A second man has died at the home of wealthy Democrat donor and gay activist Ed Buck in less than two years.
Los Angeles police are investigating the death of an unnamed man at Buck’s home in the early hours of Monday morning (January 7), reported CNN.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said officers responded to a report of a man not breathing at 1:05am on Monday.
He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police investigating death at Ed Buck’s house
The Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner is expected to announce the cause of death in due course.
It comes after another man, Gemmel Moore, 26, died at Buck’s home in July 2017.
The Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner found that Moore’s death was the result of an accidental methamphetamine overdose.
In July 2018, a charge evaluation worksheet from the LA County District Attorney concluded that there was insufficient evidence to prove beyond reasonable doubt that Buck was responsible for the death of Moore, reported CNN.
It also states that it could not be proved beyond reasonable doubt that he gave drugs to Moore or possessed drugs.
Authorities are carrying out another review of Moore’s death following the death of the second man.
Los Angeles LGBT Center, which provides services for the LGBT+ community, has released a statement following the second death, urging Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva and his department to “aggressively seek justice.”
The statement reads: “Although the investigation is in its early stages, we urge Sheriff Villanueva to keep the public fully informed as LGBT people have a considerable and urgent interest in a case that is so clearly linked to the health and safety of our community.
“The reports we have heard provide more questions than answers.”
The centre also voiced concern as both deceased men were black, adding that it believed the deaths were drug-related.
“Yes, Ed does have individuals he associates with who have problems with drugs.”
— Lawyer Seymour Amster
“The fact is two black men have died at Mr. Buck’s home in less than two years,” said the centre.
“While much is still to be learned, it appears this tragedy is linked to substance use.
“LGBT people and other marginalized groups are at elevated risk for impacts that result from the current epidemic uses of opioids, methamphetamine, and other dangerous drugs.”
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Seymour Amster, Buck’s attorney, told CNN that he did not expect there to be any charges filed following the latest death.
He added that the victim had been friends with Buck for more than 25 years.
“Yes, Ed does have individuals he associates with who have problems with drugs,” Amster told CNN.
“He tries to talk them out of it. Sometimes they bring their problems into his apartment, and that’s where the problem is.”
Ed Bucks donates to Democrats’ candidates
Buck has donated huge sums of money to Democratic candidates and the party in recent years, reports nonpartisan group OpenSecrets, which monitors political funding in the US.
In 2017, he gave more than $10,000 to the Getting Stuff Done, the political action committee that funded the campaign of openly bisexual Democratic senator Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.
He also donated $2,700 to California representative Ted Lieu of California, and $1,000 each to representatives Jimmy Gomez of California, Pete Aguilar of California, and Raja Krishnamoorthi of Illinois.
In 2015, he donated $2,700 to Hillary Clinton’s campaign and $1,000 to Barack Obama in 2008.
Buck switched his allegiance to the Democratic party, reportedly due to dissatisfaction with the GOP’s “intolerant” views.