THE BLAZE - CORTNEY WEIL - FEB 22, 2023
Former President Clinton aide who had ties to Epstein died by suicide, police say, though questions remain
A former special assistant to President Bill Clinton who also had ties to Jeffrey Epstein died by suicide, a new sheriff's office report says, though questions regarding his death remain.
On May 7, 2022, 59-year-old Mark Middleton was discovered deceased at the Heifer Ranch in Perryville, Arkansas, about 30 miles from his home in Little Rock. He was reportedly found sitting next to a tree with an extension cord wrapped around his neck. The other end of the cord was attached to a tree limb above him.
"I could see the male was obviously deceased," Perry County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy Lawson wrote in the report. Lawson arrived on the scene after ranch employee Samantha McElroy, 46, reported an abandoned vehicle — a black BMW SUV, which deputies later discovered belonged to Middleton.
Though the extension cord may have contributed to his demise, Middleton's ultimate cause of death was the gunshot wound he sustained to his chest, an assessment Sheriff Scott Montgomery made just a few weeks after Middleton was found.
"He died from a self-inflicted shotgun wound to the chest," Montgomery said last June.
"It was very evident that the shotgun worked because there was not a lot of blood or anything on the scene. You can tell the shotgun blast was on his chest. You can tell that because there is a hole in the chest, and pellets came out the back of his back. It was definitely self-inflicted, in our opinion."
A lawsuit filed by the Middleton family that same month likewise stated that he "died by suicide," the Western Journal reported.
Despite the report from the sheriff's office and a corroborating statement from the family, many people still have questions regarding Middleton's death. The main cause of confusion is that the weapon Middleton allegedly used to shoot himself was never recovered. Investigators did find "three boxes of 12GA buckshot" in the trunk of his car "but no weapon," Lawson stated.
Middleton is also just one of several former Clinton associates who died under supposedly suspicious circumstances. The death of Clinton's former deputy White House counsel Vince Foster in July 1993 was ruled a suicide by all five government groups empaneled to investigate it, though some critics and media outlets still claimed that there had been a cover-up because no fingerprints could be found on the weapon in Foster's hand.
Middleton had his own connections to Epstein. Not only did Middleton admit Epstein into the White House on seven of Epstein's 17 visits there, but Middleton himself is listed on flight logs of Epstein's "Lolita Express," the plane used to transport various high-profile figures to an island where many then sexually abused underage girls. Former President Clinton is listed on the flight logs as well.
Middleton worked for Clinton until 1995. Soon after Middleton's departure from the White House, accusations began to swirl that he had abused his position to impress business clients. He later returned to Arkansas and joined his family's HVAC business.
Reports indicate that Middleton had been suffering from depression shortly before his death. He is survived by his wife, Rhea, and two daughters, Lindsay, 18, and Lauren, 20.