Controversies always surrounded the late actress, but the one regarding whether her death was a murder or a suicide is still fresh.
Not only was Marilyn Monroe one of the most popular women in the world, but she also lived a life surrounded by controversies. After suffering from mental health battles and substance abuse it seemed like she was turning around her life for the better in August of 1962.
However, on August 4, 1962, she made the tabloids for devastating news. At just 36, she was found dead in the early hours of the morning in her bed, naked and clutching the phone receiver, by her housekeeper, Eunice Murray, according to The Mirror. The inquest recorded her death as a suicide.
According to police reports, her last known conversation was a phone call with actor Peter Lawford and his wife, reported UPI. The report was released by Chief Daryl Gates to dismiss the claims that had been going on for years, that Monroe had been murdered but it was the authorities who covered it up.
Lawford revealed that Monroe in their last conversation said, "Say goodbye to Pat (Lawford's wife), say goodbye to Jack (President Kennedy), and say goodbye to yourself, because you're a nice guy."
He also told the police that Monroe was upset over a loss of a contract with 20th Century Fox Studios along with some private matters, "presumably the romance with Robert Kennedy." This comes after there were rumors that the silver screen actress had an affair with former US President John F. Kenndy and his brother Robert Kennedy. Lawford added that the actress sounded sleepy over the call. When he tried to go to her house after the telephone went dead, her agent talked him out of it.
According to Gates, this confirmed their initial report that Monore died due to swallowing dozens of sleeping pills. The reports were released to clear out the speculations made by the Oui Magazine that the actress was murdered and the coroners covered it to protect the Attorney General Robert Kennedy.
Radar Online reported in October 2019 that Monroe had a sinister plan when she made her last phone call. In the podcast, The Killing of Marilyn Monroe, it was revealed that the actress wanted to tarnish the image of her ex-lovers from the Kennedy family. Biographer Lois Banner revealed, “She was planning to hold a conference the next Monday and reveal what the Kennedys had done to her."
Another biographer, Danforth Prince added that Monore wanted to expose her affair with the brothers publicly. Prince claimed that Monroe told Lawford, “You tell him that if he doesn’t fly down to see me and talk things over, he’ll hear from me at my press conference Monday morning." He added, “It’ll make headlines around the world, although not of the kind that would Jack’s bid for re-election.”
Prince further added that the sensuous actress threatened the Kennedy brothers through Lawford by saying that if Robert Kennedy didn't come to meet her by 6 p.m on August 4, 1962, then the brothers should "tune in" to the day she planned to expose them. “You might also call Jack at the White House,” she said and continued, “I know he has a busy schedule, but he’ll have time to watch me. I plan to look dazzling!” claimed Prince.
In the reports presented by the police, Coroner Theodore J. Curphey said that Monroe had a history of taking sedatives and then calling for help. According to the reports, he revealed, "On these occasions, she had called for help and had been rescued," but on the day of the incident, no help had been called. Curphey elaborated, "From the information collected about the events of the evening of Aug. 4, it is our opinion that the same pattern was repeated -- except for the rescue."
The coroner said that a huge amount of Nembutal and chloral hydrate was found in Monroe's body which was "gulped within a minute or two." The fatal dose took the style icon's life.
Chief Gate's report insisted that Monroe's death was no foul play but suicide as it stated, "She committed suicide by barbiturates; that is the reality, and there is nothing very special about it except for the fact that she was Marilyn Monroe. It's not a pretty story," Gates said. 'It's very tragic."
However, the telephone numbers of the calls she had made before her death and photos from the scene where her body was found had been deleted stating it was to "protect people's privacy."