Coroner: Preliminary Investigation Finds Robin Williams Died From Asphyxia Due To Hanging
HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — The Marin County coroner Tuesday said a preliminary investigation indicated that comedian Robin Williams died as a result of asphyxia due to hanging.
The coroner provided new details into the his death during an 11 a.m. news conference.
KNX 1070’s Megan Goldsby resports the comedian and Oscar-winning actor was found unconscious and not breathing Monday afternoon at his home in Tiburon in the San Francisco Bay area.
The 63-year-old was last seen alive by his wife around 10:30 p.m. Monday. She left the family home about 12 hours later, believing her husband was still asleep.
Williams’ assistant, who became concerned for his well-being after he failed to answer phone calls and knocks on his bedroom door, found his body around 11:45 a.m. and called 911.
“She entered the bedroom to find Mr. Williams clothed in a seated position, unresponsive, with a belt secured around his neck with the other end of the belt wedged between the clothes closet door and the door frame,” Lt. Keith Boyd said. “His right shoulder area was touching the door with his body perpendicular to the door and slightly suspended. Mr. Williams, at that time, was cold to the touch and rigor mortis present in his body.”
Williams also had superficial cuts on his left wrist, and a pocket knife was located near his body.
“The pocket knife was examined and a dry, red material on the blade of the knife appeared consistent with dry blood, but it is unknown at this time if the dry red material is in fact blood or if it is Mr. Williams’ blood, but scientific testing will be conducted.”
He was pronounced dead by fire officials at 12:02 p.m.
There was no indication that Williams had been involved in a struggle or altercation before his death, Boyd said.
Toxicology results to determine if he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol will not be available for two to six weeks.
Mara Buxbaum, Williams’ publicist, issued a statement saying he had been suffering from “severe depression” lately and had been seeking treatment. It was unclear if this was his first suicide attempt.
Funeral plans have not been announced.
Williams is survived by his wife and three children.
Flowers were placed on Williams’ star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday and joined the growing memorial already in place.
KCAL9’s Kristine Lazar spoke with several fans and tourists who stopped by Williams’ star to take photographs and leave flowers.
“He was a genius; I mean, how many different roles did he play and different characters,” said Jonathan Shensa, a fan of Williams. “He had that down-to-earth feeling where you just felt like he was one of the people in your neighborhood.”
Throughout his career, Williams was nominated for three Academy Awards and won the best supporting actor Oscar for his role in “Good Will Hunting.” He also won four Golden Globes, for “Mork & Mindy,” “Good Morning, Vietnam,” “Mrs. Doubtfire” and “The Fisher King,” in addition to two Emmy Awards, two Screen Actors Guild awards and five Grammys.