TaleSpin: Who Killed Scott Ruffalo?
First Published: February 9, 2009 9:27 PM EST Credit: WireImage
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Who Killed Scott Ruffalo?
That’s a question that’s been gnawing at some people around Hollywood since the brother of actor Mark Ruffalo turned up dead from a gunshot wound on December 8th.
We’ve seen the official Autopsy Report and it raises at least as many questions as it answers.
The front page of the report is clear; Ruffalo died of a gunshot wound to the head. The gun that killed him was fired from above and in front Ruffalo’s head, while held at a 45 degree angle. The bullet entered right in the center of his hairline in the right center upper part of his forehead. Later the report says the “medium caliber bullet with copper jacket” was recovered at the right occipital lobe of the brain, in the very back of his head, after cutting a path through his brain and doing massive damage. The bullet was placed in an envelope.
The report says the 39-year-old Ruffalo “according to police, was involved in a game of Russian Roulette when he suffered a gunshot wound to the head.”
In case you missed the Christopher Walken scene in “The Deer Hunter,” that means he pulled the trigger himself.
Was Ruffalo incapacitated on drugs at the time?
The report notes the presence in his blood of cocaine, morphine derivatives and a chemical found in anti-depressant and anti-anxiety drugs.
The report also says “no soot is noted on the wound margins or on the skull.” Soot (the gunpowder burn residue) would normally be present in the case of a gun fired at close range. The Coroner’s office acknowledges the soot could have been cleaned off by a doctor looking at the wound.
There wasn’t any “stippling” either. Those are small, scattered indentations around a wound caused by the force of the blast. Maybe the gun was fired from further away? Maybe around four feet? So where did the Russian Roulette story come from?
Turns out that’s courtesy of a beautiful young woman named Shaha Mishaal Adham. She’s the daughter of a wealthy Saudi businessman. She and Scott knew each other because Adham paid Ruffalo (a successful Beverly Hills stylist) “hundreds of dollars to blow-dry her hair.” And she was in the apartment.
Adham apparently saw what happened and, on the advice of her boyfriend, fled. Afterwards Adham was brought in by Beverly Hills Police for questioning.
Why did she tell the cops it was suicide?
Later Adham was released with no charges. Then later the BHPD said there was still another person in the room with Adham and Ruffalo. So who was that person?
Autopsies tell all kinds of things; Scott Ruffalo was in generally good health, although he suffered from some type of seizure disorder. He had a tattoo; “a winged beetle over a tribal band on right upper forearm.”
While the gunshot didn’t kill Scott Ruffalo instantly it might as well have. The report notes the damage to his brain was irreversible. The document also notes that Ruffalo’s wife, Lulu, was at his side and that she declined to allow the donation of any of his organs. But the family did decide not to prolong his life unnecessarily.
Scott Ruffalo died four and a half hours after life support was discontinued.
At the end of the report the Coroner ruled that, despite what police said initially, this case is a homicide. Unsolved. Today a spokesperson for the Beverly Hills Police Dept told us they are investigating “aggressively” but they don’t have anything new. And they want to be sure before they prosecute anyone.
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