Cranberries’ Dolores O’Riordan Died by Drowning, Coroner Reports
O’Riordan was found dead in a London hotel room on Jan. 15, and the Westminster Coroner's Court ordered an inquest into her death, a common practice when it is determined the deceased did not die of natural causes.
“On Jan. 15, 2018, we lost our dear friend and bandmate Dolores O’Riordan,” the surviving Cranberries said in a statement. “Today we continue to come to terms with what happened.”
A hotel maid found O’Riordan submerged, face-up in a bath. Police and paramedics were summoned to the scene, but the singer was declared dead at 9:16AM London time.
The coroner’s inquest made note of O’Riordan’s blood alcohol level, which was four times the legal limit to drive in England. Investigators at the scene found five empty miniature bottles from the room’s mini bar, as well as an 11-ounce bottle of champagne. O’Riordan had evidently also been taking prescription drugs, including the anti-anxiety medication lorazepam, and smoking heavily.
According to the Guardian, the coroner, Dr Shirley Radcliffe, noted, “There’s no evidence that this was anything other than an accident. There was no intention, this seems to be solely a tragic accident.”
O’Riordan had been dealing for some time with bipolar disorder and excessive use of alcohol. Last September, she wrote a suicide note while drinking and taking lorazepam.
The other members of the Cranberries are still processing O’Riordan’s death, but want her to be remembered fondly by her fans.
“Dolores will live on eternally in her music,” they said. “To see how much of a positive impact she had on people’s lives has been a source of great comfort to us. We’d like to say thank you to all of our fans for the outpouring of messages and their continued support during this difficult time.”
The band was working on a record prior to O’Riordan’s death and intend to release that material, as well as a 25th anniversary reissue of their debut album, Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?, within the next year.