A man in Texas who was convicted of child sexual assault died after he chugged down a mystery liquid while the verdict was being read to the courtroom.
On Thursday, 57-year-old Edward Leclair was being read his guilty verdict in a Denton County courtroom. NBC News reports that after the first count was read aloud, Leclair took out a bottle of what looked like a clear liquid and began drinking it. Leclair, who used to serve the Navy as a mechanic, was charged two years ago with five counts of sexual assault on a minor between the age of 14 and 17.
After more than years of deliberations, Leclair was looking at a sentence of possibly 100 years. The entire time, Leclair has maintained that he is innocent.
“I looked over and noticed him drinking,” said Leclair’s lawyer, Mike Howard, NBC News reports. “His hand was shaking. At the time, I thought it was shaking because of the verdict. Then he kept drinking and drinking.”
After drinking most of what was in the bottle, he was sent to his cell on standby for sentencing, NBC New reports. Howard and Leclair spoke for a bit in the cell, where Howard said his client looked “dejected and in shell shock — all the things you would expect, NBC News reports.”
When the courtroom returned, a bailiff said Leclair was throwing up. Leclair was taken to a hospital, and 45 minutes later, Leclair was pronounced dead. There are currently no details on how he died or what caused his death.