Publicist's death delivers headlines - 2007-09-30
Schmidt's last and latest deal involved wedding photos of Tom Cruise, without question the biggest name with which he had dealt. But it would prove to be his unraveling. At the time of his death, Schmidt was a few days away from entering a guilty plea on a federal charge of trying to extort Cruise by offering to sell the unauthorized photos back to him for upwards of $1 million.
The FBI arrested Schmidt in July. The case shattered his public persona, and most likely his method of making a living, and left his tattered personal life exposed.