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18-year-old woman murders her lover

18-year-old woman murders her lover



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Francisco “Chico” Forster is shot to death on downtown Los Angeles street by his jilted lover, eighteen-year old Lastania Abarta. The forty-year old Forster was the son of wealthy Los Angeles land developer and considered one of the city’s most eligible bachelors despite his reputation for womanizing and poorly treating women.

Abarta worked in her parent’s pool hall, where she sang, played the guitar, and met freqent customer Forster. On March 14, she was invited to perform at a party given by Pio Pico, California’s last Mexican governor. The former politician had just lost a sizable tract of land near San Diego to Chico Forster’s father. During a song, Abarta changed the lyrics to mock Pico and then ran off with Forster to the Moiso Mansion Hotel.

Apparently, the couple made love after Forster promised to marry Abarta. But when Forster disappeared and didn’t return with a ring or priest to perform the ceremony, Abarta and her sister Hortensia started to comb the city in search of him. They finally found him at a race track gambling and dragged him to their carriage for a trip to the church.

But Forster got out of the cab on the way, the women closely following behind until Abarta suddenly pulled out a gun and shot him through the eye. Outraged by his son’s untimely death, Forster’s father hired a special prosecutor to make sure that Abarta was properly punished.

Abarta’s lawyers tried a novel defense, they ran with America’s 1880s obsession with “female hysteria.” Medical theories of the time held that women could be driven crazy because of their reproductive system. Their first step was to introduce in evidence the blood stained sheets from the hotel where Abarta lost her virginity to Forster. The lawyers then trotted out no less than seven medical experts who expounded their hysteria theories. They testified that Abarta was clearly displaying classic “hysterical symptoms” caused “because her brain was undoubtedly congested with blood,” when she killed Forster.

However, the most important testimony came from Dr. Joseph Kurtz who received applause from the spectators in the courtroom when he stated that “Any virtuous woman when deprived of her virtue would go mad, undoubtedly.” The jury, all men of course, took just twenty minutes to acquit Abarta, who left town and disappeared out of sight.


Woman who married her birth father is laid to rest, along with their baby, after shocking murders

North Carolina incest dad Steven Pladl kills Katie Pladl, his biological daughter he married, and infant child he fathered with the girl before turning the gun on himself.

In a sad conclusion to a disturbing relationship, a woman who married her birth father and gave birth to their child was laid to rest this past weekend, along with her baby and her adoptive father, after investigators said the birth father killed them all in a murder-suicide.

Steven Pladl, 42, was found dead in early April in his vehicle in Dover, N.Y., several miles from the New Milford, Conn., murder scene where Katie Pladl and her adoptive father, 56-year-old Anthony Fusco, were discovered.

Those two also were found dead in a vehicle that had one of its windows shot out, police said.

The child’s body was found inside the couple’s home, hundreds of miles south in Knightdale, N.C., the same day.

In 1995, Steven Pladl was 20 when he met a 15-year-old girl named Alyssa on the Internet. She soon became pregnant and gave birth to a girl they named Denise.

Alyssa Pladl said in an interview last week that they put the girl up for adoption when she was 8 months old. They were young and poor, she said, but she also believed Steven Pladl physically abused the baby.

Steven Pladl, was charged with incest after he impregnated his biological daughter, Katie. Pladl killed the 7-month-old son he had with Katie, then killed Katie and her adoptive father in Connecticut and killed himself in New York.

In her interview, she did not elaborate.

“It was so hard to give her up,” Alyssa said, “but I had to because I wanted her to live and be happy.”

For most of what was to be her short life, she was.

Tony Fusco and his wife, Kelly, adopted the girl they renamed Katie and raised her with their biological daughter in Dover, about 80 miles north of New York City.

“They had a very, very normal life,” said Cary Gould, Kelly Fusco’s brother. “My nickname for Katie was Pac-Man. She was always eating. She loved animals. She was a vegetarian.”

Katie was an aspiring artist known at Dover High School for drawing comic strips. She planned to attend college and pursue a career in digital advertising.

“A pen and something to draw on became a safe place for me,” she wrote in a blog post. “Ink became my weapon against rules and regulations. . To be short for me, a life without art is no life at all.”

After she turned 18 in January 2016, Katie, who Gould said had been told she was adopted, found her birth parents and messaged them. The Pladls were happy to reunite with her.

Instead of going to college in August 2016, Katie moved in with the Pladls in Henrico County, Virginia, that month. Tony and Kelly Fusco were apprehensive, Gould said, but they thought Katie was old enough to make her own decisions and supported her.

All was not well in the Pladl home. Steven and Alyssa already had decided to separate and were sleeping in separate rooms. Alyssa Pladl said she had suffered emotional and verbal abuse by her husband for years.

“I was always on eggshells, whatever his mood was, everybody knew, and that mood was often not happy, a lot of yelling, a lot of things smashed in the house, in front of our kids,” she said.

Alyssa Pladl told Katie privately that Steven Pladl had abused her as a baby and that a major reason for the adoption was her own safety.

Katie, according to Alyssa, didn’t appear to be concerned.

Steven Pladl’s behavior changed after he met Katie, Alyssa Pladl said. He began wearing skinny jeans and form-fitting shirts. He shaved his beard and let his hair grow long. About six weeks after Katie moved in, Steven Pladl one night slept on the floor in her room.

