CULVER CITY - An autopsy was pending on an 89-year-old man who died this weekend, three weeks after he was allegedly beaten on an MTA bus near Culver City by a suspect now jailed for felony assault and elder abuse.

Coroner's Lt. Joe Bale said the autopsy would be scheduled and a positive identification made when the man's body was transported from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center to the coroner's office.

The 89-year-old victim was apparently hurt on the bus near Venice Boulevard at Main Street, in the city of Los Angeles but next to downtown Culver City, on Oct. 21.

Luke Schoedel, 35, was arrested at the scene of the attack three Sundays ago, a sheriff's spokesman said. He was booked for felony assault and felony elder abuse and remained jailed in lieu of $80,000 bail, according to jail records.

The victim's name or hometown were not released.

Schoedel might be charged with more serious crimes if the autopsy justifies that, spokesman Steve Whitmore told City News Service.

``We are waiting for the coroner to determine the cause of death,'' Whitmore said. ``We don't know yet whether the man died as a result of that assault, or for some other reason.''

The elderly man was treated at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, but left the hospital. He checked himself back in to Cedars-Sinai last Tuesday, and died at 5:30 a.m. Saturday, Whitmore said.

Detectives were not sure if the alleged bus assault or the victim's advanced age led to his death.

``That's why we're not sure what caused his death,'' Whitmore said. He said he had ``no idea'' what the victim's attending physician at Cedars-Sinai might think caused the man's death.

Sheriff's homicide detectives responded to the hospital as part of their continuing investigation into this crime, he said.

``If the coroner determines the man died as a result of the assault, then Schoedel may be rebooked on a murder charge,'' Whitmore said. ``But right now we're waiting on the coroner's report.''

Schoedel was scheduled to appear for arraignment on Dec. 12 at the Airport Court near Los Angeles International Airport.