Country Singer Daniel Lee Martin Found Dead Ahead of Child Abuse Trial

Country singer Daniel Lee Martin, who was due to stand trial for child sex abuse, has died in what appears to be a suicide, according to police.

Members of a SWAT team discovered the 54-year-old's body at a residence in Florida, a spokespersons for Pasco County Sheriff's Office told Newsweek. The property was on Little Road and Pennant Court, the Tampa Bay Times reported citing police.

The spokesperson told Newsweek officers arrived at his home in Pasco County on Friday to give him several warrants. They found his dead body, after he appeared to have shot himself. Police had previously made several attempts to contact the singer, but he failed to respond. The Pasco County Sheriff's Office SWAT team was brought in as he had previously made threats to harm himself and others.

The warrants out of Tennessee included three counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, three counts of aggravated sexual battery, two counts of committing an aggravated sexual battery, and one count of solicitation of a minor to commit rape of a child.

Pasco County Sheriff's Office records show Martin was arrested on January 27 over lewd and lascivious exhibition of a victim under 16. His bond was set at $15,000. He was due to appear at a trial in March, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

An arrest report seen by the newspaper showed that Martin exposed himself on a couch, and showed pornography to the child during an alleged incident on November 1. The child, who was staying at his home at the time, told her mother, who then contacted police.

daniel lee martin, pasco county sheriff's office
A mugshot of Daniel Lee Martin from when he was arrested in January. Pasco County Sheriff's Office

In 2018, Martin was indicted by a grand jury on charges of sexual abuse involving a minor, the Columbia Daily Herald newspaper of Tennessee reported at the time. He was charged with three counts of soliciting the sexual exploitation of a minor, three counts of aggravated sexual battery, three counts of soliciting to commit aggravated sexual battery, two counts of indecent exposure and solicitation to commit the rape of a child.

According to the Tennessean, the crimes were against three victims, including two females, under the age of 13, between May 2014 and January 2018.

Martin was known for releasing the 2003 album All That I Am, followed by On My Way to You in 2007. He has also co-hosted TV shows including Brotherhood Outdoors on Sportsman Channel. He and his ex-wife also Julie McQueen appeared in the Carbon TV show Til Death Do Us Part.

If you have thoughts of suicide, confidential help is available for free at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Call 1-800-273-8255. The line is available 24 hours, every day.

This article has been updated with comment from Pasco County Sheriff's Office.