Murderer Jonathan Schmitz in Jenny Jones TV case to be released

- It is one of the most infamous murder cases in metro Detroit history involving two men, a secret crush and an appearance on a nationally-televised talk show.

Now the killer at the center of it all -- is about to walk free. Same sex secret crushes revealed on the Jenny Jones show 

It was March of 1995 when Scott Amedure surprised Jonathan Schmitz during a taping of the show about his crush on him. Three days later back in Michigan, Schmitz went to Amedure's mobile home in Lake Orion and shot and killed him.

There was a shot and I remember seeing Scott standing in the kitchen grasping his chest and falling to the floor," testified Gary Brady, Amedure's roommate during the trial.

Schmitz was arrested, blaming mental illness, alcoholism and humiliation that fueled his rage - led to the shooting after the show.

Schmitz was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 25 to 50 years behind bars. Now he's being released from prison and granted parole for next week.

"He deserved imprisonment but so did everybody else involved in that Jenny Jones show," said attorney Geoffrey Fieger, who served as the attorney for the Amedure family. "He was the perpetrator but he was also a victim of them and they got off scott free.

"That show set him up and certainly took Scott Amedure's life for no reason."

Fieger put the sensational talk show on trial, blaming their ambush for Amedure's death.

In court at the time he said, "They solicited a victim, they picked the murderer and the provided the motive. They did everything in this case except actually pull the trigger."

The jury agreed, awarding Amedure's family $25 million.

"Maybe they'll do something about these shows that are happening and there won't be any more killings - like I lost my son," said Amedure's father Frank Sr. after the verdict.

"They ambushed him, they ambushed my brother," said Frank Amedure, Jr. at the time. "If they would have warned my brother that Jonathan Schmitz didn't want to be on the TV show, Scott wouldn't have gone through with it."

That ruling was overturned on appeal but Schmitz would continue to serve his time until now.

FOX 2 spoke with Scott Amedure's brother, Frank, by phone. He said he still has so many questions for Schmitz and they still feel the Jenny Jones show is to blame.

"They're very dangerous and they produced a tragedy here in Michigan," Fieger said. "I hope he makes something of his life."

Schmitz was granted parole in March. The Michigan Department of Corrections said that the exact place and time of his release will not be made public.
 

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