The Los Angeles Police Department might have jumped the gun when it said in a statement today that coroner's officials have determined that last night's shooting death of Lana Meisner was "determined" to be "accidental."
Meisner was the wife of Randy Meisner, a founding member of The Eagles, one of the top-selling music acts in human history. She was found after police received a 7 p.m. report of a shooting at the Meisners' home in the 3700 block of Eureka Drive in Studio City.
Ed Winter, assistant chief of the L.A. County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner, told us today, "Our investigation is ongoing."
Asked if coroner's investigators agreed that Meisner's death was an accident, he replied, "No, we didn't."
"After a thorough investigation by Valley Bureau detective personnel and the Los Angeles coroner’s office, it was determined that Mrs. Meisner’s death was accidental," LAPD said in its statement.
But Winter said, "We make the final determination as far as cause of death is concerned. The autopsy is still pending. We won't even be conducting the autopsy for the next couple days."
Police said the shooting call came after a domestic violence report at the same location at 5:30 last night.
"North Hollywood patrol officers responded to a radio call of a woman asking for police assistance for a possibly intoxicated male suspect in the 3700 block of Eureka Drive," the department stated. "The officers took a domestic violence incident report and left the location."
The shooting happened like this, according to the LAPD's statement:
Mrs. Meisner was moving a rifle that was stored inside a case in a closet. As she lifted the rifle in the case, another item within the case shifted and hit the trigger of the rifle, causing it to fire and fatally injure Mrs. Meisner.
"We don't have a case," an LAPD detective insisted to us. "There's going to be very little LAPD involvement. We took an accidental death investigation report. Once the coroner's done and everybody has their say, then it will be closed out."
He acknowledged that the coroner would have the final say on the cause of death, but said, "I would be surprised" if that office ended up disagreeing with police.
The domestic violence report earlier last night "is unrelated," the detective said.
TMZ reported that his wife alleged in the first 911 call that Randy Meisner was "waiving a BB gun and 'acting erratically.'"
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Randy Meisner's children have reportedly alleged that he suffered from mental instability. He once allegedly threatened to kill everyone at an Encino hospital with an AK-47 rifle, TMZ says.
Cops say Randy Meisner was "cooperative" during its investigation. TMZ says he was hospitalized this morning after he was reportedly appeared to be in an altered state.
The Eagles founding member cowrote the band's hit, "Take It to the Limit."