VAN NUYS : Death Cause Probed in Taser Gun Case

The Los Angeles County coroner's office Tuesday had not yet determined a cause of death for a 27-year-old Van Nuys man who had slashed himself with a piece of broken glass and was subdued by police with Taser darts and a baton blow to the chest.

A coroner's spokesman said a cause might be released this morning. But the determination might be delayed for two weeks if further tests are ordered to see whether drugs or alcohol were involved, the spokesman said.

David Martinez died early Monday morning in the emergency room of Valley Presbyterian Hospital in Van Nuys about 80 minutes after police first encountered him. When police arrived at Martinez's apartment in the 600 block of Sepulveda Boulevard, he was bleeding profusely and sawing at his throat with a piece of broken glass, apparently distraught over problems with his marriage.

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