Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Former 'Bachelorette' contestant commits suicide

Julien Hug, a former contestant on the reality TV show "The Bachelorette," whose body was found in a remote area of Riverside County earlier this week, committed suicide, authorities said Friday.

Hug, 35, died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the Riverside County coroner’s office.

Sheriff's deputies found Hug’s body Wednesday on a mountain hillside in the Pinyon Hills area near California 74.

Authorities in San Diego had asked for assistance in their search after Hug was reported missing. Hug’s vehicle was found on a U.S. Forest Service access road, authorities said. His body was later found in a rugged hillside area.

Hug was the son of prominent San Diego restaurateur Bertrand Hug and appeared on "The Bachelorette" in 2009, vying for the affections of Jillian Harris.

In a written statement, Harris said Thursday, "I am completely heartbroken for the Hug family, and my whole heart goes out to them today as they mourn a precious life that ended far too soon. I will always remember Julien's gentle demeanor and kind heart, which will be sadly missed."

-- Abby Sewell

Comments () | Archives (2)

Too bad he didnt find any other choices.

This story about Julien Hug is getting stranger all of the time. When did the family get the suicide note? Was it left at their house in Rancho Santa Fe on Sunday night when Julien Hug apparently departed for Palm Desert in his Jeep. Or was it mailed to them by Julien after he left his parents' house? How long did his parents have the suicide note in their possession? Did they know he was intending to commit suicide when they filed the missing person report when he failed to show up for work at their Augusta Modern restaurant in Palm Desert on Monday morning?

There have also been conflicting reports about the timeline in this matter. It was widely reported that the father stated that Julien's phone "went dead" when he was on Highway 74 enroute to Palm Desert on Monday and that nobody "heard from him since." Did he ever arrive in Palm Desert on Sunday night or early Monday morning after midnight? It was reported that he had been living in Palm Desert for the past 3 months and was visiting his parents' home in Rancho Santa Fe on Sunday.

RadarOnline.com has also reported that Julien was living in a "beautiful condo" with live in girl friend Jennifer (Jen) Bell in San Diego for the past 2 years which they confirmed in a detailed interveiw with Jen who said Julien was "so misunderstood." No clarification was made as to whether she was also planning to move to Palm Desert nor whether she had any contact with him during the weekend but she stated that she and Julien were planning to get married. Jen stated to RadarOnline.com taht "I had two of the best years of my life with him. They have been nothing but pure happiness to me." Yet, that period obviously included the time in 2009 when he was on the Bachelorette show trying to become the object of affection of another woman.

It is possible that Julien arrived in Palm Desert on Sunday night or in the early hours of Monday morning after driving from San Diego. If so, he then drove up back up highway 74 which intersections Highway 111 at the center of Palm Desert and continued about 17 miles up that windy road in his jeep and into the Pinyon Pines area where he drove as far out as he could on a fire access road into the forest. He could have also done on his way into Palm Desert via the back road approach of Highway 74 which is also known as the Palms to Pines Highway, but it is highly unlikely that he would have done that on Sunday night or in the darkness before the light on Monday morning, so it is quite likely he drove up to Pinyon Pines rather than going to work on Monday morning at his family's Augusta Modern restaurant.

As to the police, it is very strange that the initial report on Wednesday or Thursday released to the public did not describe him as being found with a fatal gunshot wound to the head if in fact that is the way he was found. It is also very strange that the police said nothing about him being suspected of committing suicide if his family was in possession of a suicide note and informed the police as to that matter. It is also strange that they came out Friday and stated that there was "no evidence of foul play" as suicide itself is a crime and certainly foul play itself and not death from natural causes such as an accidental fall.

No description has been given as to where Julien lived for the past 3 months in Palm Desert nor as to whether anyone such as neighbors saw him on Sunday night or Monday.

The big question is, of course, why Julien would suddenly decide to commit suicide without either his parents whom he was in close contact with and his "live in girlfriend" Jen having any indications by their own statements that was even having any particular problems.


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: