Carlos Ivan Rodas, the Guido's dishwasher who died on Sunday night, and was reportedly found in a pool of blood outside the Malibu restaurant where he worked, apparently died from an upper respiratory disease, sheriff's detectives said Wednesday.
An official cause of death from the coroner's office was unavailable, but sheriff's detectives issued a statement today, saying they did not believe any foul play was involved and the 32-year old man died from a respiratory disease.
Assistant Coroner Chief Ed Winter commented on Wednesday that he was "irritated at this," and that he could not confirm the information released by the sheriff's detectives.
Winter also added that a sheriff's detective has put a security hold on the case,
which prevents anyone in the coroner's office from commenting on the
However, when asked if an upper respiratory infection could indicate tuberculosis, Winter said it could. But he said it also could have been another kind of infection.
Guido's co-owner Vassil Pertchinkov said Wednesday that he, along with the restaurant staff, was in shock regarding the death of their co-worker.
"He was very nice and very pleasant, a very responsible young man," Pertchinkov said. "I'm just shocked."
Guido's was not open for business on Monday, a day after Rodas' death, but Pertchinkov commented that on Tuesday, support for the restaurant was immense.
"The local support has just been great," Pertchinkov said. "The next day we had a full crowd for lunch and dinner. The support we've gotten is incredible."
Confusion arose regarding the circumstances of Rodas' death, as the Sheriff's Department's original report indicated he had been shot. A subsequent department report early Monday indicated the man had been confronted by a number of people and was "brutally beaten."
However, early Monday afternoon, department spokesman Steve Whitmore said the circumstances of the death were being reexamined.
"This is an ongoing investigation, and we will learn more when the autopsy is conducted,'' Whitmore said Monday. "It is possible that this young man died of natural causes."
According to a report from KCAL9, Rodas' body was found "covered in blood from head to toe." One Guido's worker told the station that the dead man was "a real nice guy" who came from Central America and lived with his mother.
In support of Rodas' mother, Guido's has established the "Carlos Memorial Fund" out of Wells Fargo Bank. Checks can be made out to "The Carlos Memorial Fund," or under the account number 7429237253.
City News Service contributed to this report.