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'Sons of Anarchy' actor suspected of killing woman
LOS ANGELES (AP) — An actor whose character died a violent death on the TV drama "Sons of Anarchy" plunged to his death in a driveway after apparently killing his landlady and attacking neighbors near Hollywood, police said Thursday.
Johnny Lewis, who played Kip "Half-Sack" Epps in the FX show, is the only suspect in the death of 81-year-old Catherine Davis, according to Los Angeles police.
Authorities found them dead Wednesday morning after neighbors reported a woman screaming inside the home, Cmdr. Andrew Smith said.
Lewis' death ended in a turbulent nearly 10-month span during which he was repeatedly arrested and officials expressed concerns about his mental health and the danger he posed to others.
The home where Davis was found had been ransacked, glass was shattered and a dead cat was found.
Neighbors said a man had jumped a fence and assaulted a painter and homeowner next door.
The body of Lewis, 28, was found in the driveway. He could have jumped or fallen from the roof, garage or balcony, or tumbled down stairs from a patio area, Smith said.
Coroner's investigative division Lt. Fred Corral said an autopsy found Davis' cause of death was blunt head trauma and manual strangulation.
Lewis' autopsy results will have to wait for toxicology tests to be completed, said Corral.
The deaths came about four months after a probation official expressed grave concern about Lewis' mental health. The report was prepared in a case in which Lewis was accused of attempting to break into the home of a woman in Santa Monica, Calif., and it described him as a transient. That case came about six weeks after Lewis hit two men over the head with a bottle during a fight.
The probation official wrote of being "very concerned for the well-being of not only the community but that of the defendant."
The May 17 report goes on to state that "the defendant suffers from some form of chemical dependency, mental health issue and a lack of permanent housing. Given this, (Lewis) will continue to be a threat to any community he may reside."
Within days, Lewis was released to a treatment facility and he pleaded no contest to attempting to break into the home in mid-August.
He was placed on three years of supervised probation, sentenced to time-served in jail and no follow-up hearing was scheduled, court records show.