Coroner: Suspect who died falling onto river bank was drunk

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JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (AP) – The coroner says a Pennsylvania suspect who escaped from a hospital then fell off a bridge and died was extremely drunk in ruling his death an accident.

Conemaugh Township police arrested 44-year-old Jason Maldet after arguing with a neighbor Monday night. They took the Holsopple man to Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center in Johnstown for an unspecified medical issue, which is when Maldet escaped.

A Johnstown police officer saw Maldet near a bridge over the Stonycreek River and tried to stop him by firing a stun gun. But authorities say Maldet climbed over a guard rail, and through some woods toward a steep ledge before falling onto the rocky riverbank 24 feet below.

The Cambria County coroner says Maldet died of head injuries and had a blood-alcohol content three times the limit considered legally intoxicated.

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