Heche, 53, has been hospitalized since shortly
after the compact car she was driving sped out of control in a
Westside neighborhood of Los Angeles late Friday morning, plowed
into a house and burst into flames, according to police.
No one inside the home was hurt, but the impact set the dwelling
ablaze, requiring a response by dozens of firefighters.
A Los Angeles Police Department spokesperson said on Monday the
cause and circumstances of the crash remain under investigation.
Heche is in a coma and has not regained consciousness since
shortly after the accident, said Michael McConnell, a member of
the Los Angeles talent management company representing her, Zero
"At this time, she is in extreme critical condition," he told
Reuters in a text message, adding that Heche "has significant
pulmonary injury requiring mechanical ventilation and burns that
require surgical intervention."
The Los Angeles Times quoted a Venice Beach salon owner, Richard
Glass, recounting a visit by Heche to his shop shortly before
the accident, describing her as "a sweet little girl" as she
purchased a red wig on Friday morning.
Heche came to prominence for her Emmy-winning work on the
daytime television drama "Another World" and went on to star in
other screen roles including the HBO series "Hung" and such
films as "Wag the Dog" and "Cedar Rapids."
She made tabloid headlines in the late 1990s for an affair with
comedian Ellen DeGeneres around the time that DeGeneres came out
publicly as a lesbian. Following their split, Heche wed
cameraman Coleman Laffoon, but they later divorced, and she
spent some years after that in a relationship with actor James
Tupper, her co-star in the short-lived TV show "Men in Trees."
(Reporting by Steve Gorman; Editing by Stephen Coates)
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