Lee Thompson Young Dead at 29; Starred on Disney Channel's Jett Jackson, Rizzoli & Isles

Get More: In Memoriam, News

Lee Thompson Young Dead at Age 29Disney Channel star turned Rizzoli & Isles cast member Lee Thompson Young was found dead at his Los Angeles apartment on Monday morning.

Per TMZ, which was first to report on the tragedy, the 29-year-old actor suffered a fatal gunshot wound that appeared to be self-inflicted.

ABC News has since confirmed Young’s death.

RELATED | How 22 TV Shows Handled a Cast Member’s Death

Production on the back half of Rizzoli’s current season was suspended Monday and possibly will take a short hiatus. A statement from TNT, Warner Bros. TV and Rizzoli & Isles EP Janet Tamaro reads as follows:

Everyone at Rizzoli & Isles is devastated by the news of the passing of Lee Thompson Young. We are beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man. He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and offscreen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace. We send our deepest condolences and thoughts to his family, to his friends and, most especially, to his beloved mother.


Young’s TV credits include the title role in Disney Channel’s The Famous Jett Jackson (which ran from 1998 to 2001), Scrubs, FlashForward and Smallville (where he played Cyborg). On Rizzoli, he has costarred as Detective Barry Frost since the TNT series’ pilot.

On the big screen, he played running back Chris Comer in 2004′s Friday Night Lights.



Comments (148)

  • OMG I am in absolute shock – this breaks my heart.

    Comment by CJ – August 19, 2013 11:20 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Same here. What a tragic loss. Suicide is the ultimate permanent solution to temporary problems, though of course we have no idea what was going on in his life. I just ache for him, and his family and colleagues. Loved watching him in R&I. Can’t imagine how they’re going to deal with this.

      Comment by Annie – August 19, 2013 11:31 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • His loss from Rizzoli & Isles will be hard to take, but nothing compared to losing him from this world. My heart hurts so much for his loved ones. As you said, it’s a permanent solution to temporary problems. So, so sad.

        Comment by CJ – August 19, 2013 11:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • I really can’t believe it. It’s awful when they are so young.

          Comment by Teeny Bikini – August 19, 2013 12:11 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • I agree with everything you said. He was my favorite character on R&I.

          Comment by Ethel – August 19, 2013 01:49 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I find it really heinous when people start jabbing people that commit suicide. It basically amounts to sheeple towing the traditional patriarchal authoritarian propaganda to keep the serfs and slaves in line and alive, doing their bidding as they ground them in to the earth (how very modern teaPub). It’s a shame since Young seemed to have so many gifts and so much potential, but you didn’t walk in his shoes, so it’s far and away not your place to judge.

        Comment by Temperenace – August 19, 2013 08:06 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • What!!!!! or is just me.

          Comment by Charles – August 20, 2013 08:40 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • It’s just you. Parroting the standard ‘suicide is bad’ is standard patriarchal conservative gibberish – and offensive.

            Comment by Temperenace – August 20, 2013 08:26 PM PDT  
        • ur an idiot no one is jabbing at people that commit suicide all they are saying is that suicide may be a quick solution to what ur dealing with its not the answer not knowing wut he was going through they just are saying there must have been another way

          Comment by jason – August 21, 2013 02:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • i agree with you,jason. we weren’t there and we DON’T know what he was dealing with.maybe he didn’t talk to anyone who could have helped him. i will really miss him, he was one of my favorite characters, beside r&i.i’m sure there was another way, he just didn’t find it. prayers for his friends and family.

            Comment by sandi – September 14, 2013 12:39 PM PDT  
        • It’s not just Charles. You seem to have some issues and this is not the forum to address them. Serfs and slaves have nothing to do with this. Suicide is never a solution to anything, period. Woe is me. Poor little actors aren’t getting the attention they think they deserve so they do drugs or commit suicide. Another talented person lost because they are not brave enough to stay and fight the demons. They choose the easy way out and we are suppose to feel sorry? We are all actors on the stage of life. The only difference is, they get bigger paychecks than the rest of us.

          Comment by Judy – September 14, 2013 11:51 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • WHAT?!!! Sigh. Such an awesome talent.

