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Vrou vermoor kêrel met Blowfish -gif

Vrou vermoor kêrel met Blowfish -gif


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'N Vrou sê haar kêrel is dood nadat sy gifvisse geëet het

Wikimedia/Brocken Inaglory

'N Vrou sê haar kêrel is dood nadat sy per ongeluk haar jogurt met gifvleis geëet het.

Op sommige plekke is blaasvis 'n lekkerny, maar dit is ook 'n uiters giftige gif wat onlangs gebruik is om 'n jong man in China dood te maak.

Volgens Shanghaiist is die hoofverdagte in die dood van die jong man 'n 33-jarige vrou met die naam Xiao, maar sy beweer dat dit eintlik 'n ongeluk was. Sy het aan die polisie gesê dat sy van plan was om haarself dood te maak met vergiftigde jogurt, maar haar kêrel het haar jogurt uit die yskas geneem en in plaas daarvan gesterf.

Volgens die verhaal van Xiao het sy die puffer visgif op die internet gekoop vir 5000 yuan, of sowat $ 805, omdat sy gehoor het dat dit die minste pynlike manier is om te sterf. Sy het die gif met jogurt en slaappille vermeng en gesê dat sy dit in die yskas gelos het terwyl sy voorberei het om haar kêrel 'n voetmassering te gee. Tydens die massering het hy egter gekla oor duiseligheid, en sy het besef dat hy die helfte van haar jogurt gedrink het.

Xiao het gesê dat sy besluit het om die res van die gif self te neem, in plaas daarvan om die polisie te bel. Volgens haar verhaal het sy flou geword van die blaasvisgif en later wakker geword toe sy agterkom dat haar kêrel dood is. Toe wag sy 'n week voordat sy die polisie bel.

Die polisie is nie oortuig van die verhaal van Xiao nie, deels omdat sy na berig word op 'n internetbord geplaas het om te vra of dit beter is om selfmoord te pleeg of die polisie te bel nadat hulle iemand vermoor het. Xiao word aangekla van poging tot moord omdat sy die gis in die jogurt vermeng het en dat sy nie die polisie gebel het toe sy besef het dat hy dit geëet het nie.


Hemlock of Conium is 'n hoogs giftige blomplant inheems aan Europa en Suid -Afrika. Dit was gewild onder die ou Grieke, wat dit gebruik het om hul gevangenes dood te maak. Vir 'n volwassene is die inname van 100 mg conium of ongeveer 8 blare van die plant dodelik. Die dood kom in die vorm van verlamming en u gedagtes is wakker, maar u liggaam reageer nie, en uiteindelik word die asemhalingstelsel gesluit. Waarskynlik die bekendste hemlockvergiftiging is dié van die Griekse filosoof Sokrates. Hy is in 399 vC ter dood veroordeel weens goddeloosheid en het 'n baie gekonsentreerde infusie van hemlock gekry.

Beïndruk u vriende (en kry 'n paar vreemde voorkoms) met u diepgaande kennis van gifstowwe! Koop Poisons: Van Hemlock tot Botox en die Killer Bean of Calabar by Amazon.com!


'Dokter het vrou verlaat'

Intussen het Harsha & rsquos se pa, geïdentifiseer as Nanji Patel, gesê dat Hitendra sy dogter sedert Desember verlede jaar in die steek gelaat het. Sy het in sy huis gewoon. Dinsdag het sy na Hitendra & rsquos se huis gegaan, waar sy na bewering die uiterste stap geneem het, het Nanji bygevoeg.

Die polisie het 'n saak teen Hitendra, sy ouers en suster aangemeld op grond van selfmoordaanklag en ander relevante bepalings van die wet.


'N Rotsagtige verhouding

Alexander het Arias, 'n fotograaf, ontmoet tydens 'n konferensie in Las Vegas in 2006. Die twee het dit dadelik gedoen en Alexander, 'n vroom lid van die Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, het Arias oortuig om na The Book of Mormon te kyk, volgens 'n 2013 MENSE artikel. Sy het in November 2006 tot die mormonisme oorgegaan. Volgens die hofverslae het die diep verliefde paartjie 'n passievolle, maar vinnig lewendige romanse gehad. Na vyf maande saam het die twee dit in Junie 2007 beëindig, maar hulle het die volgende twee jaar steeds seksueel eksplisiete sms -boodskappe uitgeruil.

'[Arias] was heeltemal versot op hom,' het Alexander se goeie vriend Sky Hughes gesê Die Huffington Post. "Sy wou hom nie laat gaan nie. Elke keer as hy probeer om alle bande te verbreek, sou sy dreig om haarself dood te maak. Hy sou vir haar sê dat hy niks met haar te doen wil hê nie, en sy sal by sy huis opdaag. Ons ons het geweet dit is sy. Ons wou nie hê dit moes sy wees nie, maar ons het net geweet dat dit sy was. "

Toe Alexander met ander vroue begin uitgaan, het Arias sy bande gesny, by sy Facebook ingebreek en hom op uitstappies bekruip. Volgens MENSE, Het Alexander vir 'n vriend gesê: "Moenie verbaas wees as jy my eendag dood vind nie."

Op 4 Junie 2008 besoek Arias Alexander by sy huis in Arizona. Aanklaers sou later beweer dat sy onaangekondig opgedaag het. Maar Arias het daarop aangedring dat Alexander haar genooi het. Die twee het grafiese seksfoto's van mekaar geneem en 'n seksband gemaak, wat volgens Arias volgens Alexander se idees Alexander se idees was. "Hy het my vasgemaak (op) die bed. Dit is nie my gunsteling nie, maar dit is nie ondraaglik nie," het Arias in die hof gesê.

'N Dag later het Arias in West Jordan, Utah, aangekom om 'n ander minnaar, Ryan Burns, by sy huis te ontmoet. 'Sy het twee klein verbande aan haar vingers gehad,' het Burns getuig.

Alexander se dooie, verrotte liggaam sou nog vier dae lank nie ontdek word nie.


Fugu: Die visse is giftiger as sianied

Die Japannese delikatesse fugu, of blaasvis, is so giftig dat die kleinste fout in die voorbereiding daarvan dodelik kan wees. Maar die stadsregering in Tokio beplan om beperkings te verlig wat slegs hoogs opgeleide en gelisensieerde sjefs toelaat om die gereg voor te sit.

Kunio Miura gebruik altyd sy spesiale messe om fugu voor te berei - hout hanteer met lemme wat deur 'n swaardsmid tot op 'n skerp rand getemper word. Voordat hy in sy kombuis begin werk, word hulle deur 'n assistent na hom gebring, versigtig in 'n spesiale boks gebêre.

Miura-san, soos hy met respek bekend staan, sny al vir 60 jaar blaasvisse op, maar benader die taak steeds met omsigtigheid. 'N Enkele fout kan 'n kliënt se dood beteken.

Fugu is 'n duur lekkerny in Japan, en die restaurante wat dit bedien, is een van die beste in die land. In die Miura-san-onderneming begin 'n maaltyd by $ 120 (£ 76) per persoon, maar mense is bereid om te betaal vir die versekering van die fugu-sjeflisensie wat op sy muur gemonteer is, nou verouder met ouderdom. Hy is een van 'n uitgesoekte gilde wat deur die stadsregering in Tokio gemagtig is om die gereg voor te sit.

As hy begin werk, is die proses vinnig en genadiglik buite sig van die oorlewende fugoe wat in hul tenk by die restaurantdeur swem.

Eers lê hy die gestuurde vis, nogal vierkantig van die lyf met stomp vinne, op sy maag en sny die kop oop om sy brein en oë te verwyder.

Hulle word versigtig in 'n metaalbak geplaas wat gemerk is & quot; nie-eetbaar & quot; Dan verwyder hy die vel, groen en gevlek aan die bokant en sye, wit onder, en begin by die ingewande sny.

"Dit is die giftigste deel," sê hy en trek die eierstokke uit. Maar die lewer en ingewande kan ook dodelik wees. & quot Mense sê dit is 200 keer dodeliker as sianied. & quot

Volgens regeringsyfers is 23 mense in Japan dood nadat hulle sedert 2000 fugu geëet het. Die meeste van die slagoffers is hengelaars wat haastig probeer om hul vangs tuis voor te berei. 'N Woordvoerder van die ministerie van gesondheid en welsyn sukkel om aan 'n enkele sterfgeval in 'n restaurant te dink, hoewel 'n vrou verlede jaar in die hospitaal opgeneem is nadat sy 'n spoor van fugu lewer in een van die beste restaurante in Tokio geëet het - nie Miura -san nie.

Tetrodotoksienvergiftiging word beskryf as "vinnig en gewelddadig", eers 'n gevoelloosheid om die mond, dan verlamming, uiteindelik die dood. Die ongelukkige eetplek bly tot die einde toe bewus. Daar is geen teenmiddel nie.

"Dit sal genoeg wees om jou dood te maak," sê Miura-san en sny 'n klein stukkie eierstok af en hou dit omhoog. Dan kontroleer hy die giftige organe op die skinkbord sorgvuldig en sorg dat hy alles in ag neem, en gooi dit in 'n metaaltrommel wat met 'n hangslot gesluit is. Hulle sal na die belangrikste vismark in Tokio geneem word en verbrand word, saam met die afsnitte van ander fugu-restaurante.

