Man Found Dead In LA River

Cat Leigh
Cat Leigh
Apr 8, 2019 · 3 min read

Police have refused to investigate the death of actor Jason Murphy.

Photo by Shea Rouda on Unsplash

Jason Loyd Murphy was born on January 17, 1983, in Houston, Texas. He moved to California to attend Pepperdine University and graduated with a degree in Theatre and Television Production.

He became an improv actor and directed various short movies. Jason also appeared in national TV commercials for companies such as Snapple, KFC, and Bud Light. He is a member of the SAG-AFTRA.

On December 29, 2016, Jason married Dina Gregg, who he had met on Tinder three years before. The couple lived in LA with their dogs. Jason was a cancer survivor.

Jason Murphy / Legacy.com

On September 20, 2017, just two weeks after returning from his honeymoon, 34-year-old Jason was found dead. His body was spotted at 2 AM at the base of a 33-foot concrete wall at LA River.

He was lying in 2" of water, had a black eye, a herniated diaphragm, and lacerations on his dominant hand.

Jason’s body / Dina Gregg’s Twitter ( @dinaryengregg)

Earlier that night, Jason attended a premiere for the movie From Jennifer in which he had a minor role. The event took place at Laemmle’s Playhouse 7 in North Hollywood. Once it was over, Jason caught the LA Metro just before midnight.

He got off at the Lincoln/Cypress Station and his body was found halfway between the station and his home.


The LA County Coroner’s Office ruled Jason’s death as an “accidental drowning”. They claimed that there had been no foul play because he hadn’t been robbed. Authorities have made little effort to investigate Jason’s death.

Though his wallet was still with him and contained $200 and his credit cards, his phone is missing. Authorities never got a warrant for his phone data which could provide important details as to what happened.

Moreover, the authorities did not speak to anyone from the movie premier despite them being the last known people to have seen him alive. Police also refused to gather CCTV footage so Dina had to get it herself.

According to Jason’s family, police have dismissed all of their attempts to start an investigation and have victim blamed—the area in which Jason was walking through is known for gang-related activities.


With the authorities refusing to help, Dina was forced to hire a private detective. The investigator spoke to homeless people living in the area and several reported seeing a white man being thrown in a car on the night of Jason’s death. It is unknown if this incident is related.

Dina believes that her husband was attacked and left for dead. She has even moved twice due to feeling unsafe.

Some people have suggested that it was a robbery gone wrong. Others theorized that Jason was a victim of police brutality and that’s why authorities have been uncooperative.

Despite all the obstacles, Dina has not stopped fighting for justice and has recently started a GoFundMe. She needs funds to hire a private detective and to retain a lawyer. She plans on filing a lawsuit to have authorities reclassify Jason’s case as a “homicide” or “undetermined”.

If the case remains classified as an “accident”, the statute of limitations will expire in six months.

True Crime by Cat Leigh

Unsolved true crime cases. Murders, disappearances, and unexplained deaths.

Cat Leigh

Written by

Cat Leigh

True Crime Writer • catarina.leigh@gmail.com •

True Crime by Cat Leigh

Unsolved true crime cases. Murders, disappearances, and unexplained deaths.

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