The Pendulum Has Swung: Defending Yourself Against False Allegations in Senator Claire McCaskill’s Military Justice System

If you or someone you know has been falsely accused of a crime,
please contact Save Our Heroes.

This animated video describes the obstacles faced by military members who are wrongly or falsely accused of sexual assault. From the recent changes to the UCMJ to the barriers built around the alleged victim, wrongly and falsely accused service members face an uphill battle defending themselves. Court-martial defense lawyer Will M. Helixon, with decades of experience as a sex crimes prosecutor, can team with the military detailed counsel to level the playing field and defend the rights of the wrongly and falsely accused. (www.helixongroup.com)

Learn more: Letter of Support for Save Our Heroes in Our Shared Quest for Military Justice Reform & Constitutional Rights

Disabled WWII Army Veteran Richard Englander Murdered by Live-In Caregiver Sara Moore in New York 5 Days After Move In Date, Sentenced to 25 Years to Life in Prison (2014)

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Richard Englander, US Army Veteran

World War II Army veteran Richard Englander, 79, was attacked in his home by his live-in caregiver in Albany, New York on February 6, 2014. Englander served as a 1st Lieutenant with the 3rd Gun Battalion, 84th Artillery, US Army Europe and received many awards for outstanding service. As a result of his service during the war, Richard was exposed to plutonium in Germany and it left him disabled with Multiple Sclerosis. He was 100% dependent and in need of a live in caregiver. Richard placed an ad in the paper. And Sara Moore saw this job helping an elderly infirm as an opportunity because she needed a place to live. Sara Moore had never been a caregiver and Richard’s daughter was concerned and voiced those concerns but Richard decided to give her a chance. Sara moved in on February 1, 2014. It immediately became apparent to Richard that Sara was more interested in his finances then she was his welfare. Sara asked Richard if she could borrow some money on the second day of employment. Englander didn’t have any cash in the house so he gave her his credit card and she disappeared. On the third day of employment she left him alone for hours. And on the fourth day, she slept all day. As Richard was laying helpless in his bed, he realized she has got to go. On the fifth day of employment, Sara Moore stole one of Richard Englander’s checks and left the house to cash the check she wrote to herself. Sara had a secret that she didn’t share with her employer; she was addicted to crack cocaine.

Richard realized that Sara stole a check so he called the bank to initiate a stop payment and then called the police. Police report that Richard was coherent and cognizant at the time of the report. After Sara realized that the bank would not authorize her to cash Richard’s check, she became angry and went back to Englander’s home. Richard confronted Sara about the check. Sara went into Richard’s garage, grabbed a tire iron, and began viciously bashing Richard about the head while he was on the phone with the bank. The bank heard the beginning of Richard’s murder. Richard lost consciousness after the second blow. Sara hit Richard so many times that the medical examiner couldn’t determine how many times. After she got done hitting him with the tire iron, Sara used a knife and cut his esophagus. Sara then took another check and his credit cards and went back to the bank. The bank would not cash the check for Sara and called the police. First responders found Richard near death and he was transported to the hospital where he later died of the injuries. Meanwhile, Sara is using Richard’s credit cards which were on a watch list. As a result, police were able to track Sara down and arrest her. Sara was charged with second degree murder. She eventually plead guilty and was sentenced to twenty five years to life in prison. Richard was known for helping people and honorably serving his country. Sara was so desperate to get money that she preyed on a completely defenseless disabled elderly veteran.

Related Links:
Obituary: Richard Englander
A friendly face gone too soon
Wynantskill woman charged with killing Albany man
Wynantskill woman pleads not guilty to murder, robbery charges
Sara Moore Pleads Guilty to Woodside Drive Murder
Elderly man’s killer sentenced
Home care worker sentenced for brutal murder of patient
Murderer gets 25 years to life
Care provider faces 25-to-life after plea
Albany murder cast light on senior thefts
Albany murderer focus of ‘Deadly Women’episode
Deadly Women: The Vulnerable (YouTube)


A secret addiction drives a young woman to sacrifice her wheelchair bound employer; a scheming caregiver betrays the man who trusts her; and a single mother’s desire for a better life leads to a brutal dismemberment. -Discovery ID

Navy Veteran Victor Saucedo Shot and Killed in Home by Ex-Girlfriend; Navy Veteran Vegas Bray Sentenced to 50 Years to Life in Prison (2012)

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Victor Saucedo, US Navy Veteran

Never have sex with a crazy ex. -Profiler Candice DeLong, Deadly Women

Victor Saucedo served as a damage controlman in the US Navy and was stationed at Naval Base San Diego in California. The ambitious Victor left the Navy in 2012 and began working on a college degree in law enforcement. He wanted to do well so he could provide for his four year old son. He had lots of friends, a loving family, and was an all around great guy. Victor met Vegas Bray, who was also in the Navy, at the Naval Base in San Diego; they remained friends even after she was discharged. Victor reconnected with the popular, well liked twenty-two year old Vegas at the gym; they both liked to work out. Victor was smitten initially and the two began a serious relationship in March 2011. Victor and Vegas spent a lot of time together.

