There are a lot of ways to become famous: acting talent, beauty, intelligence, athletic ability, and plain old fashioned self-promotion. (Hello, Kardashians.)
Whatever their path to fame, a lot of famous people have shocking pasts. Some have even committed the ultimate sin. Here are fifteen celebrities who have caused someone else to die.
15. OJ Simpson
…the list had to start somewhere. OJ is probably the most well-known celebrity criminal. Interestingly, he committed his crimes after he was a world-famous athlete/actor. The majority (but not all) of the others in this unfortunate group committed their crimes before they became household names.
14. William S. Burroughs
The famed Naked Lunch writer shot his common-law wife Joan Vollmer. At first, Burroughs claimed the two were playing a drunken game of William Tell and that he was attempting to shoot a glass off her head and missed. He later changed his story to a simpler “mishandling a firearm.”
13. Matthew Broderick
While driving in Ireland with his then-girlfriend Jennifer Grey, he veered into oncoming traffic and hit another car head-on. The other driver died, and Broderick was fined just $175 for careless driving.
12. Vince Neil
In 1984, Mötley Crüe frontman Vince Neil was involved in a drunk driving accident in which his passenger, Nicholas “Razzle” Dingley, was killed. The two individuals in the other car also suffered extremely serious brain damage. Neil only spent only 15 days in jail despite having a blood alcohol level of .17 at the time of the accident.
11. Don King
The wild-haired boxing promoter killed two different men in his younger days as the leader of a gambling ring in Cleveland, Ohio. He shot one and stomped another to death. Gruesome.
10. Adlai Stevenson
The former 2-time Presidential hopeful accidentally shot and killed a family friend when he was 12-years-old. He was at his own home and didn’t realize that the gun was loaded. He was never charged for the crime.
9. Caitlyn Jenner
In February of 2015, eyewitnesses reported that Jenner’s SUV rear ended a white car and sent it careening into oncoming traffic. It was then struck by a Hummer. The driver of the white car was killed, and seven others sustained injuries. Jenner was not hurt in the wreck.
8. John Landis
The Twilight Zone director was charged with involuntary manslaughter after an accident on the set of his film caused the deaths of actor Vic Morrow and two children, who were extras. Landis was later acquitted of the charge, but he paid $2 million to each of the families of the children who died.
7. Felicia Pearson
Believe it or not, when “The Wire” actress was 14, she was convicted of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Okia Toomer. Though she was sentenced to serve two consecutive 8-year terms, she was released after just 6.5 years at the Maryland Correctional Institute.
6. Craig MacTavish
Former pro hockey star MacTavish missed the Bruins’ 1984–85 seasonafter being convicted ofvehicular homicide. He had struck and killed a young woman while he was driving under the influence of alcohol. MacTavish pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide anddriving under the influence of alcohol1984. Kim Radley, 26, died four days later of injuries sustained in the crash. MacTavish served a year in prison and is now the general manager of the Edmonton Oilers.
5. Sid Vicious
In 1978, notorious Sex Pistols frontman Sid Vicious claimed to have awoken from a drugged stupor to findNancy Spungendead on the bathroom floor of their room in theHotel Chelseain New York. She had suffered a single stab wound to her abdomen and appeared to have bled to death. He later admitted that “I stabbed her, but I never meant to kill her.”
4. Michael Massee
Actor Michael Massee is the unfortunate man who accidentally shot and killed Brandon Lee on the set ofThe Crow in 1993. He was so traumatized by the event that he returned to New York and took a year off from acting. He refuses to view the film. In an interview in 2005, 12 years after the incident, Massee revealed that he still had nightmares about it, going on to say, “I don’t think you ever get over something like that.”
In 2006, singer and America’s Got Talent judge Brandy Norwood was involved in a freeway pile-up that killed Awatef Aboudihaj. Law enforcement officials reported that Norwood was driving her car at 65 miles per hour, and did not notice that vehicles ahead of her had slowed considerably.
Though Aboudihaj had struck the vehicle in front of her before Brandy hit her rear bumper, witnesses on the scene said the singer claimed responsibility for the accident, repeatedly saying, “I should have stopped.” That’s a tough thing to live with.
2. Oscar Pistorius
Once an inspirational story, the former Paralympic athlete’s name will be forever linked to the tragic events of February 14th, 2013. Nicknamed the “Blade Runner” and “the fastest man on no legs,” Pistorius shocked the world when he shot his then girlfriend of three months, model Reeva Steenkamp, claiming he’d mistook her for an intruder. Despite his claims, he was sentenced to serve five years in prison roughly a year after his arrest and was charged with Culpable homicide.
1. Laura Bush
Yes, as in the former First Lady of the United States. When she was 17 years old, she and a girlfriend were hurrying to the movies when, driving her father’s car, she ran through a stop sign on a dark country road and hit a car being driven by Mike Douglas, also 17, a star sportsman and popular student at her school. Nobody was ever charged and there was no evidence that either driver had been drinking.