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Alabama anchor who broke Bill Clinton-Loretta Lynch tarmac story dead at 45

Police said the local TV news anchor and former Alabama football player's death is being investigated as an apparent suicide.
Credit: Twitter/Christopher Sign

WASHINGTON — Journalist and Alabama television news anchor Christopher Sign, who once played football for the University of Alabama, was found dead Saturday morning after what police are investigating as an apparent suicide. 

AL.com reported that the reporter and anchor for ABC 33/40 in Birmingham, Alabama was found after an emergency 911 call was received at 8:13 a.m. local time on Saturday regarding a person down at a residence. 

When police and fire personnel arrived, 45-year-old Sign was found dead, according to local media. Police said the death is being investigated as a suicide. 

Sign, who grew up near Dallas, Texas, was previously a reporter and morning anchor at the ABC affiliate in Phoenix, Arizona KNXV-TV when on June 2016 he broke the news of a secret tarmac meeting between former President Bill Clinton and then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch at Sky Harbor Airport. As Deadline reported, news of the meeting created suspicions that Clinton was lobbying Lynch on behalf of his wife. 

At that time, Hillary Clinton, who was a candidate for president of the United States, was also under investigation for allegedly using a private email server for official public communications. The practice carried the potential of revealing state secrets to foreign entities. The Department of Justice along with the State Department later decided not to prosecute Hillary Clinton after investigating the matter. 

Sign played offensive lineman at Alabama in the 1990s, and he later wrote a book about the Bill Clinton and Loretta Lynch meeting called "Secret on the Tarmac".

Sinclair Broadcast Group Vice President and General Manager Eric S. Land said, “Our deepest sympathy is shared with Chris’s loving family and close friends." Land said, “We have lost a revered colleague whose indelible imprint will serve forever as a hallmark of decency, honesty and journalist integrity. We can only hope to carry on Chris’s legacy. May his memory be for blessing,” as was reported by AI.com.

ABC 33/40 wrote on their website that Sign returned to Alabama after 13 years as a journalist in Arizona writing, "That decision put him in a place where he could see his boys off to school in the mornings, watch them play baseball in the evenings, and take them fishing on the weekends."

Christopher Sign leaves behind his wife Laura and their three boys, along with their extended family, ABC 33/40 said. 

If you or someone you know may be struggling with suicidal thoughts you can call the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) any time of day or night or chat online.