HEBER SPRINGS, Ark. -- Mindy McCready threatened suicide after losing custody of her sons earlier this month, yet she was allowed to leave a court-ordered drug rehabilitation program just days before she apparently killed herself at her Arkansas home, her ex-boyfriend said Monday.
Billy McKnight, who was in a long, stormy relationship with the former country singer and is the father of her oldest child, Zander, said the 37-year-old mother of two stayed in the substance abuse treatment center for about 18 hours before she was allowed to walk free.
McCready died Sunday at her home in Heber Springs, a vacation community about 65 miles north of Little Rock. She was found dead on the front porch, where her longtime boyfriend, musician David Wilson, died last month of a gunshot wound to the head. Authorities are investigating both deaths as suicides.
McKnight told The Associated Press during a phone interview from Tampa, Fla., that McCready and Wilson, the father of her youngest son, were recently engaged. He wondered how she was allowed to go free, given all the turmoil in her life.
"That was a big mistake on the part of whoever released her," McKnight said.
Arkansas courts were closed for the holiday Monday.
Authorities said McCready's two sons were safe.