Troubled country music singer Mindy McCready died Sunday afternoon (Feb. 17) in an apparent suicide. She was 37 years old.
Several Twitter posts, including possibly the earliest one from Fox17 Nashville reporter Stacy McCloud, preceded confirmation of the singer's death from her brother (to the New York Daily News). TMZ posted a statement from the Cleburne County Sheriff’s Office detailing the tragic event.
According to the statement, Cleburne County Sheriff’s Deputies were summoned to McCready's home in Heber Springs, Ark., after neighbors reported hearing shots fired at her house. She was pronounced dead at the scene. The cause of death appeared to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. The body was transported to the state crime lab in Little Rock and an autopsy and full investigation into her death was promised.
McCready's death came nearly five weeks after the death of her boyfriend, 34-year-old record producer David Wilson. Wilson was also discovered dead from a gunshot wound to the head in the house they shared. As of the time of McCready's death, Cleburne County law enforcement had not ruled out murder in her boyfriend's case and was actively investigating the man's death.
Cleburne County Sheriff Marty Moss told the National Enquirer: “This is a very high-profile case and we need to make sure it’s investigated as thoroughly as possible. It could take weeks for the state crime lab to complete their tests on Mr. Wilson’s body, and if you’ll notice, it was Mindy McCready’s spokesperson – not anyone involved in the investigation – who made the determination that Mr. Wilson’s death was due to a self-inflicted gunshot wound.”
Although no finger was pointed at McCready, the Enquirer also reported that the household had lately been the place of heated arguments and fighting, possibly due, according to a source, to McCready's discovery of Wilson having an alleged affair. Wilson had also allegedly packed and left the home and, after a few days, returned but only to tell McCready he was leaving her for good.
McCready had just checked out of a rehab facility she had entered shortly after Wilson's death.
It was not her first stint at such a treatment facility. In fact, McCready became more famous for her tabloid-headlining life than she ever had as a country singer. Still, she scored a string of hits on the country music charts starting in 1996, including the No. 1 hit "Girls Do It All The Time" and recorded five studio albums over the years, 1996's double-platinum-selling Ten Thousand Angels being the biggest success.
But the hits stopped coming. She recorded her last charting song in 2002, "Maybe, Maybe Not." But her songs hadn't seen the inside of the Top 40 since 1998, the same year she broke up with actor Dean Cain.
But those headlines kept coming...
Frequent run-ins with law enforcement and legal battles over the years kept popping up after that. And in 2008, the New York Daily News published an expose that alleged baseball pitcher Roger Clemens had had a years-long affair with the "A Girl's Gotta Do (What A Girl's Gotta Do)" singer that started when she was 15. McCready would later state that she met Clemens when she was 16 but that a physical relationship had not occurred until years later.
That scandal was conflated with the emergence of a sex tape with a guy called "Peter." Vivid Entertainment, the home of celebrity sex tapes from people like Kim Kardashian and Kendra Wilkinson, released the film in 2010.
McCready appeared on "Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew" in its third season.
David Wilson and the singer had been in a relationship for two years at the time of his death in January. He was the father of McCready's youngest child, Zayne, who is nine months old.
Mindy McCready also left behind a second son, 6-year-old Zander, whose father is Billy McKnight.
Both Zayne and Zander are currently under foster supervision.