A dead man was found early Monday in the Los Angeles-area apartment of the Democratic fundraiser Ed Buck, authorities said — the second time a body has been discovered in his home in the last year and a half.
The dead man, whose identity wasn’t disclosed, was found at 1:05 a.m. (4:05 a.m. ET) in Buck’s apartment in West Hollywood after someone called 911, said Los Angeles County sheriff’s Deputy Charles Moore, who said that while the Homicide Bureau was investigating, the cause of death remained unknown.
Federal election records show that Buck, 63, who has advocated for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues for decades, has donated more than $53,000 to Democratic candidates and to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee since 2008.
In July 2017, authorities cleared Buck in the death of Gemelle Moore, 26, a gay male escort whose body was found in the same apartment after investigators declared his death to have been the result of an accidental overdose of crystal methamphetamine.
Investigators reopened the case last year after Moore’s friends and family raised concerns that his political connections might have contributed to the decision. Prosecutors declined to bring charges in July, saying there was insufficient evidence. Buck resigned last year as a member of the steering committee of the Stonewall Democratic Club, a Los Angeles LGBT political group, in the wake of the questions surrounding Moore’s death.
The sheriff’s department said Monday that Buck was present during both incidents and that investigators were reviewing the 2017 case again.
Buck’s attorney, Seymour Amster, told NBC News on Monday that Buck wasn’t in custody and hadn’t been charged in connection with Monday’s death. He said the man was a “longtime friend” of Buck’s who asked to come over.
“Ed was reluctant, but the friend was insistent, so Ed allowed the friend to come over,” Amster said. A short time later, the man “began exhibiting bizarre behavior,” which prompted Buck to call 911, Amster said.