February 20, 2013 8:48 AM
(CBS/AP) LOS ANGELES - A woman's body found wedged in a water tank on the roof of a downtown Los Angeles hotel was identified as that of a missing Canadian tourist, police said Tuesday.
Lam traveled to California alone on Jan. 27 from Vancouver, British Columbia. She was last seen by hotel employees on Jan. 31.
Friday, February 22, 2013
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- It could take several more weeks before we learn how a Canadian tourist, found dead in a hotel water tank, died.
A toxicology report and other tests on Elisa Lam's brain and other organs have been ordered.
By Alan Duke, CNN
updated 7:07 AM EST, Fri February 22, 2013
The decomposing body of Elisa Lam floated inside a water tank on the roof of the Cecil Hotel while guests brushed their teeth, bathed and drank with water from it for as long as 19 days.
A maintenance worker, checking on complaints about the hotel's water, found the 21-year-old Canadian tourist inside one of four water cisterns Tuesday morning, Los Angeles Police Sgt. Rudy Lopez said.
An autopsy was completed, but the cause of death is deferred pending further examination, assistant chief coroner Ed Winter said Thursday. That may take six to eight weeks.
Last edited by summer_breeze; 02-25-2013 at 10:45 AM.
Muddy water in the street; Muddy water 'round my feet... as sung by the inimitable Bessie Smith, "Muddy Water (A Mississippi Moan)"
A few observations from a local:
I have spoken to someone who saw and spoke with Elisa in the Last Bookstore on January 31. (Yes, they have contacted police.) She was being inappropriately talkative and pesky with other customers, which combined with the purchasing heavy items (books and records) while mid-way through a trip and on a budget, supports the suggestion of mania.
I'm inclining towards the theory that the odd behavior in the elevator video shows sleepwalking, possibly drug-induced. If Elisa walked west on Fifth Street out of the doors of the Last Bookstore, one very short block would bring her to Broadway. Drug dealers blatantly sell all kinds of pills along this street and in front of the Rite-Aid drugstore at all hours of the day and night. It's not inconceivable that an occasionally insomniac and possibly manic individual might have purchased a sleeping pill on the street, and later suffered a bad reaction. (Sources: personal observation, Downtown News, Yelp)
Some people have suggested that the supposedly dark reputation of the Cecil Hotel might have drawn Elisa to stay there. The Cecil's reputation has been much enhanced by recent news coverage, which has included false claims ("The Black Dahlia stayed there" - CNN) that make it seem ever spookier.
Jeffrey David Kelly, producer of the YouTube on-the-scene videos (universalnetworknews) linked above, is a neighborhood fixture. He's kind of intense, but has never struck me as a source of concern. He has another YouTube channel dedicated to his alternative Catholic theological pursuits.
Also on his universalnetworknews YouTube channel are two clips (1, 2) related to the massive Christopher Dorner manhunt that LAPD and other Southern California police agencies were engaged in in early February. The impact on the Dorner search on all other police investigations in Los Angeles cannot be overstated. Between February 6, when Dorner was named as the suspect in the February 3 Irvine murders, until February 13, when the suspect's body was found in the burned out cabin in Big Bear, this case absorbed massive police manpower. Chief Beck admitted to journalists that less important police work was being neglected while his officers focused on the manhunt. On February 14, the first "normal" day after the Dorner manhunt ends, the elevator video is released, two full weeks after Elisa disappeared.
One has to ask: Would this video have been released earlier under different circumstances? And how much time and attention was dedicated to the police search for Elisa between February 6-13? The answer may prove embarrassing to LAPD. It may also explain why so little information is being given out about the case.
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Ok found the video where the reporter mentions at 1:45 in about how a scheduled interview with police was cancelled due to higher ups not wanting the case to be discussed.
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"I prefer peace. But if trouble must come, let it come in my time, so that my children can live in peace." - Thomas Paine
I was looking for other cases of people found dead in watertanks and I, so far, found two.
One murder case in Singapore 2012, female victim.
One apparent suicide in New Jersey 2010, male victim
Singapore 2012 case:
Body in water tank case: Cleaner discharged for murdering maid
Tuesday, Jul 10, 2012
A cleaner was given a discharge not amounting to an acquittal for murdering a maid whose body was found in a water tank last year.
The Straits Times reported that Bangladeshi Md Repon Mostafa, 29, was originally accused of causing the death of Indonesian maid Ms Ruliyawati, 30 at the rooftop of Block 686B Woodlands Drive 73 on May 16.
The story made headlines last year after the dead body of an Indonesian maid was discovered on May 16 inside the rooftop water tank of Block 686B, Woodlands Street 73.
The water tank in the affected block was replaced by a $40,000 tank about a month later by the Sembawang Town Council after residents petitioned.
The prosecution has tendered five new charges against him.
Mostafa allegedly willfully trespassed into the area three times on April 10 and 12, and May 16, 2011 without a valid reason.
In addition, he faces two charges under the Films Act of having eight films without a certificate and an obscene film on his mobile phone.