Die vaardigheid van Miura-san word dus baie waardeer. Fugu -sjefs beskou hulself as die elite van Japan se uiters mededingende kookwêreld. Hy het op 15 -jarige ouderdom as vakleerling in 'n kombuis begin. Opleiding duur ten minste twee jaar, maar hy is nie toegelaat om die praktiese toets te neem om 'n lisensie te kry tot hy 20 was nie. 'N Derde van die eksaminatore slaag nie.

Die voorstelle van die stadsregering in Tokio om die reëls te verslap, het dus 'n geskreeu van gekwalifiseerde sjefs ontvang. Deur in Oktober in werking te tree, sal hulle restaurante toelaat om gedeeltes Fugu wat hulle klaargemaak het, buite die perseel te bedien.

"Ons het hard gewerk om die lisensie te kry en moes die moeilikste eksamen in Tokio slaag," sê Miura-san. Volgens die nuwe reëls kan mense fugu verkoop nadat hulle net 'n dag na 'n klas gegaan het en geluister het. Ons het baie tyd en geld spandeer. Om hierdie vaardigheid te kry, moet u oefen deur meer as honderd visse te sny, en dit kos honderdduisende yen. & Quot

Die owerhede in Tokio stel strenger regulasies op as enige ander Japannese stad. In sommige kon restaurante al lankal vooraf voorbereide fugu verkoop. En selfs in Tokio is dit deesdae beskikbaar op die internet en in sommige supermarkte - een rede waarom amptenare dink dat die reëls bygewerk moet word.

Wat die koste betref, is dit waarskynlik dat fugu in goedkoper restaurante en kroeë (izakayas) beskikbaar sal wees. Maar om na 'n behoorlike fugu -restaurant te gaan om goeie wild te vang, wat ter plaatse berei is, is 'n luukse - vanweë die koste, indien niks anders nie - en ook 'n groot gebeurtenis. Vir baie is die aantrekkingskrag van die gereg die ekwivalent van Russiese roulette aan die etenstafel.

Sommige rapporteer 'n vreemde tinteling van die lippe uit spore van die gif, hoewel Miura-san dit onwaarskynlik meen. Hy spot ook met die mite dat 'n sjef eerbetoon sou neem met sy vismes as hy 'n kliënt doodmaak. Die verlies van sy lisensie, 'n boete, litigasie of miskien tronkstraf is die straf.

Miura-san bedien fugu-bredie en gegrilde fugu met teriyaki-sous, maar vandag is dit fugu-sashimi op die spyskaart. Hy sny die vis versigtig so dun dat wanneer dit soos die kroonblare van 'n krisantblom op 'n groot skottel gerangskik is, die patroon daaronder wys.

Rou fugu is taai en smaak meestal van die meegaande sojasousdip. Dit word kortliks gestroop in 'n sous op 'n tafelblad-'n gereg wat in Japan bekend staan ​​as shabu-shabu. Die ou joernalistieke cliche oor die eet van ongewone kos is werklik waar - dit smaak eerder na hoender.

Fugu -liefhebbers sou egter sê dat dit 'n kenmerkende smaak en, nog belangriker, tekstuur het. Japannees het baie woorde om tekstuur te beskryf, want dit is 'n baie belangrike aspek van die kombuis.

'N Ander deel van die vis -aantrekkingskrag is dat dit 'n seisoensgereg is wat in die winter geëet word, en dat Japannese maats 'n besondere waarde hieraan heg. Op dieselfde manier is unagi, paling, 'n belangrike somergereg. Maar wat u ook al van paling dink, dit is nie heeltemal 'n fuugu nie - dit ontbreek aan die ekstra opwinding wat gepaard gaan met die wete dat u deur die eet daarvan met die dood aan die dobbelsteen is.


Die vrou word vermoed dat sy haar maats vergiftig het en is skuldig aan die dood van 'n vriend

'N Vrou wat daarvan beskuldig word dat sy haar eerste man vergiftig en haar huidige eggenoot probeer vermoor het, is vandag skuldig bevind aan die moord op 'n voormalige kêrel met arseen.

'N Vonnisverhoor vir die vrou, Blanche Taylor Moore, was Donderdag geskeduleer, en aanklaers het gesê dat hulle die doodstraf sal vra.

Aanklaers het tydens die verhoor van vier weke aangevoer dat mev Moore, 57 jaar oud, deur 'n behoefte aan geld gedryf is en dat sy die voormalige kêrel, Raymond Reid, vermoor het om 'n deel van sy boedel te bekom.

Die verdedigingsadvokaat, Michell McEntire, het na die uitspraak gesê dat mev Moore se sterk karakter teen haar in die verhoor gebruik is. Sterf van Eerste Man

As jy haar nou kan sien, huil saam met haar kinders, as jy haar hart kan sien breek, is dit nie 'n prentjie van 'n sinistere, koelhartige persoon nie, 'het mnr. McEntire gesê.

Mev. Moore word ook aangekla van moord tydens die vergiftiging van haar eerste man, James Taylor, in 1973, en van aanranding omdat sy na bewering haar vervreemde man, ds Dwight Moore, probeer vermoor het ná hul wittebrood verlede jaar. Geen verhoordatums is op hierdie aanklagte vasgestel nie.

Mev. Moore het verlede week getuig dat sy nie skuldig was nie en dat sy liefdevol na die drie mans omgesien het.

"Ek weet dat arseen by hierdie drie mense gevind is, maar ek weet dat ek dit nie gedoen het nie," het sy verlede week getuig. "Ek het ander mense nooit fisies benadeel nie."

Amptenare het vyf liggame opgegrawe terwyl hulle die saak ondersoek het, waaronder dié van mev. Moore se pa, Taylor se ma en 'n voormalige medewerker van mev. Moore. Hulle het arseen gevind in die oorskot van mev. Moore se pa, Parker D. Kiser Sr., maar sy is nie aangekla in verband met sy dood nie.

Die ondersoek na Reid se dood het begin nadat dokters wat mnr. Moore behandel het, ontdek het dat hy arseen gevoer is.

Janet Branch, 'n aanklaer, het gesê dat 53 getuies die stelling dat mev. Moore tuisgemaakte kos vir mnr. Reid ondersteun het terwyl hy 'n hospitaalpasiënt in Winston-Salem was, ondersteun. Vervolgingsgetuies het ook beweer dat mev Moore 'n insekgif wou koop.

Mev. Moore het getuig dat sy nooit die gif gesoek het nie, dit nooit besit het nie en ook nooit vir Reid tuisgemaakte kos in die hospitaal gevoer het nie.


Vergiftig pappa

Hoe 'n liefdevolle dogter en ster -student bariumasetaat uit haar chemiese laboratorium op die hoërskool gesteel het, dit in haar pa se gebakte boontjies gesit het en amper met moord weggekom het.

Is jy ernstig? ” roep die vooraf geklede geklede Stacey High uit. 'Het u ooit 'n goeie kyk na haar gekry? Marie is, soos, pragtig! Op hoërskool was sy een van die mees volwasse meisies wat ek ooit ontmoet het. Ek het gedink: 'Sjoe, as ek om haar hang, sal sy my gemotiveerd hou, my help om 'n bietjie ernstiger op te tree.'

Stacey staar na 'n promfoto van haar en Marie Robards, haar beste vriendin tydens haar hoërskooljare. 'Ons het altyd alles saam gedoen. Ek bedoel, alles. En dan vind ek uit dat sy weggegaan het en haar pa vergiftig het om hierdie heeltemal gekke rede. Ek bedoel, hoe vreemd is dit? ”

Dit is die soort moordverhaal dit fassineer mense omdat dit gevul is met sulke bekende, oënskynlik onskuldige karakters: tienermeisies wat volwasse word in die voorstede, hul lewens gedryf deur adolessente onsekerheid, dagdrome en verbysterend kwikstemme. In Februarie 1993 het Marie Robards, 'n lang, opvallende 16-jarige Fort Worth, wat 'n aanklaer die perfekte misdaad noem, afgetrek en haar 38-jarige pa, wat van haar ma geskei is, vermoor deur 'n lepel vol giftige chemiese bariumasetaat in die gebakte boontjies van die Mexikaanse kos wat hy een aand geëet het. Die lykskouing het niks ongewoons gevind nie. Om sekere gifstowwe en minder algemene chemikalieë soos bariumasetaat op te spoor, is 'n gespesialiseerde masjien van $ 150,000 benodig, wat die kantoor van die mediese ondersoeker in Tarrant County nie besit het nie. Die lykskouer skryf Robards se dood toe aan 'n hartaanval.

Byna 'n jaar lank het Marie niemand van die misdaad vertel nie. Sy was 'n uitstekende student, bedag, maar beleefd, die soort meisie wat nooit impulsief opgetree het nie, nooit te laat by die huis gebly het of te veel gedrink het by partytjies nie. Sy het nie veel uitgegaan nie, maar die seuns kon nie hul oë van haar lang bene en diepbruin oë afneem nie.

Toe, een aand in Januarie 1994, tydens haar hoërskool op die hoërskool in die voorstad van Mansfield, in Fort Worth, studeer Marie Shakespeare's Hamlet saam met Stacey, een van die skool se gewildste meisies. Volgens Stacey se weergawe van die gebeure (wat Marie nog nooit ontken het nie), wend Stacey haar tot haar gunsteling deel van die toneelstuk: die eensaamheid van die Deense monarg Claudius, wat sy broer (Hamlet se pa) vergiftig het om die troon te verower. In haar mees dramatiese stem - wat net effens geraak is deur haar Texas -trek - het Stacey Claudius se pynlike toespraak voorgehou waarin hy wonder of hy ooit kan bekeer: 'My skuld is verby. Maar o, watter vorm van gebed/kan my beurt dien? 'Vergewe my my gruwelike moord?'/Dit kan nie wees nie, aangesien ek nog steeds in besit is/van die gevolge waarvoor ek die moord gedoen het. . . ”

"Is dit nie gaaf nie!" Het Stacey gesê. Maar toe sy oor die tafel kyk, het Marie bleek geword en haar hande het gebewe.

'Stacey,' het Marie gevra, 'dink jy dat mense sonder 'n gewete deur die lewe kan gaan?'

Nuutste uit ware misdaad

Tom Brown se liggaam, Hoofstuk 8: The Remains

Tom Brown se liggaam, hoofstuk 7: The Wake

Tom Brown se liggaam, hoofstuk 6: The Thicket

Texas beveel maandeliks aan: 'n Kalmerende Japannese boekwinkel in Houston, Austin en Noord -Texas

Tom Brown se liggaam, hoofstuk 5: ongewone verdagtes

Tom Brown se liggaam, hoofstuk 4: Lake Marvin Road

Stacey antwoord: 'Wel, hoe gaan dit met die soort persoon wat iemand in die oë kan kyk en hom koelbloedig kan doodmaak?'

Terwyl sy na Stacey staar, klim sy uit haar stoel, leun teen die muur en stort op die vloer neer en begin huil. "Marie, wat is die saak?" vra Stacey.

Stacey het gedink aan die ergste penarie waarin sy kon dink 'n mede-sewentienjarige meisie kon wees. 'Ag, Here, is u swanger?'

"Het u die motor van u grootouers verwoes?"

Byna skertsend het Stacey gevra: 'Wel, u het tog nie iemand vermoor nie?'

Marie se liggaam het gehuil van snikke. 'My pa,' het sy gesê. 'Ek het hom vergiftig.'

Stacey het weke lank probeer om die verhaal van Marie geheim te hou. 'As u op hoërskool is, is dit so belangrik om nie u beste vriende te verraai nie,' het Stacey later vir my gesê. Maar gepynig deur skuldgevoelens en gepla oor die idee dat Marie 'n heel ander meisie kan wees as die een wat sy ken, het Stacey uiteindelik met die polisie in verbinding getree. Agt maande later, nadat bariumtoetse uitgevoer is, het die polisiebeamptes van Fort Worth in Austin aangekom, waar Marie 'n eerstejaarstudent was aan die Universiteit van Texas, nog steeds 'n lieflike, nog steeds leergierige, wat nog steeds so skadeloos lyk. By die polisiestasie in Austin erken sy vinnig die moord. Asof die hoop dat hierdie bleek, sagmoedige tiener haar misdaad sou verduidelik, het 'n speurder haar telkens gevra of sy deur haar pa mishandel is. 'Nee, meneer,' sê Marie. Die speurder het gevra of Steven Robards ooit iets aan haar gedoen het wat hy nie moes gedoen het nie. 'Nee, meneer,' sê Marie.

Waarom dan, het sy die bariumasetaat in die gebakte boontjies gesit tydens die opname-onderhoud aan die speurder gevra?

'Omdat dit die enigste manier was waarop ek huis toe kon gaan,' het Marie gesê.

"By wie wou jy teruggaan huis toe?" vra die speurder.

'My ma,' sê Marie met 'n sagte, ontsteld stem. “Ek wou by my ma wees.” Marie se ma, Beth Burroughs, 'n vrou so lank en mooi soos Marie, is weer getroud en woon in Granbury, buite Fort Worth. In 'n bekentenis dat Marie haarself op 'n woordverwerker by die polisiekantoor getik het (in haar hoërskool op die hoërskool, het Marie haar distrikskompetisie in die universiteit se interskolastiese liga gewen), skryf sy: 'Ek wou net by my ma wees sleg dat ek enigiets sou doen om by haar te wees. ”

Die reaksies op Marie se inhegtenisneming in Oktober 1994 wissel van pure afsku tot verwarde simpatie. Mitch Poe, die jong aanklaer in die Tarrant County wat die moordsaak sou probeer, noem haar die "ergste nagmerrie van die samelewing: 'n meisie wat haar pa doodmaak." Fred Rabalais, mede-aanklaer, beskryf haar as 'n rooflose roofdier, 'n ander voorbeeld van die toenemende aantal tieners wat geweld gebruik om hul probleme op te los. Maar ander het haar gesien as Texas se Lizzie Borden, wat ondanks haar gruwelike daad so 'n aangename en behoorlike meisie was. 'Ek weet dat hierdie meisie nie 'n kriminele verstand het nie,' sê die pa van Steven Robards, Jim, wat na aan Marie was. 'Om redes wat sy net sal weet, het sy hierdie eenmalige daad gepleeg. Maar ek weet dis al wat dit was-'n eenmalige daad. Ek moet sê, ek verstaan ​​nie wat 'n strafstraf vir 'n meisie soos Marie sal inhou nie. "

Voor die verhoor van Marie, wat die afgelope Mei in Fort Worth begin het, het haar advokate gereël dat sy 'n onderhoud aan die Associated Press kon gee, waarin sy gesê het dat sy nooit van plan was om haar pa dood te maak nie, maar net om hom siek te maak sodat sy kon lewe met haar ma. 'Ek het nooit iets bedink nie. Ek het nie besef wat ek doen nie, ”het sy gesê. 'Ek het geweet ek het iets baie, baie verkeerd gedoen. Maar ek het myself nie as 'n misdadiger beskou nie. " Haar kommentaar het natuurlik nie lig gewerp op wat haar skielik buite beheer laat voel het nie. Dit is onwaarskynlik dat Marie self die kragte verstaan ​​het wat destyds in haar lewe aan die werk was. Maar vir baie wat die verhaal gevolg het, was die vergiftiging van Steven Robards 'n verdraaide gelykenis oor die gevolge van egskeiding, wanneer kinders dikwels op hul eie manier moet beweeg terwyl ouers besig is met die heropbou van hul lewens. 'Weet u, daar is tye dat ons almal sê dat ons ons ouers haat en wens dat ons hulle nooit weer hoef te sien nie,' sê Stacey, wie se ma en pa ook geskei is. 'Maar maak een van hulle dood? Tot nou toe het ek nooit gedink dit is denkbaar nie. ”

Klein Marie en Beth kort nadat Beth van Steven geskei is.

Marie in gelukkiger tye saam met Steven Robards.

Links: Klein Marie en Beth kort nadat Beth van Steven geskei is.

Bo: Marie in gelukkiger tye saam met Steven Robards.

In die sewentigerjare in Fort Worth, Steven Robards en Beth Lohmer was geliefdes op hoërskool. Steven, wie se pa 'n klein versekeringsagentskap bestuur het, was een van die mooiste seuns op skool met 'n donker krulhare en 'n maer, gespierde lyf. Die statige Beth was die president van haar skool se National Honor Society en 'n opvallende atleet op die baan-, vlugbal- en basketbalspanne. In 1974, toe sy agtien was, trou sy met Steven net nadat hy die vloot betree het vir 'n diens van vier jaar. Twee jaar later het Beth die enigste kind, Dorothy Marie Robards, gebaar. Nadat Steven by Navy -basisse in San Diego en Florida diens gedoen het, keer die jong gesin terug na Fort Worth. Die verhouding was klipperig, en in 1980 skei Beth van Steven en neem Marie saam.

In die enigste onderhoud wat sy oor die gebeure rondom Marie se lewe gegee het, het Beth vir my gesê dat sy ontnugter geraak het met Steven toe hy kort ná hul troue begin het met depressie. 'Steven se gedrag was nog altyd 'n bietjie wisselvallig, maar ek was 'n naïewe Katolieke meisie wat vasgevang was in hierdie warrelwind tienerromantiek met hierdie suiwer ou,' sê Beth, 'n uitgaande en opvallend openhartige vrou. 'Maar daar kom 'n punt dat ek nie meer weet hoe ek om hom moet optree nie. Hy het jaloers geword. Hy het woede -uitbarstings gehad. Hy kon nie 'n werk vashou nie. En dan was daar tye dat hy so moeg sou raak en voel dat alles so donker en donker is en dat niks die moeite werd is nie. ”

Teen 1981 was Beth reeds weer getroud met 'n man met die naam Frank Burroughs, 'n voormalige onderoffisier van die vloot wat sy ontmoet het toe Steven in Florida gestasioneer was. 'Toe was daar niks tussen Frank en my nie,' het Beth gesê. “Ons was net vriende.” Burroughs het uiteindelik 'n werk as polisiebeampte in Granbury gekry. Onlangs geskei en die vader van 'n jong seun, was hy 'n sterkgesinde, beskermende figuur wat van die idee gehou het om 'n pa te wees vir Marie, wat net vier jaar oud was toe haar ma weer trou. Soos Burroughs trots op die tribune by Marie se verhoor gesê het, het sy hom Pa en Robards Steven-Dad genoem.