Then Vegas realized she had to share Victor with his child, an ex-girlfriend, and all his friends. Vegas was especially jealous of the mother of his child because she had to be the only person in Victor’s life. Her jealousy was brewing because of her immature personality and stunted emotional development. Vegas Bray was both abandoned and abused, and as a result had a difficult time with men. Vegas tried to use sex to control Victor. If Victor went out with his friends, Vegas would show up and ask him to leave. This behavior embarrassed Victor and he may have lost his friends but he was never going to give up on his son. Vegas accused Victor of spending all his time with his son. Victor didn’t hide the fact that his boy came first and broke up with Vegas in March 2012. Although they still hooked up even after the break-up.

Vegas had a rough childhood. Her mother abandoned her when she was twelve; she didn’t know who her father was. But she was pretty, smart, and well liked. She was described as nice by those who grew up with her. She grew up in the heavily populated military community in San Diego and as a result was inspired to join the enlisted ranks in the Navy after high school graduation in 2007. She worked as a Machinist at Naval Base San Diego. But Vegas didn’t like it. She was not adjusting well to the rules and regulations and applied for an early discharge. The discharge application was approved and she was administratively discharged from the Navy in 2010. She wasn’t sure what she wanted to do so she began working as a cocktail waitress. She met Victor in 2011 and he broke up with her in 2012.

Instead of moving on, Vegas started pulling childish pranks. She sat outside his home, followed him, threw eggs at his car, keyed his car, punctured his tires, threw paint at his door, and threatened to kill him. Victor moved to a new apartment within the complex to escape the escalating abuse. He even considered moving back to Chicago, Illinois but didn’t want to leave his son behind. He had a feeling Vegas would kill him. After she found out where he lived, Vegas broke a window at the new place. Victor didn’t want any confrontations with her. And even after all this, he still wanted to be friends. He went to the police once to report the stalking behavior and the threats to his life but he didn’t feel like he was taken seriously. He also chased Vegas down after she threw a bottle through his car window. He then called the police but declined to press charges hoping the warning would do the trick.

Vegas told Victor she was going to move into the same apartment complex as him and Victor agreed to be a co-signer on the new apartment. Vegas went to Victor’s place on October 15, 2012 to talk about the co-signing arrangement. Vegas and Victor drank and talked all evening; they had a good time and ended up sleeping together. The next morning, Vegas wanted to go to breakfast but Victor did not. Vegas felt used and taken advantage of; she was angry. What Victor thought was a casual night with an ex meant something completely different to Vegas. This night made her feel closer to Victor, more possessive, and got her hopes up that something would rekindle. Once Victor realized his mistake, it was too late. Because of her abandonment issues, she felt rejected. She was truly devastated by this experience and her rage kicked into overdrive.

Vegas was obsessed with Victor and wanted to know why he broke up with her. On October 16, 2012, Vegas went to Victor’s home in Imperial Beach and confronted him. He reiterated that it was over. She shot him six times at close range. Then when he was down, she coldly pointed the gun at his head and fired rapidly three more times. Police would learn that she left him a message on his answering machine begging him not to leave her. She went to his apartment with a plan after he didn’t call her back, she murdered him in cold blood. Once he was dead, she called the police to report that she found Victor dead with his gun lying next to him. Vegas implied that Victor committed suicide.

After detectives observed the crime scene, they found Victor lying in the hallway with a gun at his side. He had been shot multiple times in the face, head, and upper body; a suicide was not possible. The police felt that referring to Victor’s death as a suicide was preposterous; they quickly deduced this was a homicide. But Vegas’ child-like mind failed to see the absurdity of the statement. Vegas voluntarily went to the police station and told investigators that she couldn’t remember what happened because she blacked out. During the interview, Vegas told investigators that Victor broke up with her on the phone and unfriended her Facebook. Although she had other plans, she turned around on the highway and went to Victor’s home to confront him, what the hell?

