Brown's ex responsible for her death

ATLANTA • A Georgia judge on Thursday entered a judgment of US$36.25 million (S$51.79 million) against Bobbi Kristina Brown's former boyfriend after he was held legally responsible for her death last year, attorneys for Brown's estate said.

Brown, 22, an aspiring singer and the only child of Grammy-winning singers Bobby Brown and the late Whitney Houston, was discovered face down in the bathtub of her north Atlanta home in January last year and died about six months later without coming out of a coma.

Her boyfriend Nick Gordon and a guest were at the home when she was found unconscious.

Although Gordon has not been criminally charged, Bobbi Brown's estate brought the lawsuit, accusing him of causing her death by giving her a "toxic mixture" and also stealing from her bank account while she was comatose.

He has denied the allegations and said he tried to save her life.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge T. Jackson Bedford ruled against Gordon by default in the lawsuit after neither Gordon nor his lawyer attended a hearing in the case in September, said attorney David Ware, who represented Brown's estate with attorney Glenda Hatchett.

"The defendant will not escape justice nor ever profit from his misdeeds. We hope that in some small way, this will allow Krissy's family to continue their quest for peace," Mr Ware said in an e-mailed statement.

Representatives for Gordon could not be reached for comment on Thursday.

An autopsy found that drug intoxication and the immersion of her face in the water contributed to her death.

Mr Ware said he doubted the estate would be able to collect the full judgment, but added: "Collection is not the issue; justice is."

He provided a breakdown of the award, saying that among other accounts, the judge assessed nearly US$14 million for pain and suffering and about US$1.575 million for money allegedly taken from her account and stolen jewellery.

Brown died three years after Houston drowned in a bathtub in a Beverly Hills hotel. The authorities said cocaine abuse and heart disease contributed to Houston's death on Feb 11, 2012.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 19, 2016, with the headline ''. Print Edition | Subscribe