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Arrowhead death: Homicide ruled as the official cause of death in bizarre case

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A death at Arrowhead Stadium has now been officially ruled a homicide, reports The Associated Press via Fox News on Wednesday. The man who died at Arrowhead Stadium during last Sunday’s Chiefs-Broncos game was identified as 30-year-old Kyle Van Winkle, who was found unconscious in parking lot A of the Truman Sports Complex.

According to the AP report, “Van Winkle had gone to Sunday's game in a vehicle similar to the Jeep in which he was found by the owner. Police say he was involved in a fight, but it's not clear whether that contributed to his death.”

USA Today picks up the story:

“Van Winkle, the son of a police sergeant, apparently left the stadium early in the game and went to the parking lot, where he got into a Jeep that looked like the vehicle he came to the game in… The Jeep's owner found Van Winkle, which led to an argument. People tailgating nearby came over and began fighting with Van Winkle.”

Kansas City Police Chief Daryle Forte wrote on Twitter earlier this week that detectives are investigating the homicide and that they have at least two individuals in custody.

“Multiple parties are being interviewed at police headquarters. Exact cause of death undetermined. Victim died while struggling w/2 subjects… Incident did not involve any fan rivalry.” –ChiefForte

Kansas City police spokesman Darin Snapp said that although police are treating the incident as a homicide, no arrests have been made as of yet.

“Talking to several witnesses that were out here in the parking lots, there was an individual who came back to his vehicle, saw someone inside the vehicle that did not belong,” Snapp said. “We don’t know if the person had a health condition, had a heart attack. We don’t know. We’re going to investigate this as a homicide until we hear differently. Right now it’s a suspicious death but we are going to investigate it as a homicide.”

The altercation started when the owner of the vehicle realized that someone else was in their car. When the owner of the car and the stranger began to struggle, the young boy ran to get help. Paramedics treated the victim on the way to the hospital, but he was pronounced dead upon arrival.

Chiefs fan Andy Vaughn said he got within about 20 feet from the crime scene but nearby officers were attempting to disperse any crowds that gathered while investigators collected evidence.

“They had the caution tape up and they had extra police officers roaming the area, making sure everyone was in control,” Vaughn said. “At the end of a Chiefs game, there are a lot of really rowdy people and there were a lot of people upset about losing, but it seemed like it was pretty under control.”

The exact cause of death could take weeks to determine.

Four people were taken into custody for questioning this week but none were charged.

“Right now they're persons of interest,” Snapp said. “Like I said, until we find out exactly how this person passed away, we're going to investigate it as a homicide. They're not suspects right now until we find out exactly what happened.”

USA Today did confirm that police executed a search warrant Monday at a home in the Kansas City suburb of Independence after learning of possible evidence there. A No. 25 Chiefs jersey, blue jeans and tennis shoes were seized.

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