Marie het Steven net een of twee keer per maand in Fort Worth gesien, waar hy in 'n eenslaapkamerwoonstel gewoon het. Ironies genoeg het die probleme wat in Marie se adolessensie begin verskyn het, haar pa glad nie geraak nie. Hulle het haar stiefpa betrek. 'Toe Marie daardie dae beskryf het, het ek gevoel dat daar jaloesie of besitlikheid was oor haar ma se verhouding met Frank,' het J. Randall Price, 'n gewilde sielkundige van Dallas, wat deur die advokate aangestel is om Marie te ondervra om 'n sielkundige portret van haar. (Hoewel Marie nie met my sou praat nie, het sy wel toestemming gegee dat Price 'n onderhoud kan voer.) 'Marie sou die huwelik moontlik gesien het as 'n manier om haar ma weg te neem. Op dieselfde manier was Frank waarskynlik jaloers op die moeder-dogter-verhouding. ”

Dit was duidelik vir almal wat Marie en Beth ontmoet het dat die twee 'n besonder hegte verhouding onderhou het. 'Toe ek hulle sien, was hulle op 'n openlike manier baie liefdevol en het hulle mekaar omhels en mekaar se sinne afgehandel,' het Price gesê. 'Dit was niks patologies, donker of ontstellend nie. Maar hulle het meer soos tydgenote opgetree as ma en dogter. Hulle was soos susters wat saam grootgeword het. ” Toe ek Beth vra om Marie te beskryf, gebruik sy die mees gloeiende terme en vertel my dat Marie so intelligent was as 'n klein dogtertjie dat sy al teen die tyd dat sy die eerste graad bereik het, kursief woorde geskryf het. 'Marie het sterk waardes in elke aspek van haar lewe,' het Beth gesê. 'Sy het daarop aangedring dat sy 'n maagd sou bly totdat sy trou.'

Alhoewel sy nie so ekstrovert was soos haar ma nie-sy het net 'n paar goeie vriende gehad-het Marie 'n reputasie gehad by die Hoërskool Granbury as 'n gemoedelike meisie wat uit die moeilikheid gebly het. Sy speel die klarinet in die skoolorkes en neem kunsklasse en danslesse in haar vrye tyd. Maar in die somer van 1992, voor die begin van haar junior jaar, het haar ma en stiefpa amper uitmekaar gegaan. 'Destyds', het Frank Burroughs tydens Marie se verhoor erken - sy enigste openbare verklaring oor die saak - 'het ek my gesin as 'n pa en as 'n man in die steek gelaat. Ek het hartseer veroorsaak. Marie het respek vir my verloor weens wat ek gedoen het. ” Wat dit beteken, het Beth my reguit gesê, was dat Frank 'n verhouding gehad het - en dit was Marie wat daarvan uitgevind het. 'Die naweek voordat Marie sestien jaar oud geword het,' het Beth gesê, 'het sy huis toe gekom en Frank by 'n ander vrou gevind.'

Beth was verpletter deur die onthulling van haar dogter, maar sy het vir Marie gesê dat sy by haar man sou bly. 'Ek was lief vir Frank, en ek het geweet dat hy net nie sy kop reg het nie,' het Beth gesê. 'Hy voel verwaarloos as gevolg van al die tyd wat ek met my eie werk deurgebring het [Beth werk in die noodhospitaal in die plaaslike hospitaal], en dit was sy manier om te reageer. Marie kon haar stiefpa egter nie verdra nie. Sy praat met hom terug. Sy sal nie haar kamer skoonmaak as hy haar vra nie. 'Sy het van ons almal onttrek,' het Beth gesê. 'En toe kom sy eendag na my en sê:' Ek kan nie verdra om in hierdie huis te wees nie. Ek dink jy moet van hom skei. ’En ek het gesê:‘ Maar, Marie, ek is lief vir Frank. Ek ken hom. Ek weet hy sal verander. ’Marie kyk na my en sê:‘ Ek moet weg. ’”

Beth het gereël dat Marie by Beth se ouers in Fort Worth woon, waar sy vir 'n nuwe hoërskool ingeskryf het. Maar vyf dae later, met die gebruik van al die geld wat sy gehad het - ongeveer $ 50 -, het Marie 'n taxi teruggeneem na Granbury, 45 minute weg. Frank was egter 'n streng dissiplinêr, en hy het lankal 'n paar reëls in die huis opgestel, waarvan een was dat as Marie of sy eie seun ooit sou verhuis om by 'n ander ouer te woon, dan kon hulle nie terugtrek nie. Soos hy later in die hof verduidelik het, was die reël vir hom 'n belangrike hulpmiddel vir twee geskeide ouers wat probeer om twee gesinne saam te smelt. Hy het gesê dat hy nie wou hê dat die kinders moet dink dat hulle heen en weer tussen ouers kan gaan wanneer hulle wil nie. Toe Frank se seun, in 'n vroeëre opstandstydperk, by sy ma verhuis het, het Frank hom nie toegelaat om terug te keer nie. Toe Marie ook opdaag, het hy gesê dat hy haar nie in die huis sou toelaat nie.

'Dit was 'n verskriklike toneel, ons almal skree en huil vir mekaar,' het Beth gesê. 'Marie huil dat ek haar moet terugneem, en Frank skree vir my:' U ken die reël en u kan dit nie oortree nie. Dieselfde ding wat vir my seun gegeld het, moet op haar van toepassing wees. ’Hy het sin gehad, ek weet, maar ek het gevoel dat hy my tussen hom en haar laat kies.”

In 'n besluit wat haar sou agtervolg, het Beth haar man gekies en sy het Steven gebel om Marie te neem. 'Ek het nooit gedink ek stoot Marie weg nie. Ek het gedink dat haar verhuising na Steven se woonstel net tydelik sou wees en dat Frank binnekort van plan sou verander, ”het sy gesê. Maar volgens Price het Marie haar oorgang na Steven as 'n verlating beskou. 'Sy het gedink dat Frank verlig was dat sy weg was,' het Price gesê. "Marie se konstante teenwoordigheid en haar vriendskap met haar ma het hom verhinder om sy huwelik met Beth weer bymekaar te bring."

Marie in 1986 saam met haar hond en haar ma, met wie sy so na as 'n suster was.

Van sy kant, Steven Robards was opgewonde oor die wending. Teen 1992 het medikasie hom grootliks genees van sy aanvalle met depressie. Hy het 'n ontluikende romantiese verhouding gehad met Sandra Hudgins, 'n enkelma wat hy by 'n vergadering met ouers sonder vennote ontmoet het. Die belangrikste is dat hy 'n vaste werk gekry het om pos vir die Amerikaanse posdiens te vervoer. 'Vir Steven was Marie se terugkeer na hom soos 'n kersie op die koek,' onthou sy suster, Stephanie Elder. Om Marie te huisves, het Robards aansoek gedoen vir 'n tweeslaapkamerwoonstel in sy kompleks.

Volgens Beth het Marie haar briewe gestuur waarin sy beskryf hoe sy haar nuwe skool, Eastern Hills High School, wat baie groter was as Granbury High, haat. Sy het ook geskryf dat haar pa nie die meeste tuisvaardighede het nie. Hy het min kombuisware gehad. Hy het nie die woonstel skoongemaak nie. Marie moes in 'n opklapbed in die eetkamer slaap terwyl hulle wag dat 'n groter woonstel oopmaak. Steven het nie vir Marie bang gemaak of seergemaak nie. "Hy was baie angstig om haar te behaag, en hy het alles gedoen om haar gemaklik te laat voel," het Sandra Hudgins, wat in dieselfde woonstelkompleks gewoon het, gesê. 'Hy het Marie na restaurante en flieks geneem. Maar ek weet dat Marie die eerste paar weke konstant haar ma gebel het. Sy het gesmeek om terug te kom huis toe. ”

Beth het geen beloftes aan Marie gemaak oor die terugkeer na Granbury nie, selfs toe Marie vir haar nog 'n brief geskryf het waarin sy sê dat sy selfmoord was. 'Ek het dadelik vir Marie gebel en gesê haar lewe is te kosbaar vir haar om sulke dinge te sê,' het Beth gesê. 'Ek het regtig gedink Marie was net oordramaties soos tieners kan wees.'

Na 'n paar maande het dit gelyk asof Beth reg was. Marie se grade het by Eastern Hills begin verbeter. Sy behaal 'n 98 in Frans, 'n 91 in Engels en 'n 95 in chemie. 'Sy was onder die twee tot drie persent van my studente,' het Tracie Arnold, die skool se chemie -onderwyser, gesê. 'Ek onthou nog hoe ek haar hoor sê het dat sy by haar ma wou intrek, maar sy was altyd 'n aangename, borrelende meisie. Hudgins het gesê dat Marie teen Kersfees baie meer ontspanne was met haar omgewing. 'Sy het nooit met Steven teruggepraat nie. Sy was altyd samewerkend. Sy het my selfs gevra of sy my kan help om Kersgeskenke in te draai, ”het Hudgins gesê. 'In alle eerlikheid, sy was wat u wou hê dat 'n tiener moes wees.'

Waarom het Marie in Februarie 1993, terwyl die onderwyser nie gekyk het nie, uit 'n bottel gegooi met 'n skedel en gekruisde bene en die woord 'giftig' in groot rooi letters 'n paar bariumasetaat in 'n servet gegooi, wat sy dan in haar weggesteek het rugsak? “It’s one of those mysteries—a teenager’s desperation,” said Price. “For whatever reason, Marie did feel permanently trapped. She told me that prior to the barium incident, she had been thinking that if she could burn down Steven’s apartment when he wasn’t there, she would be able to be reunited with her mother.”

But according to what Marie later told the police, she decided on the night of February 18 to put the barium acetate into his refried beans. After Steven ate his Mexican food, he went to a Wednesday night church service at a nearby Church of Christ. He returned less than an hour later, complaining of a stomachache. He began to vomit. Marie went to Hudgins’ apartment and told her that Steven wasn’t feeling well.

While Marie stayed in Hudgins’ apartment, listening to the radio with Hudgins’ young son, Hudgins rushed over to find Steven in bed, complaining that he was getting stiff in his arms and legs. “He said he couldn’t swallow well,” Hudgins recalled, “and I saw saliva coming up through his mouth. I went into the other room and called an ambulance. While I was on the phone, I heard Steven gurgling. His mouth was foaming. It was terrible. His eyes were open and he was just staring.”

Paramedics tried to get an oxygen tube down his throat to keep him alive, but his throat was completely closed. Marie came back to the apartment and stood in the doorway. “It was like she was in shock,” said Hudgins. “She didn’t tell the paramedics anything. She only stood there.” Finally, Hudgins hugged Marie and pushed Marie’s face into her shoulder so that Marie wouldn’t see her father die. Later that night, Beth and Frank came to the hospital to take Marie home to Granbury.

Mother and nineteen-year-old-daughter in the Tarrant County Courthouse, where prosecutors labeled Marie a “teenage narcissist” and said she deserved a life sentence. Roger Mallison/Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Shortly after Steven’s funeral —during which Marie stood dazed beside the grave—Beth took Marie aside and told her that the two of them were soon moving to Florida. “I told her that Frank and I were still having problems, and so I was moving out,” Beth said. “Marie stared at me. ‘You had this plan all along to take me to Florida?’ she asked. I told her I had found a job there, and we were moving, and we were going to be together again, the two of us. Marie looked like she couldn’t breathe.” Beth paused. “If I had only told Marie one week earlier, none of this would ever have happened.”

Indeed, by the end of March, Marie and Beth were in Panama City, Florida, where Beth had found a job working as an administrative assistant for the state division of motor vehicles. Marie enrolled in the local high school. She was so depressed, however—some days she couldn’t even get out of bed—that Beth was worried that Marie too had become manic depressive. She sent Marie to a counseling center, which did little good. Then, in June, Frank Burroughs arrived in Florida to try to patch things up with Beth.

This time, Beth said, he promised to work harder on their marriage, and Marie was ready to accept him back. But in another almost unbelievable twist to the story, weeks after his arrival Marie found a note in his pillow case from the other woman. Beth recalled, “Marie said to me, ‘Mom, you can put up with him if you want to, but I don’t have to. I miss Texas, and I’m going home.’”

Once again, Beth chose her husband, staying with him in Florida. Marie called Steven’s father, Jim, asking if she could come to Mansfield to live with him and his wife (he too was divorced and remarried). Considering that she could have gone to Beth’s relatives, going to the Robardses seemed to be a bizarre choice. “I think Marie somehow wanted to make up to the Robards family and be the best granddaughter there was,” Beth said. “She was determined to start a new life.”

Robards family members later said that Marie never cracked. “We didn’t suspect a thing,” one told me. “The only thing we thought was a little strange was that she didn’t want to go to Steven’s grave. She told us she couldn’t emotionally handle it.” At Mansfield High School, Marie was known as a straight-A type. She joined the volleyball team and the yearbook staff. “She impressed all the teachers,” said Leonidas Patterson, the yearbook teacher, “because here she was, a brand-new student, and she had this hunger to get involved. When we had our University Interscholastic League competitions, Marie was interested in everything—drama, journalism, and keyboarding.”

Some of the students were mystified by the elegant Marie because she was so reserved and unwilling to talk about her past. Some girls swore that Marie had told them her father was living, and others thought they heard her say he had died. But the always perky Stacey High, who was voted most humorous in her senior class, wondered if the reason Marie came to school perfectly dressed each day was because she was trying to hide some flaw. “I had come from an abused background, and I had been to plenty of psychologists,” Stacey said. “I could tell that Marie had gone through something too. I thought I could help her come out of her shell, teach her to have a little more fun in life.”

Soon, the two fatherless girls were inseparable. (Stacey’s father, whom she almost never saw, lived in Mississippi.) One weekend night, using fake IDs, Stacey took Marie to the country-western bars on the north side of Fort Worth, dressing her in a pair of tight jeans. Patrons at one bar were so taken by Marie’s appearance that they called her the Cowboy Barbie Doll. At school, Marie and Stacey were writing partners on the yearbook staff. Stacey was good at asking the questions Marie liked doing the writing. “I pride myself on asking really good questions,” Stacey said, “and sometimes when we were driving around town in her Honda, I tried to get Marie to talk about her past and her dad’s death, thinking it might help her. But it was, like, a dead-end street to get her to talk.”

Strangely enough, it was Shakespeare—the writer usually considered so boring by high school students—who got to Marie. If she had been reading her Cliffs Notes on Hamlet, which she had brought along with her the night she was studying with Stacey, Marie would have read that Claudius’ soliloquy in Act III, Scene III showed him to be “an erring human being, not an inhuman monster. Claudius clearly is not a born villain nor, however much he has sought to conceal his real self from others, does he seek to avoid moral and religious truth. . . . At this particular moment in the action, it is possible to feel some pity for this tormented man despite his appalling crimes.”

After her confession, Marie begged Stacey to tell no one. “You’re the only person who knows,” she said. But that night, Stacey went home and told her mother, Libby High, who was as close to Stacey as Beth was to Marie. Libby, who worked in nursing education, initially thought that Marie, overcome with grief about her father, had made up the story. But when Libby called the poison center number to ask if barium acetate could kill a person by closing his throat, the person on the line said it certainly could and then asked suspiciously why Libby wanted to know.

Incredibly, Libby did not call the police. She told me that after her disastrous marriage, she felt an added responsibility as a single parent to prepare her daughter for the rigors of the real world. “I wanted Stacey to know that I trusted her to make her own decision about Marie,” Libby said. “I guess I knew that this was the moment in which Stacey was going to have to grow up.”

Instead, as Stacey agonized Hamlet-like over what she should do, she came close to what she said was “a complete mental breakdown.” She spoke several times about Marie with a high school counselor, never mentioning Marie by name but referring to her as a friend of a friend. She confided in a few friends who had already graduated from high school what Marie had told her. “They said, ‘Stacey, quit lying, you need a reality check, girl,’” Stacey told me. She had nightmares that Marie was chasing her through a forest. “I could hear Marie breathing real slowly, just like it was a horror movie,” Stacey said. “And then I’d come to school the next day and there she was, this very nice person. We’d sit and talk in this little office in the back of the yearbook class, and I would tell myself that Marie had only made a teenage mistake. I kept saying, ‘Marie, I really think you need some counseling.’” At her mother’s suggestion, Stacey lied to Marie, telling her she had confessed to a priest about Marie’s secret. “Maybe I overreacted,” Libby said later, “but I thought if Marie ever wanted to harm Stacey, she wouldn’t do it because she believed Stacey had told a priest.”

In February 1994, on the anniversary of Steven’s death, Marie’s grandfather took Marie and Stacey to the Macaroni Grill for dinner. Jim Robards tried to make a couple of toasts to Steven, but Marie wouldn’t listen. “I asked her if she wanted to put flowers on her daddy’s grave,” Stacey said, “but she said to me she didn’t even know where his grave site was. She told me she was over her father’s death and didn’t want to think about it.” Like Claudius, Marie could not repent.

A few weeks later, after having more nightmares, in which she heard Marie’s father calling to her from the grave to save him, Stacey went to her high school counselor’s office and asked the counselor to call the police about Steven’s death.

Marie (right) and Stacey High at the Mansfield High School prom—”She was so beautiful that night,” Stacey said, “I kept thinking, ‘Maybe we can all just forget this happened.'”

The investigation should have been simple enough. All the medical examiner’s office needed to do was retest Steven’s blood. (The office keeps blood samples from autopsies it has conducted.) A deputy chief examiner, however, later said that it took almost three months to find a laboratory with a machine that could run a test to check for barium acetate, and then another few months passed before the test results were sent back. A possible explanation was that the overworked Fort Worth homicide unit had more important things to do than investigate a preposterous-sounding story from an overwrought teenager about her best friend poisoning her father.

