Burntout.com - A website for Kurt Cobain and Nirvana

Tom Grant The Seattle Police Reports

Following are several excerpts, quoted word for word, directly from the Seattle police reports regarding the death of Kurt Cobain.

The marking of ===== indicates a word or words blacked out by the police before they released the reports.

The marking ***** indicates something I've deleted for reasons of confidentiality such as an address.

The police reports are written without paragraphs. This makes reading and searching for details more difficult. As a result, I've indented occasionally to help reduce reading fatigue.

I've also used CAPITAL LETTERS to highlight significant words and phrases that I comment about later.

This is only a sampling of the police reports available. They are public records and can be checked for accuracy if you have doubts as to my documentation. Additional samplings of the police reports will be included in future updates.

Dated 4/4/94 - Report #94-149669

"Mr. Cobain ran away from California facility and flew back to Seattle. He also bought a shotgun and may be suicidal. Mr. Cobain may be at =====, location for narcotics. Det. Terry SPD/Narcotics has further info."


Courtney Love filed the Missing Person report claiming to be Kurt's mom, Wendy O'Conner. There was no mention in the report that Kurt had been last seen at the Lake Washington residence.

The narrative sounds like Cobain left the rehab, then purchased a shotgun and might kill himself. (Kurt actually purchased the shotgun for his own protection before he left for the rehab in L.A.)

So this report set the police up for what they would later observe. A body, a shotgun, and a note. Everything seemed to fit. It was obvious what had happened here... or was it?

(Seattle P.D. Report) Dated 4/8/94 Report #94-156500

NARRATIVE: (By Off. Levandowski, Badge #5326)
"On 4/08/94...0856 Hrs. I was dispatched to *** LakeWashington Blvd.E. to investigate a dead body. On arrival, I was contacted by ===== ===== of =====. I saw ====== work truck parked in the driveway of the house. ===== stated he had arrived at the house to do some electrical work on contract for===== the security company for the residence. Smith stated he had stepped into a west facing deck on the second floor level of the garage, and had observed a dead male on the floor. ===== said he was (unable) to see the body through the french doors, but that the doors were locked.

===== took me to the doors and I observed through the door a W/M, with long blond hair, laying on the floor, on his back. A shotgun was laying across the victim's body; the butt of the gun was between the victim's feet and the muzzle was at about the mid-chest level of the victim. The victim appeared to be Kurt Cobain who I knew to be to be the resident of the house, and who I had contacted in the recent past.

Seattle Fire units arrived and forced entry by breaking apane in the french door. On entry, SFD announced the W/M as dead on arrival and cleared the scene, leaving engine Company 34 behind.

SFD asked for I.D. from the nearby wallet and I opened the wallet which was within a couple of feet of the victim's body.Inside I found a Washington State driver's license in the name of Cobain, Kurt Donald DOB/022067.

I had called for 1G, Sgt. Getchman enroute to the call andSgt. Getchman and A/Sgt. Fewel arrived. I used Getchman's polaroid to photograph the scene while Fewel and Getchman used 35mm cameras to document the scene... I maintained the scene until Homicide's arrival...

Inside the scene, I had observed a cigar box lying next to the victim. Inside the box were syringes, a spoon, and other items of narcotics paraphernalia.

On a nearby table was a paper placemat with a hand written note in red ink. The pen was stabbed into the note, holding it inplace. The note was apparently written by Cobain to his wife and daughter explaining why he had killed himself."

NARRATIVE: By Detectives Jim Yoshida, #3168 and Steve Kirkland, #3356)4-8-94 0950:
"Lt. Marberg receives a phone call from SPD Communications. They are requesting a Homicide Team at *** Lake Washington Blvd. E. They are on the scene of a suicide. There is a note present and the gun is also in place. The victim is Kurt Cobain..."

4-8-94 10:15 "Detectives arrive at the scene and are met by Off. JoeFewel #4896. Off. Fewel is the acting sergeant for this sector. Also on the scene are Off. Von Levandowski #5326 (10c04), Sgt.Jeff Getchman #3322 (1-G), and the 1st Watch East PCT Commander,Lt. Ziminsky. Off. Levandowski will be responsible for the initial incident report. Off. Levandowski turns over polaroid photos taken of the scene and also two rolls of 35mm film.

Off. Levandowski states the witnesses, ===== (electricians for =====) came to do some work on the victim's residence this morning and observed the victim lying on the floor of the greenhouse above the detached garage of the residence. Off. Levandowski says there was a dual response on the 911 call. SFD broke the westside french door to gain access and visually determined that the victim was obviously dead...

