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I guess it has been clear for a while that the Tea Party was attracting a lot of vulnerable or unstable people to its ranks. But this goes all the way up to the leadership.

Mr. Mayfield was accussed of assisting in the break-in of the nursing home where Thad Cochran's wife resides and playing a role in her subsequent harassment. He was recently arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit a crime.

Mark Mayfield, a Mississippi tea party leader and lawyer facing charges in connection with taking photos of Sen. Thad Cochran’s wife at her nursing home apparently committed suicide Friday morning.

Police said that Mayfield’s wife, Robin, called 911 just after 9 a.m. to say her husband had shot himself. Officers arrived to find the 57-year-old lying on the floor of a storage room in his garage with a single gunshot wound to the head and a “large caliber revolver” with the body.

...

Mayfield was arrested on May 22 and charged with conspiracy. The Madison County district attorney alleged that Mayfield, one of four facing charges, gave advice on how to get into the nursing home where Rose Cochran, who suffers from Alzheimer’s, lives. He declined to take the pictures himself, the DA said, but his mother had lived in the facility so he knew the best way in.

Mr. Mayfield was a lawyer who specialized in loan foreclosures and was well-known in Republican circles in the state.

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