Three days after the mourning family of David Carradine requested FBI intervention into the mysterious circumstances surrounding the actor's death, Thai police say they will welcome U.S. assistance.
However, Bangkok officials, who have since reneged on their initial theory that the 72-year-old's committed suicide, said that the FBI would be welcomed simply as observers—the only position allowed for a foreign body under Thai law.
"If the FBI wants to get involved, we will do our best to cooperate," Thai police Maj. Gen. Amnuay Nimmano told reporters at a press conference today. "We have nothing to hide."
Including Carradine's cause of death, which has yet to be officially announced for one simple reason…
Police are not yet certain about what caused his demise, let alone the events that led up to it.
"The previous conclusions on the cause of death were made by people who know nothing about the case," said Nimmano.
In recanting the suicide theory, investigators announced Friday that Carradine may have died from autoerotic asphyxiation during a sexual encounter.
A grainy photo was published in the tabloid Thai Rath over the weekend apparently showing a naked Carradine with both hands bound at the wrist and suspended over his head in his Bangkok hotel room. His face is blurred and parts of his body were obscured.
Thai police have since said that the image was most likely a police forensic photograph that was leaked to the paper.
Carradine's brother Keith Carradine said that the family was "profoundly disturbed" by the publication of the image and may seek legal action against the paper and any future publishers of the photo for "invasion of privacy and severe emotional distress."
The body of the Kill Bill star is expected to arrive in Los Angeles sometime today, where a second autopsy will be performed. The results of an autopsy performed in Thailand are not expected for three weeks.
Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
In the meantime, BayView Entertainment has announced plans to release two Carradine-featuring martial arts-based workout videos this year. David Carradine's Shaolin Cardio Kick Boxing will be released Sept. 8, while David Carradine Presents Shaolin Strength Training will be released sometime in October.
(Originally published June 8, 2009, at 10:37 a.m. PT)