DA: No charges to be filed in beach death

SANTA CRUZ — A man arrested in the death of another man Sunday in Santa Cruz will not be charged, Santa Cruz County District Attorney Jeff Rosell announced Tuesday.

After reviewing evidence submitted by the Santa Cruz Police Department, as well as the autopsy findings from the Sheriff's Coroner's office, the DA's office determined that there was "insufficient evidence" to charge Kevin Callahan with the death of 52-year-old Steven Lee, according to Rosell.

Callahan was released from custody.

According to Santa Cruz Police Deputy Chief Dan Flippo, around 4:20 a.m. on Sunday officers responded to the Main Beach in the area of the volleyball courts for a report of a deceased male. Paramedics were called to the scene as well, and the victim was pronounced dead shortly after their arrival.

Officers were contacted by witnesses who said that the victim had been in an altercation with another male earlier.

Callahan, who was arrested shortly after about 100 feet from where Lee's body was found, admitted that he choked Lee, Rosell said.

However, Callahan reportedly told investigators that Lee was alive when he left him at the scene.

During the investigation, witness accounts and evidence collected at the scene led investigators to believe that Lee had died as a result of the earlier altercation, according to Rosell.


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