      Comment by Teeny Bikini – August 19, 2013 12:10 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’m in shock as well. While I never saw his Disney show I love him on R&I. If you’re thinking about suicide there are people out there who you can talk to: 1-800-273-8255
      National Suicide Prevention Lifeline or 1-800-SUICIDE 1-800-784-2433

      Comment by David7118 – August 19, 2013 01:55 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’m in shock. Such an unvelibable new. Rest in peace. My favorite characther in R&I

      Comment by Alrisha6 – August 19, 2013 03:35 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I’ve never heard of this guy so I’m not moved by his suicide at all. It’s like reading statistics. I find it boring.

      Comment by dan mcguire – August 21, 2013 01:15 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • dan, i sure hope you don’t ever get to that point and have some one make your comment about you. it’s sad when anyone feels they have no way out and some people don’t care.

        Comment by sandi – September 14, 2013 12:43 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Wow. Your lack of compassion for the loss of a fellow human being – who was clearly at a critical place in his life, is nothing short of staggering. Dan, may you never experience what this man faced, or experience a time in your life when you feel complete hopelessness or unparalleled loneliness. Emotional confusion is dangerous, as it tends to alienate people from reaching out for help.

        Comment by teddi6 – September 14, 2013 03:46 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Being a mother of a young 22yr old who committed suicide several years back, you show insight to the turmoil going on inside one at the threshhold of committing suicide. They can appear to be great to everyone and in fact are, but they don’t believe it themselves…to them, it was a facade they built over time due to other’s expectations or their own. Then get to a point of being so overwhelmed that they can never reveal their true feelings or self because it would indeed destroy that very image. The loss of hope that one’s real thoughts, feelings and actions could ever be as good as the facade.

          My empathy and condolences to those who loved him,

          Comment by Mickie – September 15, 2013 08:42 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Omg I remember him way back on disney! So sad!!!

    Comment by tvaddict – August 19, 2013 11:21 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • So sad, I loved him on Rizzoli and Isles! Prayers for his family and friends…

    Comment by K. – August 19, 2013 11:22 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • this is so sad :( RIP

    Comment by Dani – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • omg it so freaking sad, never saw it coming :*(

    Comment by marie – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • is everyone killing themselves these days? such tragedies are heartbreakingly painful to hear about.

    Comment by PrincessD (@princessdeesha) – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Wow, just horrible. He was a good actor i really enjoyed him on T.V.

    Comment by D – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I totaly agree he brought a balance and funny wit to the show,he made agreat impact on the show and it will be hard to find someone who really showed looks,wit and charm to an already outstanding cast…….lee

      Comment by robert downs – September 14, 2013 03:43 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Shocked!

    Comment by mrwiseman – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • That is a shame. I was just rewatching The Sarah Connor Chronicles where he appeared, and it made me wonder what he’s been up to lately. I can’t say that I know much (or anything) about the man himself, but he was on a lot of shows that I liked. I guess that’s a good thing to say about an actor.

    Comment by Drew – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Omg! How sad :( Frost was such a fun character.

    Comment by Samantha – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Rizzoli will be lost without Frost. For sure. The dynamic is definitely going to change. Im so very saddened and shocked!

      May he have peace and his family strength!

      Comment by McAmster – August 20, 2013 08:38 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • so incredibly sad to hear about this.

    Comment by Kat – August 19, 2013 11:23 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Wow I’m stunned-condolences to his family,friends and coworkers.

    Comment by Suzanne Kari (@suzank45) – August 19, 2013 11:24 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’m soooo sad.

    Comment by M. – August 19, 2013 11:24 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • RIP. He was my favorite Disney actor growing up. :(

    Comment by Esaul – August 19, 2013 11:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Jet Jackson was one of my favorite show as a kid. This is so sad.

    Comment by Melinda – August 19, 2013 11:27 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Terrible news. I loved “The Famous Jett Jackson” as a kid, and enjoyed seeing him on Smallville. Though I hadn’t watched R&I i was glad he had consistent work on the series.

    Condolences to family & friends. Suicides should never happen, it’s heartbreaking that some people end up thinking it’s their only option.

    Comment by ZmaX – August 19, 2013 11:28 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This is so incredibly sad to hear. I loved watching him on Rizzoli & Isles. My prayers go to his family, friend and co-workers.

    Comment by Marla (@zoyaroses) – August 19, 2013 11:29 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • So very, very sad. He was a sweetheart. Enjoyed him so much for past three years on Rizzoli.

    Comment by Judy – August 19, 2013 11:30 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Unbelievable!!! Loved him on Rizzoli and Isles. I know they will handle his loss well on the show.

    Comment by Eric7740 – August 19, 2013 11:30 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Such horrible news.
    He was a handsome, very talented actor. I love R&I and ill miss him so much

    Comment by Cherry – August 19, 2013 11:30 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This is unreal! I am at a loss for words. I first saw him on FlashForward and loved him and was so excited when I saw him on Rizzoli and Isles. He was one of my favorites on there. Bright light indeed! He will be missed.

    Comment by Sasha – August 19, 2013 11:32 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • So they are still filming for this season? This means they will get a chance to give him a proper goodbye this year instead of waiting a year right? I hope.

      Comment by Sasha – August 19, 2013 11:37 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • TMZ reports that it was because he hadn’t shown up for filming this morning that the landlord was called to check on him. :-(

        Comment by Simon Jester – August 19, 2013 12:14 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • That’s so awful. The cast and crew must be in total shock right now.

          Comment by JC – August 19, 2013 12:21 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • I believe the epiosodes for the summer shows have all been completed and they were filming the episodes for when they come back on in the late fall/early winter ususally TNT has about 6-8 epioside air at that time. I would think they would plan an episode for then. But as for right now maybe something like a dedication after tomorrow nights episode. This is very sad news I loved him on R&I Frost was a great character. i just read an interview with him not too long ago how excited he was for his tranisition from a child star to an adult star. I never saw this coming my condolences to his family and the cast and crew at Rizolli and Isles.

          Comment by Girl in MD – August 19, 2013 12:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
          • I feel like tomorrow;s episode will be hard to watch knowing he is gone…..

            Comment by Girl in MD – August 19, 2013 02:03 PM PDT  
          • Thanks for this. I figured they were wrapping up this current run so I was confused as to what part of the season they were filming. He will truly be missed. I hope he is at peace now.

            Comment by Sasha – August 19, 2013 02:05 PM PDT  
      • Angie or Sasha said on twitter a couple of weeks ago that they would be done filming the season finale by the end of August. So they must be pretty close to having all the episodes in the can. But according to Deadline, the producers are now considering going on hiatus to give the cast and crew time to grieve as well as to give the writers time to figure out how they are going to write him out.

        Comment by Babygate – August 19, 2013 03:10 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
        • Writing him out (not saying it wouldn’t be emotionally hard) is easy. Killed in line of duty offscreen, Frankie gets the desk.

          None of that takes away from the tragedy in real life.

          Comment by Evan – August 19, 2013 06:56 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Whoa. I liked him on The Famous Jett Jackson and Johnny Tsunami (one of the Disney Channel movies). Sad to hear of him taking his own life…

    Comment by Steve F. – August 19, 2013 11:33 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • OMG!! Johnny Tsunami!! I loved that movie as a kid hahahaa
      Although he is gone, he will live forever on screen and in the hearts of those who truly love him R.I.P

      Comment by Basher – February 11, 2014 06:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • So sad to hear this. I loved his character on R&I and it seemed like they were starting to really explore him. RIP

    Comment by Angela – August 19, 2013 11:33 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • What horrible news. So sad to hear. :(

    Comment by nonniemb – August 19, 2013 11:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Tragic. So sorry he felt such despair. :(

    Comment by Kim R – August 19, 2013 11:35 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • oh no!!! I loved him :(

    Comment by Elyse – August 19, 2013 11:36 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Morbid, I was just thinking about where he was in his career after seeing his Jett Jackson Co-star Lindy Booth as Night Bitch in Kick-Ass 2.

    Comment by Roger – August 19, 2013 11:37 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I actually gasped with shock when I saw this. I loved him on R&I and especially his playful banter with all the characters. So very sad :( RIP Lee !

    Comment by Lesley – August 19, 2013 11:37 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I gasped audibly as well. He was terrific on Rizzoli and Isles, and to hear that something caused him to take his own life is profoundly sad.

      Comment by Andrea – August 19, 2013 12:34 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I was so shocked to read this!!!! He was a good actor & I loved him on Rizoli & Isles! Prayers for his family & friends!

