Computer hacker Adrian Lamo’s death remains a mystery

The coroner's office in Sedgwick County, Kansas, on Wednesday released its autopsy report on famed hacker Adrian Lamo, who died in March at the age of 37. His autopsy report lists cause and manner of death as "undetermined." That means that after a thorough examination of his body, results of toxicology testing and information about Lamo's life and last hours, there is nothing that points to a specific reason he died. However, examiners found a sticker on his thigh identifying him with "Project Vigilant."

Lamo, best known for reporting Army whistleblower Chelsea Manning’s theft of secret documents to the government, had numerous drugs in his system when he died, but forensic pathologists who performed his autopsy were unable to determine what caused his death in Wichita. Lamo had turned in Manning to FBI back in 2010.

The document of his autopsy was obtained and first published Thursday by Matthew Keys, an independent journalist based in California, who shared it with Ars. On Thursday, the Wichita Eagle also described and quoted from the autopsy report.

"Despite a complete autopsy and supplemental testing, no definitive cause of death was identified," Scott Kipper, the county's deputy coroner-medical examiner said in his report. He continued: "As the cause of death cannot be definitely determined, the manner of death is best classified as undetermined."

The 10-page report notes that Lamo, 37, was "last known to be alive around" March 7, 2018 but was found "unresponsive" in his Wichita apartment "in a state of early postmortem decomposition."

The opinion section of the report notes that Lamo had a history of anxiety, depression, Asperger's syndrome, and drug and alcohol abuse. He also suffered from a seizure disorder that could not be ruled out as a possible cause or contributing factor to his death, it says.

In 2004, Lamo pleaded guilty to hacking The New York Times, among other entities. He was sentenced to two years probation and six months house arrest.