As I Lay Dying’s Tim Lambesis Opens Up About Mindset in Hiring Hitman to Kill His Ex-Wife
It was the news that shocked many in 2013. As I Lay Dying frontman Tim Lambesis had solicited a hitman to kill his wife as he was in the midst of a potential split. The singer eventually plead guilty to charges of solicitation to commit murder and spent nearly two years in jail before being paroled in 2016. In a recent podcast interview with Suicide Silence's Chris Garza on The Garza Show, the vocalist reflected on that dark period in his life, offered insight on his mindset and shared his thoughts on making amends in his life moving forward.
Shortly after pleading guilty, Lambesis granted an interview in which he discussed how his steroid use had clouded his thinking. "When I was arrested, I had come off testosterone-based steroids. My hormone levels were really unbalanced. Your body naturally produces a decent level of testosterone and keeps your estrogen levels under that, if you’re a guy. When you take testosterone, it elevates your level to 10 times what your body is normally doing," stated at the time, though also taking full blame for his actions.
Upon his release from jail, the singer sought to make amends with his former bandmates and has reclaimed his spot in As I Lay Dying. He's also offered an apology to his family, spent time pursuing a background in social work and became an addiction treatment counselor. He has also since remarried twice after the downfall of his first marriage.
Now, opening up to Garza, Lambesis has reflected on how his life turned in 2013 and the decision to solicit a hitman (that turned out to be an undercover cop) to murder his wife.
“My thinking was so isolated in my own mind and disconnected from my support system that I didn’t really even fathom or realize how much I had lost myself and the core of who I really was. It’s, like, I was this one person for most of my life, and then for this period of time, I had this very isolated, different type of mindset, and then have since returned to being much of who I was in the earlier part of my life plus, of course, the added perspective of everything I went through," said the singer.
He continued, "I don’t really know how to describe it. I lost myself, I lost my way, and I sat there in a cell being, like, ‘How did I become this person?’ It kind of blew my own mind. And as the mental cloud, the fog went away and I could see clearly, there are so obviously a thousand better ways that I could have gone through a divorce or a thousand better ways that if I wanted to be close with my family or if I felt that burning of a father who felt…”
Lambesis offered, “I can talk about, vaguely speaking, any father who loses his children, there’s a burning feeling of just, like, ‘I’ll do anything to fix this or to make this right or to maintain this relationship.’ But just ’cause you feel like you would be willing to do anything to maintain what matters to you the most in the world doesn’t mean you show that those are your best options. And I saw clearly sitting there thinking in a cell, ‘Wow, I could have handled this a thousand different ways,’ and the fact that in my mindset I thought at the time this was the best way to handle the situation, it blew my own mind. It’s, like, how did I even think that? It just was shocking. And there’s really no defense or no way to take away what I did other than that, thankfully, there was actually no true physical harm of any kind.”
As for his future and where things stand now, the vocalist says, “Knowing that I’m relatively young and I have the rest of my life to demonstrate to myself, beyond other people, that that is a very isolated, dark thought process in my life. And if that is an isolated, dark thought process, over the course of 30, 40, 50 years, you’ll see that. But I can’t prove that to anybody, coming out of prison, like, ‘Hey, guys. I’m changed. I’m good.’"
"They have to say, ‘Here’s who you were for 32 years. Here’s this dark period of your life. And here’s who you are for the next 20…’ I have at least 20 years till most people in this world are willing to be, like, ‘You know what? Maybe he really did change. Maybe incarceration really did…’ In one of those rare instances where incarceration actually helped an individual; maybe I’m one of those rare cases. But I have 20 years to prove that. So I’m not in a rush other than to be myself and let people see that slowly over time."
Finishing up his thoughts, Lambesis adds, "I hate talking about it in any kind of contextual way because I feel like it might come across like I’m giving excuses. I’m not. I’m just telling people the context under which these things happened. That’s it.”