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Toxicology tests sought in death of porn actor Sledge Hammer

April 20, 2012 | 11:57 am

Sledge HammerLos Angeles County coroner's officials say they have deferred ruling on the cause of death of porn actor Sledge Hammer, who died in an altercation with police, until toxicology tests are done.

Officials said the test won't be completed for several weeks, said Chief Craig Harvey, and until then no cause of death will be listed on his death certificate.

The LAPD's Force Investigation Division is also investigating the death of Marland Anderson -- known professionally as Sledge Hammer -- after he became violent with paramedics and was restrained by Los Angeles police officers, who used a Taser to stun him.

The incident occurred April 8 in Reseda and he died April 13 at a hospital.

Authorities say they responded to a call of an attempted suicide at a home in Reseda. When paramedics and officers arrived, they found Anderson with his girlfriend. Anderson had suffered a knife injury, Lt. Andrew Neiman said.

The girlfriend told officers Anderson tried to hurt himself with the knife and she pried it away from him, Neiman said.

He was then handcuffed to a gurney by police for transportation in an ambulance. An officer was riding in the ambulance with paramedics when Anderson became extremely agitated, Neiman said.

Neiman said Anderson tried to stand up but moved with such force that he broke the gurney free from a floor lock and broke the handcuff.

"He was partially standing in the ambulance," Neiman said.

Paramedics had to stop the ambulance and a second officer following in a police car joined the brawl. Trying to subdue Anderson, the officer used a Taser, but it failed to stop him, Neiman said.

The Taser, used in a stun mode, may have actually made contact with the other officer's leg because that officer complained he was being stunned, Neiman said.

Eventually, the officers called for backup. With Anderson -- who stood 6-foot-1 and had a muscular  build -- then outside the ambulance, officers again used the Taser to try to restrain him and then used their body weight.

"Six to eight [officers] eventually managed to control him," Neiman said.

Neiman said a conscious and restrained Anderson was then put back into the ambulance and taken to a hospital.

ALSO:

Carlsbad school gunman gets 189 years in prison

Woman bites driver who stole parking spot, police say

Officials probe secret clique in L.A. County sheriff's gang unit

-- Richard Winton

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