The case was adjourned to July 24 for the lawyer to take instructions from his client on the five new charges.
Bail of $5,000 was allowed, and Mostafa's passport has been impounded.
New Jersey 2010 case:
Officials identify body found in Spotswood water tank as Helmetta man
Published: Monday, September 06, 2010, 10:06
Wife of Helmetta man found in Spotswood water tank believes death related to unemployment
Published: Monday, September 06, 2010,
Hi, english is not my first language so please bear over with me
Short article at link
VANCOUVER SUN FEBRUARY 25, 2013 8:04 AM
But LAPD public information officer Alex Martinez denied those reports, saying "there's been no update," from investigators and no cause of death yet determined.
Does anyone know if the water tank lid was open or closed when police searched the watertank and then found Elisa Lam's body?
I mean if it was open then I think it's possible that it might be a suicide , but if it was cloed I really doubt that EL entered that watertank on her own will, I mean would a person really be able to jump down in that tank and at the same time close the lid?
And as I understand it the opening/lid was pretty narrow, as I read that the rescue team, with their diving equipment on, could not get down through the opening but had to make a hole to enter.
This sure is a very odd and eerie case!
Hi, english is not my first language so please bear over with me
I do not understand why people keep thinking there is any possibility this is suicide.
In order for it to be suicide Elisa Lam would have had to have been alive when she went into that tank. She would have died of drowning. This would have been IMMEDIATELY obvious to a medical examiner. She would have had lungs filled with water. And the autopsy would have shed some light on to this fact.
The fact the autopsy report so far has revealed nothing and that they NEED toxology results to determine cause of death, tells us she was already dead when her body entered that tank.
Two huge questions....
1. What was her state of mind, at the time of her last known sighting....
IMO, she appears to be acting strange right from the moment she walks into the elevator....why would anyone press all the buttons immediately walking into an elevator...at that point she doesn't appear alarmed or scared....
This makes me think she is hallucinating... Her odd behaviour including paranoia in the elevator may be from the hallucinations....
2. From the info that has been made available by LE and sleuthing posted by netizens.... Why and how did the body end up in the tank?
Great sleuthing everyone! Thoughts?
WHAT ? They just ruled out foul play and then denied ruling out foul play ?
So a leak ? Or a mis report?
Elisa, what happened to you ?
Sometimes, being a squirrel can be a real nutjob!
VANCOUVER SUN FEBRUARY 25, 2013 9:40 AM
Same information, different source.
Let's see if the CKNW story issues an "update" at all....?
Denied foul play? hmm.
Is this to protect the interest of various stakeholders? i.e. Cecil Hotel reputation, LE in that vicinity, tourism to LA?
I really really think she is on an ambien sleepwalk. And for anyone who says she doesn't look like she could be under the influence of anything because she is too steady on her feet....do NOT understand what someone acts like on ambien.
The reason I think ambien is because her actions are deliberate....yet they don't seem to make much sense to us when watching it. When people sleep walk on ambien they usually have something they are trying to accomplish in their mind, even if it doesn't fit the reality that s going on around them, it makes sense to them, to them they are doing something logical. They will appear sort if normal, can carry on a conversation, though in the conversation you will realize they are not making perfect sense. But to themselves their logic is perfect.
There have been people on ambien who woke up, had a late night food craving, drove to a drive through, came home, ate the food, went back to bed. And woke up in the morning to find dings on their car, and wrappers in their trash, and no memory of driving, at all! Yet in their ambien state that sequence of events was not only neccasary bu logical to them.
If you do not think elisa lam was likely on ambien in this video, because she doesn't seem "that" messed up to be drugged, then one does NOT understand how ambien can effect people.
To me the weirdest part of the video is when she pushes buttons for the second time, pushes many, and without waiting for anything, just exits the elevator to the left and is out of sight.
I don't think she was scared by someone else, if she was why would she walk in, push buttons, and just walk out? If she's scared someone was following her, why would she just walk out like that, casually, immediately after pushing so many buttons.
Again I think ambien, for whatever reason, this whole sequence of events was making sense to her. I think she was confused why the elevator wasnt shutting, but wasnt realizing she was causing it not to shut. Because her state of mind was focused on her ambien induced agenda and not totally in the reality of the present.
Do I think she walked to the roof and climbed into a tank in this state....no, not really.....but I'd be willing to bet she caught the attention of someone who took advantage of her ambien induced state if mind.
Rephrasing question.... Can drowning be determined definitively when looking at the lungs IF the person has had a BIG dose of valium? ( or some similar drug)
Thank you Think Hard, I am I am !
Few years back someone I know OD'd on valium. Virtually in a comatose state and was literally DROWNING, the dr said , of Carbon Dioxide . So very little lung function was taking place that the normal process of breathing IN oxygen and breahing OUT carbon dioxide was not happening ...... the breaths were so shallow and far apart that a buildup of carbon dioxide was in the body and became a poison. Ugh , a real nightmare.