Did Scientology Cover Up a High-Ranking Member’s Suicide?

Did Scientology cover up a member’s brutal death by suicide, or did it just go unnoticed? What happened after Whitney Mills died?

I am very hesitant to call Scientology a cult, but I’m also reluctant to call it anything else. Some of their beliefs and practices seem suspect, but because I’m not close to Scientology, I can’t be definitive in my opinions. (I do believe convicted cult leaders have intentionally used Scientology practices because they have been so effective in keeping their members locked in – I’m looking at you, Keith Reniere – and that’s saying something.) But, cult or no cult, Scientologists are quick to dismiss the mental health industry, claiming it’s pseudo-science at best. Don’t believe me? Google Tom Cruise, Brooke Shields, and Matt Lauer in one search.

Because of this outlook on mental health, Scientologists are hesitant to seek outside help. They might also avoid confiding in another member for fear of being reported, which, from what I understand, they are encouraged to do. It wouldn’t be shocking to find a long history of hiding extreme mental health cases, especially victims of suicide. This potentially happened with Tampa, Florida resident and practicing member Whitney Mills.

The Death of Whitney Mills

Shortly after actress and practicing Scientologist Kirstie Alley’s death, news leaked that Whitney Mills had also died, only months before. Mills was the same level member and lived in the same area, but unlike Alley, who died of cancer, Mills’ died by suicide. Now, let me be clear, I know suicide intimately, and I only have compassion for those who intentionally end their own lives. I also recognize that suicide is not always a sign of poor mental health, although most assume it is. But in the case of Whitney Mills, it’s hard to believe it was anything else, given that she tried to light herself on fire before shooting herself in the head.

In the video below, former Scientologist Aaron Smith-Levin uses his first-hand knowledge to comment on the news of Whitney Mills’s death. I recognize that any former member will have a particular viewpoint on Scientology matters but agree with Smith-Levin or don’t; it’s still fascinating to hear his opinions (first video’s audio NSFW):

If you want to listen to Aaron Smith-Levin speculate even further on how Scientology may have affected Whitney Mills’s death, here go you: