George Lynch says that Tim Lambesis will "skate through life" after being released from prison for his role in a murder-for-hire plot.
In May 2014, the AS I LAY DYING singer was sentenced to six years in jail after pleading guilty to paying a San Diego police officer posing as a hit man $1,000 to kill his wife.
Speaking to "Trunk Nation", the former DOKKEN guitarist, whose daughter was once engaged to AS I LAY DYING guitarist Nick Hipa, recalled having spirited discussions with Lambesis about religion.
"[Tim] is a Biola-trained theologian," Lynch said (hear audio below). "The guy's really super bright. He had an IQ of 160; the guy had a brain like a freaking vice.
"I had every freaking argument out there, and he just was able to really kind of battle every argument, 'cause he had every counter-argument prepared in his mind; he had studied so hard. And as silly as his argument was, and as much as it didn't really hold water when you thought about it — it was all fallacious arguments — but…"
Lynch continued: "Anyways, he just got out of jail for attempting to kill his wife. Now I'm not saying this as an indictment against anything. All I'm saying is, there is a guy who could argue Christianity beyond anybody I've ever spoken to in my life; I had these very heated debates with this guy… He had a beautiful wife; they had adopted three Cambodian children. And then he discovered cocaine, strippers, heroin and steroids. He went completely off the rails, abandoned his family, his wife threatened to divorce him, he hired an off-duty cop to kill her.
"He recently got out of jail. He destroyed his band. They don't have a pot to piss in now; they're all struggling. [They are] a great band. I know them very well because, actually, the guitar player was my daughter's fiancé. And, actually, the drummer [Jordan Mancino] played in another project I had ways back, SOULS OF WE. So, anyways, he's out, he's got a mega record deal, he's got a book deal, everything's lined up for him. I mean, he's gonna skate through life. Everybody else is suffering. His wife is living in fear, his children are living in fear. His band doesn't have a pot to piss in."
Lambesis in 2015 filed a lawsuit against a California medical team alleging that he was not given a prescribed medication for nearly two months prior to his incarceration, resulting in him developing gynecomastia (enlarged breasts). Records show that his lawsuit was dismissed in October 2016 with prejudice, possibly because the parties had reached a settlement agreement.
Speaking to Alternative Press in the days leading up to his May 2014 sentencing, Lambesis described a Christian band circuit where phony faith was prevalent. He said: "We toured with more 'Christian bands' who actually aren't Christians than bands that are. In twelve years of touring with AS I LAY DYING, I would say maybe one in ten Christian bands we toured with were actually Christian bands."
Lambesis continued, speaking of his own band's beliefs: "I actually wasn't the first guy in AS I LAY DYING to stop being a Christian. In fact, I think I was the third. The two who remained kind of stopped talking about it, and then I'm pretty sure they dropped it, too. We talked about whether to keep taking money from the 'Christian market.' We had this bizarrely 'noble' thing, like, 'Well, we're not passing along any bad ideas. We're just singing about real life stuff. Those kids need to hear about real life, because they live in a bubble.'"
Lambesis, now 36, said he has been an atheist for years and had distanced himself from Christianity while in college. He said: "In the process of trying to defend my faith, I started thinking the other point of view was the stronger one."
"I remember one Christian festival where an interviewer wanted one of the guys to share his testimony, and he just froze up and let one of the guys who was still a Christian at the time answer the question," Lambesis said. "We laughed about it afterward, but we were only laughing because it was so awkward. When kids would want to pray with us after shows, I'd be like, 'Um, go ahead and pray!' I would just let them pray. I'd say, 'Amen.' If praying while I have my hand on their shoulder makes them feel better, I didn't want to take that away from them. When they would specifically ask me to pray for something, I'd say, 'I don't really like to pray out loud, but I'll take that with me to the bus."