The longer the police took, the more Stacey second-guessed her decision. She and Marie never spoke about Steven’s death again. Eventually, Stacey dropped out of the yearbook class so she wouldn’t have to see Marie every day. She began missing school, staying out late, and as she put it, partying too much. In April Stacey checked in to an after-school program at a private psychiatric treatment center in Mansfield. “I walked in and told them my life was swirling down the toilet.” But at the prom, she did pose with Marie for a photograph. “She was so beautiful that night,” said Stacey, “that I couldn’t believe she had ever done anything wrong. I kept thinking, ‘Maybe we can all just forget this ever happened.’”

After graduation, Stacey went to Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, about a three-hour drive from the University of Texas at Austin, where Marie was. The two never spoke, and Stacey tried to concentrate on her education. But late one night in October, a detective called to tell her that he would be arriving the next morning to take her statement. The tests had shown that Steven Robards had 250 times the amount of barium acetate normally found in a person’s blood. Stacey was so panicked that she got out of bed, went to her dorm’s vending machine, and ate five Snickers bars.

Marie was let out on bond, and she went back to Granbury, where her mother and Frank, still together, had moved earlier that year. (Frank had been offered a job as a deputy sheriff for Hood County, and Beth worked as a clerk for the city.) While waiting for her trial, Marie got a job as a waitress at a TGI Friday’s in Fort Worth. A film director hired to shoot a Friday’s commercial was so impressed with Marie that he used her in a scene serving drinks to customers. “What’s so tragic is that total strangers could meet Marie and see something special in her,” said Beth, breaking into tears. “She felt trapped, and I let her feel that way. I didn’t give her any hope.”

Using the life insurance money that Marie had received after Steven’s death—more than $60,000—Beth hired two veteran Fort Worth defense attorneys, Bill Magnussen and Ward Casey, whose strategy was to convince the jury that Marie didn’t know that barium acetate could kill a person. If the jury believed that she had not intended to kill, then Marie had the chance of receiving a lighter sentence for manslaughter rather than murder. “She only wanted to make her daddy sick overnight,” Casey told the jury in his old-fashioned oratorical style. “She only wanted to go home to Mama.”

Each day of the trial, the courtroom was packed. (One high school civics teacher thought it would be educational for his class to sit through testimony. The students listened for a while and then began to write notes. One girl sitting beside me wrote her boyfriend a letter that began, “I am psycho in my love for you! Do you hear my heart pounding.”) Spectators craned their necks to get a look at Marie, who by then was nineteen years old. She had cut her hair in a short nunlike bob and wore sleeveless, flower-print blouses and loose-fitting pants. Throughout much of the testimony, she put her right hand on her cheek and sobbed silently. During breaks, her mother, who could not watch the proceedings because she was a potential witness, came into the courtroom and wrapped Marie in her arms. Frank sat outside on a bench, speaking to no one. Members of the Robards family sat stone-faced on the right side of the courtroom.

One of the more emotional moments in the trial came when Jim Robards took the stand and said that as upset as he was over the death of his son, Marie should be forgiven and offered a probationary sentence. Randall Price arrived to testify that Marie was not deranged but was so consumed with remorse over Steven’s death that she was experiencing a version of posttraumatic stress syndrome, unable to express her emotions. Price was also going to say that he believed Marie never wanted her father to die, but the defense attorneys, for reasons that remain unclear, did not call Price to the stand, which gave the prosecution an unhindered opportunity to rip into Marie, telling the jury that she cavalierly poisoned her father and never tried to help save him when the paramedics arrived.

Stacey High wants to get her college degree and get on with her life. Brian Harness

The prosecution’s most important witness, of course, was Stacey High. Wearing a green dress, brown loafers, and white socks, she came to the stand, nervously sucking on a breath mint, and said that Marie had told her during one of their conversations that she knew the barium acetate would be fatal. At one point, Stacey turned and looked at Marie. They locked eyes, then Marie dropped her head.

In the end, the jury was apparently swayed by prosecutor Mitch Poe when he said in his final argument, “Just one stomachache wasn’t going to get Marie back to her mama’s place . . . Steve Robards had to die.” The jurors convicted Marie of murder, which left them with the question of deciding her sentence. The defense attorneys felt they had no choice but to have Marie testify.

She nearly stumbled as she walked to the stand. In a squeaky, trembling voice, she told the jury she had never been convicted of a crime. She said that her only contact with the Robards family since her arrest was a birthday card she had sent her grandfather.

Then Casey asked, “Marie, did you love your dad?”

“Are you sorry you killed your dad?”

It was time for her to repent. Bursting into tears, she turned to the side of the courtroom where the Robardses were sitting and said, “I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry.”

Poe said Marie deserved a life sentence because she gave her father a death sentence. The defense attorneys begged for probation for a girl they said would have to live with the guilt of her father’s death for the rest of her life. The jury split the difference, giving Marie a 28-year sentence—she will have to spend at least seven years in state prison before being eligible for parole. (Claiming that the prosecution used improper testimony about Marie’s state of mind during the trial, her attorneys have filed a motion for a new trial. If that fails, they will appeal the verdict.) Outside, in the courthouse hallway, Poe told the local press that Marie was a “teenage narcissist.” Surrounded by television cameras, Stacey High dramatically said, “I’m ready to wrap up this phase of my life, hopefully major in neuropsychology in college, and be a wonderful citizen of the United States.” Beth and Frank were the last ones to leave the courtroom. For nearly an hour after the sentencing, they sat alone on the front row, holding hands. “Frank and I have made our mistakes,” Beth later told me, “but we’re going to be strong together. We’ve got to go on. Our marriage will survive this.”

For several days Marie remained on a suicide watch at the county jail. But a week after the verdict, Price went to see her. “Marie asked me if she could get her college degree while she was in prison. She told me she was anxious to start some kind of schooling, to improve herself, to accept her punishment and move on,” Price said. “She was wearing these paper clothes, which the jailers give prisoners on a suicide watch, and she was shivering in her cold jail cell. But she told me she had no right to complain about her own problems because she had already caused so much suffering. It was sort of amazing to listen to her.”

From jail, Marie also called her mother collect every night. In one of those phone calls, she told Beth that she hoped Stacey didn’t feel badly about going to the police. She still liked her, Marie said. After all, she added, the two of them had once been best friends.


6. Blanche Taylor Moore

Sometimes hospital food is actually the better option.

They say the way to someone’s heart is through their stomach. But that’s also a handy way to poison them with arsenic. Blanche “Black Widow” Taylor Moore proves that. In 1986, Moore’s boyfriend, Raymond Carlton Reid Sr., was admitted to hospital with extreme dehydration, nausea, and vomiting.

Consequently, doctors initially believed the man had gastroenteritis.

(You can see where this is going, right?) While Reid was in the hospital, Moore brought him food from home, including Jell-O, banana pudding, soup, and milkshakes. She even fed him herself. Although Reid had periods of temporary recovery, he repeatedly relapsed, often after Moore’s visits. Eventually, he died aged on October 7th.

Three years later, in 1989, Moore married a pastor named Dwight Moore.

However, after the honeymoon, Dwight contracted the same symptoms as Reid. His liver, heart, and kidneys were all failing. The doctors tested him for herbicides and found 100 times the normal amount of arsenic in his system.

After interviewing Dwight on his deathbed, the police suspected Blanche.

They exhumed the bodies of several people she knew who mysteriously died, including her first husband James Taylor. Both Taylor and Reid had massively elevated levels of arsenic in their systems.The woman’s father and mother-in-law also had elevated but not lethal levels.

The courts charged Blanche Taylor Moore with first-degree murder over the deaths of Taylor and Reid, and for assault with a deadly weapon over the poisoning of Moore.

She denied all charges but was found guilty for Reid’s passing.

She received a fatal sentence in 1990. But as of September of 2019, she’s still on Death Row in North Carolina. Hopefully, they didn’t put her to work in the kitchens.


Puente was born Dorothea Helen Gray on January 9, 1929, in Redlands, California, to Trudy Mae (née Yates) and Jesse James Gray. [3] She had a traumatic upbringing her parents were both alcoholics and her father repeatedly threatened to commit suicide in front of his children. Her father died of tuberculosis in 1937 her mother lost custody of her children in 1938 and died in a motorcycle accident by the end of the year. Puente and her siblings were subsequently sent to an orphanage, where she was sexually abused. [4]

Gray's first marriage, at the age of sixteen, in 1945, was to a soldier named Fred McFaul, who had just returned from the Pacific theater of World War II. Gray had two daughters between 1946 and 1948 she sent one child to live with relatives in Sacramento and placed the other for adoption. McFaul left her in late 1948, after she suffered a miscarriage. [5] [6]

In the spring of 1948, Gray was arrested for purchasing women's accessories using forged checks in Riverside. She was charged and pled guilty to two counts of forgery, serving four months in jail and three years probation. Six months after her release, she left Riverside.

