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A man died early Monday at the West Hollywood home of prominent Democratic donor Ed Buck, his attorney confirmed to Fox News — 17 months after a male escort died in the same apartment.
Attorney Seymour Amster told Fox News the unidentified victim was a “longtime friend” of Buck and said the two had known each other for 25 years. Amster said the victim “reached out for [Buck’s] help” Sunday night and began acting “in a bizarre way” after he arrived at Buck’s apartment.
“As far as we’re concerned, this is an accidental death,” said Amster, who added that police had released the scene and Buck was not under arrest.
Buck, a well-known figure in LGBT political circles, has given more than $500,000 to a range of Democratic groups and candidates — including former President Barack Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. In July of last year, prosecutors declined to file charges against Buck in the death of Gemmel Moore, a male escort whose body was found in Buck’s apartment in July 2017. According to a coroner’s report, Buck’s apartment was full of drug paraphernalia, including 24 syringes containing brown residue, five glass pipes with white residue and burn marks, a plastic straw with possible white residue, clear plastic bags with white powdery residue and a clear plastic bag containing a piece of crystal-like substance.
Moore’s death initially was ruled an accidental methamphetamine overdose, but the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office re-opened the investigation after writings in Moore’s journal implicated Buck in his drug use.
In a December 2016 entry, Moore wrote: “I’ve become addicted to drugs and the worst one at that. Ed Buck is the one to thank. He gave me my first injection of crystal meth it was very painful, but after all the troubles, I became addicted…”
“If it didn’t hurt so bad, I’d kill myself, but I’ll let Ed Buck do it for now,” wrote Moore’s final entry, dated Dec. 3, 2016.
At the time, Amster told Fox News that the investigation into Moore’s death had “turned into an attack on Mr. Buck’s personal life.”
“This was an accidental overdose that Ed Buck had nothing to do with and it’s a tragedy,” Amster told Fox News after prosecutors declined to file charges.
After Fox News reported on the investigation, at least six Democrats in California and Arizona confirmed that they had returned or redirected donations from Buck.