'Vodka Mum' Toni Medrano commits suicide after Nancy Grace slam?
Published Jul 12 2012, 09:46 BST | By Zeba Blay Nancy Grace
has faced criticism following the apparent suicide of a Minnesota mother whose behaviour she slammed during a recent television broadcast.
Toni Medrano died on Saturday (July 7) at a hospital in Cottage Grove. She reportedly set herself on fire while visiting her mother in St. Paul Park five days earlier, and while an official cause of death is still pending the outcome of tests, the Ramsey County Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed that the 29-year-old died of "complications from thermal injuries".
Medrano's newborn son died in November last year, after the mother-of-four fell asleep with him on a couch. She is said to have been drinking heavily the night before.
An autopsy later showed that 3-week-old Adrian Medrano died of "asphyxia due to being laid upon while sleeping with an adult."Former Dancing with the Stars contestant
Grace blamed Medrano for the child's death on a June 11 broadcast
of her HLN
TV show, dubbing her the "vodka mommy".
She added: "I don't care if she was driving a car, holding a pistol or holding a fifth of vodka. [It] doesn't matter to me. The baby is dead at the hands of the mommy."
Grace also questioned why murder charges had not been brought against Medrano during a heated debate with lawyers.
According to The Huffington Post
, Medrano fell into a depression after the broadcast, receiving internet comments fueled by Grace's tirade.
"The things people said were horrible," Medrano's husband said of the backlash to the St Paul Pioneer Press
. "It shows that cyberbullying happens to adults, too."
Police are still investigating Medrano's reported suicide, with St Paul Park police chief Michael Monahan admitting that Grace's show "very well could" have contributed to the woman's death.
HLN has not yet commented on the allegations.