Texan convicted of child sex crimes drinks liquid in court and dies

A 57-year-old man on trial for child molestation in Texas drank an unknown liquid in the courtroom and died later that day, the WFAA reported Friday.

Frisco’s Edward Peter Leclair was facing multiple counts of single-victim assault, offenses that occurred over a two-month period in 2016, Denton County Jail records show, according to the outlet.

He was arrested in 2018 and jury selection began Monday at the Denton County Courts Building.

According to First Assistant District Attorney Jamie Beck of the Denton County District Attorney’s Office, the jury walked in, sat down, and the defendant and his attorney stood up.

Moments later, Judge Lee Gabriel began to read out the verdict that Leclair was guilty on all counts.

“It was during this process that he had a bottle of water with him at the lawyers’ table, and he drank it,” Beck recalled, adding, “It wasn’t like he just taking sips of water, literally throwing it back, so to speak.

The man would never have taken a sip from the bottle before.

Leclair was taken to a holding cell and an investigator then asked a bailiff to check on the man due to the incident.

He seemed to look “gray,” Beck said, but he was alive. Leclair was taken to hospital and died there.

The Texas Rangers are investigating the case, Fox 4 reported, and Beck noted the water bottle was taken as evidence.

In its description of child sexual abuse, the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN) states, “A child cannot consent to any form of sexual activity, period.

“When an abuser engages with a child in this way, they are committing a crime that can have lasting effects on the victim for years to come,” the organization’s website states.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “about 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 13 boys in the United States experience child sexual abuse.”


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