The Case of David Carradine in the Eyes of Forensic Science
It was a death that created shock waves, more so because of the sexual
connotations associated to it than because it was that of a movie star. David
Carradine is not that big a star in Hollywood, but he is relatively well known
because of his recent work in hit movies like the Kill Bill volumes.
Those of you who follow the movie industry news will know that this
aging Kung Fu star was recently found dead, hanging inside a closet in his hotel
room in Bangkok where he was shooting for the movie Stretch. The death made the
headlines because of the many ropes tied around the body – one around the neck,
the other around his genitals, and the third around his hands.
who has a little knowledge of the strange and kinky sexual world would know that
this was a case of autoerotic asphyxia, where death is caused when the person
tries to simulate eroticism through near-strangulation. David Carradine was
known for his deviant and kinky sexual behavior, according to reports from his
ex-wives (he has been married and divorced five times).
forensic investigator examined the marks on the ropes and concluded that there
had been no struggle. Also, the records on the hotel’s closed circuit cameras
were checked and did not show any signs of an intruder or even a partner who
engaged in the sexual play.
There have been some public claims that it
was a case of murder by secret Chinese societies who feared he might expose them
and their activities to the world, when you look at the case through the
forensic angle, it would seem to be an impossible proposition. For one, there
was no sign of struggle, and for another, the actor’s hands were tied above his
head and not above his back as reported by most newspapers.
Carradine’s past behavior and knowing of his sexual tendencies, this does seem
like a case of attempted sexual pleasure through self bondage and autoerotic
asphyxia gone horribly wrong. It could neither be classified as a suicide
because there were ropes other than around the neck, nor could it be termed as
murder because the hotel’s CC cameras did not show signs of an intruder and also
because the ropes did not show signs of a struggle.
This article is written by Kat
Sanders, who regularly blogs on the topic of forensic science
technician at her blog Forensic Scientist Blog. She welcomes your comments
and questions at her email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.