According to the Associated Press, Sean Levert, a third of the 1980s R&B trio LeVert and son of lead O'Jays singer Eddie Levert, has died after falling ill while serving a jail term. He was 39. Authorities said Monday that an autopsy was inconclusive but foul play was ruled out. Levert was sentenced last week to one year and 10 months in jail for failing to pay $89,025 in child support to his three children whose ages ranged from 11 to 17. He died at Lutheran Hospital in Cleveland late Sunday, less than an hour after he was taken there from the jail, said coroner Frank Miller. Levert was sentenced by Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Nancy Margaret Russo, who said a presentence report indicated he had been addicted to marijuana from the time he was 14 until recently. He didn't speak at his sentencing and gave no indication of any health problems, the judge said Monday.
A nursing supervisor at Lutheran Hospital confirmed to Cleveland's Fox 8 News that Levert died of natural causes. However, an autopsy was done Monday but no immediate cause of death was determined, according to Powell Caesar, a spokesman for the Cuyahoga County's coroner's office, but he said there was no evidence of foul play or trauma. Levert suffered from high blood pressure and had been hallucinating in jail, Caesar said. Toxicology reports could take four to six weeks, he said. Warden Kevin McDonough said earlier that Levert had been sick and guards were watching him at the jail's regular cellblock because he had been acting strangely.
AFTER THE JUMP, CONTINUE READING THIS STORY + SEE ONE OF SEAN'S LAST PICTURES TAKEN IN THE MEDIA BEFORE HIS DEATH.
The brothers had formed LeVert in the 1980s with childhood friend Marc Gordon. Their hits included Baby I'm Ready, (Pop, Pop, Pop, Pop) Goes My Mind and Casanova. Casanova was nominated for a Grammy in 1988 for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocal. It was also nominated for best R&B song.
At Gerald Levert's funeral service in November 2006, Sean Levert and his father performed Dance With My Father and personalized the words for Gerald. The elder Levert's group, the O'Jays, was known for such smash hits as Back Stabbers, Love Train and For the Love of Money. Sean Levert found a new third partner last year and was trying to revive LeVert.
To the right is one of Sean's last pictures taken in the media. Eerily, he and his mother, Martha attended the 50th annual Grammy Awards this past February to accept Gerald's Grammy award for Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance.