Dr. Adam Lazzarini, a South Carolina surgeon accused in the shooting death of a medical salesman, has now reported that his wife, Vanessa Biery, has died.
The cause of death for the doctor’s wife is not yet clear, but the tragedy adds a surprise and mysterious twist to what was already an unusual case as the orthopaedic surgeon had just been charged with the shooting death of the salesman, William Player Holland, in the couple’s home.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Adam Lazzarini Was Accused of Involuntary Manslaughter in the Salesman’s Death
The strange saga of Dr. Lazzarini dates back to 2017 when a man died in his home.
“Mrs. Biery’s residence was the location of a prior death, which occurred on October 9, 2017,” the Lexington County Coroner reported. “Mr. William Player Holland died as the result of a single gunshot wound to the chest. On May 3, 2018, Dr. Lazzarini was charged in connection with Mr. Holland’s death.”
Holland wrote on Facebook that he worked in sales at Crosslink/Stryker Orthopaedics and was a former salesman at Apria Health Care. He studied Business Administration at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina and went to The Carolina Academy. He was from Scranton, South Carolina and lived in Columbia.
Holland’s death was initially considered an accident. According to the State, Holland was visiting the Lazzarini home when the shooting occurred.
Holland’s parents released a statement saying that accounts of their son’s death had not made sense to them. Other details have not been released.
Lazzarini turned himself in on May 3 after being charged with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Holland, who was shot once to the chest.
2. The Coroner Confirmed that Vanessa Biery was Found Dead
On May 3, 2018, the Lexington County Coroner’s Office “confirmed the investigation of a death that was reported on May 1, 2018 at a residence in the 200 block of Hunters Mill Drive.” The cause of death is not yet clear.
According to the coroner, Mrs. Vanessa Brooke Biery, 43, “was found dead in her home of unknown circumstances. Mrs. Biery’s death was reported by her husband, Dr. Adam Lazzarini, at approximately 7:00A.M. An autopsy was conducted on May 3, 2018 at MUSC in Charleston; the results of that autopsy are pending,” the office said in a statement posted to Facebook.
“The investigation of Mrs. Biery’s death by the Cayce Department of Public Safety and SLED is ongoing.” She was allegedly found unresponsive.
On Facebook, people filled the comment thread under the couple’s wedding photo with flattering remarks. “Looks like Hollywood may call both of you😎” wrote one friend. Not many other photos or posts are visible on her page, save for a picture of a small child and an aquarium. Biery joked of the tank that contained swimming fish: “And one totally cool turtle! Love 🐢 sea turtles! Wish our government did…”
3. Lazzarini Has More Than a Decade of Experience Conducting Joint Replacement Surgeries
Lazzarini was an orthopaedic surgeon for Lexington Medical Center.
“With more than 10 years of orthopaedic surgery experience, Dr. Lazzarini specializes in using the most advanced surgical techniques to perform complex primary and revision total joint replacement surgery,” his biography on the site reads.
“He is an expert in hip arthroscopy, including management of labral tears, tendon injuries and impingement. Dr. Lazzarini is also an American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Fellow with additional certifications in advanced cardiac and trauma life support, computer navigation of the hip and knee during total joint replacement surgery and anterior total hip replacement.”
4. Dr. Lazzarini Attended Medical College in New York
According to his work biography, the doctor attended New York Medical College, Valhalla, New York and performed his residency at St. Vincent’s Hospital, New York, New York.
He also had a fellowship at the Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, New York; Adult Reconstruction and Hip Arthroscopy. After his arrest in the Holland death, Lexington Medical Center released a statement that read, “We are aware of the charges brought against Dr. Adam Lazzarini. We have placed him on leave and we trust that law enforcement and the judicial process will bring a just, speedy resolution to this investigation. We encourage Dr. Lazzarini’s patients to contact his practice with questions about their care.”
5. Biery Was the Daughter of a Television Announcer & Real Estate Agent & She Married Lazzarini a Decade Ago
Biery and Lazzarini were married in 2008, according to their wedding announcement in The New York Times. It reports that his uncle officiated.
At the time, Biery was 34. She was “working in Walnut Creek, Calif., as a freelance executive recruiter for investment banking and asset management companies. She graduated cum laude from Skidmore College,” the wedding announcement stated. She was the daughter of a television announcer in New York and a real estate agent, according to the announcement.
Lazzarini’s father is a lawyer, his mother worked for Wells Fargo, and he also had a stepfather. The couple was married in East Hampton, New York, the announcement reported.