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Suicide or Murder? In the Case of Arturo Gatti, It's Still Unclear

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↵We know this much: Arturo Gatti is dead. How and why he's dead is still a mystery nearly 11 months after his body was found while on vacation in Brazil. According to a report today, Gatti's former trainer Pat Lynch and most of the Gatti family are convinced that the boxer did not, in fact, commit suicide like the Brazilian coroner eventually determined. Lynch told Chris Summers of the BBC that the second autopsy – done by pathologist Dr. Michael Baden yet never published – indicates foul play: ↵

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↵⇥The results have not been published but Lynch told the BBC: "The second autopsy discovered that, among other things, his Adam's apple was fractured, which is consistent with strangling and not hanging." ↵⇥

↵⇥He said there were also signs he had been beaten with a blunt instrument on the left side of his body and the back of his head. ↵⇥

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↵⇥"The handbag strap doesn't match the ligature mark on his neck," said Lynch. "There are so many unanswered questions." ↵⇥

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↵It should be noted that Gatti was on a "second honeymoon" with his wife, Amanda Rodrigues, and infant son when he died on July 11th. The two had gotten in a fight that night and, per reports, Gatti was intoxicated at the time of his death. The wife, a native Brazilian who Gatti met at, as the BBC called it, "a lapdancing club in New Jersey," was originally arrested in connection to the boxer's death. On July 30th of last year, the death was ruled a suicide and Rodrigues was cleared of all charges. ↵

↵Now, she wants his money. ↵

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↵It was widely reported that Gatti's will had changed just three weeks before his death to make Rodrigues and the couple's son, Junior, the primary beneficiaries of Gatti's estate worth more than six million dollars. The rest of his family doesn't want her to get a dime of that money: ↵

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↵⇥Next month, lawyers for the Gatti family will seek to prove Rodrigues…is an "unsuitable" person to inherit the money. ↵⇥

↵⇥She says she never had any crossed words with the Gatti family before he died, and added: "All their accusations towards me have happened after his death, which makes me believe that all they want is money... How come they hate me so much now?" ↵⇥

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↵Perhaps they hate you because the pathologist they hired thinks you killed him? Or, if the suicide story is indeed true – a story that none of the Gattis believe to be true – then your marriage to the former boxing champion could be seen as a primary cause of his demise. At the very least, your marriage coincided with the end of his career and, as you have told reporters, the start of depression, alcoholism and drug abuse. ↵
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↵For every claim by the wife that Gatti was troubled and gave up on life – she tells Summers, "it is the same thing as telling a seven-year-old that Superman or Spiderman committed suicide" – comes a counterclaim by a family member or friend who swears that he would never do that. So, nearly a year later, it remains a mystery. Rodrigues may not be in jail, but she may not get his money either. One thing in all of this is for certain; the night Gatti met Rodrigues was the most expensive trip to a lapdancing club in lapdancing club history.↵

This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.