“Storage Wars” star Mark Balelo suicide

Authorities say the death of a businessman featured on A&E’s “Storage Wars” has been declared a suicide.
The Ventura County medical examiner’s office determined Mark Balelo died after inhaling carbon monoxide and car exhaust fumes. His body was found Monday morning in a business warehouse in Simi Valley, Calif.
“Storage Wars” followed Balelo as one of a group of buyers who bid on abandoned storage units searching for lucrative items to sell.
Balelo (who immigrated to Southern California from Portugal) had been featured on the show and stated in an online autobiography that he opened an auction business in 2011.
A&E Television Networks declined to comment on Balelo’s death.
There was no answer at a phone number registered to his company (Balelo Inc.) on Tuesday afternoon.

"Storage Wars" star Mark Balelo suicide
Mark Balelo.

Sadly – Mark Balelo did take his own life.
The Ventura County Coroner’s Office confirms to E! News that the 40-year-old Storage Wars star died of carbon monoxide poisoning and his death has been ruled a suicide.
Balelo was found yesterday in his car, the motor running, in the garage of his auction house in Simi Valley, Calif.
“We are deeply saddened by this tragedy and our thoughts are with Mark’s family” – A&E said in a statement today to E! News.
Balelo had been arrested Saturday on suspicion of possessing a controlled substance—and it turns out that was not his first run-in with the law.
Per Radar, he previously pleaded guilty in 2009 to sale or transport of a controlled substance, resulting in him being sentenced to 60 days in jail and three years’ probation.

Mark Balelo (an auction house owner featured on the reality show “Storage Wars”) died from carbon monoxide poisoning in an apparent suicide, the Ventura County medical examiner’s office said today.
Balelo (40) was found dead on Monday in his car, which was parked at his Simi Valley, Calif., auction house, authorities said.
The slick auctioneer, who earned the nickname “Rico Suave” on the A&E show, was arrested Saturday for being under the influence of a controlled substance and possession of methamphetamine, Sgt. Craig Dungan of the Simi Valley Police Department told ABCNews.com.
Balelo was not breathing when authorities responded to the scene on Monday – Dungan said.
The official cause of death is listed as asphyxia by inhalation of carbon monoxide and exhaust fumes, according to the medical examiner.
With a keen eye for what separates trash and treasure, Balelo made a name for himself and his liquidation business.
In 2011, he helped reunite Nicholas Cage with a rare copy of a 1938 Superman comic book that had been stolen from the actor’s Los Angeles home. The collectible had been missing for 10 years and was worth an estimated 1 million dollars.

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