It immediately concerned Alyssa. After he did it again the next night, she confronted him. He said it was none of her business and stormed out of the house with Katie.

Alyssa Pladl finally moved out in November 2016, and she shared custody of the two children with Steven Pladl.

In May 2017, she learned from her 11-year-old daughter’s journal of the incestuous relationship and Katie’s pregnancy. Her daughter wrote that she and her sister were told by Steven Pladl to refer to Katie as their stepmother.

“I started to become hysterical, and I called him,” she said. “I said, ‘Is Katie pregnant with your baby?’ He just said, ‘I thought you knew. We’re in love.’

“I started screaming,” she said. “I was just cursing him out: ‘How could you? You’re sick. She’s a child.’”

Then she called the police.

On July 20, 2017, two months after his divorce from Alyssa was finalized and amid the police investigation, Steven Pladl married Katie in Parkton, Maryland. They lied on their application, saying they were unrelated, according to records.

Katie’s adoptive parents posed for a photo on the wedding day along with Steven, Katie and Steven’s mother. Katie wears a short black dress.

Tony and Kelly Fusco thought there was nothing they could do and had decided it was best to support Katie, Gould said.

Katie gave birth to Bennett on Sept. 1. She and Steven moved to a house on a cul-de-sac in Knightdale, North Carolina, just east of Raleigh, but wedded bliss did not last long. They were arrested on incest charges in January. A judge ordered them not to contact each other, and Steven Pladl’s mother has custody.

Steven Pladl’s lawyer, Rick Friedman II, said there was never an allegation that Steven Pladl pressured Katie into a relationship.

“This case is an 18-year-old girl who shows up at the doorstep of a 40-year-old man who’s going through difficult times with his wife,” Friedman said. “They have a bond because they’re biologically related, but they never knew each other before they had a sexual relationship. He was head over heels in love with her, so much so that that outweighed the issue of them being biologically related.”

After the arrests, Katie moved back with Tony and Kelly Fusco, who declined to comment for this article. Every Tuesday and Thursday, she would travel to her adoptive grandmother’s home in Waterbury, Connecticut, Gould said.

On April 12, a Thursday, Katie and Tony Fusco left the Dover home for Waterbury. In a minivan nearby, Steven Pladl watched them leave, surveillance video shows.

Minutes later in nearby New Milford, witnesses reported someone opening fire. Katie and Tony Fusco, 56, were fatally shot. Steven Pladl was later found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot back in Dover.

Shortly after the New Milford shooting, as Fox News previously reported, Steven Pladl’s mother called 911 to report her son had told her he killed the baby, Katie and her adoptive father.

“I can’t even believe this is happening,” Steven’s mother told authorities, according to a 911 call transcript from which her name was redacted. Her son, she said, was upset because Katie, by then just 20, had broken up with him.

Police found the baby dead and alone in Katie and Steven’s home.

Alyssa Pladl struggles to make sense of it all.

“I’m grieving. I’m sad. I’m upset,” she said. “But I also want to have something good come out of this. If it’s to get truth out there, to open people’s eyes to incest.”


A Pretend Web Romance, Then a Real-Life Murder

CLARENCE, N.Y. — He told her he was a young marine, recently back from Iraq.

She said she was an attractive 18-year-old woman eager to meet men, even if they were far from her West Virginia home.

As with many relationships born on the Internet, neither was telling the truth.

In reality, the man was Thomas Montgomery, a 47-year-old married father of two teenagers, who had spent the last 12 years working at a factory in this suburb of Buffalo. His cyber-lover from West Virginia was also in her 40’s, the police say, but had adopted her daughter’s identity, including the younger woman’s e-mail address and Web page, as her online persona.

Still, no one would have been hurt had the real world not collided with the pair’s middle-aged fantasies.

Instead, a 22-year-old co-worker of Mr. Montgomery’s was shot dead one September night as he left the power-tool plant where they were employed. Mr. Montgomery was arrested in November and charged with second-degree murder.

“The uniqueness of this case is that everybody appeared to be misleading everybody else, and the whole situation which resulted in a violent death was unnecessary,” said John J. DeFranks, Erie County’s first deputy district attorney. “Ironically, the only person telling the truth here was the victim.”

The killing of Brian Barrett, the part-time factory worker who was a student at nearby Buffalo State College and an aspiring teacher, stunned the rural town of Lockport, where he had lived with his parents.

“He was kind of an easygoing, quiet kid,” said Tom Sarkovics, the athletic director and Mr. Barrett’s baseball coach at Starpoint High School in Pendleton, outside Lockport. “He’d do anything you asked him to do, never complained about running, never complained about drills.”

According to the police, the men’s colleagues at the tool plant, Dynabrade, said that Mr. Montgomery frequently bragged of his online relationship with the supposed teenager from the time it began in May 2005.

Then, last spring, Mr. Barrett also was drawn into corresponding with the woman. Neither man made any secret of the situation.

“It was noted by fellow employees that there was a rivalry between the two over what they believed to be the same woman, for an extended period of time — months,” said Dennis Rankin, chief of the patrol services division at the Erie County Sheriff’s Department.

