It’s been 21 days since 26-year-old Gemmel Moore’s body was removed from the West Hollywood apartment of 63-year-old prominent Democratic political donor Ed Buck. Moore was homeless and worked as an escort.

Because Ed Buck is a white gay man in West Hollywood the police didn’t bother to investigate Moore’s death which was immediately classified as an accidental meth overdose by the Los Angeles County Coroner.

Shortly after Moore’s death the WeHo Times published a story that quoted Moore’s mother LaTisha Nixon as saying that she didn’t believe it was as cut and dry as the coroner’s office was making it.  She had learned that her son had been doing escort work and that her son’s friend was also engaged in similar activity—and that they had a client in common.

Speaking to the WeHo Times, Nixon said, “I called one of my son’s friends and was like, ‘who the hell is Edward Buck?’  And my son’s friend was like, ‘oh my God, that’s that white guy, that wealthy white politician guy… he was like ‘oh my God…’  When he calmed down, he told me that Ed Buck was one of my son’s clients and that Ed Buck was one of his clients as well.  [Buck] would have my son to go out to… Santa Monica Boulevard looking for young gay black guys so he could inject them with drugs, see their reaction and how [they] would react and take pictures of them.”

Moore’s own personal journal seemed to corroborate those statements.

Among Moore’s personal belongings collected by his family from the coroner’s was a journal in which he documents his feelings about the direction of his life and the role of Ed Buck in it.

In his journal, Moore wrote, “I honestly don’t know what to do. I’ve become addicted to drugs and the worst one at that,” a December entry reads. “Ed Buck is the one to thank. He gave me my first injection of crystal meth it was very painful, but after all the troubles, I became addicted to the pain and fetish/fantasy.”

His last entry, dated Dec. 3, 2016 reads: “If it didn’t hurt so bad, I’d kill myself but I’ll let Ed Buck do it for now.

In the aftermath of the WeHo Times article and the publishing of Moore’s journal, more victims of Ed Buck have privately come forward recounting similar stories about a man who has a Tuskegee Experiment like fetish and who likes to shoot drugs into young Black men that he picks up off the street or via dating hookup websites like Adam4Adam. The drugs are often times injected into the young men without their permission and while they’re unconscious after having been given GHB (also known as the “date rape” drug).

Local news showed video surveillance of Moore’s body being removed from Buck’s house as another young man was just arriving. Almost implying that Buck planned to keep on “partying” even after the death of Moore in his house.

Buck has since hired a criminal defense attorney who has been selling the idea that his client and Moore were “good friends” and that he’s a kindhearted man.

Seymour Amster said that while his client was in the apartment when Moore died, he had absolutely nothing to do with his overdose.

“It is unfortunate that the sheriff’s department is reacting to unsubstantiated allegations,” Amster said. “This is a tragedy, not a crime. He had no involvement in Gemmel Moore’s death. Unfortunately he opened his home to an individual who was troubled.”

“Whatever Moore did, Mr. Buck was not around when he did it. He was in the apartment in the time of his death. We’re not sure where Mr. Moore took whatever he took to cause the overdose.”

Buck has given hundreds of thousands of dollars of Democratic causes and candidates over the years. His Facebook page boasts dozens photos of him with everyone from presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to Governor Jerry Brown and even Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. One look at the list of political contributions from Buck to Democrats and it’s easy to see that while he may have a penchant for young Black men–that liking doesn’t extend to Black politicians of whom only one handful have received donations.

In online ads soliciting young Black gay men, Buck has referred to them as being a “6 foot nigger.”  On his Facebook page he jokes with friends using the n-word.

Ed Buck’s Adam4Adam ad

 

Ed Buck screen grab

 

Normally in politics we try to distance ourselves from white people who call Black people niggers or use the word nigger–not protect them with our silence.

With the exception of a very tailored and politically correct statement made by the local chapter of the Stonewall Democratic Club most of Los Angeles’ Democratic and LGBT community–which are often one in same–has had nothing to say publicly about Moore’s death. Politicians who have received thousands of dollars from Buck over the years–and even this year for their reelection campaigns–have been curiously silent.

