Scalia's son: Conspiracy theories about father are 'hurtful'

By Shawn Price  |  Feb. 19, 2016 at 6:14 AM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 19 (UPI) -- One of the sons of the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said conspiracy theories about his father's death have become "hurtful distractions."

Eugene Scalia was on Wednesday's The Laura Ingraham Show and said he agrees with the official ruling on his father's death.

"Our family just has no doubt he died of natural causes," he said.

"My father was like a force of nature," he told Ingraham. "He seemed sort of a permanent institution. He was a month shy of 80 years old. He lived to see an incredibly full and active life, but I knew, and he knew, that he was at a place in life where he could be taken from this world at any time -- and that's what happened last week."

Conspiracy theories began to swirl on Saturday after Presidio County Judge Cinderela Guevara pronounced Scalia dead without seeing the body, and also chose not to request an autopsy partly to respect the family's wishes. But the county sheriff also told her "there were no signs of foul play or struggle, and that it appeared that Justice Scalia had died peacefully in his sleep."

William O. Ritchie, former Washington, D.C., Police Department's head of criminal investigations, stirred things up on Facebook: "You have a justice of the peace pronounce death while not being on the scene and without any medical training opining that the justice died of a heart attack."

Scalia quickly scolded ideas of foul play.

"It's, I think a distraction from a great man and his legacy at a time when there's so much to be said about that and to help people even more fully appreciate that. And, on a personal level, I think it's a bit of a hurtful distraction for a family that's mourning," Scalia said.

Scalia said the loss has been hardest on his mother, who is getting through it with a combination of faith and family.

"What I think about and worry about most right now is my mom, not my dad," Scalia said.

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