Vegas Bray said she didn’t plan on going back to Victor’s house. She said she didn’t remember anything and blacked out but remembered her ears were ringing. She also admitted that the black outs began in childhood. She said she was sexually abused as a child and when she reported it to her mother, she wasn’t believed. She did see a psychiatrist to work on her depression and her disability, post traumatic stress disorder. She also admitted that the 38 caliber revolver was hers. Others described Vegas as unstable; she had quick temper and flew off at the handle. Witnesses confirmed she was jealous of the ex-girlfriend and would often cause scenes. They said one time she even held a gun to Victor’s face and this is when he left her. He didn’t want anymore drama unfortunately leaving her only heightened the drama.

Vegas Bray was arrested later that day and charged with the murder of Victor Saucedo. It took two years to declare Vegas mentally fit to stand trial. The jury would learn that Victor was shot nine times with hollow point bullets meant to do maximum damage. And they learned that a 38 caliber revolver only held six bullets so Vegas had to reload the gun before shooting Victor three more times. This fact also matched testimony by witnesses who said they heard 5-6 gunshots, silence, then three more shots. The defense brought up Vegas’ difficult upbringing with her abusive, neglectful mother but the jury decided it didn’t excuse taking a life. In 2016, Vegas Bray was found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to fifty years to life in prison. Vegas Bray was an unstable, jealous ex with a gun who killed Victor Saucedo because she couldn’t control him.

Related Links:
Emotional Vigil Held for Slain Father
‘Fly Guy’ Victor Saucedo Remembered at Candlelight Vigil
Friends remember local sailor killed in Imperial Beach
Family, friends say shooting victim was stalked
Ex-Girlfriend Arrested in IB Homicide Case
Woman accused of gunning down ex-boyfriend in Imperial Beach
Woman accused of killing ex-lover in court: Vegas Bray suspected in death of Victor Saucedo
Woman Charged with 1st Degree Murder After Man Is Shot
Murder suspect: ‘I was never jealous’
Vegas Bray Pleads Not Guilty to Shooting Ex-Boyfriend
Imperial Beach Murder Suspect’s Facebook Page Can’t Help
Prosecutors: Woman harassed ex-boyfriend before killing him
Family: Sheriff Failed to Protect Ex-Sailor From Shooting Death
Homicide Charge On Hold: Vegas Bray Headed to Mental Hospital
Woman accused of killing ex-boyfriend determined to be mentally competent to stand trial
Trial set for suspected boyfriend killer
Trial Date Set For Woman Who Shot Ex-boyfriend Nine Times, San Diego
January Trial Set for Vegas Bray in Navy ‘Fatal Attraction’ Case
Vegas Bray (Hellbeasts)
Former Navy sailor found guilty of murdering ex-boyfriend
Fatal attraction case ends in woman’s conviction
Ex-Girlfriend Said to Have Stalked, Harassed Ex-Boyfriend, Convicted in His Murder
Woman involved in fatal attraction case convicted of first-degree murder
Long term for stalker who shot boyfriend to death
Woman who shot ex-boyfriend to death sentenced
Woman Who Stalked, Murdered Ex-Boyfriend Gets 50 Years
Woman Who Stalked, Killed Ex-Boyfriend Gets 50 Years to Life in Prison
Woman who stalked and shot her ex-boyfriend 9 times claimed his death was suicide
Ex-Lover Jealousy Turns Lethal: The Vegas Bray Story
Woman accused of killing ex-lover in court: Vegas Bray suspected in death of Victor Saucedo
Woman accused in fatal shooting of ex-boyfriend appears in court
Woman accused of killing ex-lover in court: Vegas Bray suspected in death of Victor Saucedo
Mental competency hearing set for woman accused of murder
Guilty verdict in fatal attraction case
Snapped: Vegas Bray | Oxygen
Snapped: Vegas Bray Calls 911 | Oxygen
Snapped: Vegas Bray Interrogation | Oxygen
Snapped: Stalking is Dangerous
Ex-Lover Jealousy Turns Lethal: The Vegas Bray Story
Deadly Women: Cling ‘Til Death (Investigation Discovery)


These Deadly Women won’t let their men go… they “Cling ‘Til Death.” -Discovery ID

Marine Corps Spouse Brittany Killgore Held Captive, Tortured, Raped, and Murdered After Refusing Sex; 3 BDSM Cult Members Sentenced to Life (2012)

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Brittany Killgore, US Marine Corsp Spouse

Brittany Killgore, a civilian married to a man serving in the USMC, was initially reported missing on April 14, 2012 but was later found dead near Lake Skinner in California in 2012. Her husband was deployed at the time she went missing. They were stationed at Camp Pendleton and Brittany was in the process of getting a divorce and moving out of her home. On her last night at Camp Pendleton, another Marine named Sgt Louis Perez, offered to not only help her move but asked her to go out one last time before she left. Brittany was acquaintances with Perez, his live in girlfriend Dorothy Maraglino, and another woman named Jessica Lopez, who also lived at the residence of Maraglino.

