Hockney aide: finding death cause "could take weeks"

Tue Mar 19, 2013 11:57am EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - Determining how an assistant of renowned artist David Hockney died could take weeks, police said on Tuesday as pathologists carried out a post mortem on the body of Dominic Elliott.

Elliott, 23, was rushed to hospital from his employer's home in Bridlington, east Yorkshire early on Monday and later died.

A Home Office post mortem was not expected to end until early Tuesday evening, police said in a statement.

"Whilst it is hoped this may provide some clues as to the cause of Mr Elliott's death, results from post mortem examinations are not always conclusive and it may then take several more weeks for complete results to be available to provide a pathologist with the information required to identify any cause," the statement added.

Humberside police are treating the death as unexplained and Hockney himself has been too upset to comment.

On Monday, police said there had been no signs of violence on Elliott's body.

Hockney's publicist, Erica Bolton, said the artist was devastated by the death of Elliott who had worked as an assistant in the artist's studio in Bridlington and had been painted by him.

"He worked for him for over two years and was a hugely valued member of the team," she told Reuters.

Tributes were paid to Elliott by the Bridlington rugby club, where he played in the first and second teams.   Continued...