Sons of Anarchy Actor, Johnny Lewis, Dead


Image from dailyoftheday.com

Most people may know 28-year-old Johnny Lewis from Sons of Anarchy, but I know him as the shy, lovable and slightly awkward musician in Raise Your Voice.

The actor has apparently  suffered from serious psychological disorders his entire life and had spent the majority of this year in and out of both jail and rehab for a series of different crimes after he suffered a psychotic break after experimenting with a new drug believed to be called, Smiles. He’s apparently been self-medicating the entire year, causing what doctors called co-occurring disorders — He was suffering on 2 fronts.

On Wednesday, just 5 days after being released from his last stint in jail, apparently Lewis stopped taking all forms of medication, causing him to become extremely violent and erratic, at which point he allegedly entered the home of his 81-year old-landlord, Catherine Davis, and bludgeoned her to death before dismembering her cat. After that, he’s said to have leaped over her fence when he encountered 2 of her neighbors who he fought off before either falling or leaping to his death.

Upon learning of Lewis’s death, Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter said:

“I wish I could say that I was shocked by the events last night, but I was not. I am deeply sorry that an innocent life had to be thrown into his destructive path.”

Sutter is not the only person in Lewis’s life to release statements since his death that tell us just how aware and unconcerned they were about helping him. It is incredible to me the kinds of indifference shown by the people in Lewis’s life about his mental condition. If someone could be so incredibly ill and unstable that you would not be surprised by them murdering an old woman before taking their own life, and you never felt a need to help, or even release a mournful statement in the aftermath, I don’t know how you deal with yourself. The moral indifference is unbelievable.

This is a tragedy, for all parties involved. But what’s so unnerving and heartbreaking is that this obviously troubled man who had both no control over his actions and received no help from the people around him is being vilified, as though he were a heartless serial killer who just went on a methodical killing spree for fun. Johnny Lewis was deeply unstable, and all the people who are writing and commenting on the articles about  his death seem only able to talk about how his family is to blame for being Scientologists, what a cult Scientology is, how he deserved this, how they don’t care that he’s dead because he was a murderer. He was ill, mental illness is real.

People’s ability to not just show no sympathy to Lewis’s grieving family, but even blame them for Lewis’s death simply because they don’t agree with their religious views, is the kind of attitudes that I’m sure existed in Nazi Germany when people sat idly by as Jewish people were slaughtered, and it is a disgrace. Who are you to say that this would’ve never happened had he and his parents Scientology not prevented him from seeing a psychiatrist. There are many people who suffer from mental illness and see psychiatrists and still end up committing suicide. And there are many Christian people who suffer from mental illness and still choose not to see a psychiatrist.

The way society is able to pick and choose when they show sympathy based on the way they choose to view issues they can’t relate to is beyond me. Just because you have a problem with Scientology or you unfairly view suicide and mental illness as weak does not justify being an intolerant ass, even if your viewpoint is in the majority.

My sympathies are with the family of Johnny Lewis and the families of his landlord, Catherine Davis. Lewis is survived by a young daughter whom he had recently been involved in a bitter custody battle over.

If you are interested in learning about Mental Illness or getting help, click here.

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