A Chicago-based web radio host claims he has video footage of both Hell On Earth’s performance, and what is purported to be the suicide that accompanied it, this past Saturday night (October 4), according to the St. Petersburg Times. Shane Bugbee, who hosts an Internet show called Radio Free Satan and has interviewed Hell On Earth frontman Billy Tourtelot, says he uploaded footage of both the band’s show and what appears to be a “sickly-looking” man committing suicide through “some sort of asphyxiation.”
Bugbee revealed he won’t confirm the authenticity of the death without more proof. “You know, until a body is taken out of an apartment, until a grieving family steps forward to talk about their dying family member’s last wish, I don’t know if I believe it,” Bugbee said. “For all I know, it could be Billy’s drummer dressed up and it’s a gag, a hoax on me. You know, a hoax on all of us.”
Bugbee claims he’s been offered $10,000 by the National Enquirer for the videos, which he says he will make public soon.
The Florida-based band made national headlines by proclaiming that their performance on Saturday night was in support of a terminally ill friend who planned to commit suicide during the concert. The show and suicide were scheduled to be broadcast live on the band’s website, from two separate, undisclosed locations, but a heavy flood of traffic brought the site down Saturday night. A spokesperson for the site’s server said it was getting eight hundred hits a second at one point.
Billy Tourtelot claims the concert went ahead, but initially had no idea if the suicide occurred as well. St. Petersburg police and emergency services operators did not receive any suicide-related calls from Saturday night through Sunday afternoon.
The city of St. Petersburg issued an ordinance last week making it illegal to promote a suicide for entertainment or commercial purposes, in order to stop the event from occurring.