After a lengthy investigation by civilian police in San Diego, it was determined that Louis Perez lured Brittany and eventually took her to his home where he and his girlfriend (Maraglino) lived. Perez, Maraglino, and Jessica Lopez all engaged in what is referred to as BDSM and they decided that Brittany would join them whether she wanted to or not. In the course of sexually abusing and torturing Brittany, Louis Perez strangled her to death. Maraglino and Perez decided that Jessica Lopez needed to take the fall for her death and they coerced Jessica into not only admitting to the murder but also to take her own life. She was found near death in a hotel room after a failed suicide attempt. In 2015, Perez, Maraglino, and Lopez were all sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Related Links:
Timeline: Brittany Killgore Case
NBC Details about Marine Wife
Detectives: Marine wife Brittany Killgore died during sexual attack
Graphic autopsy reveals Brittany Killgore strangled, dismembered
Did fantasy become reality in S&M murder case?
3 conspired to commit thrill killing, DA says
Abduction fantasy revealed during Killgore murder hearing
Dismissal of charges denied for suspect in sex-torture murder case
Suspects accused in death of Brittany Killgore ordered to stand trial
Friend testifies Marine wife Brittany Killgore texted ‘help’ after dinner cruise with Louis Perez
Marine Convicted of Sex Dungeon Murder
Final defendant in murder of Marine wife is sentenced to two life terms
Life Sentences in 2012 Torture, Slaying of Marine Wife
Woman in sadomasochist sex ring sentenced for death of Marine wife Brittany Killgore
3 Sex Cult Members Convicted of Murdering Marine’s Wife for ‘Sadistic Pleasure’
California man and woman get life in torture murder of Marine’s wife
Jessica Lynn Lopez Sentencing 01/08/16
Sex cult murder: sadomasochists convicted for killing Marine wife who refused rough sex
Sex Cult Sentencing: Marine Wife Murder
Parents of murder victim share grief
Dorothy Maraglino: Sex Dungeon, Masters, Slaves Topic in ID’s ‘Murder Among Friends’ in Case of Louis Perez and Jessica Lopez


When the battered corpse of a young woman turns up on the outskirts of Fallbrook, California, detectives unravel a secret world where dominance, sadomasochism, and manipulation reign. -Investigation Discovery

Army Vietnam Veteran Samuel Wiggins, Jr Stabbed to Death & Dismembered by Girlfriend Carmen Montelongo, Motive was Financial Gain, Sentenced to 26 Years to Life in Prison (2011)

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Samuel Wiggins, Jr., US Army Veteran

Army Vietnam veteran Samuel Wiggins, Jr., 63, was found dead in Diamond Bar, California on May 29, 2011 after police found his body parts in a trash can. Carmen Montelongo (Montenegro) was caught red-handed by the police wheeling around a trash can with Samuel’s remains. Samuel met Carmen a couple years earlier. The family shared that Samuel waited 60 years for the right woman and Carmen would be the biggest mistake of his life. He was good to her from the beginning even offering to pay for her daughter’s college and a vehicle. Carmen started stealing from him immediately, taking little things. Samuel noticed but Carmen became angry when Samuel accused her. This was their first fight so Samuel forgave her and they continued the affair. And eventually Samuel asked Carmen to marry him. But Carmen continued to steal from him. Samuel caught her again and this time he finally had enough; he ended the relationship. Samuel was last seen by relatives on May 1, 2011. The family became concerned and his nephew went looking for him at his house. Samuel’s nephew witnessed fine blood spray on the walls and doors of his home. Carmen had to think fast because she knew the police were going to be notified. Carmen panicked and started digging up Samuel’s remains in the backyard so she could move the body.

Carmen was putting Samuel’s body parts in a trash can when some of her family members showed up to the house unannounced. She began offering to pay them to help her move the garbage bags. In the course of moving the garbage bags from the garden to the trash can, one of the bags came open and her family saw a body part. They refused to help, left, and called the police. When the police showed up, they found Carmen wheeling a trash can down the road and the stink of death was following her. Court testimony revealed that Carmen snapped after Samuel decided to end the relationship and stabbed him to death. An autopsy revealed that Samuel was fatally stabbed twice in the chest and then Carmen stabbed him 22 more times in the back post mortem. Carmen had to get rid of the body so she dismembered Samuel with a chainsaw. She cut off his head, arms, and legs. She buried his head and arms in potted plants and buried the rest of his body (torso and legs) in the garden in the backyard. She gave the potted plants as a gift to her cousin. Then she immediately drained Samuel’s bank accounts and made it look like he was alive for over a month. The District Attorney declared that the motive for murder was financial gain. Carmen Montelongo was found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to 26 years to life in prison.