Mr. Barrett’s involvement sprang from a dose of reality, Mr. DeFranks said. For one thing, Mr. Montgomery’s wife found an e-mail message from the woman — whose name the police have not released — and wrote to her, revealing that he was not the recent Iraq veteran he claimed to be.

In addition, Mr. DeFranks said, Mr. Montgomery had told the woman that he had a friend named Brian and she was able to contact him.

“This woman took it upon herself to locate the person online and started chatting with him,” he added.

Unlike the other two points in the triangle, Mr. Barrett did not feel the need to create a fictitious identity.

Late on Sept. 15, after finishing his work shift, Mr. Barrett was sitting in his car when he was shot with a .30-caliber weapon in what Chief Rankin described as a “sniper shooting.”

“We have someone who heard the gunshots and witnesses who saw someone in the area,” Chief Rankin said. “We could tie that to the time that Mr. Barrett was last at work, which was moments before the shot.”

After learning of the connection between Mr. Montgomery, Mr. Barrett and the woman in West Virginia, investigators searched the computers of all three and compiled hundreds of pages of correspondence, Mr. DeFranks said, much of it of an “adult nature,” as well as threats made by Mr. Montgomery toward both Mr. Barrett and the woman.

Mr. Montgomery, a stocky man with a swirl of dark blond hair and a bushy mustache, pleaded not guilty at his arraignment last month before State Supreme Court Justice Amy J. Fricano, who ordered him held without bail pending a hearing on Jan. 10 and warned him not to contact the woman.

Mr. Montgomery’s lawyer, John J. Molloy, declined to comment on the case.

In the hundreds of messages exchanged, there was no indication that either man planned to meet the woman, leaving investigators struggling to understand why someone would kill over a relationship that existed only in cyberspace.

“I can’t speculate on that,” Mr. DeFranks said. “It is what it is.”

The woman in West Virginia, whose true age became known to Mr. Montgomery only after his arrest, does not face any charges.

“She was doing absolutely nothing wrong,” Chief Rankin said. “She obviously didn’t realize what was going to happen, or that there would be a ‘love triangle.’ ”

He added: “Mr. Barrett was a completely innocent person who was, from all appearances, a fine, upstanding young man who was putting himself through college. He was simply looking for a friendship on the Internet and ended up dying for it.”


12 Female Poisoners Who Killed With Arsenic

odorless, tasteless, and builds up in the human body. A large dose will kill someone in hours, while a steady, small dose will cause someone to become ill and appear to die from natural causes. The poison used to be extremely difficult to detect after death, until James Marsh developed a reliable test in 1832. Even after that, only the victims of suspicious deaths were tested—so many arsenic killers tallied up multiple victims before being caught.

1. GIULIA TOFANA

was a poison-maker in 17th-century Italy. Some sources attribute the invention of the mysterious poison called Aqua Tofana to her, but there are earlier mentions of the “inheritance potion.” (Others attribute the development of Aqua Tofana to Teofania di Adamo, who was executed in 1633 and might have been Giulia Tofana’s mother.) At any rate, both women made and sold the concoction, which included a base of arsenic with some other ingredients, most likely lead and belladonna. Just a few drops could kill a person. At the time, many women had so little status and power that their only means of breaking away from a bad marriage was death, and there was no shortage of women who wanted to keep that option in a small bottle on their dressing tables. As many as 600 people may have died as a result of Tofana’s business over an 18-year period. Eventually, one of her customers was caught, which led to an investigation. Tofana was executed for her activities, along with her daughter and several other accomplices, in 1659.

2. AMY ARCHER-GILLIGAN

ran a nursing home in Connecticut from 1907 to 1917. When her first husband and business partner James Archer died in 1910, Archer-Gilligan was the beneficiary of a substantial recently-purchased life insurance policy. She married Michael Gilligan in 1913. Three months later, he was dead. Meanwhile, too many people were dying in the nursing home, particularly those who had recently paid for their care with a lump sum. A complaint from a relative led to a newspaper and police investigation, which led to exhumations. Her second husband and several patients tested positive for arsenic. Archer-Gilligan was tried on only one count of murder and found guilty in 1917. She was sentenced to death, but a new trial was granted to determine whether Archer-Gilligan was insane. That trial led to a life sentence, but she was later sent to a mental institution where she lived until her death in 1962. Archer-Gilligan's number of victims could be anywhere between five and 48. Her story is thought to have inspired the play Arsenic and Old Lace.

3. BERTHA GIFFORD

was born in the 1870s in the town of Morse Mill, Missouri. She married a man named Graham, but when she took up with Gene Gifford, her husband died of a mysterious ailment. She and Gifford married and moved to Catawissa, Missouri, where Bertha became known as a Good Samaritan. She often took care of sick people in her community, going to their homes and cooking for them. She built a reputation as an excellent cook, and she also made home remedies. Quite a few children died under her care, but children, especially sick children, often died from one disease or another in those days. Older people died, too. But in 1917, two healthy, middle-aged men died. Sherman Pounds died at the Gifford’s home, and later hired hand Jim Ogle died after a dispute over pay with the Giffords. Pounds’ three-year-old granddaughter also died while staying with Bertha Gifford in 1922, and seven-year-old Irene Stuhlfelder died under Gifford’s care in 1923. In 1925, Ethel Schamel, two of her sons, and another relative all died within a few months, again under Gifford’s care. Farm hand Ed Brinley died in 1927. Finally, growing rumors of Gifford’s involvement in all those deaths brought an investigation. The bodies of Ed Brinley and the Schamel brothers were exhumed and found to contain large amounts of arsenic. It came out that Bertha Gifford had purchased a lot of arsenic over the years to poison barn rats. She went to trial for two murders in 1928, and was found criminally insane. She was committed to a state mental hospital, where she died in 1951.

