Whitney Enters Drugs Rehab...


[From USA Today]

Whitney Houston enters drug rehabilitation center

Wed Mar 17, 6:20 AM ET
By C├ęsar G. Soriano, USA TODAY

Pop diva Whitney Houston has checked into rehab after years of rumored drug abuse.

"Whitney Houston has chosen to enter a facility for rehabilitation. She thanks everyone for their support and prayers," her publicist, Nancy Seltzer, said in a statement.


Seltzer told USA TODAY on Tuesday that Houston, 40, checked herself into drug rehab Monday night and that this is the first time the star has sought treatment. (Related story: Stars who have faced their demons)


Seltzer declined to say what led Houston to seek help or where she is being treated other than to confirm that the facility is in the USA.


Music legend Dick Clark told Access Hollywood on Tuesday that he once tried to help Houston with her drug problem, but nobody knew what to do. "Finally, she's addressed it; she's taking care of it and thank God," Clark told Access.


In an interview in December 2002 with ABC's Diane Sawyer, Houston admitted she had used alcohol, marijuana, cocaine and prescription pills during her career, but she denied using crack cocaine. "I make too much (money) for me to ever smoke crack. ... Crack is whack," she infamously said.


"I partied a lot. Trust me: I partied my tail off," she told Sawyer. Houston said she overcame her demons through prayer. "You get to a point where you know the party's over."


In January 2000, Houston was charged with drug possession after marijuana was found in her handbag at a Hawaii airport. The charge was later dismissed. She missed several major performances that year and was removed from the Academy Awards (news - web sites) lineup after flubbing rehearsals.


Her emaciated appearance at a Michael Jackson (news) tribute concert in September 2001 shocked many. Days later, radio stations reported that she had died of a drug overdose, which forced her record label into damage-control overdrive.


Houston was among the most successful entertainers of the 1980s and '90s, with six Grammy wins, five No. 1 hit songs and blockbuster films such as The Bodyguard and Waiting to Exhale.


But her career has faltered in recent years as she and her husband, singer Bobby Brown (news), 35, have dodged drug abuse rumors and legal problems.


Her last album of new songs, 2002's Just Whitney, sold a lackluster 717,000 copies. Houston's most recent performance was Feb. 14 in Dubai.


In December, police responded to a domestic dispute call to the couple's home in Atlanta. Brown was charged with misdemeanor battery for allegedly hitting Houston, leaving her with a bruised cheek and a cut inside her lip. He has a May 5 court date on that charge. Brown is now serving a 60-day jail sentence for repeated parole violations.


Houston and Brown have been married since 1992. Their daughter, Bobbi Kristina, 10, is being cared for by family members, Seltzer said

NEWSFILE: 17 MARCH 2004

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