In 1952, Gray married merchant seaman Axel Bren Johansson in San Francisco. She created a fake persona, calling herself "Teya Singoalla Neyaarda", and claiming to be a Muslim of Egyptian and Israeli descent. They had a turbulent marriage Gray would take advantage of Johansson's frequent trips to sea by inviting men to their home and gambling away his money. [6]

Gray was arrested in 1960 for owning and operating a brothel under the guise of a bookkeeping firm in Sacramento [5] she was found guilty and was sentenced to ninety days in the Sacramento County Jail. In 1961, Johansson had Gray briefly committed to DeWitt State Hospital after a binge of drinking, lying, criminal behavior, and suicide attempts. While there, doctors diagnosed her as a pathological liar with an unstable personality. [6]

Gray and Johansson divorced in 1966, although she would continue to use Johansson's name for some time following their separation. Gray assumed the identity of "Sharon Johansson", hiding her delinquent behavior by portraying herself as a kind, Christian woman. She established her reputation as a caregiver, providing young women with a sanctuary from poverty and abuse without charge. [6]

In 1968, Gray married Roberto Jose Puente. After sixteen months, the couple separated, with Gray citing domestic abuse as the main cause. In 1967, she attempted to serve him with a divorce petition, but Puente fled to Mexico the divorce wouldn't be finalized until 1973. The two would continue to have a turbulent relationship, and Gray filed a restraining order against him in 1975. Gray would go on as Dorothea Puente for more than twenty years. [6]

Following her divorce, Gray would focus on running a boarding house at 21st and F streets in Sacramento. She established herself as a genuine resource to the community to aid alcoholics, the homeless, and mentally ill by holding Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and assisting individuals to sign up to receive Social Security benefits. She also established herself as a respected member in Sacramento's Hispanic community, funding charities, scholarships, and radio programs. She eventually met and married Pedro Angel Montalvo, though Montalvo abruptly left the relationship only a week after their marriage. [6]

In 1978, Gray was charged and convicted of illegally cashing thirty-four state and federal checks that belonged to her tenants. She was given five years probation and ordered to pay $4,000 in restitution. [6]

In April 1982, 61-year-old Ruth Monroe began living with Puente in her upstairs apartment, but soon died from an overdose of codeine and acetaminophen. Puente told police that the woman was very depressed because her husband was terminally ill. They believed her and ruled the incident as a suicide. [ aanhaling nodig ]

A few weeks later, the police returned after Malcolm McKenzie, a 74-year-old pensioner (one of four elderly people Puente was accused of drugging), accused Puente of drugging and stealing from him. [ aanhaling nodig ] She was convicted of three charges of theft on August 18, 1982, and sentenced to five years in jail there, she began corresponding with Everson Gillmouth, a 77-year-old retiree from Oregon. A penpal friendship developed, and when Puente was released in 1985 after serving three years of her five-year sentence, he met her outside the jail, driving a red 1980 Ford pickup. Their relationship developed quickly, and the couple was soon making wedding plans. [ aanhaling nodig ]

In November 1985, Puente hired Ismael Florez to install some wood paneling in her apartment. For his labor and $800, Puente gave him the red Ford pickup, which she stated belonged to her boyfriend in Los Angeles, who no longer needed it. She asked Florez to build a 6-by-3-by-2-foot box to store "books and other items". She then asked Florez to transport the filled, nailed-shut box to a storage depot. Florez agreed, and Puente assisted him. [7]

Puente told Florez to stop while they were on Garden Highway in Sutter County and dump the box of "junk" on the riverbank at an unofficial household dumping site. On January 1, 1986, a fisherman spotted the suspicious, coffin-like box near the river and informed police. Investigators found the badly decomposed and unidentifiable body of an elderly man inside. Puente continued to collect Gillmouth's pension and wrote letters to his family, explaining that the reason he had not contacted them was because he was ill. She continued to maintain a boarding house, taking in forty new tenants. Gillmouth's body remained unidentified for three years. [8]

Puente continued to accept elderly boarders and was popular with local social workers because she accepted "tough cases", including drug addicts and abusive tenants. She collected tenants' monthly mail before they saw it and paid them stipends, pocketing the rest for "expenses". During this period, parole agents visited Puente at least fifteen times though she had been ordered to keep away from the elderly and refrain from handling government checks, no violations were ever noted. [ aanhaling nodig ]

Suspicion was first aroused when neighbors noticed the odd activities of a homeless alcoholic known only as "Chief", whom Puente stated she had "adopted" and made her personal handyman. Puente had Chief dig in the basement and cart soil and rubbish away in a wheelbarrow. At the time, the basement floor was covered with a concrete slab. Chief later dismantled a garage in the backyard and installed a fresh concrete slab there as well. Soon afterward, Chief disappeared. [ aanhaling nodig ]

On November 11, 1988, police inquired after the disappearance of tenant Alberto Montoya, a developmentally disabled man with schizophrenia, who had been reported missing by his social worker. After noticing disturbed soil on the property, they uncovered the body of tenant Leona Carpenter, 78. Seven bodies were eventually found buried on the property. [9]

Puente was charged with a total of nine murders: Puente's boyfriend, Everson Gillmouth, 77 and eight tenants who lived at the boarding house: Ruth Munroe, 61 Leona Carpenter, 78 Alvaro "Bert/Alberto" Gonzales Montoya, 51 Dorothy Miller, 64 Benjamin Fink, 55 James Gallop, 62 Vera Faye Martin, 64 and Betty Palmer, 78. [9]

During the initial investigation, Puente was not immediately a suspect, and she was allowed to leave the property, ostensibly to buy a cup of coffee at a nearby hotel. Instead, after buying the coffee, she fled immediately to Los Angeles, where she befriended an elderly pensioner whom she had met in a bar. The pensioner, however, recognized her from police reports on television and called the authorities. [ aanhaling nodig ]

Puente's trial was moved to Monterey County, on a change of venue motion filed by her attorneys, Kevin Clymo and Peter Vlautin III. The trial began in October 1992 and ended a year later. The prosecutor, John O'Mara, was the homicide supervisor in the Sacramento County District Attorney's office. [ aanhaling nodig ]

O'Mara called over 130 witnesses he argued to the jury that Puente had used sleeping pills to put her tenants to sleep, then suffocated them, and hired convicts to dig the holes in her yard. Clymo concluded his closing argument by showing a picture commonly used in psychology that can be viewed in different ways and saying "Keep in mind things are not always as they seem." The jury deliberated over a month and eventually found Puente guilty of three murders. The jury was deadlocked 11 to 1 for conviction on all counts, and the lone holdout finally agreed to a conviction of two first degree murder counts, including special circumstances, and one second degree murder count. The penalty phase of the prosecution was highlighted by her prior convictions introduced by O'Mara. [ aanhaling nodig ]

The defense called several witnesses, who showed Puente had a generous and caring side to her. Witnesses, including her long-lost daughter, testified how Puente had helped them in their youth and guided them to successful careers. Mental health experts testified of Puente's abusive upbringing and how it motivated her to help the less fortunate. At the same time, they agreed she had an evil side brought on by the stress of caring for her down-and-out tenants. [ aanhaling nodig ]

O'Mara's closing argument focused on Puente's acts of murder:

Does anyone become responsible for their conduct in this world? . These people were human beings, they had a right to live-they did not have a lot of possessions-no houses-no cars-only their social security checks and their lives. She took it all. Death is the only appropriate penalty. [ aanhaling nodig ]

Clymo responded by evoking Dorothea the child and caregiver. Peter Vlautin addressed the jurors in confidential tones, contrasting with O'Mara's shouting:

We are here today to determine one thing: What is the value of Dorothea Puente's life? That is the question. Does she have to be killed?" Vlautin spoke gently about Puente's childhood touching on the traumatic aspects that shaped her life and urged the jurors to see the world through her eyes. "You have heard of the despair which was the foundation of her life, the anger and resentment. If anyone in the jury room tells you it was not that bad, ask them would you want that to happen to yourself? Would you want that to happen to your children? . I am led to believe if there is any reason for us to be living here on this Earth, it is to somehow enhance one another's humanity, to love, to touch each other with kindness, to know that you have made just one person breathe easier because you have lived. I submit to you ladies and gentlemen that is why these people came to testify for Dorothea Puente . I think you can only truly understand why so many people testified and asked you to spare Dorothea's life only if you have ever fallen down and stumbled on the road of life and had someone pick you up, give you comfort, give you love, show you the way. Then you will understand why these people believe Dorothea's life is worth saving. That is mitigating. That is a human quality that deserves to be preserved. It is a flame of humanity that has burned inside Dorothea since she was young . That is reason to give Dorothea Puente life without the possibility of parole. [ aanhaling nodig ]

Puente was convicted of three of the murders, although the jury could not agree on the other six. After several days of deliberations, the jury was deadlocked 7–5 Judge Michael J. Virga declared a mistrial when the jury said further deliberations would not change their minds. Under the law, Puente received life without the possibility of parole. She was incarcerated at Central California Women's Facility (CCWF) in Chowchilla, California. For the rest of her life, she maintained her innocence, insisting that all of her boarders had died of "natural causes".

Puente died in prison at Chowchilla on March 27, 2011, from natural causes she was 82. [10]

Puente has been featured on numerous true crime television shows, including Crime Stories, [11] Deadly Women, [12] A Stranger in My Home [13] and World's Most Evil Killers. [14]

The 1991 film Evil Spirits, starring Karen Black and Arte Johnson, is loosely based on the Puente murders.