4. MARY ANN GEERING

was born in 1800 and lived in Guestling, East Sussex, UK, in 1846 when her husband Richard Geering inherited £20. That was a lot of money back then, but not enough to induce murder plans in most people. Two years later, Richard died after a painful illness of five days. His death was attributed to heart disease. Four months passed, and Geering’s 21-year-old son George died. A few weeks later in 1849, 26-year-old son James also died from a painful illness of just a few days. A third son, 18-year-old Benjamin, fell ill shortly afterward on Easter Sunday. This time, doctors removed the patient from the home, and Benjamin recovered. His doctors raised an alarm, and Mary Ann Geering’s husband and two dead sons were exhumed. The bodies were full of arsenic. Geering was arrested and her three younger children were taken to a poorhouse. She confessed during her trial, and was hanged in 1849.

5. BLANCHE TAYLOR MOORE

married her first husband James Taylor in 1952 when she was 19 years old. She jumped into marriage to escape her abusive father, an alcoholic minister named P.D. Kiser. Kiser died in 1966 of heart failure, although arsenic was later found in his body. Taylor himself died in 1973 after a mysterious illness. Blanche had been carrying on an affair with her co-worker Raymond Reid for years, and they began dating openly after her husband's death. Reid, however, died in 1986.

Blanche then was able to openly date another man she had been seeing secretly, the Reverend Dwight Moore. The two married in 1989. Immediately after returning from their honeymoon, Rev. Moore was admitted to a hospital. Suspicious doctors found he had been poisoned with arsenic. Dwight Moore survived with treatment, but has suffered lingering health effects. The bodies of James Taylor and Raymond Reid were exhumed both showed high levels of arsenic. Blanche Moore was arrested and tried in 1990 for the murder of Raymond Reid. She was found guilty and sentenced to death. Moore is on Death Row and continues to profess her innocence. A made-for-television movie about her case was aired in 1993, in which Elizabeth Montgomery played the role of Moore. Incidentally, there is no truth to the rumor that Moore requested a live kitten for her last meal. Now 82, she is still on Death Row.

6. JUDY BUENOANO

was an abused child and already had a son when she married Air Force officer James Goodyear in 1962. The couple had two more children and settled in Florida. Goodyear served in Vietnam, but died of a mysterious malady three months after coming home to his wife in 1971. Buenoano collected on three life insurance policies. A couple of months later, she collected on another policy when her home burned (another insured home burned a few years later). By 1973 Buenoano had a new lover, Bobby Joe Morris. She and her children moved to Colorado with Morris in 1977, but he died of a mysterious malady in 1978. Again, Buenoano collected on several insurance policies.

Back in Florida by 1979, Buenoano's adult son Michael visited his mother and suffered base metal poisoning, which left him disabled but alive. He drowned in 1980 while on a canoeing trip with his mother, and Buenoano again collected on three life insurance policies. She dated a man named John Gentry and took out a life insurance policy on him. He was hospitalized with a mysterious malady, but survived, only to return to the hospital when his car exploded in 1983. Gentry cooperated with investigating police, telling them of the vitamins Buenoano gave him before his earlier illness. The "vitamins" contained paraformaldehyde and arsenic. Gentry also found out that Buenoano had told her friends that Gentry had a terminal illness (he did not). The bodies of James Goodyear and Bobby Joe Morris were exhumed and found to contain high levels of arsenic. In 1984 , Judias Buenoano was sentenced to life for the murder of her son, and in 1985, she received a death sentence for the murder of James Goodyear. Buenoano was executed in Florida in 1998.

7. VELMA BARFIELD

was not home when a house fire killed her first husband Thomas Burke in 1969 in North Carolina. Another fire soon afterwards destroyed what was left of the home. She married Jennings Barfield in 1970, but he died in 1971. Barfield moved in with her parents, but her father died of cancer and her mother died in 1974 of a mysterious illness. A boyfriend also died in a car accident.

Barfield moved in with Dollie and Montgomery Edwards in 1976, working as a nurse for the elderly couple. They both died in 1977. The next elderly man in her care, John Henry Lee, also died in 1977. Barfield then moved in with her boyfriend Stuart Taylor, who soon died of a mysterious illness. Taylor's autopsy showing the presence of arsenic, and a tip from Barfield's sister led to her arrest. Jennings Barfield's body was exhumed and also found to contain arsenic. The widow eventually confessed to several murders. In 1978, Velma Barfield was convicted of the murder of Stuart Taylor and in 1984 became the first woman in the US executed by lethal injection.

