January 23, 1959 |
La Crosse, Wisconsin, United States
Scott Thorson (born January 23, 1959) (later Jess Marlow) became famous for his relationship with and lawsuit against the late entertainer Liberace and his testimony against gangster Eddie Nash.
In 1989, Thorson emerged as a pivotal witness in the prosecution of gangster Eddie Nash in the 1981 quadruple murders of the Wonderland Gang. For his testimony, he was placed in the federal witness protection program. In 1990, he was shot five times when drug dealers broke into his hotel room in Jacksonville, Florida.
In 2000, Thorson was among several people featured in the British television documentary Liberace: Too Much of a Good Thing Is Wonderful. In 2002, he was interviewed by Larry King on Larry King Live. In the midst of his relationship with Liberace, Thorson confirmed he chose to have plastic surgery to look more like Liberace at the pianist's suggestion. During the interview with King, Thorson revealed his chin implant had been removed earlier in 2002.
In 2008, Thorson pleaded guilty to felony drug and burglary charges and was sentenced to four years in prison.
Following his release, Thorson gave interviews about his relationship with Liberace, including with Howard Stern, in June 2013, in which he talked about former lovers and affairs he had when he lived with Liberace. Another interview was on Entertainment Tonight in May 2012, where he stated that memories of his time with Liberace were still difficult for him.
Previously diagnosed with hepatitis C, in the autumn of 2012 Thorson was diagnosed with stage II cancer. Since his diagnosis, Thorson has made public pleas for money to continue his medical treatments. Recently, Thorson has been involved in writing a followup to Behind the Candelabra.
In February 2013, police investigating a lost wallet tracked the use of the victim's credit cards to a hotel in Reno, Nevada. Thorson was found to be using the credit cards, including renting a room at the Ponderosa Hotel in Reno, and was arrested. Thorson (who also uses the alias Jess Marlow, an alias he says occurred when he entered the protection program in the Nash case) was booked on a variety of charges, including burglary, and using a credit card without consent.  He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to five years' probation.
On January 23, 2014, Thorson was sentenced to 8 to 20 years in Nevada prison for failing court-ordered drug tests while on probation for burglary and identity theft convictions. Washoe District Judge Patrick Flanagan sentenced Scott Thorson after a string of bad drug tests, and due to his failure to show up at a court-ordered treatment facility for treatment. Thorson blamed his troubles on his revived celebrity status. Flanagan suspended Thorson's prison sentence in July 2013, and gave Thorson another chance in September 2013 to straighten out his life after he tested positive for methamphetamine. Thorson subsequently failed drug tests again - twice in October, and again on November 1, 2013. Thorson was arrested on November 19, 2013, after violating a court order to enter an inpatient treatment facility in Reno, Nevada two weeks earlier. Judge Flanagan told Thorson his so-called celebrity status missed the key point. "You're just like any other addict, who has committed a crime against a victim", noted judge Flanagan. 
Behind the Candelabra movie
An HBO original movie, Behind the Candelabra, based on Thorson's book Behind the Candelabra: My Life with Liberace, aired on HBO on May 26, 2013. The film features Matt Damon as Thorson and Michael Douglas as Liberace, and is the first movie on the Thorson–Liberace relationship and its aftermath since the Canada–US made-for-TV movie Liberace: Behind the Music (1988), where Thorson was portrayed by Michael Dolan. Behind the Candelabra is directed by Steven Soderbergh from a screenplay by Richard LaGravenese, with music by Academy Award-winning composer Marvin Hamlisch.
- Behind the Candelabra — My Life with Liberace by Scott Thorson and Alex Thorliefson; pp. 47; Copyright 1988; E.P. Dutton Publishing; ISBN 0-525-24653-3
- "Interview with Scott Thorson (Transcript)". Larry King Live (CNN). Airdate 12 August 2002 - 21:00 ET. Retrieved 29 December 2012. Check date values in:
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