Related Links:
Man Found in Trash Can Likely Died of Multiple Stab Wounds
Authorities say woman stabbed Diamond Bar man to death before dismembering him
Nephew: Victim in dismemberment killing a `very loving man’
Human Remains Found In Trash Can Belong to Diamond Bar Man
Diamond Bar Home Suspected Scene of Trash Can Remains Murder
Kids of Woman Arrested with Body Parts Also Held
California trash can body suspect’s 2 kids arrested
Son and daughter of woman who wheeled around body parts in Ontario are arrested
Murder suspect is due in court
Woman in Trash-Can Murder Appears in Court
Murder victim’s remains found in trash can and flower pots
Carmen Montelongo, Grandmother Accused of Carting Body Parts in Trash Can, Allegedly Buried Other Remains in L.A. County
DA: Money possible motive in trash can body case
Woman: Dismemberment killing was revenge for rape
Hearing for grandmother accused of murder, dismemberment postponed
Carmen Montelongo to face jury in dismemberment in Ontario case
Ontario dismemberment suspect’s pretrial hearing pushed back
Judge grants mistrial in Ontario killing, dismembering case
Girlfriend sentenced for Calif. man’s ‘heinous’ stabbing death
Woman found with ex-boyfriend’s body parts convicted of murder
ONTARIO: Riverside woman sentenced in dismemberment murder
Carmen Montelongo, Woman Who Hid Boyfriend’s Body Parts In Flower Pots, Sentenced
Riverside Woman Who Stabbed Boyfriend 24 Times Then Dismembered Him Is Sentenced: DA
Woman sentenced to 26 years to life for stabbing boyfriend to death, dismembering his body and burying remains in potted plants
Prison for woman who dismembered boyfriend, hiding parts in potted plants
Carmen Montelongo, Samuel Wiggins: ‘Snapped’ Details Case of Boyfriend’s Dismembered Body Parts Found in Flower Pots, Trash
Deadly Women: Love Leaves Town (YouTube)
Snapped: Carmen Montelongo (YouTube)
Snapped Sneak Peek: Carmen Montelongo, Part 1


With hearts of stone, these Deadly Women give their men special send-offs when “Love Leaves Town.” -Discovery ID

Navy Lt CDR Fred Trayers Stabbed to Death in California by Wife Jennifer Who was Angered by Infidelity with Fellow Navy Doctor (2010)

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Lt CDR Fred Trayers, US Navy

  • Fred Trayers was stabbed to death on December 4th, 2010.
  • Fred Trayer’s wife Jennifer was charged with his murder.
  • Jennifer Trayers was found guilty of second degree murder in 2012.
  • Jennifer was sentenced to 16 years to life in a California state prison.

Related Links:
Peabody native slain in Calif.
Navy doctor’s wife arrested in husband’s killing in San Diego
Jennifer Trayers/Fred Trayers/Danielle Robins Love Triangle: Five Riddles!
Mistress Testifies in Love Triangle Murder Trial
Mistress of Doctor Who Was Stabbed to Death Testifies at Widow’s Trial
New Details Emerge In Love Triangle Murder Trial
Did Jealous Wife Commit Murder?
Navy Doc’s Wife Was Also Having An Affair
Deadly love triangle: Mistress of murdered Navy doctor tells court how lover was going to leave his wife ‘before she stabbed him ten times after learning of affair’
Closing arguments in Navy wife’s murder trial
Deadly love triangle case goes to jury
Navy Wife Guilty of Second-Degree Murder
Wife guilty of killing her Navy doctor husband
Wife sentenced in killing of Navy doctor
Jury finds Navy wife guilty of second-degree murder in husband’s death
Navy husband killer gets 16 years to life in prison
Navy Doc Hacked to Death by Jealous Wife
The People v Jennifer Michelle Trayers, California Appellate Court (2014)
Wife Kills Navy Doctor in Love Triangle
Jennifer Trayers killed her husband, Navy Lt. Commander Fred Trayers, for having an affair with Danielle Robbins
Investigation Discovery: Scorned: Love Kills, “A Revenge Affair”
Investigation Discovery: Scorned: Love Kills, “Naval Affairs”


Fred and Jennifer have a picture perfect marriage. But when Fred meets Danielle, a young doctor in the Navy, Jennifer fights to keep Fred for herself. The love triangle explodes, leaving police struggling to understand a grisly crime scene. -Discovery ID

