Civil Liberties

Autopsy Results Revealed in Mountain Police-Related Death


After a fatal encounter with Twin Peaks deputies at a Valero gas station in Lake Arrowhead, Calif., Allen Kephart's autopsy says he died of "Hypertensive Cardiovascular Disease," and his manner of death was a "homicide." The results of the autopsy were revealed in a press release from the Twin Peaks police station, although the full autopsy has not been released.

The two page press release also contained an account of what happened to Kephart that differed greatly from a wrongful death lawsuit filed in San Bernardino Superior Court, August 30, by Alfred and Carol Kephart in the death of their son.

The release says that Kephart failed to stop at a stop sign and did not pull to the side of the road as directed by Deputy Ismael Diaz. Once at the gas station, alleges the release, Diaz was not able to handcuff Kephart because of his 392lbs size and a struggled occurred where both ended up on the ground, after which a Taser was deployed several times.

The lawsuit says the encounter began when Kephart honked at Deputy Diaz after Diaz pulled in front of Kephart at an intersection. It went on to say, Diaz was angered and turned on his police vehicle lights attempting to pull Kephart over.

Once at the gas station, the suit says, Deputy Diaz ordered Kephart out of his car at gunpoint, threw him face first to the ground where he was eventually Tasered repeatedly in the upper back, neck and head.

The press release also states that, "At no time during the investigation was anyone's cellular telephone confiscated." A witness told in The Killing of Allen Kephart: How the Police Lost the Trust of a Law-and-Order Town, that he saw law enforcement taking cameras at the scene.