'Drugstore cowboy' author dies in Wash. prison

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SEATTLE (AP) -- The man who wrote "Drugstore Cowboy," an autobiographical crime novel that led to an acclaimed 1989 film starring Matt Dillon, has died at age 75.

A state corrections spokeswoman says James Fogle died Thursday at a prison in Monroe, Wash., where he was serving time for holding up a pharmacy in a Seattle suburb in 2010.

The Snohomish County Medical Examiner's office on Friday says Fogle died of probable malignant mesothelioma (meh-soh-thee-lee-OH'-muh).

The Seattle Times reports that (http://is.gd/sCQoh9 ) Fogle had already spent half his life in prison when he wrote "Drugstore Cowboy," based on his experiences in a band of addicts who roamed the Pacific Northwest robbing pharmacies to feed their addictions. Filmmaker Gus Van Sant turned the novel into the acclaimed 1989 film.

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Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com