Pharmaceuticals executive Gigi Jordan, who was convicted in the death of her young autistic son, committed suicide less than a day after the Supreme Court revoked her bail and while her manslaughter appeal was still pending before the high court.
Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor ordered the bail of Jordan rescinded late in the day on Dec. 29, 2022, as The Epoch Times reported, a little over a week after the justice unexpectedly ordered her freed.
The wealthy businesswoman filed a petition with the Supreme Court this past Nov. 4 asking the justices to grant oral argument in the appeal of her manslaughter conviction, which was based on a claim that she was denied her constitutional right to a public trial. Despite the bail reversal, the high court had been scheduled to consider the request on Jan. 6.
Jordan, 62, was discovered dead Dec. 30, in an apartment in Brooklyn, New York, the New York Daily News reported. A note was recovered at the scene.
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in New York City confirmed the manner of death was suicide. The cause of death was “Asphyxia by covering of head with plastic bag and displacement of oxygen by nitrogen gas,” spokesperson Julie Bolcer told The Epoch Times on Jan. 4.
The Epoch Times has also reached out for comment to Jordan’s attorney in New York, Norman Siegel, and her Supreme Court counsel, Michael B. Kimberly.
Siegel told the New York Daily News the passing of his client was “unbelievably sad.”
“Gigi Jordan had a lot to offer society,” he said. “In the end, she did not have her opportunity to contribute to society.”
Siegel told the media outlet that Jordan had tried to call him about 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 29, the day the Supreme Court reversed its bail order.
“She said, ‘Did you call me?’ I said ‘Oh, it must’ve been a butt call.’ So we kind of laughed,” Siegel said.
“She sounded in good spirits. I said, ‘I’ll talk to you soon.’”
Siegel said he received a call from an unidentified person in Jordan’s home the morning of Dec. 30, “saying they called 911 and the cops were there. So it was jarring and sad.”
Jordan was convicted by a state jury of giving a fatal dose of drugs to Jude Mirra, her 8-year-old autistic child, in 2010 and was given an 18-year custodial sentence in 2015. Her defense characterized what happened as a mercy killing. At the time of her death, Jordan was at liberty, subject to a secured bond, ankle bracelet monitoring, and a court-imposed curfew.
After Jordan was convicted, a judge determined that Jordan had been imprisoned unlawfully because there were irregularities during her trial.
Her lawyers argued that Jordan was denied her Sixth Amendment right to a public trial because of what they called “a shocking courtroom closure in the middle of the guilt phase of … Jordan’s closely watched criminal trial.”
The trial judge ordered the courtroom cleared and heard arguments from both sides on several issues, including the prosecution’s claim of defense counsel misconduct.
The New York Appellate Division overruled Jordan’s objections to the closure and found her public-trial right wasn’t violated because what was discussed in the absence of the public was the same kind of material that would be legitimately raised in a sidebar with lawyers or in a conference in chambers.
On Dec. 19, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit found that Jordan’s imprisonment was not unlawful and ordered Jordan to report to prison immediately. Sotomayor stayed the circuit order the next day and directed both sides to provide written submissions regarding Jordan’s emergency application for bail.
On Dec. 29, Sotomayor reversed the bail order without explaining why.
This article by Matthew Vadum appeared Jan. 3, 2023, in The Epoch Times. It was updated Jan. 4, 2023.