PALM BEACH — Roger Ailes, the man who built Fox News into a marketing machine for all things Republican, died in a West Palm Beach hospital overnight.
According to reports, he drifted into a coma last week after a heavy fall at his $36 million-mansion on Palm Beach’s oceanfront and never came to.
The twice-married political lighting-rod was 77.
Ailes, who moved to Palm Beach in disgrace after several female anchors accused him of sexual harassment, was said to have moved to benefit from Florida’s homestead laws.
They are designed to protect someone’s personal real estate from seizure to pay for judgements. Ailes was sued by several of the network’s high-profile women.
Ailes lived with his wife Beth in a six-bedroom house spread on more than 10,000 square feet.
According to Palm Beach Police records, Ailes fell in a bathroom shortly before 2 p.m. May 10 and injured his head.
According to the report, Ailes was bleeding profusely when Palm Beach Fire Rescue arrived at the house. He was conscious and breathing, the report shows, but was not completely alert.
The founding CEO of the conservative-leaning Fox News in 1996, Ailes was forced to resign in July and reportedly offered a $40 million-golden parachute.
Fox News made the move despite Ailes’ ability to build Fox News into a powerhouse thanks to a high-number of disgruntled voters who felt left out by more intellectual media.
The pressure for the very-married Ailes to leave stemmed from accusations from high-profile Fox News on-air talent that Ailes made untoward sexual advances.
In early July, ex-anchorwoman Gretchen Carlson sued Fox and Ailes on claims that her contract wasn’t renewed because she rebuffed Ailes’ attempts to sleep with her.
Ailes denied the charges but Fox kicked off a wide-ranging review of his actions at the office.
Ex prime-time anchorwoman Megyn Kelly then confirmed she, too, was the target of Ailes grabby ways early in her career, and ex-anchorwoman Andrea Tantaros filed her own suit.
On Sept. 6, Fox announced it settled with Carlson, reportedly for $20 million, and two other Ailes employees who remained anonymity.
On the barrier island of Palm Beach, meanwhile, Ailes joined an impressive stable of celebrity homeowners, including radio jock Howard Stern, rocker Rod Stewart, conservative pundits Anne Coulter and Rush Limbaugh as well as presidential hopeful Donald Trump and billionaire political donor David Koch.
Meanwhile, Ailes’ new crib was one of the most coveted new constructions in Palm Beach and was designed to look more like a Miami Beach mansion than a chi-chi cottage.
Ailes had owned property in Palm Beach County in the past, including a beachfront condo on Singer Island that he sold to Fox financial guru Neil Cavuto for $525,000 in 2003.
Ailes’ new purchase, which closed on Sept. 19, was made in the name of City National Bank of Florida Trust No. 2401-3263-00.
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Ailes’ new crib was one of the most coveted new constructions in Palm Beach and was designed to look more like a Miami Beach mansion than a chi-chi cottage.
It offers 12,700 square feet of sheer luxury with sweeping views on the ocean and the property’s private beach from the dozens of large aquarium windows.
The six-bedroom, 10-bathroom house was finished in late 2015 and boasts an interior designed by the high-profile Florida-based Marc-Michaels Interior Design.