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Fremont Police Department (CA)
Sunday October 20th, 2019 :: 10:10 a.m. PDT


A 36 year-old man was charged for involuntary manslaughter in the May 19th suspicious death investigation that occurred in Niles.

In September, the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office filed charges against 36 year-old Matthew Jardine, behind his involvement in the death of victim Thaddeus Steiner, a 40 year old Fremont resident.  Jardine was charged with PC 192 (b) - Involuntary Manslaughter.

As a department, we are always careful not to speculate and try to only share factual information.  In many instances, cases are quick to investigate and conclude, but that was not the case with this incident. Since the incident occurred, detectives have kept the Alameda County District Attorney apprised of the case and had to ultimately wait for the Alameda County Coroner’s autopsy report to be finalized before concluding the criminal investigation.  In September, the final report was provided to the District Attorney for review and charges were filed against Jardine.  These are the facts of the case available at this time:

On Sunday, May 19, 2019, at ‪approximately 8:00 p.m. Fremont Fire responded to a man down medical call in the vicinity of ‪the Florence Bar on Niles Blvd.  The man, identified as victim Thaddeus Steiner, was suffering from a head injury and was transported to a trauma center.  It wasn’t evident at the time, nor was information provided from witnesses, regarding the potential cause of Steiner’s injury.    

Early the following morning, the Fremont Police Department was notified that Steiner was suffering from a life threatening injury and may not survive. Further, a witness who had been inside the Florence bar at the time of the incident came forward with information regarding the events leading up to the injury.  The witness informed detectives that just prior to being found suffering from an injury Steiner had walked outside of the bar with Matthew Jardine.  Crimes Against Persons Detectives and CSI’s responded to the area where Steiner was found.  Detectives obtained video surveillance from multiple businesses in the surrounding area and spoke to several potential witnesses. 

Based on the totality of the investigation it is believed that Steiner and Jardine first came into contact with each other on Friday, May 17th at the Florence Bar.  At that time, Steiner is believed to have been in possession of a firearm.  The two became involved in a verbal dispute outside the bar however no physical altercation took place at that time.  Two days later, Sunday, May 19th, Steiner returned to the Florence.  Jardine confronted Steiner and asked to speak with him in the courtyard adjacent to the bar.  In that courtyard, a physical altercation between the two occurred.  During the fight, Steiner was struck in the head by Jardine’s fist.  As a result of the fight, Steiner lost consciousness and was believed to have passed out.  Jardine returned to the bar and told one of Steiner’s friends where to find Jardine and relayed that he “put him [Steiner] to sleep.”   This specific information was not provided to paramedics and fire personnel who responded for medical aid.  At the hospital, it was learned that the injury was much more serious and Steiner succumbed to his injuries after being hospitalized for several days.

On May 23rd, Jardine and his attorney spoke with detectives regarding his involvement in the incident.  Jardine was found to have multiple cuts in the knuckle area of his right hand and his middle finger appeared to be swollen and bruised in color (injuries consistent with the altercation he described).  Following the statement, Jardine left the police department with his attorney.  

The Coroner’s report indicated Steiner had a fracture to the back of his skull and a subdermal hematoma which caused swelling/pressure to be put on the brain stem.  The Coroner stated the cause of death was due to blunt force injuries to the head. 

After charges were filed, Jardine turned himself into custody.  He was later released on his own recognizance.  Jardine has remained out of custody and his next court date is scheduled for November 14, 2019, at 9:00 a.m. in department 702 of the East County Hall of Justice in Dublin, CA.

In penal code PC 192 - Manslaughter is classified as "the unlawful killing of a human being without malice"; subsection (b) speaks specifically to the 'Involuntary' portion which reads, "in the commission of an unlawful act, not amounting to a felony; or in the commission of a lawful act which might produce death, in an unlawful manner, or without due caution and circumspection."

If anyone has information about this case and would like to speak with detectives, please call 510-790-6900 or email Detective Gebhardt at  We also accept anonymous tips.  Text - Tip FremontPD - followed by your short message to 888777.

Fremont Police Department (CA)
2000 Stevenson Blvd
Fremont, CA 94538

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