Police: Missouri auditor spokesman dead in apparent suicide
JEFFERSON CITY, Missouri (AP) — The spokesman for the Missouri auditor’s office has died from a gunshot wound in what police described Monday as an apparent suicide. The death comes about a month after the state auditor also killed himself.
Robert “Spence” Jackson was found dead Sunday evening in his home after police responded to a well-being check, the Jefferson City Police Department said in a written statement. Police said they are investigating the case as a suicide.
Police spokesman Capt. Doug Shoemaker said investigators found a note, but he declined to say what it said.
Jackson’s boss, Auditor Tom Schweich, fatally shot himself on Feb. 26 at his home in the St. Louis suburb of Clayton in what police also have described as a suicide.
Jackson, 44, had remained as the auditor’s office spokesman after Schweich’s death. Shoemaker said Jackson’s mother called police Sunday after not being able to reach him.
Schweich’s death has roiled the Missouri Republican Party as it prepares for an important 2016 election that will feature contests for president, U.S. Senate, governor and most of Missouri’s other statewide executive offices.
Just minutes before Schweich’s death, Schweich had told an Associated Press reporter that he wanted to go public with allegations that the chairman of the Missouri Republican Party, John Hancock, had been telling people last year that Schweich was Jewish. Schweich, who was Christian, said he perceived the remarks to be part of an anti-Semitic whispering campaign against him.