Autopsy Inconclusive on Abbie Hoffman Death

From Associated Press

An autopsy on Abbie Hoffman was inconclusive, but officials hoped toxicology tests would determine how the 1960s radical died. Friends and family said he had been was depressed and may have committed suicide.

Hoffman, 52, was found dead in his bed by his landlord Wednesday night.

Kate Fluehr, a spokeswoman for Bucks County Dist. Atty. Alan Rubenstein, said Friday that the laboratory tests to find the cause of death had begun, and the results would be announced this week.

Hoffman’s mother said at first that the family assumed that Hoffman had taken his life. He sounded very depressed in recent telephone conversations with his brother, Jack, 83-year-old Florence Hoffman said Thursday night.

But Friday she said she was encouraged that the initial autopsy was inconclusive and added, “It’s very possible that he had a heart attack.”


Rubenstein said an autopsy performed Thursday night at Doylestown Hospital failed to uncover the cause of Hoffman’s death.

Hoffman rose to prominence with the Chicago Seven, a group of radicals who stood trial on charges of conspiring to disrupt the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago. He was acquitted of conspiracy, and a conviction of crossing state lines with intent to riot was overturned.

He also founded the loosely organized Yippie movement, or Youth International Party, in 1968 to bring together radicals to protest the government and the Vietnam War.

Formal arrangements were pending.