Details are emerging about a gruesome incident Wednesday morning in Los Angeles that left two people dead — “Sons of Anarchy” actor Johnny Lewis, 28, and his 81-year-old landlady.
The Los Angeles Times reports: “Investigators have identified Johnny Lewis, 28, as the sole suspect in the death of Catherine Davis after a bizarre altercation Wednesday at her Los Feliz home, where Davis had rented a room to the actor. Lewis was later found dead in the driveway.”
Authorities suspect Lewis, a Los Angeles native, was under the influence of drugs — possibly the new designer drug C2-I — during the incident.
Lewis was in jail just five days earlier, but was released from Los Angeles County Jail despite having received significant jail sentences, the Times reports, citing online jail records.
“Lewis pleaded no contest Aug. 8 to one count of assault with a deadly weapon and was sentenced to 365 days in Los Angeles County Jail with three years of probation, a district attorney’s office spokeswoman said. Nine days later, he pleaded no contest to a burglary charge in a separate case and received 291 days in jail,” the Times reports.
It was not known why Lewis was released.
Police were called to the scene in Los Feliz, near L.A.’s Griffith Park, after receiving calls about a screaming woman, as previously reported. They also received reports about men fighting.
“The owner of a home next to Davis’, who asked not to be identified, said Lewis approached him that morning wearing only jeans and introduced himself as ‘John,’ a new neighbor,” the piece reports. “Lewis left but returned about 15 minutes later, when he hopped a fence and began attacking a painter in the neighbor’s yard, the neighbor said.
“The neighbor’s wife ran to intervene, he said, and started screaming for help. The neighbor then went outside and joined the fray. He said Lewis was impervious to the blows he took — that it was like ‘hitting him with a fly swatter.’
“The neighbor, his wife and the painter ran into the house after managing to shake Lewis. It took all three barricaded against the door to keep him out, the neighbor said.”
When authorities arrived they found Lewis dead in Davis’ driveway. They later found the body of the landlady inside her home.
“Investigators said they believe Lewis died after falling from a nearby roof or balcony and Davis died from blunt force trauma,” the story reports. “Coroner’s officials said no official causes of death had been determined.”
Kurt Sutter, the creator of FX’s “Sons of Anarchy,” commented on the incident via his Twitter account, writing: "it was a tragic end for an extremely talented guy, who unfortunately had lost his way. i wish i could say that i was shocked by the events last night, but i was not. i am deeply sorry that an innocent life had to be thrown in his destructive path."
The report notes: “Investigators are looking into whether Lewis may have been under the influence of C2-I — a new designer drug known as ‘smiles’ — during the altercation, sources said. The illegal drug causes hallucinogenic effects and is usually sold in tablets or powder form, which users often mix with chocolate before eating.”