Yesterday (January 7), an unidentified Black man was found dead in the Los Angeles home of prominent Democratic fundraiser Ed Buck. It is the second time a Black man has died in his home.
The man was discovered not long after midnight in Buck’s West Hollywood apartment after someone called 911, reports NBC News. The cause of death is still unknown.
According to The Advocate:
Buck, a White man in his 60s, was investigated previously by authorities after the death of Gemmel Moore, who died of a methamphetamine overdose in Buck’s home in July 2017. Since Moore’s death was classified as an accidental overdose, numerous young Black gay men have alleged that Buck has a fetish for shooting drugs into Black men he picks up off the street or on hookup sites. Moore had written [in his jounal] about Buck injecting him with dangerous drugs before his death.
Moore, whose body was found unclothed on a mattress with drug paraphernalia nearby, worked as an escort, reports the Los Angeles Times.
Per The Advocate:
Buck’s attorney, Seymour Amster, characterized the death today as an accidental overdose and said Buck is cooperating with investigators. “From what I know, it was an old friend who died of an accidental overdose, and, unfortunately, we believe that the substance was ingested at some place other than the apartment,” Amster told the Los Angeles Times. “The person came over intoxicated.”
The Advocate reports that community activists, including Jasmyne Cannick, have accused Los Angeles officials of not prosecuting Buck for the 2017 incident because he has made sizable donations to prominent politicians such as Hillary Clinton, former California Governor Jerry Brown and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. Federal election records show that Buck has donated more than $53,000 to Democratic candidates and to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee since 2008, according to NBC News. He is also an advocate for LGBTQ rights and well-known in LGBTQ political circles.
If another young, Black gay man overdoses or worse dies at Democratic donor Ed Buck’s apartment it’s going to be the fault of the sheriff’s dept and L.A. District Atty for not stopping him when they had the opportunity to. #GemmelMoore #Justice4Gemmel pic.twitter.com/jlbS2KTvNe
rnt— Jasmyne Cannick (@Jasmyne) July 28, 2018
#EdBuck remember the name & lers hold the L.A. County district attorney accountable, why has a SECOND young Black man died in his home & nothing has been done! Oh he’s a political donor & the victims are young, poor & Black? https://t.co/fQ3RHKD96R
rnt— bevysmith (@bevysmith) January 8, 2019
The investigation of the latest death is still underway and the Los Angeles LGBT Center issued a statement asking the Sheriff’s Department to “fully investigate this tragedy and aggressively seek justice wherever the investigation might lead.”