Talk show host Nancy Grace has delivered her warped sense of "justice" and claimed yet another victim. Toni Medrano, 29, of Minnesota, set herself afire and died just weeks after being ridiculed as "vodka mom" on national television for drunkenly rolling onto and asphyxiating her three-week-old son in November.
About a week after she was charged, flame-throwing CNN talk-show host Nancy Grace featured the case on her show. (See the video above.) Grace held up a fifth of cheap vodka and said she was going to see how many glasses she could get out of the bottle.
She poured at least nine as the words "vodka mom" appeared on the screen.
Grace said during the show that she had attempted to contact Medrano at her house. She then spoke to a reporter from her show and two officials unfamiliar with the case as she theorized that Medrano had been sleeping on her child for hours. "There was a long period of time that baby's life could have been saved," Grace said.
She said the baby was purple and one guest theorized that was from a "pooling of blood" because he had been dead for so long. "Why no murder one charges?" Grace asked, referring to the charge for premeditated murder.
Medrano's younger sister described Toni as being visibly shaken as she watched Grace's show discussing her case. Toni then told her sister that "life wasn't worth living," and that she "couldn't live with herself."
This should not be construed as an effort to excuse Medrano's actions leading to her child's death in any way. I simply despise Nancy Grace's efforts to sensationalize tragedies for entertainment and ratings purposes, and setting herself up in the role of television studio judge, prosecutor, and jury to do so. These are people's lives she is using to make a fast buck, consequences be damned.
Grace's previous victim, Melinda Duckett, the 21-year old mother of a missing two-year old son, Trenton, fatally shot herself after being battered by tough questions from the talk-show host in 2006.
Grace accused Duckett of hiding something, apparently because of her vague answers and unwillingness to take a lie-detector test. Police later named Duckett the prime suspect in the boy's disappearance.
Duckett committed suicide the day the taped interview was scheduled to air, Sept. 8, 2006. Soon after, her family filed a lawsuit charging Grace with the wrongful death of Duckett.
"Nancy Grace and the others, they just bashed her to the end," Duckett's grandfather, Bill Eubank, said following her death.
After Melinda Duckett's suicide, Grace told her viewers that "guilt" had driven the young woman to take her own life.
The lawsuit filed by Duckett's family against Grace and CNN was settled in 2010 for $200,000.
Probably needless to say, but calls and emails to Nancy Grace and her network went unanswered.