8. NANNIE DOSS

Serial killer Nancy Hazle later became known as Nannie Doss and was also referred to in the press as "the Giggling Granny" because of her bizarre behavior. In 1921, when she was only 16 years old, she married Charlie Braggs. They produced four daughters. The two middle daughters died under mysterious circumstances in 1927, and Braggs left Doss. She met Frank Harrelson through a lonely hearts column and married him in either 1929, 1937, or 1945 (accounts vary). He died from ingesting rat poison in 1945. Meanwhile, two of Doss' grandchildren died under mysterious circumstances. Doss married her third husband, Arlie Lanning, in 1947. He died in 1952 of heart failure, although he had no history of heart problems. Soon after, their home burned. The house had been willed to Lanning's sister, but the insurance beneficiary was Doss. Soon after, Lanning's mother and Doss' sister died.

Husband number four was Richard Morton, whom Doss married in 1952. During that marriage, Doss' father died and her mother came to live with her. The arrangement did not last long, as Louisa Hazle died within a few days of her arrival in 1953. Richard Morton died three months later. Nannie Doss immediately began looking for another husband, and married her fifth, Sam Doss, in 1953. Within a couple of months, he was hospitalized with a mysterious illness, but survived and was sent home on October 5th, only to die later that night. Sam Doss' suspicious doctor ordered an autopsy and found (you guessed it) arsenic. Nannie was finally arrested, and she confessed to murdering all four deceased husbands, a mother-in-law, her own mother, her sister, and a grandson. She pleaded guilty to the murder of Sam Doss and was sentenced to life. She died in prison in 1965.

9. ANNA MARIE HAHN

was the first woman to die in Ohio's electric chair and only the second woman executed by the state . She immigrated from Germany in 1929. After divorcing her second husband, Hahn began working as a private live-in nurse for elderly German men in Cincinnati. Her patients tended to die and leave their fortunes to Hahn, which helped pay for her gambling habit. The string of unusual deaths ended in 1937, when police found a suspicious amount of arsenic in George Obendoerfer's body. An investigation revealed a string of unusual deaths among Hahn's patients, and a survivor who caught her trying to poison him. Hahn was convicted of one murder, that of Jacob Wagner, in 1937. She was executed in 1938.

10. DAISY DE MELKER

was the second woman ever to be hanged for her crimes in South Africa. She married Alfred Cowle in 1909. Four of their five children died in infancy. Cowle died in 1923, and left de Melker a substantial inheritance. Three years later, de Melker married Robert Sproat, who died in 1927 after a painful illness that resembled Cowle's. De Melker once again collected a fortune in inheritance.

In 1931, Daisy married Sydney Clarence de Melker, a plumber, as her previous husbands had been. In 1932, de Melker's 20-year old son Rhodes Cowle died after drinking coffee his mother had prepared. William Sproat, the brother of de Melker's second husband, became suspicious and demanded an investigation. Rhodes Cowle's body was found to contain arsenic. James Webster, a man who had become sick after drinking some of Cowle's coffee but survived, also tested positive for arsenic. William Cowle and Robert Sproat, de Melker's first and second husbands, were exhumed and strychnine was found in the decomposed tissues. De Melker was charged with three murders but found guilty of only one, that of her son. She was hanged in December of 1932.

11. MARY ANN COTTON

had three husbands and at least 10 children who died of ambiguous gastric illnesses between 1852 and 1872. The third of her four husbands survived, and her 13th and last child was born as she awaited trial. Several stepchildren and lovers also died of the same symptoms, but Cotton avoided suspicion by constantly moving to different towns around England. The first sign of trouble for Cotton came in 1872, when she predicted the death of her apparently healthy young stepson Charles Edward Cotton to an official. When Charles Edward Cotton died suddenly a few days later, Cotton's first errand was to collect on his life insurance. Told that she needed a death certificate, Cotton went to the child's doctor, who refused to sign until a formal inquest was held. An examination of the body found evidence of arsenic. Two other bodies from the family were exhumed and were also found to contain arsenic. Mary Ann Cotton was found guilty of the death of her stepson and was promptly hanged. Her story was made into a nursery rhyme.

Mary Ann Cotton,
Dead and forgotten
She lies in her bed,
With her eyes wide open
Sing, sing, oh, what can I sing,
Mary Ann Cotton is tied up with string
Where, where? Up in the air
Sellin' black puddens a penny a pair.

12. TILLIE KLIMEK

Chicago resident Tillie Klimek had a reputation as a psychic. She began predicting the deaths of neighborhood dogs with startling accuracy. In 1914 she predicted the death of her husband, John Mitkiewitz. Astonishingly, Mitkiewitz died three weeks later. Klimek collected his life insurance money and went to a matchmaker. Her second husband, John Ruskowski, died only three months later, just as Klimek predicted. Husband number three, Frank Kupczyk, lasted only a few years before he died. Klimek also foresaw the death of a neighbor woman who raised suspicions about Klimek's husbands. Klimek predicted the death of three children belonging to a family she had trouble with as well—and sure enough, the children all died. The widow remarried to Anton Klimek, husband number four, in 1921. Soon after a new life insurance policy went into effect, family members visited the Klimek home and found Anton sick in bed. When his stomach was pumped, the food Klimek has eaten was found to contain arsenic. Tillie was arrested and confessed to the attempted murder of Anton Klimek. She was sentenced to life imprisonment, and the deaths of her other suspected victims were not investigated. Her sentence carried the stipulation that Klimek was never to be allowed to cook for other prison inmates.

