Naomi Judd’s Daughters & Husband Petition Court To Seal Her Death Records

Naomi Judd / Facebook

The JuddsNaomi Judd died on April 30 at the age of 76. Her daughters, Wynonna and Ashley, initially stated that they “lost [their] beautiful mother to the disease of mental illness.”

Ashley later spoke with GMA on behalf of Naomi’s entire family. During that interview, Ashley shared that Naomi died as the result of a self-inflicted gunshot wound:

Because we don’t want it to be part of the gossip economy, I will share with you that she used a weapon,” Ashley said. “Mother used a firearm. So that’s the piece of information that we are very uncomfortable sharing, but understand that we’re in a position that, you know, if we don’t say it someone else is going to.”

Ashley also shared that she was the person who discovered her mother on that tragic day.

In that same interview, given not long after Naomi died, Ashley spoke about how she, Wynonna, and Naomi’s husband Larry Strickland wanted to take control of the narrative surrounding Naomi’s death:

They chose to reveal the information about Naomi’s suicide “…before things about the thirtieth of April become public without [their] control. Rather it’s the autopsy or the exact manner of her death…That’s really the impetus for this timing, otherwise it’s obviously way too soon.”

Now, Wynonna, Ashley, and Larry have petitioned the court to ensure that other details about Naomi’s death remain private.


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The three family members gave a representative permission to provide a recently filed court petition to The Associated Press. CBS News reports that the petition was filed on Friday (August 12)

CBS News also explains the purpose of the petition. It states that Wynonna, Ashley, and Larry want the court to seal police reports and recordings made in relation to Naomi’s death.

 “The family filed the petition in Williamson County Chancery Court, saying the records contain video and audio interviews with relatives in the immediate aftermath of Judd’s death, adding that releasing such details would inflict ‘significant trauma and irreparable harm,'” CBS News reports.

The filing shows that Ashley stated she was in “clinical shock, active trauma and acute distress” when she spoke with law enforcement on the day of her mother’s death. Because of this, CBS News reports, “she did not want those records, including video, audio and photos, to permanently stay in the public domain and haunt their family for generations.”

Larry expressed similar sentiments, as indicated in the petition. He said he was not aware his interviews with law enforcement were being recorded, during which he shared private and personal information.

CBS News goes on to explain:

The petition asks the court to prohibit the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office from releasing the records for several reasons, including that the disclosure would include her medical records and that the family has a right to privacy.

Also according to CBS News, the filing includes information about how Ashley found Naomi alive after she shot herself. The filing indicates that Ashley remained by her mother’s side for 30 minutes while waiting for help to arrive. Unfortunately, it was too late.

The family released a statement, which CBS News cites. The statement read:

Our family continues to grieve together privately, in unity and community, recognizing our mother’s beauty and talents as a gift to the world. There has been misinformation circulated as we continue to mourn and we lament that. We ask news organizations only to cover facts.”

Naomi’s family ended their statement with the following message.

And as we recognize other families struggling as a loved one faces mental health crises, we encourage them to seek help through NAMI: The National Alliance on Mental Illness available 24 hours a day at 800-950-6264.

Our hearts go out to Naomi’s loved ones during this difficult time.

As mentioned above, if you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, please call the National Alliance on Mental Illness at 800-950-6264 or contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, text “TALK ” to 741-741, or visit