The husband of Jim Carrey’s former girlfriend has filed a lawsuit against the actor for allegedly supplying prescription drugs that contributed to her fatal overdose.
In September 2015, Cathriona White, a 30-year-old hairstylist and beautician, was found dead in her home in Sherman Oaks, a neighborhood in north Los Angeles. At the time of her funeral, White was believed to have committed suicide.
In a lawsuit filed Monday, White’s widower Mark Burton alleged Carrey illegally obtained “highly addi[c]tive” drugs under the bogus name Arthur King. After obtaining the prescription drugs, Carrey gave them to White, which played a role in her death, the lawsuit claimed.
According to the lawsuit, the Los Angeles County Coroner eventually ruled that White died due to a lethal overdose of prescription drugs including Ambien, propranolol, and a “massive dose” of Percocet.
White did not have prescriptions for those drugs, Burton said. Upon visiting White’s residence, the coroner found drugs that came from pill bottles prescribed to King, Burton’s lawyers noted in the lawsuit.
Carrey, denying wrongdoing in White’s death, vowed in a statement to fight the allegations rather than settle the civil lawsuit out of court. After dating White on and off reportedly since 2012, he said he would not tolerate “this heartless attempt to exploit me or the woman I loved.”
“What a terrible shame,” the actor said in a statement. “It would be easy for me to get in a back room with this man’s lawyer and make this go away, but there are some moments in life when you have to stand up and defend your honor against the evil in this world.”
It’s unclear right now whether Burton, who lives in Portland, Oregon, and White were separated or in the process of a divorce at the time of her death.
According to Burton, White had a history of depression and had previously attempted suicide. Because of that, Burton claimed that Carrey acted with “reckless disregard of causing serious harm and injury” to White.
“Ms. White was ill-equipped to ingest and manage highly [addictive] prescription drugs outside the care of a licensed physician,” the lawsuit said.
In his statement, Carrey responded that White’s health issues “were born long before I met her,” adding that her death was tragic but ultimately “beyond anyone’s control.”
In addition to unspecified damages, Burton also asked a judge to award him attorney fees, as well as funeral and burial expenses.
Moving forward, Carrey said he awaits the day when “people will stop trying to profit” from White’s death. After serving as a pallbearer, carrying White’s coffin to her gravesite in Ireland, Carry now has a simple hope for his late partner.
“Let her rest in peace,” he said.