Updated after the jump with the woman's husband, who allegedly was on ecstasy that morning, claiming that someone pushed her. First posted at 6 a.m.
The Millennium Biltmore Hotel downtown was built in 1923, and if its walls could speak they would probably add this one to the landmark's true legends: On a weekend when TV's America's Got Talent was staging auditions at the Biltmore, a 48-year-old woman fell down a stairwell and died, authorities said.
Did the butler do it, or was it just freak accident the weekend before Halloween? Police will only say that it's under investigation.
It's not clear if Alta Loma resident Laura Finley, who was reported by coroner's officials to have died at 8:25 a.m. Saturday, was in town for the auditions.
Her cause of death was deferred as police continued to look into it.
A hotel guest told City News Service the place was crawling with cops over the weekend and that the rumor was that the woman had fallen from an 11th-floor entrance to the stairwell.
Perhaps adding to a surreal atmosphere: Reality-show hopefuls rehearsing songs, dance moves and other routines throughout the old hotel.
Update: KCAL9 reported Monday afternoon that police indicated there was no foul play — that the woman had possibly been drinking before slipping and falling six stories down a stairwell.
The station stated that the woman's husband was indeed in town to audition for the show.
Update #2: The woman's husband, Joe Finley, told TMZ that it was “not an accident … Somebody threw her off that railing.”
TMZ reported that the man allegedly took ecstasy in the early morning hours before his wife's death, that he indicated he was a “person of interest” in the investigation, and that he said a stranger requested a key to their room at 1:30 a.m. that morning.