.
The plan was to quickly evaluate his health and devise a treatment plan,” Mauzy said, speaking on behalf of the Kornfelds. “… The doctor was planning on a lifesaving mission.”
Mauzy said Kornfeld, who runs Recovery Without Walls, an addiction treatment center in Mill Valley, Calif., couldn’t immediately meet Prince, so he sent his son Andrew on a flight from San Francisco that night to discuss treatment in a meeting planned for the next day. He arrived at Paisley Park, Prince’s home and studio compound in suburban Minneapolis at 9:30 a.m., and was one of three people who found his unresponsive body in an elevator. Mauzy said it was Andrew Kornfeld who called 911, but was unfamiliar with Paisley Park and told the dispatcher “we’re at Prince’s house.”
A record of the 911 call shows the caller didn’t know the address of the compound and mistakenly said it was in Minneapolis, rather than in the suburb of Chanhassen.
A law enforcement official briefed on the investigation has told the Associated Press that investigators are looking into whether Prince died from an overdose. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to talk about the investigation. The same official also said investigators are looking at whether Prince had suffered an overdose when his plane made an emergency landing in Moline, Illinois, less than a week before he died.
Other sources with direct knowledge of the investigation confirmed Mauzy’s account to the Star Tribune. Calls and e-mails to the Kornfelds were not returned Tuesday evening.
Authorities haven’t released a cause of death. An autopsy was done the day after Prince’s death but results, including toxicology results, weren’t expected for as many as four weeks.
Mauzy said Andrew Kornfeld had been interviewed by Carver County investigators. Deputy Sheriff Jason Kamerud didn’t immediately respond to an email message before business hours Wednesday.