In the days before killing his family and committing suicide, professional wrestler Chris Benoit reportedly argued with his wife over the care of their mentally retarded seven-year-old son.
World Wrestling Entertainment attorney Jerry McDevitt said "I think it's fair to say that the subject of caring for the child was part of what made their relationship complicated and difficult, and it's something they were both constantly struggling with." McDevitt said the WWE learned from the Benoits' friends and relatives that the couple were struggling with where to send the boy after his recent graduation from kindergarten. He said Benoit's wife Nancy, while not urging him to quit wrestling, wanted him to spend more time at home with their son Daniel.
She had filed for divorce in 2003, alleging "cruel treatment," but later dropped the complaint. Daniel suffered from Fragile X Syndrome, a rare inherited form of mental retardation often accompanied by autism. Authorities said Benoit strangled his wife and smothered his son over the weekend, placing a Bible next to their bodies before hanging himself with a weight-machine cable in the family's Atlanta-area home.
Anabolic steroids were found in the couple's home, leading to speculation that drug-induced paranoia and "roid rage" played a role in the killings.
In a June 26 statement, the WWE said steroids "were not and could not be related to the cause of death" and that the findings indicate "deliberation, not rage." It added that Benoit tested negative for anabolic steroids on April 10, his last date of testing.