BONUS: 13. MARIE BESNARD

was called the "Queen of Poisoners" in France, although she was never convicted. Her first husband, a cousin, died of tuberculosis in 1927. Besnard married Léon Besnard the next year. The couple moved in with Léon's parents, who both died separately within months. Léon's sister, who shared in the inheritance, died soon after. Marie Besnard's father also died during the period. Two boarders (a married couple) also died and left the Besnards their estate. Several other relatives who died named the Besnards as their heirs, including Marie's mother. Both Besnards, by now very wealthy, took lovers into their home. Léon became suspicious that his wife was trying to kill him, and said so to his paramour. He died in 1947. Marie Besnard, who inherited all the accumulated wealth, was finally a suspect. Léon's body tested positive for arsenic. Other bodies were exhumed, tested for arsenic poisoning, and Besnard was finally charged with 13 counts of murder. Her first trial in 1952 included eleven murders, but ended in a mistrial. The second trial in 1954 also was declared a mistrial. Besnard was acquitted during her third trial in 1961, and died in 1980.


Celeste Carrington

Celeste Carrington was 32 years old when she was sent to California's death row for the execution-style murders of a man and a woman during two separate burglaries, and the attempted murder of a third victim during another burglary.

In 1992, Carrington had been employed as a janitor for several companies prior to being fired for theft. After leaving her position, she failed to return several keys to the companies where she'd worked. On January 17, 1992, Carrington broke into one of the companies—a car dealership—and stole (among other items) a .357 Magnum revolver and some bullets.

On January 26, 1992, using a key, she broke into another company, and armed with the gun she'd previously stolen, she encountered Victor Esparza who was working as a janitor. After a brief exchange, Carrington robbed and shot Esparza, who died of his wounds. Carrington later told investigators that she had intended to kill Esparza and felt powerful and excited by the experience.

On March 11, 1992, Carrington entered yet another company where she'd previously worked as a janitor, again using a key. Armed with the revolver, she shot and killed Caroline Gleason—who was on her knees, begging Carrington to put away the gun. Carrington proceded to steal around $700 and Gleason's car.

On March 16, 1992, again using a key from her former janitorial job, Carrington broke into a doctor's office. During the robbery, she encountered Dr. Allan Marks. She shot Dr. Marks three times before fleeing the building. Marks survived and later testified against Carrington.


Woman Gets Lesbian Lover and Co-Worker To Kill Her Husband Of 6 Months

Hard-partying Elizabeth Turpin had no intention of settling down after she got married, and she hatched a deadly plan with her lover, Karen Brown.

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The day of her husband Michael Turpin’s memorial service, Elizabeth Turpin waltzed into the Lexington, Kentucky funeral home acting nothing like a widow.

Instead, the young newlywed wore a bright red dress and laughed with friends and family.

“She thought it was a party,” Michael’s father, Don Turpin, told “A Wedding and a Murder,” airing Thursdays at 9/8c on Oxygen.

This wasn’t the only odd behavior Elizabeth exhibited following the murder of her husband, who was stabbed 19 times in their apartment, then dumped in the spillway of a local golf course.

While speaking with Lexington Police Department Detective Fran Root, Elizabeth shared an unusually detailed alibi for the night of the slaying.

She claimed she left Michael at home around 7:15 p.m. on Feb. 2, 1986, to go out partying with friends from the car dealership where she worked. Elizabeth spent the night at co-worker Karen Brown’s apartment because it was raining, she had been drinking, and she didn’t drive well at night, she claimed.

“That was really the first time my interest got piqued on this young lady because she was telling me too much,” Root said.

Elizabeth also alleged her husband had been a drug dealer who went by the street name “Shark” and worked for an organized crime unit called The Family, while Michael's friends and family disputed the claim.

On Feb. 4, Brown unexpectedly showed up at the police station to corroborate Elizabeth’s alibi — and her stories about Michael’s alleged criminality. He also physically abused Elizabeth, Brown told police.

Investigators decided to dig deeper and learned Elizabeth and Michael’s marriage had begun to unravel. Friends claimed that, six months after tying the knot, Michael wanted to settle down and start a family, but Elizabeth refused to give up her partying lifestyle.

Detectives also learned that, while out at the club on Feb. 2, Elizabeth and Karen had shared a lengthy kiss that “left no doubt there was a relationship between Karen and Elizabeth,” Lex18 News reporter Nancy Cox told “A Wedding and a Murder.”

Believing Elizabeth could have had something to do with Michael’s death, police called his mother and asked her to look into his life insurance policy. Sure enough, days before the murder, $60,000 had been taken out on his life, and Elizabeth was the beneficiary.

“We believe that Elizabeth Turpin had to be linked to the murder, in that she was the only one with the real motive to see Mike Turpin dead,” Root said.

Meanwhile, Brown’s two roommates came to the station harboring their own suspicions about her. The morning after the murder, Brown was seen cleaning her car with co-worker Keith Bouchard, a mechanic from the dealership who was also at the club that night.

One roommate saw bloodstains in Brown’s car after she gave him a ride that morning, and Bouchard later asked him to get rid of his shoes, which had apparent bloodstains on them. Brown’s other roommate said Bouchard had been staying at their apartment, and that she had found a pair of his boxer shorts covered in blood.

