Lee Thompson Young suffered from bipolar disorder before suicide: coroner’s report
The ‘Rizzoli & Isles’ star, 29, was taking medication for bipolar disorder and was also suffering from depression when he shot himself in the head in August, a report from the Los Angeles County Coroner said. Lithium and Quetiapine Fumarate were detected in his blood, but no traces of opiates, alcohol, cocaine or other drugs were found in his system.
Lee Thompson Young, 29, was taking medication for bipolar disorder and was also suffering from depression when he killed himself in August, a report from the Los Angeles County Coroner said.
LOS ANGELES — The star of TNT’s “Rizzoli & Isles” who committed suicide in August had a history of bipolar disorder, authorities revealed Tuesday.
Lee Thompson Young, 29, was taking medication for the condition and also suffered from depression when he shot himself in his right temple while sitting on the couch of his North Hollywood bachelor apartment, a report from the Los Angeles County Coroner said.
“He was known to take his medications” and “appeared okay” when he last spoke with his doctor on Aug. 14, the report said.
Lithium capsules and Quetiapine Fumarate tablets were found in his residence, and both drugs were detected in his blood.
No traces of opiates, alcohol, cocaine or other drugs were found in his system.
Young was found Aug. 19 after he missed a call time on a production set and his manager requested a welfare check. The last time anyone spoke to him was Aug. 17.
Coroner officials said Young’s doctor was not aware of any financial problems or suicidal threats or attempts.
The gun recovered from the scene was a 40 caliber Sig Sauer semi-automatic registered to Young, the coroner report said.
The actor didn’t leave a suicide note, and his specific motive remains a mystery, officials said.
“He was ill. You don’t just do this,” a close friend who’s known Young since he was a teenager previously told the Daily News.
The friend said Young was religious, following the faith practiced by the Yoruba tribe of Nigeria and southern Benin.
Young was the star of TNT’s ‘Rizzoli & Isles’ (pictured). Production of the hit Boston police drama was temporarily halted after his death. Young rose to fame in the leading role of the Disney Channel series ‘The Famous Jett Jackson.’
He took a trip to a Yoruba village with him mom several months before his death and attended a “beautiful ceremony,” the friend said.
“He was very close to his mother and sister,” the friend said. “He had a great support network. He had his local priest and lots of good friends who were like family, including the ‘Rizzoli’ cast.”
The coroner report released Tuesday said investigators found a “makeshift altar” in Young’s closet with “miscellaneous religious items displayed.”
The friend said a prior media report linking Young’s depression to his faith was “a gross mischaracterization.”
A better explanation, the friend said, is that Young was drawn to his faith because he yearned for enlightenment and may have been “too sensitive” for this world.
“He wouldn’t even play characters that were bad. He was all about good,” the friend said.
Production of the hit Boston police drama “Rizzoli & Isles” was temporarily halted after Young’s death.
“Everyone at ‘Rizzoli & Isles’ is devastated by the news of the passing of Lee Thompson Young. We are beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man,” TNT, Warner Bros. and executive producer Janet Tamaro said in a joint statement.
“He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and off-screen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace. We send our deepest condolences and thoughts to his family, to his friends and, most especially, to his beloved mother,” the statement said.
Young, originally from South Carolina, rose to fame in the leading role of the Disney Channel series “The Famous Jett Jackson” and also portrayed running back Chris Comer in the 2004 movie “Friday Night Lights.”
Actor Jordan Bridges, who plays Frankie Rizzoli, the onscreen brother of series co-star Angie Harmon, posted a final farewell on Twitter.
“Goodbye @Lee_T_Young,” Bridges tweeted in August. “I am shattered at your startling departure. It was an honor to work with you. Love and Prayers to your family.”