Navy Seabee Rebecca Braswell Conspired with Fellow Navy Seabees to Have Her Ex-Husband & Navy Veteran John Marmo Murdered, Sentenced to Life in Prison (2006)

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John Marmo, Jr., US Navy Veteran

  • John Marmo, Jr., US Navy veteran, was shot to death on December 1, 2006 in Camarillo, California
  • John’s ex-wife Rebecca Braswell, US Navy, conspired with fellow Naval Seabees to have John murdered: Shannon Butler, Matthew Toerner & Seth Hardy
  • Rebecca Braswell was sentenced to life in prison without parole in 2009
  • Matthew Toerner was sentenced to life in prison without parole in 2009
  • Seth Hardy was sentenced to life in prison for attempted murder with the possibility of parole for putting propane canisters under John’s car in 2006
  • Shannon Butler was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for first degree murder

Learn more: Prosecutor: Navy Petty Officer Rebecca Braswell Considered a Pure Sociopath

Related Links:
Seabee deployed to Okinawa accused of killing former sailor in California
3 Seabees to stand trial in slaying
Warning signs ignored in Marmo killing
At murder trial, witnesses say Seabee spoke of harming man
Two Seabees found guilty in 2006 slaying
3rd Seabee convicted in Camarillo ambush killing
Ex-Seabees sentenced to prison for murder
2 Ex-Seabees Get Life for Ventura Murder
The People, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. Rebecca Golden Braswell, Defendant and Appellant, Court of Appeals California (February 15, 2011)
Rebecca Braswell, John Marmo, Jr.: Investigation Discovery’s ‘I’d Kill for You’ Shocks with Story of Naval Seabees who Murdered Camarillo Man Over Child Custody
Shannon Butler: Life in Prison without Parole
Investigation Discovery Go: I’d Kill for You ‘First to Die’
Investigation Discovery: I’d Kill for You ‘First to Die’ (YouTube)


A shotgun wedding leaves naval officers John Marmo and Rebecca Braswell in a troubled marriage with a baby. As the relationship crumbles, allegations of infidelity and abuse run rampant. A fierce custody battle pushes both sides in a deadly battle. -Discovery ID

Navy Reservist Paul Berkley Murdered by Wife Monique in North Carolina while Home on Leave from Middle East, SGLI was the Motive (2005)

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Paul Berkley, US Navy Reserve

Paul Berkley, US Navy Reserve, was murdered by his wife, Monique Wallace Berkley, her teenage lover, and his friend on December 18, 2005. Paul was home for Christmas on leave from a deployment in the Middle East. Monique, Andrew Deshawn Canty, and Latwon Darrell Johnson were all charged with first degree murder. The motive was the $400,000 Servicemen’s Group Life Insurance payout. Monique pleaded guilty to first degree murder and was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. The state announced it was going to seek the death penalty if Berkley had gone to trial. Andrew Canty pleaded guilty to first degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Latwon Darrell Johnson pleaded guilty to second degree murder and conspiracy to commit first degree murder. He was sentenced to 23 years in prison. Johnson appealed his sentence claiming that it was too harsh given his role in the slaying and his cooperation with police and prosecutors.

Paul Berkley survived his deployment in the Middle East without any injury, but he couldn’t survive one week with his wife Monique. -Profiler Candice DeLong

Related Links:
Rapist on the Loose; Police Investigate Murder of Navy Reservist
Slain sailor’s knowledge, skills lauded at Bahrain memorial service
Wife, Teen Lover Held in Slaying of Sailor
Tampa Native Accused in Husband’s Slaying
Wife Charged In Reservist’s Murder
Wife, her teen lover charged with killing husband in park
Reservist Slain Allegedly by Wife and Teen Lover
Berkley frantic on 911 tape
Bizarre Murder Case Raises New Blogging Issues
Wife Of Murdered Navy Reservist Gets Life
Wife of murdered reservist gets life
Wife in Fatal Love Triangle Admits Guilt, Gets Life Sentence
Man Appeals Sentence in Naval Reservist’s Slaying
Murder of SP native takes new turn with appeal filed by one defendant
Home From Iraq and Dead Within Days
Servicemen’s Group Life Insurance is a Common Motive for Murder
Navy Reservist Murdered by Cheating Wife’s Teen-age Lover
Scorned: Love Kills “Rules of Engagement” (Investigation Discovery)
Snapped “Monique Berkley” (Oxygen Media)
Deadly Women “Murder for Me” (Investigation Discovery)


