LAPD trying to determine whether there was foul play in death of Andrew Getty

LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith, left, talks with Capt. William Hayes at the entrance to Montcalm Avenue in the Hollywood Hills, where the body of Andrew Getty was found. (Michael Robinson Chavez / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles police investigating the death of Andrew Getty, an heir to the Getty oil fortune, are still trying to determine whether foul play was involved.

A law enforcement source told The Times Getty was found naked from the waist down in the bathroom of his Hollywood Hills estate Tuesday and appeared to suffer from some type of blunt force trauma. It's unclear whether the injury was caused by a fall or something else.

LAPD Cmdr. Andrew Smith, a department spokesman, cautioned it was still “very, very early in the investigation” but said that based on initial observations, “this does not appear immediately to be a criminal act.”

The death appeared to be natural or an accident, said Ed Winter, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County coroner's office. Investigators had not yet determined a time of death, Winter said.

Ann and Gordon Getty confirmed their son’s death in a statement, which asked for privacy during an “extremely difficult time.” Police and coroner’s officials have yet to release the name of the man whose body was found Tuesday afternoon at the Montcalm Avenue home. 

Coroner’s and investigators remained on scene late Tuesday, waiting for a search warrant that would allow detectives to enter the home and look for any evidence.

The source, who spoke on the condition of annoymity because the case was on going, caution it could take some type for police and the medical examiner to determine whether foul play was involved.

The LAPD’s elite robbery-homicide detectives are handling the case because of the high-profile nature.

Police were called to Getty's compound, located at the end of a narrow, leafy street, at 2:18 p.m., said Cmdr. Andrew Smith.

A woman who was present at the time of the death was escorted from the residence by police for questioning, Smith said. She is cooperating with investigators, Smith said.

Just two weeks ago, Getty had sought a restraining order against a woman, according to court records. His attorney declined to comment.

Andrew Getty, 47, was the grandson of oil baron J. Paul Getty and part of the Getty trust.
He is one of four sons of Ann and Gordon P. Getty, one of J. Paul Getty's three sons.

Gordon Getty has a net worth of $2.1 billion, according to Forbes magazine.

Getty’s death is the latest misfortune to befall the wealthy family, which has seen its fair share of illnesses, addictions, early deaths and eccentricities.

J. Paul Getty's fifth son -- the only child he had with his fifth wife -- died of a brain tumor in 1958 at age 12.

In 1973, J. Paul Getty III, the 16-year-old grandson of J. Paul Getty, was kidnapped and held for ransom for more than five months. He was released after the family, which had been sent the boy's severed right ear, paid the abductors $2.8 million.

Gordon Getty in 1999 confirmed that he had a second family living in Los Angeles, news that came to light after the three daughters born of another woman filed court documents requesting that their last name be changed to "Getty."

The news that the well-known music lover had a second family -- while remaining married to his current wife -- became tabloid fodder, but it was something of an open secret among elite social circles.

The home where Getty was found dead had a storied history. The 70-year-old villa, which he purchased in 1996, was previously owned by three-time Oscar-winning film composer Miklos Rozsa.

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