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HOME > Megan Wants a Millionaire

Accused 'Megan' murderer Ryan Jenkins dead from apparent suicide


By Christopher Rocchio, 08/24/2009 

Ryan Jenkins, the Megan Wants a Millionaire bachelor who was charged with murdering his ex-wife and had eluded authorities, was found dead over the weekend from an apparent suicide.

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The 32-year-old Calgary, Alberta native was found dead on Sunday after allegedly hanging himself in the secluded Thunderbird Motel in Hope, British Columbia, Orange County district attorney's office spokeswoman Farrah Emami told The Associated Press.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police confirmed "that a deceased person that was found in a motel in Hope, British Columbia is, in fact, Ryan Jenkins," according to Sgt. Duncan Pond.

"At this present time the investigation into the circumstances of his death is continuing, but preliminary evidence suggests that he took his own life," Pond said.  "Any further details will not be released at this time as this investigation remains in its infancy."

After initially being dubbed a "person of interest" by authorities, Jenkins was charged with murder on Thursday in the death of Jasmine Fiore -- a 28-year-old swimsuit model whose body was found August 15 stuffed in a suitcase in a Buena Park, CA trash can.

Police alleged Jenkins removed Fiore's teeth and fingers prior to disposing of her body, presumably to hinder efforts to identify her, however authorities used the serial numbers on her breast implants to identify the body.

A preliminary coroner's report showed Fiore was strangled. 

Jenkins became the focus of an extensive manhunt on the U.S. and Canadian border after his car and an empty boat trailer belonging to him were found abandoned at a marina in Blaine, WA and a man matching his description was seen arriving in Point Roberts, WA on a boat registered to him on Wednesday.

While Blaine shares a border with Canada and is a major border crossing location, Point Roberts is a remote unincorporated community on a peninsula that only has land access from Canada.  They are separated by an approximately 10-mile boat ride across Boundary Bay.

The U.S. Coast Guard briefly pursued Jenkins' boat off the Washington coast on Wednesday but it eluded them and they were unable to verify he was on the vessel, according to prosecutors. 

The Thunderbird Motel is located roughly 100 miles from Point Roberts, WA and Michelle Beck, who lives near the motel, told The AP that the type of people who frequent the establishment are "kind of seedy - lots of drugs addicts and people down on their luck."

Jenkins was identified through fingerprints, according to The AP, which added it is unknown how long he was at the motel before his body was discovered.

Despite Jenkins apparent suicide, police continue to investigate to ensure he acted alone in Fiore's death, however The AP reported they do not expect to find anything.

"We continue to believe that Mr. Jenkins was solely responsible," said Emami told The AP.

Jenkins and Fiore were married in a quickie Las Vegas wedding in March after he had finished filming Megan Wants a Millionaire, which had billed him as a "smooth operator" with a personal net worth of $2.5 million.

While Fiore's mom Lisa Lepore has previously claimed the couple had the marriage annulled in May, there are no court records of an annulment in either Clark County, NV, which is where they were married, or in Los Angeles County, where they most recently lived, according to The AP.

Earlier this summer, Jenkins traveled to Mexico to film I Love Money 3 -- another VH1 reality show produced by 51 Minds Entertainment, the same production company behind Megan Wants a Millionaire

Jenkins reportedly returned from filming I Love Money 3 roughly four weeks ago and had been boasting that he had won the reality competition's $250,000 grand prize.

A 51 Minds spokesman told The New York Times Jenkins visited the company's Los Angeles production office to pick up a $5,200 "honorarium check" for his I Love Money 3 participation on August 12 but would not confirm reports that he won the competition.

After stating that it had not yet decided the show's future on Friday, VH1 canceled I Love Money 3 on Sunday.  The show had been scheduled to premiere in January.

Jenkins was one of 10 remaining suitors still vying for Megan Hauserman's heart when VH1 pulled Megan Wants a Millionaire from the air after police had initially named him a "person of interest" in Fiore's death.

The network permanently canceled Megan Wants a Millionaire, which had premiered earlier this month, after Jenkins was charged with murdering Fiore on Thursday.

(Photo credit VH1)


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