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'Golden voice' Ted Williams departs drug rehab

By Alan Duke, CNN
Ted Williams, 53, admitted during a taping of "The Dr. Phil Show" earlier this month that he was still drinking.
Ted Williams, 53, admitted during a taping of "The Dr. Phil Show" earlier this month that he was still drinking.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Ted Williams' rehab stint was voluntary, so he could leave, Dr. Phil McGraw says
  • He entered rehab on January 12 after a talk with McGraw
  • The homeless man became an internet sensation recently for his "golden voice"

Los Angeles (CNN) -- Ted Williams, the homeless "golden voice" sensation on the internet, checked himself out of drug rehab 12 days after he voluntarily entered the facility, Dr. Phil McGraw said Monday.

Williams, 53, admitted during a taping of "The Dr. Phil Show" earlier this month that he was still drinking, claiming in other interviews in the past week to have been sober for the past two years after years of addiction.

"Ted was given the chance to voluntarily enter a drug rehabilitation facility in order to help him in dealing with his dependency on drugs and alcohol," McGraw said. "In that it is voluntary, the decision to remain in treatment is Ted's to make."

Williams' substance abuse separated him from his family and left him homeless for years, until a reporter for the Columbus Dispatch in Ohio videotaped him panhandling on a roadside last month. The video quickly went viral on the internet, and he was offered a several announcing jobs, including a contract with Kraft Foods.

Williams had been on a whirlwind spiral of publicity when he traveled to Los Angeles with his family to tape three interviews with "The Dr. Phil Show,"

The decision to seek professional help came after "a lengthy one-on-one conversation with Dr. Phil," show spokeswoman Stacey Luchs said in a statement issued then.

"The decision was made due in part to Williams' strange behavior over the past several days, which culminated in a physical altercation with one of his daughters at a Hollywood hotel," the January 12 statement said. "He was briefly detained by police and later released."

"We certainly hope that he continues his commitment to sobriety, and we will continue to help and support him in any way that we can," McGraw said Monday.

No information was given about where Williams went after leaving the rehab facility.

 
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