The young and wild Monique Wallace is married to 40-year-old Paul Berkley, a navy reservist and father of two in suburban North Carolina. But with Paul leaving on a mission overseas, temptation and lust will lead them all down a dark path to murder. -Discovery ID

Air Force SSgt Michael Severance Poisoned with Animal Medications by Veterinarian Wife, Wendi Davidson Plead ‘No Contest’ to First Degree Murder, Sentenced to 25 Years (2005)

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SSgt Michael Severance, US Air Force

Air Force SSgt. Michael Severance was poisoned with animal medications by his veterinarian wife Wendi Davidson on January 15, 2005 in San Angelo, Texas. SSgt. Severance enlisted with the United States Air Force in 1998 and was a flying crew chief stationed at Dyess Air Force Base. He met Wendi at a local club and they hit it off right away. Shortly after meeting, she got pregnant with his child. Michael wanted to do the right thing so he eventually married Wendi and moved in with her in a small apartment attached to her new Veterinarian Clinic. He commuted 90 miles one way to the base where he worked. Michael was reported missing to the local police on January 16th after his wife Wendi informed Michael’s parents that she wouldn’t make the flight to Maine with him for a visit with their child because he was nowhere to be found. She cancelled the flights for all three of them. Michael’s parents also called the base to report him missing but Air Force leadership informed them that their hands were tied until he was considered Absent Without Leave (AWOL). After Michael’s leave was up 8 days later and he didn’t return to duty, he was officially considered AWOL. This prompted the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) to join forces with the local civilian authorities. Wendi led all the investigators to believe that Mike had deserted the military. She claimed that he didn’t want to go back to Iraq and was thinking about heading to Canada. Michael, Wendi, and their child were planning a trip to visit his parents in Maine because Mike was scheduled to deploy to the Middle East after returning from the trip.

The San Angelo police department investigators visited Wendi at her veterinarian clinic on January 17, 2005. Wendi told them Mike had been drinking lately and was out all the time, but investigators observed that all of his personal belongings were still at their shared apartment. On January 18th, Wendi filed divorce papers and attempted to get a restraining order against Mike. Civilian investigators were suspicious of Wendi and believed that she was cold and calculating. They gave her a polygraph test but the results came back inconclusive. Once Mike’s leave was up and he was considered officially AWOL, AFOSI joined the San Angelo police department investigation. AFOSI doubted that Michael was a deserter and would just up and leave. In the meantime, the San Angelo police department put a GPS tracking device on Wendi’s car. They learned that on February 7th, Wendi traveled to a remote area owned by a friend of hers. Because investigators considered Wendi a person of interest, they traveled to the location where she had been and found a large retaining pond on the property. In March 2005, investigators were able to look at the search history on Wendi’s computer and learned that Wendi had done a search for ‘decomposition of bodies’ and ‘how to pass a lie detector test’. Investigator’s confronted Wendi but didn’t buy her story so they started turning up the heat. Wendi appeared to dismiss the investigators and then after the interview left the vet clinic in a hurry. She traveled back to her friend’s remote property but this time the police were there to make sure she wasn’t able to disturb a potential crime scene while they worked on obtaining a search warrant.

In the meantime, Wendi confided in her brother Marshall. She told him that she came home and found Mike dead. She said she was scared so she disposed of his body. But her brother didn’t buy her story either and reported her to the police. On March 6th, law enforcement searched the pond on her friend’s property and found Michael Severance’s body anchored down with cinder blocks. When they searched Wendi’s home and business, they found a knife, rope, drug log book, and bottles of medication. Wendi was arrested for the murder of Mike Severance and after 32 days behind bars, her parents raised the $500,000 bond to get her released. Investigators learned that they had only been married for four months when she murdered him. Wendi gave birth to her first child in October 2001. In December 2003, she met Michael and eventually got pregnant but Michael wasn’t ready to settle down or get married quite yet. And Wendi’s parents apparently didn’t like Mike and labeled him lazy and disrespectful; they did not want Wendi to marry him. In September 2004, Wendi gave birth to their son and they were quietly married twelve days later at the courthouse. Two weeks later, Wendi purchased a veterinarian clinic and Mike moved in with her, despite the commute 90 miles one way to work at the base. Shortly after moving in, Mike was sent to Airman Leadership School in Wichita Falls and then he got orders to go to the Middle East. Mike planned a vacation to Maine in January 2005 so his parents could meet his new wife and child, their grandchild, before he was deployed overseas. After Mike returned from Airman Leadership School shortly before their trip to Maine, he observed that Wendi was cold towards him and her mother made it clear that she didn’t like Mike and she didn’t want Wendi going to Maine.

