Joni Mitchell, performing in 1983. By Capannelle (originally posted to Flickr as Joni Mitchell) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.
Joni Mitchell, performing in 1983. By Capannelle (originally posted to Flickr as Joni Mitchell) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.

A judge on Monday named a longtime friend of Joni Mitchell to be the temporary conservator of the singer-songwriter, who’s been hospitalized in Los Angeles since March 31.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David Cunningham’s order gives Leslie Morris of Sherman Oaks interim authority to oversee the entertainer’s care, but not her finances and business interests.

A July 8 hearing was scheduled on Morris’ bid to be named Mitchell’s permanent conservator.

Morris’ petition, filed last week, stated that Mitchell “remains unconscious and unable to make any responses and is therefore unable to provide for her personal needs.” But a statement was posted on Mitchell’s official Twitter page later the same day, saying the singer remained hospitalized at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center but was improving — and that Morris was with Mitchell at the hospital and approved the statement.

“Contrary to rumors circulating on the Internet today, Joni is not in a coma. Joni is still in the hospital — but she comprehends, she’s alert and she has her full senses. A full recovery is expected.”

The statement went on to say that the petition “simply give(s) her longtime friend Leslie Morris the authority — in the absence of 24-hour doctor care — to make decisions for Joni once she leaves the hospital. As we all know, Joni is a strong-willed woman and is nowhere near giving up the fight.”

On March 31, Mitchell was taken to the hospital to undergo tests after collapsing at her Bel Air home. Mitchell was found unconscious at home, but regained consciousness in an ambulance en route to a hospital, according to her website.

Several days later, a posting on the Twitter account said she was improving. No updates have been provided since last Tuesday’s post, which was the first to update her condition since early April.

City News Service

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