Edward LeClair, 57, died after chugging a 'cloudy' liquid from a bottle as he was found guilty of five counts of child sexual assault. A medical examiner found his cause of death was the toxic effects of sodium nitrite

A sex offender who died after ‘chugging’ a cloudy liquid from a water bottle in a Texas court room after being found guilty of sexually assaulting a child ingested a lethal amount of sodium nitrite, a medical examiner has found. 

Edward LeClair, 57, started drinking the liquid after the jury found him guilty on the first count and continued glugging as the other counts were read on August 11, 2022. He collapsed in his cell and died soon after.  

The Tarrant County Medical Examiner’s office told DailyMail.com on Tuesday that the manner in which LeClair died was suicide and his cause of death was the toxic effects of sodium nitrite.

LeClair had been facing five counts of child sexual assault against one victim, which took place in 2016. First Assistant Attorney Jamie Beck from the Denton County District Attorney’s Office said at the time that initially the situation had been normal.

But when LeClair heard that he had been found guilty on the first count, he grabbed his bottle and ‘chugged’ the cloudy liquid down as he was found guilty on the other four counts.

Edward LeClair, 57, died after chugging a 'cloudy' liquid from a bottle as he was found guilty of five counts of child sexual assault. A medical examiner found his cause of death was the toxic effects of sodium nitrite

Edward LeClair, 57, died after chugging a ‘cloudy’ liquid from a bottle as he was found guilty of five counts of child sexual assault. A medical examiner found his cause of death was the toxic effects of sodium nitrite

LeClair had been waiting to hear the verdict at the 16th District Court in Denton, Texas, alongside his attorney when he started glugging the water

LeClair had been waiting to hear the verdict at the 16th District Court in Denton, Texas, alongside his attorney when he started glugging the water

‘It wasn’t like he was just taking sips of water. He was literally throwing it back, so to speak,’ Beck told WFAA at the time.

Beck explained that while those in the courtroom felt LeClair’s actions were odd, they thought it was just his way of dealing with the situation.

LeClair was taken back into a holding cell after the verdict was read, before officers decided to check on him because of his strange behavior.

He was found unconscious, with witnesses saying he had ‘gone gray’ and was rushed to Medical City Denton where he was pronounced dead.

Beck added:  ‘Our investigator noticed him chug the water. He told the bailiff he might want to go check on him. The bailiff did. 

‘He was unconscious in the holding cell. Shortly after entering the holdover cell, he started vomiting, and emergency services were called.’

Authorities in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania have ruled the death of one-time child actor Matthew Mindler a suicide

Matthew Mindler (pictured), 19, killed himself with sodium nitrate he bought on Amazon for $15. Lancaster County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled Mindler’s death to be suicide by sodium nitrate toxicity

In August last year, former child star Matthew Mindler  died by ingesting a lethal dose of sodium nitrate

Mindler is a former child actor who starred opposite Paul Rudd in 2011

In August last year, former child star Matthew Mindler, who starred in Our Idiot Brother alongside Paul Rudd in 2011, died by ingesting a lethal dose of sodium nitrate, according to the actor’s mother 

In August last year, former child star Matthew Mindler, 19, died by ingesting a lethal dose of sodium nitrate, according to the actor’s mother. The compound of chemicals is similar to sodium nitrite, which is synthetically made.

Monica told TMZ that her son searched online for information on the toxic compound as it pertained to suicide, and ending one’s life painlessly. 

She said that her son was able to obtain sodium nitrate by purchasing it on Amazon, at just $15 in which she says was enough to kill four people. 

She warned others the dangers and ‘hopes someone else’s life can be spared, ‘of folks know what warning signs to look for,’ she said.

Sodium nitrite is a salt-like substance that is yellowish-white, and odorless. The substance, often used to preserve foods such as, meat and some fish, can be bought over the internet. 

The sale of sodium nitrite has been banned from the online marketplace eBay since 2019, but is available on Amazon. 

The oxidizing agent, more often kills people accidentally, by causing low blood pressure and limits the flow of oxygen in the body, which can result in death, experts say.  

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