Vanessa Marquez, an actress, perhaps best known as a featured nurse on the 1990s TV show ER, was shot and killed Thursday by police in Los Angeles after she pointed what turned out to be a BB gun at them during an encounter.
Police had been called to make a wellness check on the actress, but when they arrived, they found her combative and disheveled. Police called mental health providers to assess her condition, but she became belligerent and seemed to have armed herself, Variety reported.
Police say that she waved a gun at them causing officers to fire at her. It was later discovered that the gun she pointed at officers was a BB gun.
Sheriff’s Lt. Joe Mendoza told reporters that the 49-year-old actress appeared to have been seized by “mental problems” and was “gravely disabled.”
The actress, whose career spanned the 1990s but who had only worked sporadically since the year 2000, also accused the industry of blacklisting her because of her charges of sexual abuse.
In fact, Marquez blamed her lack of roles on blacklisting by ER star George Clooney.
Last October, Marquez accused Clooney of squashing her career saying, “Clooney helped blacklist me when I spoke up about harassment on ER.’women who don’t play the game lose careers.’ I did.”
Clooney responded to the actress’ accusations saying he had no role in casting for ER.
“I had no idea Vanessa was blacklisted,” Clooney said in a statement. “I take her at her word. I was not a writer or a producer or a director on that show. I had nothing to do with casting. I was an actor and only an actor. If she was told I was involved in any decision about her career, then she was lied to. The fact that I couldn’t affect her career is only surpassed by the fact that I wouldn’t.”
The actress claimed she was repeatedly groped on the set of ER and when she complained during those days before the #MeToo movement, she found her career on the skids.
Marquez had also frequently posted messages about her medical conditions to social media.
The actress wrote variously of having immune disorders, including celiac disease. She also said she had a “terminal” disease, suffered from chronic pain, and had become “homebound.”
“A person only has so much strength, and I’m afraid I’ve used all mine up,” she lamented tragically in one post. “Why couldn’t my dream have lasted for more than just those few years?”
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.