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Michigan Man Convicted Of Murder After 1995 Talk Show Taping To Be Released From Prison

DETROIT (WWJ/AP) - A Michigan man convicted in the 1995 murder of another man who expressed romantic interest in him on national television is expected to be released from prison.

Jonathan Schmitz
Jonathan Schmitz (Photo: Michigan Department of Corrections)

Jonathan Tyler Schmitz was 24 years old when he was invited to travel to Chicago to appear on the Jenny Jones Show where he would meet a "secret admirer." During the taping, a male acquaintance —  32-year-old Scott Amedure — revealed he was romantically interested in him.

Schmitz, who said he wasn't gay, then fatally shot Amedure in Lake Orion on March 9, 1995, just three days after the taping.

According to court records, Schmitz told friends he went on a drinking binge following the taping; and, the morning of the shooting, he found what was alleged to be a sexually suggestive note from Amedure on his front door.

He then drove to a local bank, withdrew money from his savings account, and purchased a 12 gauge pump-action shotgun and some ammunition. Schmitz then drove to Amedure's trailer, where he confronted Amedure about the note. When Amedure just smiled at him, Schmitz walked out of the trailer, stating that he had to shut off his car, but instead retrieved the gun.

Schmitz then walked back to Amedure's door where he fired two shots into Amedure's chest.

Immediately after the shooting, Schmitz called 911 — telling police he killed Amedure because he was embarrassed and had been humiliated on national television.

While the defense argued that Schmitz was manic-depressive and had been ambushed and then stalked by Amedure, Schmitz was found guilty of second degree murder by an Oakland County jury. On Sept. 14, 1999, he was sentenced to 25 to 50 years in prison.

Schmitz, now 47 years old, was granted parole after a March hearing and is scheduled to be released from Parnall Correctional Institution in Jackson next week.

Michigan Department of Corrections records shows Schmitz earliest release date is Monday, Aug. 21; although he could have been imprisoned December 17, 2037.

The MDOC does not list an attorney for Schmitz.

© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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