Ed Buck (right) with LA City Councilmember Mike Bonin and LA County Accessor Jeffrey Prang

Jeffrey Prang, Los Angeles County Assessor who is running for reelection  and a longtime West Hollywood resident who served for a time as the city’s mayor and is a regular recipient of donations from Buck, told the L.A. Times that Buck has long been known as a “leader in the West Hollywood community and civil affairs for L.A. County.”

“Some of the things that I’ve read on online news sources seem difficult to believe, but I think the bottom line is a young life has been lost to drug addiction,” Prang said. “We should all mourn that.”

Depending on what homicide investigators conclude–Moore’s life might have been lost due to a form of murder or manslaughter–not drug addiction.

Ed Buck with Congressmember Adam Schiff and California Democrat Party Chairman Eric Bauman

Eric Bauman, chair of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party and California Democratic Party was reported to have been sobbing after being accused of “engaging in inappropriate behavior with 14- and 16-year-old boys.”

“I’m a pretty tough guy and I can take the attacks, lies, distortions, and mud that has been slung at me pretty well,” Bauman’s said in an email. “But to accuse me of child abuse, especially of this nature, is beyond the pale and 100% unacceptable.”

Perhaps that’s why Bauman, who is gay himself, hasn’t said one word publicly about one of his party’s top donors taking advantage of vulnerable young Black gay men.

But still–no one from the political party of allies, coalition building and we’re stronger together has uttered a public call for justice in the death of this young Black gay man.  Not even a politically correct statement asking for a thorough investigation into Gemmel’s death–or questioning why the police would just take the word of Ed Buck in the first place on the cause and manner of his death.  If that isn’t the epitome of white privilege.

And while there was no shortage of politicians in Los Angeles falling over themselves to issue statements and be seen in the media condemning the events of Charlottesville and President Trump’s response to them–locally they have seemingly looked the way and conveniently ignored that one of their top donors might be a serial predator who gets his kicks by drugging vulnerable young Black gay men.

Let me put it this way.  Using Ed Buck’s connection to former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, conservative news websites and blogs have exploited (and amplified) the story of the death of Gemmel Moore more than Democrats have–albeit for different reasons, but still.

There has only been one elected official who has received money from Ed Buck that I know of who has actually reached out and offered to make a contribution towards Gemmel Moore’s funeral experiences–Congresswoman Karen Bass who returned Ed Buck’s $250 donation and put it towards his funeral expenses.  Funeral expenses that are being paid for by donations to a GoFund Me account–not by the man who according to his attorney was a “good friend” of Gemmel Moore’s and who has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to various candidates and causes around town. I guess the poor homeless Black gay man who died in Buck’s house wasn’t cause enough to even care.

All that talk from Democrats about being allies and at edge of each other’s battles goes out the door and loses all credibility when in 2017, a Black gay man can die under more than suspicious circumstances and rather than acknowledge his death–everyone looks the other because they don’t want to alienate a consistent and top-giving political donor.

The silence from L.A.’s Democratic community on the death of Gemmel Moore and Ed Buck is no better than Black cis folk looking the other way because he was a gay sex worker and the white gays doing the same because he was Black.

The lives of Black queer folks can’t only matter when it’s February, pride season, convenient or popular.

The Ed Bucks of the world win when their money can literally mute an entire political party and it sends a message to victims that their lives are expendable and aren’t worth the bother.

This is why we lose and will continue to lose in 2018. We don’t practice what we preach.

Update:

Thank you to West Hollywood Councilmember John D’Amico for your contribution toward’s Gemmel’s funeral expenses.

Receipts—Partial List of Ed Buck’s Political Contributions

Click on section to open.

Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee
Amount Recv’d: $25,000
Date: 11/30/2015, 2/17/2016, 3/21/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Getting Stuff Done PAC
Amount Recv’d: $10,000
Date: 2/24/2015, 3/15/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ready PAC
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

House Majority PAC
Amount Recv’d: $5,000
Date: 10/6/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Equality California PAC
Amount Recv’d: $3,250
Date: 5/15/2013, 5/21/2013, 3/17/2014, 11/18/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

United for a Strong America PAC
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 6/10/2008
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Los Angeles County Central Democratic Committee
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 8/23/2012
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Democratic State Central Committee
Amount Recv’d: $2,600
Date: 10/16/2010, 10/28/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Stonewall Young Democrats
Amount Recv’d: $4,750
Date: 8/23/2010, 10/20/2013, 4/7/2014, 1/27/2015, 11/18/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Stonewall Democratic Club
Amount Recv’d: $13,725
Date: 4/15/2011, 3/31/2010, 3/19/2012, 2/9/2014, 5/6/2014, 6/30/2014, 4/23/2015, 12/1/2015, 12/25/2015, 4/23/2016, 4/26/2017, 7/14/2016, 12/7/2016, 6/6/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: Yes

Democratic Party of San Fernando Valley
Amount Recv’d: $350
Date: 11/8/2009
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Planned Parenthood Advocacy Project LA County Action Fund
Amount Recv’d: $390
Date: 10/2/2014, 9/9/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Hillary for America
Amount Recv’d: $2,950
Date: 4/24/2015, 5/6/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ready for Hillary
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 12/31/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Obama for America
Amount Recv’d: $1,500
Date: 4/24/2008, 5/25/2008, 8/29/2008
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Joe Donnelly for US Senate
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 5/31/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ted Lieu For Congress
Amount Recv’d: $8,000
Date: 2/11/2014, 8/19/2015, 3/20/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Adam Schiff For Congress
Amount Recv’d: $2,700
Date: 4/28/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Jerry McNeary For Congress
Amount Recv’d: $5,750
Date: 5/12/2008, 9/18/2009, 4/22/2010, 9/2/2010, 2/2/2011, 9/30/2011, 6/11/2012, 10/3/2012
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Lucibal Roybal-Allard for Congress
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 11/3/2009
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Kyrsten Sinema For Congress
Amount Recv’d: $7,700
Date: 1/27/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Peter Aguilar for Congress
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 5/26/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Tony Cardenas For Congress
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 3/25/2012
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Friends of Raja Krishnamoorthi for Congress
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 6/21/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Anthony Portantino Congressional Exploratory Committee
Amount Recv’d: $3,500
Date: 9/2/2010, 5/1/2011, 5/27/2011, 6/29/2011
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Bryan Caforio For Congress
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 10/10/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Susie Lee for Nevada
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 12/7/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Rosen for Nevada
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 10/10/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

 

Judge Songhai D. Miguda-Armstead
Amount Recv’d: $250
Date: 4/29/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No
*Songhai D. Miguda-Armstead is a judge on the Superior Court of Los Angeles County in California. She was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown (D) on July 16, 2015, and was re-elected in 2016.

Jerry Brown for Governor
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 10/17/2010
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Gavin Newsom for Governor
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 6/29/2011
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Gavin Newsom for Lieutenant Governor
Amount Recv’d: $100
Date: 6/4/2009
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Kevin de Leon for Lieutenant Governor
Amount Recv’d: $7,800
Date: 10/8/2013
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

John Perez for State Controller
Amount Recv’d: $14,600
Date: 11/18/2015, 6/8/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Scott Svonkin for Board of Equalization
Amount Recv’d: $5,500
Date: 6/16/2016, 5/31/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Kevin de Leon for State Senate
Amount Recv’d: $4,100
Date: 4/16/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Henry Stern State Senate
Amount Recv’d: $5,200
Date: 6/25/2015, 9/22/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Anthony Portantino for State Senate
Amount Recv’d: $8,300
Date: 5/27/2013, 12/9/2014, 9/22/2016, 12/16/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Richard Boom for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $2,500
Date: 5/23/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ben Allen for CA Senate
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 11/4/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Curren Price for State Senator
Amount Recv’d: $100
Date: 5/18/2010
Amount Returned: $250
Statement Made: Yes
*Karen Bass is currently a member of the US House of Representatitives

Blanca Rubio for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 5/4/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Reggie Jones-Sawyer for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 12/5/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ted Lieu for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $4,100
Date: 12/3/2013
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Matt Dababneh for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $1,500
Date: 11/1/2013
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Gloria Gray for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $1,500
Date: 7/2/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No
*Gloria Gray is currently on the West Basin Municipal Water District

Karen Bass for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $250
Date: 5/30/2008
Amount Returned: $250
Statement Made: Yes
*Karen Bass is currently a member of the US House of Representatives

John Perez for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $3,900
Date: 10/5/2012
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No
*John Perez is currently a Regent of the University of California

Julia Brownley for State Assembly
Amount Recv’d: $100
Date: 10/5/2010
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No
*Julia Brownley is currently a member of the US House of Representatives

Jackie Lacey for DA
Amount Recv’d: $100
Date: 3/12/2012
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Garcetti for Mayor 2017
Amount Recv’d: $1,400
Date: 11/3/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Mike Feuer for City Attorney 2013
Amount Recv’d: $2,600
Date: 9/4/2011, 3/23/2012, 4/2/2013
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Mike Feuer Legal Defense Fund
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 4/7/13, 10/14/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Mike Feuer City Attorney Officeholder Account 2013
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 5/13/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Re-Elect Mike Feuer for City Attorney 2017
Amount Recv’d: $1,400
Date: 5/13/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ron Galperin for LA City Controller 2013
Amount Recv’d: $2,600
Date: 3/5/2014, 5/21/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Controller Ron Galperin Officeholder Account 2013
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 10/13/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Ron Galperin for LA City Controller 2017
Amount Recv’d: $1,400
Date: 12/31/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Bob Blumenfield for City Council 2013
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 9/25/2012
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Bob Blumenfield for City Council 2013 Officeholder Account
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 12/7/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Bob Blumenfield for City Council 2017
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 12/7/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Councilman Tony Cardenas 2011
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 2/8/2011
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No
Tony Cardenas is now a member of the U.S. House of Representatives representing the California’s 29th congressional district

Cedillio for City Council 2013
Amount Recv’d: $1,400
Date: 2/27/2013, 5/20/13
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Paul Koretz for City Council
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 8/20/2008
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Paul Koretz Officeholder Account
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 4/29/2011, 12/17/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Koretz for City Council 2017
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 6/30/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Krekorian for City Council 2009
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 11/19/2009, 12/2/2009
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Krekorian for City Council 2011
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 6/24/2011
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Krekorian for City Council 2015
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 2/26/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Mitch O’Farrell for LA City Council 2013
Amount Recv’d: $1,400
Date: 2/17/2013, 4/2/2013
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Councilmember O’Farrell Officeholder Account 2013
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 9/30/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell Legal Defense Fund
Amount Recv’d: $1,400
Date: 3/23/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Mitch O’Farrell for LA City Council 2017
Amount Recv’d: $700
Date: 9/30/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Jeffrey Prang for Los Angeles County Accessor
Amount Recv’d: $9,500
Date: 11/1/2013, 6/13/2014, 6/18/2014, 6/26/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

John Duran for LA County Supervisor
Amount Recv’d: $11,500
Date: 2/11/2014, 4/21/2014, 5/17/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Scott Svonkin for Los Angeles Community College District
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 2/15/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Sydney Kamlager for Los Angeles Community College District
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 2/7/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Scott Houston for West Basin Municipal Water District 
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 2/20/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

John Duran for LA County Supervisor
Amount Recv’d: $13,000
Date: 1/6/2014, 2/11/2014, 4/21/2014, 5/17/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

John Duran for City Council
Amount Recv’d: $1,000
Date: 11/28/2012, 6/18/2016
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Neighbors for a Better West Hollywood in Support of Lauren Meister for West Hollywood City Council 2015
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 2/4/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Lauren Meister for West Hollywood City Council 2015
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 2/1/2015
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

John Heilman for West Hollywood City Council 2017
Amount Recv’d: $2,000
Date: 5/25/2017, 6/1/2017
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

D’Amico for City Council 2015
Amount Recv’d: $500
Date: 7/24/2014
Amount Returned: $0
Statement Made: No

Sources: Open Secrets, Cal-Access, The City of West Hollywood