No signs of foul play in Scott Sterling death, authorities say

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There were no signs of foul play in the death of Scott Sterling, the son of Clippers owner Donald Sterling, who was found dead on the couch in his Malibu apartment, officials said Wednesday.

L.A. County sheriff’s detectives said evidence in the apartment seemed to suggest the 31-year-old died of a drug overdose, but they would not know for sure until toxicology tests conducted by the coroner were completed in several weeks.


Homicide detectives were called to the apartment complex in the 22600 block of Pacific Coast Highway about 11:30 p.m. Tuesday after the body was found. It was not immediately known who reported the death nor how long he had been dead.

Sheriff’s department spokesman Steve Whitmore confirmed it was the body of Scott Sterling, who was found alone. Friends and family had not seen him for a couple of days, Whitmore said.

The neighborhood was quiet outside the Malibu Beach Villas complex on Pacific Coast Highway on Wednesday.

One resident of the building, who declined to be identified, called Scott Sterling a ‘nice guy’ who would wave when she saw him walking his dog.

‘He said hello,’ the resident said. ‘It’s a sad day here.’

Cars whizzed by the complex Wednesday, passing a sheriff’s car, a police car and a slew of news vans. One woman who was visiting her daughter from out of town said she was staying nearby for New Year’s, but had not heard any commotion. Scott Sterling’s complex advertises its units as ‘ultra luxurious’ and has a black ‘now leasing’ sign affixed to a balcony.

The complex sits next to Nobu restaurant and a McDonalds. Sand and ocean lie on the other side of the complex, and a silver BMW could be seen from the underground parking garage.

A friend and a neighbor outside near the complex said a large, white hound dog with gray spots that they had on a leash belonged to Scott Sterling. They did not want to say anything until the Sterling family does, but they described Scott Sterling as ‘intelligent and kind.’

One man said Scott Sterling often spent time with his daughters. They declined to elaborate.

Scott Sterling had been arrested in the 1999 Beverly Hills shooting of childhood friend Philip Scheid, but he was never charged in the case.


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-- Matt Stevens in Malibu and Andrew Blankstein