TX Man Commits Suicide Inside Courtroom, Just Minutes After Being Convicted of Child Sexual Assault

TX Man Commits Suicide Inside Courtroom, Just Minutes After Being Convicted of Child Sexual Assault

A 57-year-old Texas man who was convicted of child sexual assault did not want to go to prison. So much so, that just minutes after he was found guilty he committed suicide. The man dropped to the floor after the guilty verdict was read. His name was Edward Leclair, and he may have escaped “earthly justice,” but I am confident Satan was waiting for him on the other side. It appears that he committed suicide by drinking some “murky” looking liquid that people thought was cruddy water. Right after the verdict, he began chugging the liquid, and he was dead soon after.

The New York Post reported that Edward Leclair, 57, was on trial in Denton, Texas, for five counts of sexual abuse and had been free on bond until the verdict Thursday.

“As these verdicts were being read, he chugged a bottle of water he had at [the] counsel table,” Denton County Assistant District Attorney Jamie Beck told CNN Friday, adding the liquid seemed cloudy.

“Our investigator noticed him chug the water,” Beck said. “He told the bailiff he might want to go check on him. The bailiff did. He was unconscious in the holding cell.”

“Shortly after entering the holdover cell, he started vomiting, and emergency services were called,” Leclair’s defense attorney, Mike Howard said.

Howard said Leclair had taken a “long drink from a water bottle” while listening to the verdict, but the attorney did not know what was in the bottle.

The Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s Office lists Leclair’s time of death as 3:21 p.m. at Medical City Denton. The cause of death is pending. The Texas Rangers are investigating.

Jurors had been dismissed from the courtroom before the bailiff found Leclair. They returned Friday morning to determine the next move since Leclair, who had been found guilty, had died before he could be sentenced for his crimes.

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“I can certainly say that it was highly emotional for everyone involved,” Howard said. “We were shocked by this. It does carry a lot of emotion and even more so for the jurors. They didn’t choose to do this. They were chosen, and as we told them, serving on a jury and making sure that the justice system works for the alleged victim and accused person is the cornerstone of being a citizen and making sure our government and society function.”

It was an unusual situation, not just for the jurors but also for the defense, the prosecution, and the judge, none of whom had ever experienced something like this before.

At the time this happened, Leclair was a corporate recruiter, and he met the 14-year-old on Craigslist, and they met for several sexual encounters. He was out on bond for 4 years, awaiting trial. His trial only lasted a few days, and then he was dead.

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