The family of the late Chris Cornell sued a Beverly Hills doctor Thursday, accusing him of over-prescribing “mind-altering” drugs to the former Soundgarden frontman, leading to his suicide last year at age 52.
The Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit contends that Dr. Robert Koblin prescribed the drugs — most notably Lorazepam, or Ativan — to Cornell beginning in September 2015 and continued to do so without ever actually examining the singer.
Koblin could not be reached for comment.
Cornell died in Detroit on May 18, 2017. His death was ruled a suicide by hanging. Coroner’s officials found prescription drugs in his system but determined they did not cause his death.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Cornell’s widow, Vicky Cornell, and their children, Toni and Christopher.
The lawsuit faults Koblin for “negligently and repeatedly prescribing dangerous mind-altering controlled substances to Chris Cornell which impaired Mr. Cornell’s cognition, clouded his judgment and caused him to engage in dangerous and impulsive behaviors that he was unable to control, costing him his life.”
“At the time of his death, Mr. Cornell had everything to live for and was planning a future of recordings, performances and continued work as a charitable activist,” according to the lawsuit.”
The suit contends that Cornell had a “well-known history of past substance abuse and chemical dependency,” and yet Koblin prescribed him “more than 940 doses of Lorazepam” during the last 20 months of his life.
“Yet, at no time during this period did Dr. Koblin conduct a medical examination of Mr. Cornell, perform any laboratory studies, obtain an interim history or do any type of clinical assessment of Mr. Cornell,” according to the suit. “He did not even physically see or speak to Mr. Cornell during this period.”
The lawsuit contends that for people with a history of substance abuse or addictive disorders, Lorazepam “was known to increase the risk of suicide by severely impairing judgment and rational thinking and by lessening impulse control.”
The suit, which alleges negligence, willful misconduct and failure to obtain informed consent, seeks unspecified damages.
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