Suspect in Long Beach death released; police say stabbing didn't kill victim

A 64-year-old man who was arrested for allegedly fatally stabbing a man during an argument in Long Beach was released from custody when coroner's officials determined that stab wounds sustained by the victim in the fight were not the cause of his death, police said Monday.

Ronald Wandersee was initially arrested the night of Nov. 19, with police saying he had gotten into an altercation with an acquaintance, 58-year- old Michael Marker, that escalated into a physical fight in the 2000 block of San Gabriel Avenue. Police said Marker began to physically assault Wandersee, who pulled out a knife and stabbed Marker multiple times.

Marker was pronounced dead at the scene.

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Wandersee suffered a non-life-threatening laceration wound during the altercation. He was treated for his injuries and subsequently booked on suspicion of murder.

But Long Beach police said Monday they were informed by the coroner's office on Nov. 22 that "the stab wounds sustained by the victim do not appear to be the cause of death." The coroner's office is continuing its investigation to determine how the man died, including toxicology reports, police said.

Due to the initial findings, however, Marker's death was reclassified by police from a murder to an "undetermined death investigation." As a result, Wandersee was released from custody. Jail records show he was released Friday morning.

Long Beach police urged anyone with information to call them at 562-570-7244 or Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.