Details of Naomi Judd's death ruled too distressing to be made public

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By Asiya Ali

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The family of Naomi Judd has been granted a temporary order to keep the details of her death private.

The 76-year-old country singer - who battled depression and mental illness for years - died on April 30 and her family filed a request in Williamson County, Tennessee, on Monday (August 1) to keep any investigation records into her suicide private.

Court documents obtained by NBC reported that the sheriff's office that responded to Judd's death collected photo and video evidence, in addition to other documents, that if released would cause "emotional distress, pain, and mental anguish."

Judd's husband, Larry Strickland, and her two daughters, Wynonna Judd, 58, and Ashley Judd, 54, argued in the court filings that records could depict the death of the singer in a "graphic manner".

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Credit: AFF / Alamy.

Legal documents state that the temporary order stops Williamson County Sherriff Dusty Rhoades from "disclosing certain records and other materials regarding the death of Naomi Judd pursuant to one or more Public Records Act requests".

A date for the family's motion is scheduled for September 12 and until then, the court ordered the county to warn anyone who requested documents related to Judd's death under the state's open records law of decision.

"Moreover, the release of these records would continue to cause the entire family pain for years to come," the court filing also explained.

Her daughters announced on April 30 that they lost their mother to "the disease of mental illness," and Ashley later revealed that her mother died by suicide.

"Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness," Ashley and Wynonna said in a statement on Instagram.

"We are shattered. We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory," they added.

This isn't the first time the family has taken measures to keep the materials surrounding Judd's death confidential. In an interview with Diane Sawyer, Ashley shared her mother's cause of death to stop it from being publicized without the family's consent.

"My mother used a firearm, so that's the piece of information that we are very uncomfortable sharing," Ashley said. "But understand we're in a position that if we don't say it, someone else is going to."

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Naomi Judd with daughters Ashley and Wynonna. Credit: Abaca Press / Alamy

Judd ended her life a day before she and her daughter Wynonna, of the Grammy-winning duo The Judds, were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

She had been vocal about her struggle with depression over the years. In 2016, the singer revealed to Good Morning America that her severe depression left her housebound for years, and it got worse after she and her daughter decided to stop touring in 2011.

"[Fans] see me in rhinestones, you know, with glitter in my hair, that really is who I am," she told host Robin Roberts at the time. "But then I would come home and not leave the house for three weeks, and not get out of my pajamas, and not practice normal hygiene."

"It was really bad. When I came off the tour, I went into this deep, dark, absolutely terrifying hole and I couldn’t get out. I spent two years on my couch,” she added.

Our thoughts continue to go out to Judd's family, friends and fans.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, please reach out for help and contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, text HOME to 741741, or visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources

Featured image credit: AFF / Alamy

Details of Naomi Judd's death ruled too distressing to be made public

vt-author-image

By Asiya Ali

Article saved!Article saved!

The family of Naomi Judd has been granted a temporary order to keep the details of her death private.

The 76-year-old country singer - who battled depression and mental illness for years - died on April 30 and her family filed a request in Williamson County, Tennessee, on Monday (August 1) to keep any investigation records into her suicide private.

Court documents obtained by NBC reported that the sheriff's office that responded to Judd's death collected photo and video evidence, in addition to other documents, that if released would cause "emotional distress, pain, and mental anguish."

Judd's husband, Larry Strickland, and her two daughters, Wynonna Judd, 58, and Ashley Judd, 54, argued in the court filings that records could depict the death of the singer in a "graphic manner".

wp-image-1263153234 size-full
Credit: AFF / Alamy.

Legal documents state that the temporary order stops Williamson County Sherriff Dusty Rhoades from "disclosing certain records and other materials regarding the death of Naomi Judd pursuant to one or more Public Records Act requests".

A date for the family's motion is scheduled for September 12 and until then, the court ordered the county to warn anyone who requested documents related to Judd's death under the state's open records law of decision.

"Moreover, the release of these records would continue to cause the entire family pain for years to come," the court filing also explained.

Her daughters announced on April 30 that they lost their mother to "the disease of mental illness," and Ashley later revealed that her mother died by suicide.

"Today we sisters experienced a tragedy. We lost our beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness," Ashley and Wynonna said in a statement on Instagram.

"We are shattered. We are navigating profound grief and know that as we loved her, she was loved by her public. We are in unknown territory," they added.

This isn't the first time the family has taken measures to keep the materials surrounding Judd's death confidential. In an interview with Diane Sawyer, Ashley shared her mother's cause of death to stop it from being publicized without the family's consent.

"My mother used a firearm, so that's the piece of information that we are very uncomfortable sharing," Ashley said. "But understand we're in a position that if we don't say it, someone else is going to."

wp-image-1263153833 size-full
Naomi Judd with daughters Ashley and Wynonna. Credit: Abaca Press / Alamy

Judd ended her life a day before she and her daughter Wynonna, of the Grammy-winning duo The Judds, were inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

She had been vocal about her struggle with depression over the years. In 2016, the singer revealed to Good Morning America that her severe depression left her housebound for years, and it got worse after she and her daughter decided to stop touring in 2011.

"[Fans] see me in rhinestones, you know, with glitter in my hair, that really is who I am," she told host Robin Roberts at the time. "But then I would come home and not leave the house for three weeks, and not get out of my pajamas, and not practice normal hygiene."

"It was really bad. When I came off the tour, I went into this deep, dark, absolutely terrifying hole and I couldn’t get out. I spent two years on my couch,” she added.

Our thoughts continue to go out to Judd's family, friends and fans.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, please reach out for help and contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, text HOME to 741741, or visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources

Featured image credit: AFF / Alamy