CLAYTON, Mo. – When Missouri’s former state Auditor Tom Schweich threatened to kill himself after those closest to him urged him to stay quiet on a whisper campaign he believed had been led against him, police here say it was not the first time he made such a threat.
On Tuesday, police in Clayton released their initial report on Schweich’s death. After numerous interviews and searches of his living quarters, phones and computers in St. Louis and Jefferson City, police said they believe what appeared to be the case when first responders found his body on top of a gun at his home in February: That Schweich had, in fact, taken his own life.
“The bottom line is this is a suicide, self-inflicted,” said Don Bass, a detective at the Clayton Police department.
Tom Bossch, who led the investigation into Schweich’s suicide, said Schweich had expressed suicidal thoughts to his wife and family members before February – prior to the brutal primary he had entered against Republican Catherine Hanaway for governor and prior to an alleged anti-Semitic “whisper campaign” that he was Jewish, which he had told those closet to him was being waged against him by John Hancock, chairman of the Missouri Republican Party.
“He had mentioned that he had those thoughts off and on” with family members, Bossch said.
Bass said he believed Schweich may have believed that there was such a campaign being waged against them, but that they only proof they found after scores of interviews and examining his digital footprint was a single affidavit signed by David Humphreys, a Joplin businessman who had contributed heavily to Schweich’s campaign.
Bass said police had just gotten ahold of Schweich’s work computer in St. Louis, and would be seizing his Jefferson City computer on Tuesday before closing the books on their investigation.
Police here added that they had found no link to Schweich’s suicide and the subsequent suicide of his spokesman, Spence Jackson, in Jefferson City about a month later and that their relationship did not extend beyond work in the auditor’s office.
Read the Clayton Police report: