Guilty Verdict Causes Man To Kill Himself In Court Room

Mallet Verdict

A Texas man charged with five counts of child sexual assault died after a jury convicted him, and he chugged a bottle of liquid in the courtroom, his lawyer said Friday.

Edward Leclair, 57, started drinking from a plastic water bottle filled with what appeared to be clear liquid after the jury returned a guilty verdict, his lawyer said.

“I looked over and noticed him drinking,” Howard said. “His hand was shaking. At the time, I thought it was shaking because of the verdict. Then he kept drinking and drinking.”

Assistant District Attorney Jamie Beck told the Denton Record-Chronicle that the liquid appeared “cloudy.”

Leclair, a former Navy mechanic, was charged with five counts of sexual assault on a person between the ages of 14 and 17. He said he was innocent of the charges.

His lawyer said that Leclair had been out on bond during the trial and wasn’t subject to the same restrictions as someone in custody. Howard said he drank most of the bottle before being remanded to a cell to await sentencing.

For more on this story, please consider these sources:

  1. Man convicted of child sexual abuse dies after prosecutor says he ‘chugged’ liquid in court as verdict was being read  CNN
  2. Texas man convicted of child sexual assault dies after chugging from bottle as verdict is read  msnNOW
  3. Texas man dies after drinking cloudy liquid as he’s found guilty of child sexual assault  CBS News
  4. Texas man dies after chugging unknown fluid when jury convicts him of child sex assault  Fort Worth Star-Telegram
  5. Man drinks ‘cloudy’ water, dies after guilty verdict in Denton County  The Dallas Morning News
John Nightbridge is a veteran reporter, researcher, and economic policy major from UCLA. Passionate about world issues and potential ways to solve them is a significant focus of his work. Writing freelance and reading the news are John's passions at work. Outside of work, it's all about sky diving, surfing, and stock market modeling.