Authorities Thursday said blood tests on Anne Heche showed the presence of “narcotics,” but more tests would be needed to rule out substances that may have been administered at a hospital following the fiery crash in Mar Vista that left the actress in a coma.
The blood tests showed that Heche was not under the influence of alcohol at the time of the crash, but did show the presence of unspecified “narcotics,” Officer Annie Hernandez of the Los Angeles Police Department’s media relations office told City News Service.
Additional testing will be required to rule out any substance that may have been administered to the actress at the hospital, Hernandez said. A “felony DUI investigation” is being conducted, Hernandez said.
Hernandez earlier said investigators obtained a warrant for a blood draw from the actress following the Friday crash that left her car fully inside a Mar Vista home, which caught fire and was largely destroyed.
The crash was reported shortly before 11 a.m. Friday at a two-story house in the 1700 block of South Walgrove Avenue, said Brian Humphrey of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
On Thursday, TMZ reported that the tests showed Heche “was under the influence of cocaine … this according to law enforcement sources, and possibly fentanyl as well.”
“LAPD sources tell TMZ … the department has tested the blood they drew after Anne was admitted to the hospital, and in addition to cocaine, they also found fentanyl. However, our sources say fentanyl is sometimes used as a pain med in hospitals, so they need to do more testing and investigation to determine if the fentanyl was in her system at the time of the crash,” TMZ said.
“We are also told Anne’s condition is dire … it has not improved since she was admitted to the hospital. As we reported, Anne has been fighting for her life and is in critical condition,” TMZ said.
TMZ obtained video showing Heche involved in a minor collision at a Mar Vista-area apartment complex earlier Friday, crashing into a wall in a parking area, then driving away as people nearby tried to help. The crash into the home occurred a short time later.
Surveillance video posted on social media shows the car speeding down the residential street just prior to the crash, which sent Heche’s blue mini Cooper completely into the home.
Humphrey said the vehicle “struck and came to rest well within a 738-square-foot two-story home, built in 1952, causing structural compromise and erupting in heavy fire prior to LAFD arrival.
“Fifty-nine firefighters took 65 minutes to access, confine and fully extinguish the stubborn flames within the heavily damaged structure, and rescue one female adult found within the vehicle, who has been taken to an area hospital by LAFD paramedics in critical condition,” Humphrey’s statement continued.
No other injuries were reported.
A source close to Heche told CNN Saturday that Heche was “lucky to be alive. She has severe burns and has a long recovery ahead. Her team and her family are still trying to process what led up to the crash.”
Her representatives said the actress is intubated but expected to survive.
“Her family and friends ask for your thoughts and prayers and to respect her privacy during this difficult time,” the statement said.
Neighbors of the woman whose home was destroyed in the crash, Lynne Mishele, have started a GoFundMe page to assist her, raising more than $75,000 as of Monday afternoon. According to the page, Mishele “very narrowly escaped physical harm” in the crash, but the home was destroyed and she lost “her entire lifetime of possessions.”
Neighbor Lynne Bernstein, who has lived in the neighborhood since 1976, told People magazine that he and his fellow neighbors, Dave and Gabriel, were able to talk to Heche moments after her blue Mini Cooper drove “almost all the way through” the house and “almost immediately” caught fire. Dave was able to get into the back of the car and speak to Heche.
“She responded that she wasn’t doing real well,” Bernstein told the magazine.
Heavy smoke and flames prevented the men from getting Heche out of the car. But they were able to help the home’s resident, who was in the backyard, to safety.
Heche, 53, rose to fame on the soap opera “Another World,” where she played the dual role of twins Vicky Hudson and Marley Love from 1987 to 1991 and won a Daytime Emmy Award for her performance.
She also had roles in several films including “Donnie Brasco,” “Six Days, Seven Nights,” “Wag the Dog,” “I Know What You Did Last Summer” and director Gus Van Sant’s remake of “Psycho.”
Heche has also appeared on several television shows including “Ally McBeal,” “Chicago P.D.” and a recurring role on the series “All Rise.” In June, she signed on to star in Lifetime’s “Girl in Room 13,” which is set to premiere this fall.
The Ohio native had a high-profile romance with comedian-actress and former talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres from March 1997 until they broke up in August 2000 and has a 20-year-old son, Homer Heche Laffoon, with ex-husband Coleman `Coley’ Laffoon.
Heche also has a second son from a relationship with actor James Tupper, her co-star on the TV series “Men in Trees,” which aired on ABC for two seasons from 2006 to 2008, according to the Hollywood Reporter.