Armed with their testimony, police brought in Brown and Bouchard for an interrogation and served a search warrant on her car, which investigators found had been doused in blood and bleach. Under questioning, Brown broke down and named Bouchard as the one who stabbed Michael, herself as the getaway driver, and Elizabeth as the mastermind behind the murder.

In exchange for a life sentence with parole, Bouchard pleaded guilty to murder and agreed to testify against Elizabeth and Brown. Bouchard testified that he and Brown drove over to the Turpins’ apartment and knocked on the front door.

As soon as Michael answered, Bouchard stabbed him multiple times with paring knives, while Brown helped hold him down. The slaying was at Elizabeth’s behest, Bouchard said.

Prosecutors argued Elizabeth wanted Michael dead for financial gain, and that she had manipulated the two assailants to carry out her bidding.

Elizabeth and Brown were both found guilty of murder and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for 25 years.

To learn more about the case, watch “A Wedding and a Murder” on Oxygen.


Socialite charged with killing Belize cop has been arrested again: reports

An 18-year-old animal shelter volunteer in Colorado was allegedly beaten to death in a parking lot by her ex-boyfriend, authorities said.

Danielle Hopton was found unconscious “with life-threatening injuries consistent with an assault” in the parking lot of an apartment complex in Fort Collins on Feb. 6, according to Fort Collins police.

She was taken to a local hospital, where she died of her injuries. Her death was ruled a homicide. Cops didn’t elaborate on what kind of injuries she sustained.

Police later arrested her ex-boyfriend Stephen McNeil, 20, for the slaying. Another suspect, Ian Rayas, 20, was also taken into custody in connection with the killing.

A police investigation revealed Hopton was with the men the night of her death. The group drove to the parking of the apartment complex and parked there to hang out, cops said.

At some point, Hopton and McNeil got out of the car to talk and then the assault occurred. The ex fled, “and a member of the group called 911,” according to police.

McNeil is charged with first-degree murder, and Rayas is charged with attempt to influence a public servant and accessory to a crime.

Hopton was described as an animal lover who “genuinely cared about others.”

“Danielle loved spending her time volunteering at the animal shelter, and helping her dad raise guide dog puppies,” according to a GoFundMe page set up for her family.


6. The Knoxville Girl

Also known as Hanged I Shall Be, The Oxford Tragedy, The Oxford Girl, The Wexford Girl, The Butcher Boy and many others, this song - variants of which date back to the 1700s - is one of many murder ballads in the folk canon that follow a similar pattern. A man spots a woman he likes the look of, so he takes her to a remote location to pitch woo, but kills her instead. Then the guilt starts.

In The Knoxville Girl, sung by, among others, The Lemonheads, Elvis Costello and Nick Cave (who knows a thing or two about murder ballads), the singer hits the object of his affections with a stick, many times, although earlier variants have her stabbed with a knife, and then drowned for good measure. Each version tends to end in a similar way, with the singer realising he's bound for prison, and maybe the gallows, and also most certainly for eternal damnation.


Victorian Poisoners

Poison seemed to be the first choice for many murderers in the Victorian era – mainly by women.

One of the most celebrated cases was that of Adelaide Bartlett.

Adelaide Bartlett’s husband Edwin was one who succumbed to poison. In his case, chloroform. Adelaide’s trial has gone down in history as one of the most baffling. Although poor Edwin’s post-mortem revealed a large amount of liquid chloroform in his stomach, there was no trace in the mouth or throat.

The central part of Adelaide’s defence at her trial was the mystery of how the chloroform got into the stomach, as it is almost impossible to swallow as the unpleasant taste causes vomiting and if it had been poured down his throat while unconscious, some would have gone into the lungs and there was none found.

Adelaide was acquitted at the trial, and afterwards Sir James Paget of St. Bartholomew’s Hospital remarked, “Now that it is all over, she should tell us, in the interest of science, how she did it”.

Arsenic was easily obtained in Victorian times in the form of fly-papers. These could be soaked and the arsenic obtained. Ladies of fashion used arsenic for cosmetic purposes as well as killing husbands!

Madeline Smith, a beautiful 21 year old girl, lived in Glasgow in 1897. She had been having a torrid affair with a clerk called Emile L’Angelier, and she had written him some very passionate letters during the course of the affair. Madeline’s father pressured Madeline to become engaged to a friend of his, and she therefore tried to get the letters back from L’Angelier. He refused to give them to her and threatened to show them to her fiance. She then decided to poison him with arsenic in a cup of cocoa! He drank it and died. At her trial Madeline made a very good impression on all present, and the final verdict was Not Proven, a verdict only possible in Scotland.

Florence Maybrick also decided arsenic would be just the thing for her husband.

In 1889 after a short illness, James Maybrick died. The Maybrick family were suspicious, and after locking Florence in her room, they searched the house. They found a packet labelled ‘Arsenic. Poison for rats’. The autopsy on Maybrick revealed traces of arsenic in his stomach and Florence was accused of his murder. She was sentenced to death, commuted to life imprisonment. She served 15 years and was released in 1904.

Mary Ann Cotton can be called Britain’s Mass Murderess. She poisoned four husbands and twice as many children, with arsenic.

