Police: Cape Elizabeth man's death in balcony fall appears accidental

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CAPE ELIZABETH — Police hope an autopsy will confirm whether a Cape Elizabeth man died as a result of a fall from his second-story porch on July 25, but the report is not expected for several weeks.

John Knight, 39, was found dead at his single-family home at 10 Tiger Lily Lane by a relative who called 911 at about 4:45 p.m., Cape Elizabeth Police Department Capt. Brent Sinclair said.

The last contact relatives had with Knight was around 10 a.m. Saturday. His wife tried to reach Knight during the afternoon and, having no success, asked a relative to check the home, Sinclair said.

The partly wooden deck Knight seemed to have fallen from provided some indication of what may have happened. Sinclair said there was “some evidence of rotting to the deck railing and that the railing had given way.”

“There was blunt force trauma to the head consistent with a fall from the balcony,” Sinclair said Wednesday.

Sinclair said he can’t say for sure that the incident was an accident, but that it “certainly appears that way.”

“We are still investigating it, but there’s no evidence that it was suspicious at this point or that it was an intentional act,” he said Sunday.

The state medical examiner’s office on Wednesday said the results of an autopsy won’t be available for three to four weeks. Sinclair said officials are also waiting for the results of toxicology reports. 

Knight, a software engineer, was the father of two children. According to his LinkedIn page, he was the managing director of Knightlabs LLC, a technology firm developing a validation system for online learning. 

He previously worked as the chief technology officer of Saylor Academy, an online, non-degree-granting academic organization. He also worked for Blackboard Inc., a program used by colleges and universities to manage courses and grades, for 17 years. Knight graduated from Cornell University in 1998.

Anyone with information about Knight’s death is asked to call Sinclair at 767-3323.

Bangor Daily News contributed to this report. Kate Gardner can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 125 or kgardner@theforecaster.net. Follow her on Twitter: @katevgardner.

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I'm a reporter for The Forecaster covering Freeport, Yarmouth, Chebeague Island, and Cape Elizabeth. I'm from a small town in NH no one's ever heard of. When not reporting, I can be found eating pasta and reading books, often at the same time.