New Culkin Tragedy: Macaulay's Sister Dies

Dakota Culkin, 29, dies after being hit by a car in Los Angeles.

ByABC News
December 11, 2008, 1:31 PM

Dec. 11, 2008 — -- Another tragedy has befallen one of Hollywood's most infamous families.

Dakota Culkin, the 29-year-old sister of actor Macaulay Culkin, died yesterday from injuries sustained after she was hit by a car in Los Angeles Tuesday.

"She was taken to UCLA hospital with massive head trauma and passed away on Dec. 10th at 12:45 PM," the LAPD said in a statement. "The driver stopped, rendered aid, and identified himself as required by law. Detectives have determined that the driver was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol, so no crime was committed."

In a statement to reporters, Macaulay Culkin's spokeswoman, Michelle Bega, called Dakota's death a "terrible tragic accident" and said the family had no further comment.

Macaulay Culkin, 28, is best known as the star of the 1990s "Home Alone" movies. He reigned as the decade's biggest child star, commanding $8 million a movie by 1994's "Richie Rich." But his career came to a screeching halt when his parents, Kit (who also served as his manager) and Patricia, began fighting over control of his personal fortune, which by the mid-'90s was estimated between $17 million and $50 million.

Almost all of that went down the drain. The family was reportedly close to homelessness because of lawyer fees resulting from the feud. Macaulay ceded control of his assets to his accountant, temporarily, and by 1997, Kit gave up the fight after Manhattan Supreme Court Justice David Saxe said the "Home Alone" star and his actor siblings insisted they would "not work with Mr. Culkin," whom the judge deemed a "demanding, difficult and pugnacious man."

Macaulay's legal troubles ended, and so did the spate of bad press surrounding his family. But it picked up again in 1998, when a fire in Patricia Culkin's New York apartment resulted in the deaths of four people in the building.