    Comment by Nena – August 19, 2013 11:39 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • WHAT

    Comment by Brandy – August 19, 2013 11:43 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I grew up watching Famous Jett Jackson and loved him on Rizzoli & Isles. He seemed like he was very grounded in interviews. Such a sad loss.

    Comment by Tori Melching (@lizjaxe) – August 19, 2013 11:45 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • What?! NO! What the hell?! No! …This is awful, awful news. Sending good vibes to his friends and family, and the Rizzoli and Isles fandom. This is truly the terrible loss of a very promising actor.

    Comment by Zoe – August 19, 2013 11:50 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • omg. I cant believe it. loved him in Rizzoli and isles :( such sad news :(

    Comment by lynn – August 19, 2013 11:51 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This is insane, terrible, and tragic. I loved him on “The Famous Jett Jackson” and adored his turn on “Rizzoli & Isles” even more. Even with playing such a memorable character as a youth, his transition from child actor to adult actor seemed relatively smooth. My thoughts and prayers are with the people who love him.

    Comment by Ashley – August 19, 2013 11:53 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • That’s awful. His poor family and friends. It’s going to be hard to watch the next few episodes of Rizzoli & Isles.

    Comment by JC – August 19, 2013 12:01 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Such sad news. My daughter and I are huge fans of Rizzoli & Isles, which shows over here in the UK on Alibi channel, and the banter and chemistry between Frost and his colleagues was always a joy to watch. We also remember him from Scrubs, too. So, so sad to hear of his death.

    Comment by Shazza (UK) – August 19, 2013 12:01 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Oh my gosh! I just found out the news. A life that was taken too soon. He will always be cyborg on smallville to me. I adored him as an actor, and this is just shocking.

    Comment by lll – August 19, 2013 12:02 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This is incredibly sad :(

    Comment by Cynthia – August 19, 2013 12:05 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • so sad

    Comment by bitca – August 19, 2013 12:07 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Words fail… what is going on? Such a vibrant, charismatic and talented young man. One can only wonder what darkness was lurking inside. The R&I family must be devastated… Prayers for all…

    Comment by Babygate – August 19, 2013 12:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I haven’t watched R&I since S2 but damn, that’s sad. Frost was a cool character, and although I don’t know much about the actor it’s still way too young to go. It’s even more sad that he made that decision himself. My heart goes out to his family, friends and co-workers. RIP Lee.

    Comment by Olivia – August 19, 2013 12:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Wow……how awful.

    Comment by Alichat – August 19, 2013 12:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • OMG! What a tragic waste. I will miss him on Rizzoli & Isles. Such a handsome, talented young man. God bless you……

    Comment by Bobbi – August 19, 2013 12:14 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Poor Lee. That’s so sad. I was just watching last weeks R&I last night. He was a great actor and just absolutely handsome. He will be missed.

    Comment by Liz – August 19, 2013 12:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Such sad news! Like everyone else, I’m completely stunned.

    Comment by Lorie – August 19, 2013 12:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • My heart goes out to his loved ones.

    Comment by ishthemish – August 19, 2013 12:24 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • He will be missed on R&I. :( Frost was a character that I really enjoyed. He added a lot to the show.

    Comment by JC – August 19, 2013 12:25 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I’m sure I speak for all R&I fans when I say I’m saddened and shocked by this news. Such a sad loss to R&I and I know they’ll handle the absence of Det Barry Frost in a sensitive and respectful way because R&I is a very classy show. Condolences to his family, friends and everyone connected with R&I. RIP.

    Comment by Scott – August 19, 2013 12:28 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • I second this. Watching the remaining episodes will be weird and very hard for us fans. I wish his family much support during this hard time!

      Comment by Sarah-Ann – August 19, 2013 03:10 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Cyborg! How sad… What a loss.

    Comment by Lisa London – August 19, 2013 12:37 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I was first introduced to him on Smallville and became a fan. Only I watch R&I on and off but I really enjoyed his character. Such utterly heartbreaking news. My thoughts are with his family, friends, and costars. Such a tragic loss.

    Comment by Maya – August 19, 2013 12:37 PM PDT  Reply To This Post

Leave a Reply

Comments on TVLine.com are monitored. So don't go off topic, don't frakkin' curse, and be gone with your offers of discount leather goods. Talk smart about TV!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s