Opinion: An Update — Finally We Have an Answer

EDITOR’S NOTE: This morning I was finally provided the L.A. Medical Examiner / Coroner’s Office report on the cause of death of Adrian Norbet.  The death was ruled, six months after it occurred, to have been a suicide caused by “multiple blunt trauma,” which likely was the result of his fall from his apartment balcony three stories above the ground. 

It was six months ago yesterday that the body of a young man was found lying on the ground at an apartment building on Hacienda Place.

Adrian Nobert was found dead outside 1156 Hacienda Place on June 18. (Photo by Jim Garrecht / ANG News)

Adrian Nobert, 25, was pushed from the balcony on the third floor. Or he fell. Or he jumped. He was stabbed in an assault inside the apartment. Or he wasn’t. All of those speculations were reported the day after the incident.

But six months after his death, the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner / Coroner’s Office still claims not to have determined the cause of death. That determination has been “deferred,” according to a spokesperson for the office, which appears to be government-speak for “we haven’t gotten around to it.”

Nobert’s death is (or was?) being investigated by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s detective bureau by a detective who can’t be bothered to return telephone calls from WEHOville about the matter.

Adrian Nobert

It hasn’t come up at our Public Safety Commission’s meetings, a number of which have been cancelled this year. Yet the commission, when it does meet, continues to take time to call out the names of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty across the United States and then sits silently through most presentations by the Sheriff’s Station and the L.A. County Fire Department. Rarely do its members, with one exception, take a moment to raise questions about incidents like this one, which have yet to be explained.

What we do know about Adrian Barritt Nobert is that he was an aspiring actor who grew up in Ohio and lived for a time in Chicago. He had a minor role as a sniper in a film titled “Approaching Midnight.” And he has had extensive experience as a restaurant server.

What we still don’t know is why that young man’s body was found six months ago lying face down on the ground at 6:55 a.m. in front of the apartment building on Hacienda Place.  West Hollywood, which thankfully deals with few murders, deserves to know whether or not this was one.


15 Comments
  1. This is just another example of apparent cover-up of a questionable death. The Ed Buck case with drugs reportedly visible when the Fire Department and sheriffs arrived and questions as to if this young man was stabbed(?), pushed(?) or jumped is very distressing.

  2. An exhorbinant salary for someone whom appears to be hard at work protecting the Sheriff’s intrests instead of citizens. NO ONE in WEHO city gov. should be making almost as much as the Gov. or the President of the United State. It is obscene.

  3. Excellent OP/ED! Hopefully this will shine some light on the Public Safety and Sheriff Department’s inept investigative abilities and/or a deliberate choice to ignore certain issues such as the Jemmel Moore death. I attended the Public Safety Commission meeting on December 11th. They accomplished nothing and had nothing substantial to talk about. There were three Residents in the audience including my roommate Jack Cline and myself. The only other person there was Hank Scott. Just a reminder Ms. Cook who is head of the Public Safety Department is paid over $300,000 a year. That Commission should be outspoken at every City Council Meeting about a myriad of issues. I used to think that the picture of Mr. Norbert’s dead body was is very poor taste, but I now hope that it will motivate those who have the ability to effectively address Public Safety issues to step up or step down. We need real leadership when it comes to Public Safety.

    1. What does the original police report say? Are the speculations about how Mr. Norbert got to the ground only speculations? And who are these speculations from? Was he with anyone in his apartment? Could it have been an accidental fall? Why not publish the facts with names redacted? Or why not do some investigative journalism and question the folks that produced the speculations. Neighbors, roommate(s) friends, co-workers?

      1. This. All these I was asking while reading this.

        Our supposed journalist would do best by sticking to “shaming” parking lot offenders.

    2. Irresponsible to use every happenstance in West Hollywood as an opportunity to insinuate that you could handle each and every issue. Opinions and more opinions, pointing fingers without sufficient information is sheer speculation and a convenient arrangement of isolated information. At this point it would appear that you could do nearly everyone’s job in the city better than they do but barely possess any credible resume and/or results. Showing up and glamming on to other people and events for sheer name transfer recognition seems a fool’s errand. While you apparently disdain Wehoville in a “speak truth to power” campaign it becomes a convenient megaphone for” a party of one”.

  4. This is so terribly sad. So terribly tragic, and sadly, so terribly acceptable. I have heard from more than one commissioner, and members of the public, that commissioner questions or requests are treated like an inconvenience. SMMFGH.

  5. Thank you for bringing a follow up to this tragic story. It is sad that we have not heard anything about this, where no one is speaking out, as another young man has lost his life. Would we be hearing more about this case, or demand further investigations if this were at Ed Buck’s apartment building or if this young man was of color? No, we don’t, instead only hours after this posting, the same ole cry of WehoVille posting an offensive photo. I find its a shame that there has not been any outcry to know who this young man was, and why he was faced with such a tragedy. It’s a hypocritical stance of Weho community, no finger to point, no sexy or pc cause to stand behind, so lets forget about it as if it never happened, and complain about the posting of a photo of a body. Please, Hank, keep digging into this and ask the questions.

  6. In my view this is another example of a city bureaucracy that is asleep at the wheel, or in cozy relationships with the contracts they are charged with managing. In this instance, we have a commission which should be holding the LASD contract to the fire, but it appears that only Mr. Berger is asking the tough questions, in a tough setting where such questioning has challenges. Further, we have a Director of Public Safety with a compensation package of $323,000 a year whose principle function includes managing the contract with the LASD. That individual should also be asking the tough questions. We are a contract city with what appears to be little accountability by the officialdom of West Hollywood. The questions aren’t difficult, nor should asking them and expecting answers be difficult when a multi-million dollar contract is in place that is designed to enhance public safety.

    1. I could not have said it better myself. there is little to no accountability in our City Government. Residents need to speak up. Write letters to Council Members, speak up at City Council Meetings. Bringing awareness to the accountability issue is the only thing that will cause change. Demand that the Director of Public Safety hold town meetings or ask for her resignation. We Residents should never be afraid to speak truth to power. We have the power to cause change, Let’s use it!

      1. It is all part of the arrogant and imperious attitudes that permeate WeHo officialdom and it starts at the top with an executive whose compensation eclipses that of every single state governor, the president, and most likely every elected mayor in the country, and with an out-of-touch and condescending council (not all of them) who are too busy cruising Grindr, or plotting the next political position, or reneging on campaign promises.

        I do applaud your engagement in this valuable community forum known as wehoville, Mr. Schmidt. It would be nice to see a few of the other challengers take some public positions.

        Engagement here is one thing, but are we all pledging to vote? Pledging to get others to vote? Pledging to hold officialdom accountable? When I moved to WeHo there were cranks and gadflies, where have they gone? They got stuff done!

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