Rock star Tom Petty’s death has officially been confirmed by his longtime manager.
Petty was first believed to be dead when CBS News and other sources reported that the LAPD and law enforcement confirmed his death.
TMZ contradicted that information not long after and reported that Petty’s family said he was still clinging to life.
LAPD tweeted that they did not confirm the rock star’s death.
“The LAPD has no information about the passing of singer Tom Petty. Initial information was inadvertantly provided to some media sources,” tweeted the LAPD official account. “However, the LAPD has no investigative role in this matter. We apologize for any inconvenience in this reporting.”
Around midnight, Petty’s death was officially confirmed by his band manager, according to the Los Angeles Times and People.
The statement, sent by Tony Dimitriades, reads: “On behalf of the Tom Petty family we are devastated to announce the untimely death of of our father, husband, brother, leader and friend Tom Petty. He suffered cardiac arrest at his home in Malibu in the early hours of this morning and was taken tobut could not be revived. He died peacefully at 8:40 p.m. PT surrounded by family, his bandmates and friends.”
Spokeswoman Carla Sacks confirmed the information to the Associated Press.
Petty was born on October 20, 1950 in Gainesville, Florida. He dropped out of school at the age of 17 to start his music career. Petty, Mike Campbell and Benmont Tench first came together in the early seventies as “Mudcrutch” in their hometown of Gainesville, Florida. The group first signed onto the Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Shelter Records.
After recording a couple of singles as Mudcrutch, the group disbanded but later came together and renamed themselves as Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.
He was best known for songs such as “Free Fallin,’” “American Girl,” “Don’t do me like that” and “The Waiting” to name a few.
Petty once said, “I’d like to see us break some new ground and leave some sort of mark on the music. That would be the nicest thing—to give something back, as noble as it sounds. If you could make some little dent in rock, where that little area is yours—that’s what I’m striving for now.”
Overall, Petty has sold more than 80 million records worldwide. In 2002, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.