Published On: Fri, Jun 29th, 2012

Michael Marin found guilty in arson trial, swallows pill and then dies in courtroom

A shocked courtroom in Arizona on Thursday looked on as Michael Marin was found guilty of arson, burning down his $3.5 million mansion, but then swallowed something, likely a pill, collapsed and died in front of the court.

Marin, age 53, was found guilty of arson by a jury in Maricopa County Superior Court. The Fox video shows the man shocked, closing his eyes as the verdict is read, then appearing to swallow something he puts in his mouth. After washing it down with his water, her goes into convulsions moments later.

Investigators suspect he poisoned himself rather than face a possible 15 3/4 years in prison.

AZ Central detail how Marin had fashioned a larger-than-life persona. Tall and distinguished, he had a law degree from Yale University and had scaled Mount Everest. He flew planes and wrote books. He owned a mansion full of fine art in the ritzy Biltmore Estates neighborhood of Phoenix. He had amassed a small fortune — and lost it.

His mansion caught fire in July 2009. Marin said he barely escaped by climbing down a rope ladder from the second floor while wearing a scuba tank and diving mask to protect him from smoke inhalation.

But inside, arson investigators found boxes of flammable debris laid end-to-end through the house from the four ignition points, as if to feed the blaze. Marin was charged with arson of an occupied structure.

Michael Marin taking pill after hearing guilty verdict in arson case Screenshot from the Fox video

Check out the Phoenix FOX 10 video below

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- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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