Originally posted by CBS News (cbsnews.com) October 4, 2011 11:00 AM
Details emerge about TV pitchman Don Lapre's apparent suicide By Michelle Castillo
(CBS) More details surrounding the death of incarcerated TV pitchman Don Lapre have been released. Authorities say the Arizona-based late night infomercial personality killed himself early Sunday morning, two days before his $52 million fraud trial was to begin.
Law enforcement officials said a "large amount of blood" was found in the jail cell where Lapre was being held, and that the pitchman had committed suicide by cutting himself.
TMZ spoke to Lapre's mother, Shirley Cleveland, who alleged that her son's anti-depressant medication was taken from him when he was sent to jail. She also claims the father of two had attempted to commit suicide in the past. She told TMZ that when she learned that law officials had allegedly taken away his medication, she appealed to her son's lawyer for help. Cleveland claims her son was given another medication eventually, but that it did not treat his depression.
Lapre was facing 41 counts of conspiracy, mail fraud, wire fraud and promotional money laundering. Prosecutors allege that his product his company was promoting, "The Greatest Vitamin in the World," did not work as he claimed, and the product was used to fuel an Internet-based Ponzi scheme that scammed over 220,000 people.
When the TV pitchman did not appear for his arraignment in June, a warrant was issued for his arrest. Officials say they found Lapre hiding out in a gym, with a deep cut to his groin. At that time, they believed he had tried to commit suicide by slicing his femoral artery.
Can't remember which one he was? Here's a YouTube from CBS News Online of the same story:
Gee, I'll really miss him - RIP.
Hey, let's get Kevin Trudeau to kill HIMself next!
I have a distinct recollection of Lapre being "interviewed" by Cindy Margolis on one of his infomercials (confirmed by Wikipedia when I was trying to remember how to spell her name). AND.. to tie it all around... I believe Margolis was one of Jeff Jarrett's victims when he was putting a bunch of women in the figure-four.
Regardless of what he did, depriving someone of his anti-depressant medication while he's in jail awaiting trial clearly constitutes cruel and unusual punishment, and the police department and government should be held liable for his death.
"Hold on, hold on, hold on... this doesn't happen a lot, I need to savor this... I am the most normal person in the room." --Ethan, Ctrl+Alt+Del
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It really depends on what his anti-depressant was.
Let's say he was a medical marijuana user - does that change this at all? Not to stoke the fires here, but there are key facts missing.
You generally don't want to change anti-depressants on someone during a period of high stress. I can't believe it would be standard practice to move people off of one type of med to a different kind. Something smells here.
Now that he is dead, who gets sued? Does the family not have to pay out the fines if he is found guilty? I assume they sue his estate now, right?
Originally posted by kentishWas he the same guy that David Spade played on SNL where he would tech you to save time by shortening words when you speak?
No, I think that was supposed to be Kevin Trudeau. Well, maybe. I just watched a clip and I am not so sure now.
We'll be back right after order has been restored here in the Omni Center.
That the universe was formed by a fortuitous concourse of atoms, I will no more believe than that the accidental jumbling of the alphabet would fall into a most ingenious treatise of philosophy - Swift
Ricky Gervais' blog and reaction to the episode is rather prickly. He's not too fond, is he? "If you're going to jump a shark, jump a big one. Still we've a had a good innings. Ha ha." And more: http://rickygervais.