The coroner was not able to determine if there was physical trauma to Mike’s body due to decomposition. But an autopsy revealed that Michael overdosed on drugs usually found in an animal clinic. They found Phenobarbital and B-Euthanasia in his system and he was stabbed 41 times after he was dead. Investigators learned from Wendi’s google searches that Mike was most likely stabbed post mortem so his body wouldn’t float to the surface in the pond. Wendi was arrested again on April 15th for evidence tampering after police learned she falsified log records at the animal clinic so she could justify taking the medication she used to kill her husband. Her bail was now $100,000 per tampering. In the meantime, her family arranged for her to have a privately administered polygraph. On May 24th, a grand jury indicted Wendi for murder and shortly after she was released on bond again. While awaiting trial, on August 20th, Wendi was arrested for child endangerment. One of her children got lost while looking for her; she was out at a night club. She spent another night in jail. In preparation for trial, prosecutors theorized that Wendi concocted her homicidal plan on January 14th. She asked Mike out to dinner on January 15th and then afterwards they went to a bar where they drank and danced. Upon return to their residence, prosecutors believe that Wendi mixed Phenobarbital in his drink. After he was unconscious, she plunged a syringe full of B-Euthanasia into his chest. Then she had to get rid of his body so she drove him out to the pond on her friend’s property and used fishing line to tie cinder blocks to his body. From google searches she learned that gases will make the body float so she went back to the retainer pond and stabbed him 41 times to release the gases; she attached more weight to his body.

Wendi Mae Davidson was looking at 9 to 99 years in prison so instead of going to trial, she plead ‘no contest’ which also left things open for appeal. Her lawyers argued the validity of the search warrants and believed that the GPS tracker was placed in an illegal manner; the resulting evidence was fruit of the poisonous tree. Wendi Davidson was found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to 25 years in prison. She also received an additional 10 years for evidence tampering. Investigators and prosecutors were somewhat baffled with the motive for this crime and because Wendi plead ‘no contest’, we may never know the real reason she murdered Mike. Authorities theorized that maybe Wendi was motivated to kill because Mike Severance wanted to leave her. They theorized that Wendi’s mother didn’t like Mike so instead of divorcing him, she killed him. They also theorized that Wendi and her family wanted custody of the child with no incident. It’s important to note that Michael’s family believes Wendi also wanted the $500,000 life insurance payout. This was an unusual case because Wendi never had any known predisposition or tendency for violence but Mike’s family believes that her mother specifically had something to do with Wendi committing the murder. The question remains why didn’t she just divorce him instead of killing him?

Wendi may have made this decision because control and financial motive is a common motive for murder. It was noted that Wendi met Mike at a bar and shortly thereafter became pregnant; he may have been targeted for exploitation. It was noted that Wendi was in debt after purchasing a new animal clinic providing the motive for financial gain. It was noted that the crime was premeditated as evidenced by her plan to steal the medications from her animal clinic used to kill Mike. It was noted that Mike was murdered only four months after marrying Wendi; was he a means to an end? It was noted that Wendi’s parents didn’t like Mike and their beliefs may have been the fuel to light the fire; she may have been manipulated because she didn’t want to defy or disappoint them, afraid of the consequences. It was noted by Mike’s family that Wendi was the recipient of the life insurance policy. It was noted that Wendi attempted to manipulate the investigation and make Mike out to be someone he was not; even going so far as to get a restraining order a couple days after she killed him. Wendi Davidson does appear to be cold and calculating. Wendi Davidson appears to be a sociopath; but she exercised her right to remain silent in another attempt to abuse the process. As a result, she is eligible for parole in April 2019; she will be 41 years old.

Learn more: Servicemen’s Group Life Insurance is a Common Motive for Murder

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When Staff Sgt. Michael Severance goes AWOL the community of San Angelo rallies around his new bride. But there is something more sinister behind his disappearance, and investigators uncover a saga of treachery and passion as big as the state of Texas. -Discovery ID

Army Veteran Gregg Whitmore and Girlfriend Karen Cummings Stabbed to Death in Home; Ex-Wife Shana Parkinson Sentenced to 27 Years in Prison (2004)

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Gregg Whitmore & Karen Cummings (photo courtesy of http://gregg-whitmore.memory-of.com)

Shana Parkinson Whitmore, 38, was convicted and sentenced to 27 years in prison in 2005 for the the stabbing deaths of her ex-husband Gregg Whitmore, 38, and his girlfriend, Karen Cummings, 29, while they slept at Gregg’s home in Rigby, Idaho on February 1, 2004. Shana Parkinson is not eligible for parole until 2031.

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Deadly Women: Lover’s Revenge