She was 20 when she married William Mowbray, a miner, and they had four children. William went to sea as a stoker and died suddenly while at home, as did the four children.

Mary, now a grieving widow, got a job as a nurse in Sunderland Infirmary where she met George Wood. He married her but did not live long. Mary collected the insurance money and met James Robinson, a man with four children. They were married in 1867 and all of his four children died, as well as the new baby that Mary had. Once more Mary collected the insurance and married Frank Cotton. He had two children by his first wife and a new baby by Mary. Frederick died suddenly as did all his children. Mary now had a new lover, a man called Natrass, but he died too of Gastric Fever, according to Mary.

The local doctor, Dr. Kilburn, became suspicious and in 1873 Mary was brought to Durham Assizes. She was found guilty and hanged at Durham Jail.

Christiana Edmunds was an ill-tempered, waspish spinster who fell madly in love with her doctor. She was convinced that Doctor Beard was in love with her and began to send him emotional, passionate letters. Doctor Beard was embarrassed but powerless. In 1871 Christiana decided that Mrs. Beard would have to go, and sent her a box of chocolates. They were full of strychnine. Christiana was eventually caught after the small boy she had deputed to buy the chocolates from the shop identified her. She pleaded insanity at her trial but was sentenced to death. This was later commuted to detention in Broadmoor for life.

Dr. Pritchard in 1864 purchased some antimony as his wife was standing in his way – he wanted to marry one of his servant-girls. He had a problem as this servant was pregnant. His wife suddenly became very ill and his mother-in-law came to look after her. Quite suddenly his mother-in-law died in his house, and her daughter, his wife, a few weeks later. They were both found to have been poisoned with antimony. Pritchard was hanged in 1865, the last man to be executed in public in Scotland. A crowd of 100,000 watched the execution.


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Assistant U.S. Attorney Phil Green told jurors that Deuman killed the girl during the oral rape, and then he considered scenarios throughout the evening to suggest she died of an accidental cause.

He didn’t call 911, but told Maitland on the telephone that their daughter wasn’t breathing, wasting valuable time which could have saved her life.

Scene: Ten members of the same family lived in this mobile home in Suttons Bay, Michigan, on land belonging to Chippewa Indians

Green said yesterday: 'This was a very difficult case for anyone to have to hear.

'This is about as heinous as it gets. That’s a tragic reality here. He did do it.

'A beautiful 15-week-old baby girl lost her life, lost her future, because of his need for sexual gratification.'

He applauded the baby's mother Natasha for testifying on behalf of the prosecution, despite 'having to endure a loss no one should ever have to endure'.

According to Michigan Live, he told jurors: 'This was no accident. She couldn’t roll over, much less crawl.

'She certainly wasn’t capable of overcoming the obstacles on her bed, the pillows, to end up on the floor. Even if (she did), how is she going to suck that condom up?'

Finally, he said: 'It’s hard to imagine anything more objectionable than the oral rape of a 15-week-old baby.'

Jurors also heard from witnesses who, as children, claimed they also were sexually abused by Deuman.

The defense attorney argued that his client was a proud father and that the mobile home they shared with ten other people was an 'accident waiting to happen.'

He said prosecutors unfairly portrayed his client as an 'unbridled sex fiend'.


Baby Raped, Dies, Mother Charged For 'Encouraging' Boyfriend

A mother whose baby was raped and died after the attack was charged in Missouri after police say she "encouraged" her boyfriend to assault the infant.

On Monday, horrifying details were released on the arrest of Jessica Lynn Howell, 25, after the rape and murder of her 4-month-old daughter, Ashlynn Lilith Peters on December 3 of last year.

Prosecutors allege the baby was raped and murdered by Howell's boyfriend Jordan Lafayette Prince, age unavailable, and that Prince had previously been convicted of assaulting a child.

The prosecutors' narrative takes an even darker turn when it comes to the rape and strangling of baby Ashlynn, as court documents state that Howell was not only aware of Prince's history, but that she consented to and arranged for the fatal assault to occur.

KMOV says the St. Charles County mom was complicit in the alleged rape, reporting:

"Prosecutors say the night before the girl was assaulted and killed, Jessica Lynn Peters had taken Ashlynn with her to spend the night at Prince's home. Evidence includes text messages from the mother consenting to the sexual assault of her daughter by Prince."

Of the mother's charges in the baby's rape related death, St. Charles Prosecuting Attorney Tim Lohmar cites text message evidence of planning, and says:

"In those text messages she suggested and encouraged some unspeakable things. It is very, very disturbing."

Neighbor of Prince, John Ezell, saw Ashlynn enter the suspect's trailer with her mother on the night of the baby's alleged rape and murder, and he says:

"I saw them take the baby in and out, but you never imagine something like that is going on. I am glad she is charged. I hate to see baby killers go free."

Probable cause affidavits in the case detail the baby's rape and horrific injuries, reading:

"Ashlynn was sexually assaulted causing multiple tears to her anus, a massive laceration to her rectum with massive hematoma in the area of the pelvis. The injuries to her anus and rectum of Ashlynn were sufficient to eventually cause her death even without the strangulation."

Howell has been charged with child abuse and murder following baby Ashlynn's rape and murder.