A 25-year-old gay Atlanta man and adult entertainer found dead in a Midtown hotel room died after huffing cleaning solvent.
The Fulton County Medical Examiner ruled Mehran Chestnut's death on Sept. 4 an accident caused by intentionally inhaling a cleaning solvent and suffering acute chloroethane toxicity. Chestnut had a history of huffing solvent and ingested enough Black Max to be toxic and cause “a violent accidental death,” according to an autopsy report obtained by Project Q Atlanta.
On Sept. 4, Chestnut was found nude and on the floor about 6:30 a.m. in a room at the Hyatt Atlanta Midtown on 10th Street. He arrived there the night before with a man he met on Jack'd for sex. The pair fell asleep about 12:30 a.m. and when the man woke up, he tried to wake up Chestnut before calling 9-1-1, according to an incident report from the Atlanta Police Department.
The man told an investigator with the Fulton County Medical Examiner that he didn't see Chestnut huffing. There were no signs of struggle in the room or trauma to Chestnut's body, and Atlanta police did not treat his death as a homicide.
The medical examiner performed an autopsy a few hours later and finalized its report and issued a cause of death on Oct. 7.
Weeks before his death, Chestnut told a friend that he lost his job and didn't have a place to live. He also complained of suffering from grand mal seizures. Chestnut's mother, Linda McDaniel, told medical examiners that her son had a habit of huffing Black Max, which could cause the seizures, according to some medical reports.
Chestnut performed as a stripper at Atlanta nightclubs and during parties for gay nightlife promoters, including Rockstars Productions and Wet In ATL. He also appeared in gay porn scenes as King B, the stage name tattooed on his lower back, for several studios including Raging Stallion and NextDoorEbony.
In 2013, Chestnut appeared in an episode of “Tha Life Atlanta,” a web-based reality series about black gay life in Atlanta. In his appearance, Chestnut discussed how becoming a stripper and porn actor helped lift him up from living homeless behind a MARTA station.
“I actually learned how to financially hold my own money, gain my own money, to live on my own, to basically learn the ATL lifestyle, the gay lifestyle in general and how to go from a low self esteem to a high self esteem. So it really taught me a lot,” Chestnut said.