In 1998, Puente began corresponding with Shane Bugbee. [15] The result was Cooking with a Serial Killer (2004), [16] which included a lengthy interview, almost fifty recipes, and various pieces of prison art sent to Bugbee by the convicted murderer. Jodi Picoult mentions Puente's crimes and cookbook in her novel House Rules.

The boarding house at 1426 F Street was included in the 2013 home tour held by the Sacramento Old City Association. [17] It was then the subject of the 2015 documentary short The House Is Innocent and was again opened to tours for one day in conjunction with a local film festival's showing of the film. [18]

In 2015, the Ghost Adventures crew investigated the house, due to reports of hauntings by the victims and Puente herself.

In April 2020, the house and current owners were showcased in the Quibi series Murder House Flip.

In June 2020, the house was featured in a ten-minute documentary with 60 Second Docs about the purchase and renovation of the house by the current owners.


Blanche Taylor Moore was born Blanche Kiser, to Flonnie Blanche (née Honeycutt) and Parker Davis Kiser, a mill-worker, ordained Baptist minister, and womanizer. [2] [3] Blanche's father was an alcoholic, who she said later forced her into prostitution to pay gambling debts. She was known to switch from quoting Scripture to sexually explicit topics in the same breath. Blanche's father died, reportedly of a heart attack, in 1966. [3] [4]

On May 29, 1952, Blanche married James Napoleon Taylor, a veteran and furniture restorer [3] they had two children, one in 1953 and another in 1959. In 1954, Blanche began working at Kroger as a cashier. By 1959, she'd been promoted to head cashier (roughly the equivalent of a customer service manager today), the highest job available to a female employee at Kroger at the time. In 1962, Blanche began an affair with Raymond Reid, the manager of the store where she worked. James Taylor died on October 2, 1973 as with her father seven years earlier (1966), the cause of death was initially reported as a heart attack. [2] [3]

After Taylor's death on October 2, 1973, Blanche and Reid began dating publicly. By 1985, however, the relationship had soured. There are indications that she began to date Robert J. Hutton, Kroger's regional manager for the Piedmont Triad area however, that relationship ended, and she filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against Hutton and Kroger in October 1985. [3] Hutton was forced to resign, and Kroger settled the case out of court two years later for $275,000. In 1985, Blanche also accused an unknown "pervert" of starting two fires that damaged her mobile home.

On Easter Sunday, she met Rev. Dwight Moore, the divorced pastor of the Carolina United Church of Christ in rural Alamance County. Eventually the two began meeting for meals. [4] Blanche had to hide her budding relationship with Moore because her lawsuit against Kroger maintained that she was "completely alienated and antagonistic towards men and has not been able to maintain any meaningful social contacts with the opposite sex." [3] While she was dating Moore, she asked him to procure some arsenic-based ant killer for her. [2]

In 1986, Reid developed what was initially diagnosed as a case of shingles. He was hospitalized in April of that year, and died on October 7, 1986. Doctors indicated the cause of death was Guillain–Barré syndrome. [3] The Kroger lawsuit was settled one year later. [3] Blanche and Moore began seeing each other publicly shortly after Reid's death. They planned to marry, but Blanche was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987. The wedding date was pushed back to November 1988, [3] but Moore developed a mysterious intestinal ailment that required two surgeries to correct. On April 19, 1989, the couple were married and honeymooned over a long weekend in New Jersey. [3] Within days of their return, Moore became severely ill and collapsed after eating a fast-food chicken sandwich that Blanche had given him. [3]

After several days of extreme nausea and vomiting, Moore was admitted to Alamance County Hospital on April 28. For the next two days, he was transferred between Alamance County and North Carolina Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem. Moore was then admitted to North Carolina Memorial Hospital in Chapel Hill. Despite hospitalization, his condition deteriorated further, threatening multiple organ failure and death. Blanche had told doctors he had been working with herbicide in their yard soon after returning from their honeymoon. Doctors Lucas Wong, Jonathan Serody, Mark Murphy and George Sanders, after discussions with the hospital toxicologist, ordered a toxicology screen to check for herbicide poisoning. The results came back on March 13, showing Moore had 20 times the lethal dose of arsenic in his system- the most arsenic found in a living patient in the hospital's history at that time. Moore had a particularly robust constitution and survived. However, he never regained full sensation in his hands and feet. [4] In a 2010 television interview, Moore said he still suffers tremors in his hands and weakness in his legs. [5]

The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and the police were notified by the hospital of Moore's toxicology results. When interviewed by police from his hospital bed, he mentioned that a former boyfriend of Blanche's died from Guillain–Barré syndrome, which presents similar symptoms to arsenic poisoning. Investigators also discovered Blanche had attempted to change Moore's pension in order to make herself the principal beneficiary. In light of these revelations, exhumations of her first husband James Taylor, her lover Raymond Reid, and her father Parker Kiser were ordered by investigators. [3] Subsequent autopsies showed elevated levels of arsenic in all three bodies. The levels found in Reid and Taylor were determined to be fatal, therefore reclassifying their deaths as the result of arsenic poisoning. It also emerged that doctors at Baptist Hospital, where Reid was admitted in 1986, had ordered a toxicology screen for him at that time. However, on the day the test came back, the resident responsible for caring for Reid rotated to another hospital, and the new resident never passed the results up the chain of command. Those results had shown an extremely high level of arsenic in Reid's system. [4]

During interviews, Blanche stated that both Moore and Reid felt depressed and suggested they had probably been taking arsenic themselves—something investigators found highly improbable. Additionally, it emerged she had still been sleeping with Reid around the same time she began dating Moore, raising further questions about her possible involvement with Reid's illness and death. Blanche also had Moore's hair cut in an attempt to prevent hair samples being obtained by the SBI. Pubic hair samples were used instead. On July 18, 1989, Blanche was arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the deaths of Reid and Taylor. She was also charged with assault with a deadly weapon for the poisoning of Moore. Prosecutors later dropped the charges in the cases of Taylor and Moore, after she was sentenced to death for Reid's murder. [4]

The trial opened in Winston-Salem on October 21, 1990. Blanche adamantly denied ever giving Reid any food. However, the state introduced fifty-three witnesses who testified about her daily trips to the hospital, bearing food. The state had an easier time than expected in making such a complex case because Reid's ex-wife and sons sued Baptist Hospital for malpractice. They were able to get the normal statute of limitations for wrongful death thrown out because they were able to prove that Blanche, as executor of Reid's estate, should have been the person to find out about the toxicology screen. The Reid family argued that Blanche fraudulently prevented them from finding out about the test longstanding precedent in U. S. courts holds that statutes of limitations do not apply when the defendant engages in fraudulent concealment. [4]

Under the terms of a deal between the Forsyth County district attorney's office and the Reid family's lawyers, most of the evidence against Blanche was gathered by the latter party. Although the courts have interpreted the Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination very broadly for criminal cases, such protections usually don't apply in civil cases. Civil law also allows much more latitude for searches and subpoenas. [4]

Blanche was convicted on November 14,1990. [6] On November 17, the jury recommended the death penalty. On January 18, 1991, the presiding judge concurred with the jury and sentenced Moore to die by lethal injection. She currently resides at the North Carolina Correctional Institution for Women as prisoner #0288088. She wrote music in the past, and spends her time writing poetry. [7] Health issues in prison have required Moore to undergo both chemotherapy and radiation therapy. [8] Because of the automatic appeals in progress, Blanche has been able to avoid execution for over 28 years. She maintains her innocence to this day.

One of Blanche's attorneys, David Tamer, misappropriated client funds, including hers, and was convicted of embezzlement. He also had a history of mental problems. [9] In 2010, Moore and the eleven other death row inmates from Forsyth County filed a motion to convert their sentences to life imprisonment on the basis of the state's Racial Justice Act. Essentially, the issue was the racial composition of the juries. [10] Dwight Moore told Winston-Salem station WXII-TV that he has no objections to his ex-wife seeking to have her death sentence overturned. [5]

In 1993, author Jim Schutze wrote a book about the murders, entitled Preacher's Girl. [4] Schutze het bewyse gevind wat daarop dui dat Blanche Denton in die pak vir seksuele teistering op die been gebring het, en dat sy moontlik die twee brande opsetlik aangesteek het. Later dieselfde jaar speel Elizabeth Montgomery Moore in die televisiefilm gebaseer op die boek getiteld Black Widow Murders: The Blanche Taylor Moore Story. [11]

Episode 66 (Case 66: The Black Widow) van die Casefile Ware misdaad podcast dek die saak van Blanche Taylor Moore, insluitend haar misdade, die ondersoek daarna en haar verhoor.

In 1999, die Discovery Channel's Die nuwe speurders reeks, Seisoen 4, Afdeling 6, "Women Who Kill", bevat die misdade van Blanche Taylor Moore.

Bose lewe hier episode "My Mother's Lies".

In die re -enmentment -segment van die laaste episode van Seisoen 1 van Dodelike vroue, Blanche Taylor Moore is uitgebeeld deur Maja Meschitschek.