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Time Warner chief’s son found slain in NYC apartment

June 3, 1997

NEW YORK (AP) _ The schoolteacher son of Time Warner’s chief executive has been found bound, gagged and lying dead in a pool of blood in his Manhattan apartment.

The victim, Jonathan Levin, 31, is the son of Time Warner’s CEO Gerald Levin, the corporation said today.

The body was found by police Monday night after coworkers at Taft High School in the Bronx told neighbors he had not shown up for work.

There were no signs of forced entry and the apartment was in good condition, but the body had begun to decompose, said police spokeswoman Noreen Murray. She had no detail on how he died. An investigative source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Levin apparently had been dead since late last week.

Neighbor Richard Veloso let police into the flat and said he saw Levin lying face down, halfway out of the kitchen, with a pool of blood around his head.

Levin’s dog, a German shepherd named Julius, was found shut in the bedroom, Veloso said.

``I had a key because I would take care of the dog when he worked late at school,″ Veloso added. ``The dog was barking all weekend.″ He said he took the dog out of the apartment as police began their investigation.

Gerald Levin, 58, became chairman of Time Warner four years ago after the death of Steven Ross, who built Warner Communications and engineered its takeover of Time Inc.

Levin put his own stamp on the media conglomerate with last year’s $7.5 billion purchase of Turner Broadcasting System Inc., bringing CNN under the roof with HBO and the huge Time Warner cable television system.

Time Warner President Richard D. Parsons said in a statement: ``We are shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Jonathan Levin. The sympathy, love and prayers of all the women and men of Time Warner go out to Gerry, Barbara, Carol Levin and the entire Levin family.″

Barbara Levin is Gerald Levin’s current wife; Carol Levin was his first wife and is Jonathan’s mother.

Thelma Ortiz, a cashier at the Arista Deli, two doors down from Jonathan Levin’s apartment, said he would stop in each day. ``He was very friendly and he would wave whenever he passed by,″ she said in her native Spanish. ``He was an English teacher and he lent me English books.″

Neighbors described him as a humble man who never mentioned his family’s wealth. ``I had no idea he had such famous parents,″ Ms. Ortiz said. She said he had dated several women in the recent past.

The apartment is on Columbus Avenue near 70th Street on the prosperous Upper West Side. Outside the sealed apartment door this morning, debris from the police investigation was scattered in the hallway _ wrappers for protective gloves and plastic coverings from film.

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