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Brazilian actor dies after accidental hanging in 'The Passion of the Christ' play

By Marilia Brocchetto, CNN
updated 9:14 AM EDT, Wed April 25, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Tiago Klimeck, 27, died Sunday after accidentally hanging himself April 6
  • He spent more than two weeks in a medically induced coma
  • Klimeck was playing the role of Judas Iscariot, who hangs himself
  • Report: Klimeck wore a harness under his robe; the harness is now being analyzed

(CNN) -- A Brazilian actor died after accidentally hanging himself during the play "The Passion of the Christ," a local hospital said.

Tiago Klimeck, 27, was one of the actors from a local theater company taking part in an independent production of the play April 6 in the city of Itarare.

Klimeck died Sunday after spending more than two weeks in a medically induced coma due to extensive brain injuries from a prolonged lack of oxygen after accidentally hanging himself, according to the Hospital Santa Casa de Misericordia, in the neighboring city of Itapeva.

The cause of death was not immediately available. Photos taken by a local photographer show the final moments of the play as Klimeck, in the role of Judas Iscariot, hangs himself as described in the Bible in the book of Matthew.

Klimeck wore a harness under his robe during the play, according to CNN affiliate TV Record.

Police investigator Jose Victor Bassetti told the news station this was the third year the local fire department let the theater company borrow the harness for the play and that Klimeck was not supervised because he knew how to use the equipment. The harness, along with the rope used in the play, are now being analyzed at the Criminal Institute of Sorocaba.

Luiz Carlos Rosner owns a sandwich cart next to the city square where the play was taking place. He described the anxiety after cast members realized Klimeck was unconscious.

"One of the actors came over to me, desperate, explaining there was someone unconscious hanging from the rope and that he wanted to cut it," Rosner told TV Record. "I was a little worried about giving him a knife in the middle of the crowd."

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