Lavendowski secured the area and waited for response by Patrol supervisors and homicide. He has some knowledge of the victim and has been to the residence on a prior occasion. He is also aware that the victim is AWOL from a drug treatment center in Los Angeles and that his family had filed a missing person report with SPD. The families fear was that the victim was suicidal and he had recently bought a shotgun.

Cobain is found in the 19' by 23' greenhouse above the detached double garage. There are stairs on the west side leading to the french door entry and another set of french doors on the east side which lead to a balcony. These doors are unlocked and closed but there is a stool with a box of gardening supplies on it in front of the door.

There is a sink on the west wall and there are stainless steel planting trays on the north and south walls. One of the stainless trays contains a pile of dirt with bulbs in it. On top of this dirt pile is a note written in red ink and stuck into the dirt pile with a red pen. This is a suicide note directed to Courtney and ===== and signed Kurt Colbain. [The accidental mispelling of Colbain has no significance].

The victim is found on the floor lying on his back with his head to the west and feet to the east. There is a large drying puddle of blood to the left of the victim and obvious trauma to his head.

There is a Remington M-11 20 gauge shotgun between the victim's legs with the barrel pointed towards his head and his left hand wrapped around the barrel. The shotgun is inverted with the trigger and magazine trap door pointing up. The barrel end is just above his beltline. There is a spent 20 gauge shell casing on top of a brown corduroy jacket which is on top of a beige nylon shotgun case. These are just to the left of the victim and under one of the stainless steel garden trays. There are several cigarette butts on the floor and a 3/4 full can of Barqs rootbeer also on the floor in the area of the victim.

Cobain's wallet was open and his driver's license showing.Off. Levandowski exposed the driver's license to verify identification of the victim.

There was also $120.00 in cash on the floor to the right ofthe victim and a cigar box. This cigar box contained narcotics paraphenalia (syringes, burnt spoons, cotton, and small pieces ofwhat looks like black tar).

There is a brown paper bag containing 22 live 20 gauge shotgun shells. The box is marked that it contains 25 shells. The bag containing the shells is on the floor at the victim's left foot. On the floor to the victim's right in the same area as the cigar box is a hat, two towels, the $120.00 in cash, the wallet, a pack of cigarettes, a lighter, and a pair of sunglasses. Inside the jacket pocket is a receipt for the purchase of the Remington 20 gauge shotgun serial #1088925. The purchase price was $308.37 and the receipt is dated 3-30-94. The purchaser was Dylan R. Carlson ===== Seattle 98115, from Stan Baker Sports...

These items, the other items on the floor and the note were photographed using the 35mm and Polaroid cameras.

1105 hrs: Investigator Dave Delgado, Dr. Nick Hartshorne, and Dr. Donald Reay of the King County Medical Examiner's Office arrive at the scene. Dr. Hartshorne will be conducting the initial examination of the victim. Dr. Hartshorne takes his photographs and then begins the on scene examination of the victim.

The shotgun is removed from its location between the victim's legs and it is rendered safe by Det. Kirkland. There is one live shell in the chamber and another live shell in the magazine. These two shells and the spent expended shell account for the full box of 25.

Dr. Hartshorne states that the damage to the interior of the mouth indicates the shot was taken in the mouth.

He notes there are puncture marks on the inside of the left and right elbows.


  1. The police had polaroid photographs available. They could have shown me these photographs to clear up any questions about Kurt's hair being combed, but Sgt. Cameron told me they "haven't developed the photographs and probably never would."

  2. The french doors on the west side were locked. But it had a simple push and twist type lock. Anyone can lock the door and pull it shut as they leave. (I have photographs of this door.)

  3. The first officer on the scene found the wallet on the floor and exposed the driver's license for photographs. Kurt did not leave his wallet open with his license showing as reported in the media.

  4. There was no stool wedged against the door. Kurt was not barricaded in the room as the media has reported. The only stool in the room was sitting in front of the other unlocked french doors which led out to the balcony. This was not an entrance. There are no stairs to the balcony. This little wooden stool did not and could not block anything.

  5. The police referred to the note at the scene as a "suicide"note and say it was written to Courtney and Frances "explaining why he had killed himself." This note was not written to Courtney and Frances. It was written to Kurt's fans with a small footnote to Courtney and Frances. As you'll see in the next update, Kurt said nothing about killing himself!

  6. The shotgun was inverted. How would the killer know how to position the shotgun to make it appear as if Kurt had been holding it when it discharged? Have you seen the photograph of Kurt holding a what appears to be a rifle in his mouth?

    This photo appeared in a tabloid magazine soon after Cobain's death. It was taken several months earlier while Kurt was clowning around with a toy rifle. Kurt put the toy rifle in his mouth and held his right thumb on the inverted trigger!

    We now know that Courtney had a copy of this photo at the Cobain residence prior to Kurt's death. Was this photograph used as a "diagram" for the set-up?

