Arizona woman who gave husband chloroquine being investigated by homicide detectives

Last week an investigation by the Washington Free Beacon uncovered some intriguing information about the Arizona couple who took chloroquine to protect themselves from the coronavirus. It turned out Gary Lenius, who died in that incident, was a well-educated engineer. There were also indications that the marriage had experienced some problems including one call to police and an arrest of Gary’s wife Wanda for domestic abuse. She also occasionally lashed out by destroying things that belonged to her husband (a laptop screen, some model airplanes). Yesterday the Free Beacon published a follow-up story saying homicide detectives in Mesa, AZ are now investigating Gary’s death:

The Mesa City Police Department’s homicide division is investigating the death of Gary Lenius, the Arizona man whose wife served him soda mixed with fish tank cleaner in what she claimed was a bid to fend off the coronavirus. A detective handling the case confirmed the investigation to the Washington Free Beacon on Tuesday after requesting a recording of the Free Beacon’s interviews with Lenius’s wife, Wanda.

Gary Lenius, 68, died on March 22. Wanda, 61, told several news outlets last month that both she and her husband had ingested a substance used to clean aquariums after hearing President Donald Trump tout one of its ingredients, chloroquine phosphate, from the White House briefing room.

Detective Teresa Van Galder, the homicide detective handling the case for the Mesa City Police Department, confirmed that the investigation is ongoing but declined to provide additional details.

“As this is an active investigation, I cannot go into any details at this time regarding the case,” Van Galder said. The Free Beacon provided a recording of its interview last month with Wanda Lenius.

The fact that police asked for recording the Free Beacon made of conversations with the wife isn’t surprising. One of the striking quotes (among many) in the original piece was Wanda’s response to whether or not she and Gary had had a conversation about the drug before taking it. “No. I mean, it was really kind of a spur of the moment thing,” she said.

At least one former friend questioned whether Gary knew what he was taking saying, “I really can’t see the scenario where Gary would say, ‘Yes, please, I would love to drink some of that Koi fish tank cleaner.'” The same friend added, “I really don’t think Gary knew what he was taking.”

At this point it’s hard to imagine how police could make a case this was something other than stupidity. Wanda took the same drug and wound up in the ICU. And since only she and Gary were there and he is no longer alive to tell his version, her story about what happened is the only one we have.

That said, given that Gary died based on something she instigated it probably does make sense to have police ask Wanda what happened in a more formal setting. Her story never made much sense and makes even less knowing that Gary was a fairly well-educated person not prone to doing reckless things.