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8 Jan, 2019 14:29

An 'accidental' death? Protests break out outside home of Democratic donor, after body found inside

An 'accidental' death? Protests break out outside home of Democratic donor, after body found inside

Protests have broken out outside the California home of wealthy Democratic donor and LGBT activist Ed Buck, after the second dead body of a black man was found inside in less than two years.

The dead man – an unidentified man in his 50s – was a “longtime friend” of Buck, Attorney Seymour Amster told Fox News. He apparently turned up at Buck’s door on Sunday night and began acting “in a bizarre way,” before dying in the Los Angeles apartment.

“As far as we're concerned, this is an accidental death,” Amster told Fox.

Neighbors aren’t convinced. Shortly after the discovery on Monday, they began turning up outside Buck’s Los Angeles residence. The protesters blame Buck for the man’s death, and say they have called the police on the wealthy donor before.

While one death is suspicious enough, this is not the first time a black man has died in Buck’s house.

In July 2017, a 26-year-old black male prostitute named Gemmel Moore was found dead in Buck’s apartment. The apartment was full of drug paraphernalia, including dozens of syringes, glass pipes, and plastic bags containing powdery residue and a crystal-like substance. Moore’s death was ruled an accidental methamphetamine overdose, but police reopened their investigation after excerpts from Moore’s journal were published by the Los Angeles Times.

“I’ve become addicted to drugs and the worst one at that,” Moore reportedly wrote in the diary. “Ed Buck is the one to thank, he gave me my first injection of crystal meth.”

“I just hope the end result isn’t death,” Moore continued. “If it didn’t hurt so bad I’d kill myself but I’ll let Ed Buck do it for now.”

Police ultimately declined to press charges, a decision that angered Moore’s family, his legal team, and the protesters outside Buck’s house on Monday.

Law enforcement “have blood on their hands” for failing to prosecute Buck the first time round, Jasmyne Cannick, a PR specialist who worked with Moore’s family told the Daily Mail. Cannick claimed that Buck would regularly pay gay men to come to his apartment and inject crystal meth, before engaging in amphetamine-enhanced sex acts.

“It's only a matter of time before it happens a third time if he's not stopped,” Cannick added.

Buck has not been arrested after the unidentified man’s death, but police are investigating the scene and have reopened the 2017 investigation for secondary review, the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department said in a statement.

Buck, 64, made his wealth in the technology sector in Arizona, before moving to California and becoming active in politics, with a particular focus on LGBT issues. He has donated over $50,000 to Democratic candidates since 2008, among them Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. Buck resigned from his position on the steering committee of the Stonewall Democratic Club, an LGBT political group, last year after Moore’s death.

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