  7. There were three rounds loaded into the shotgun when Kurt died. If he bought this shotgun just to kill himself, what was he going to do with the other two rounds? Kurt had that shotgun loaded for protection, not for suicide.


Remember that stool I've been talking about? There's one more police report that mentions this stool.

Report #94-156500, Item #8 - STATEMENT of Ofcr. Levandowski#5326, forwarded to Detectives. [This appears to be a one page summary of the original report written by Levandowski].

"On 4/08/94 at about 840 hrs., ===== arrived at ***** Lk.WA. Blvd. E. to perform some electrical work. =====walked onto the west facing deck of the garage, and observed the victim through the window panes in the french door. The victim was laying on the floor, with a shotgun across his body, and a visible head wound. C/ called 911, and a dual response of SFD and SPD was dispatched.

On arrival, Levandowski observed the victim laying on the floor, unmoving. The french doors were locked. SFD Engine #34 responded, and made entry by breaking one of the glass panes in the french door. No life saving measures were attempted by SFD.The scene was secured, and 1G, Sgt. Getchman and 241, Lt. Zimnisky responded to the scene. Photographs were taken of the scene by Levandowski, Fewel and Sgt. Getchman. The scene was maintained until released to Homicide Detectives. All pictures and film were released to Det.Yoshida.

(Now look at this) ... "Levandowski observed that the french doors at the opposite end of the room were blocked by a stool, preventing access."

Notice the LAST LINE of this report? This statement is clearly out of context. The report appears to have ended, THEN... the line about the stool is ADDED!

As mentioned in the previous update, THESE DOORS (at the opposite end of the room), were UNLOCKED and just LED OUT TO THE BALCONY. THERE WAS NO ACCESS FROM THESE DOORS. Furthermore, that little wooden stool COULDN'T BLOCK ANYTHING! But of course, if you weren't there and didn't see this for yourself, you'd never know the difference.

So WHY was this line added?

Because the detectives had already told me and the media there was a stool against the door. Kurt was allegedly barricaded inside. Someone eventually must have noticed the police reports didn't reflect the "official myth" and they apparently tried to correct it.

Who wrote the line?

I suspect it was either added by someone without Levandowski's knowledge, or someone "suggested" Levandowski add the line after the report was submitted for approval. I don't question Levandowski's intentions or motives. Although mistakes were made and some of his conclusions were reached a little prematurely, he seemed to be conscientious and thorough.

But if Levandowski ever admits to personally writing that ridiculous and deliberately misleading line, I'd have to re-evaluate my opinion not only of his motives, but of his intelligence and his eyesight.


Homicide Unit - Report # 94-156500

Scene Detectives: Jim Yoshida & Steve Kirkland - Paragraph 2:
"Cobain suffered a single GSW to the head. The shotgun had been placed in Cobain's mouth and discharged. THERE WERE MARKS ON COBAIN'S HANDS CONSISTENT WITH THE FIRING OF THIS WEAPON."

" We know there were no marks on Cobain's hands that would indicate HE fired this weapon. I've also had these reports analyzed by other homicide detectives and criminalists. No one can figure out what these "marks" could have been.

This model shotgun is somewhat rare, but several months ago we located an identical shotgun in Northern California. We test fired this shotgun. I personally fired the weapon 18 times without cleaning my hands. There were no visible marks or scratches on either of my hands that resulted from the firing of this weapon.

Could the marks have been gunshot residue or soot? No. I'll tell you more about this in a later update.

Of course the average reporter or other reader of these reports wouldn't pick up on these misleading details without doing a little research, so a little creativity went a long way in convincing the media this was a suicide.

Follow-up report. Incident #94-156500, Unit file #94-117

Dets Steve Kirkland and Jim Yoshida4/13/94 0900: To the SPD Evidence Unit.
NARRATIVE: "Checked Cobain's wallet. There is no SeaFirst card with the above listed number in the wallet. There are two Sea First Versa-teller cards with different numbers in the wallet."


What happened to Kurt's other Sea First Card? The one he used in Los Angeles at Delta Airlines just before leaving for Seattle. The one that Courtney had "canceled."

The credit card company records show that someone was still trying to use this "missing" card after the time the Coroner says Kurt died, but stopped these attempts after the body was discovered.

The police have never bothered to clear this up? Why?


Whenever someone says, "There's no PROOF this was a murder," be patient and remember this... There's never been any PROOF this was a suicide. There are only opinions... and those opinions have been based on false and misleading information.

Whatever your opinion is of this case, it should be based onthe true facts, not on the twisted details given to the police and to the media.


"Something good can come out of Kurt's death. I don't know what it is yet... but something good can... something good can" (Courtney Love - April 10, 1994)

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