American Monster Premiered ‘Stages of Grief’ on Investigation Discovery: Dennis Dawley & Brandita Taliano Murdered Joan Dawley for Cash (July 8, 2018)


In suburban California, an intruder brutally attacks and kills Joan Dawley. As the Dawley family grieves, it’s up to LAPD detectives to crack the case. Secret home movies uncover a shocking tale of deceit, and a monster lurking behind the scenes. -Stages of Grief, American Monster (Investigation Discovery)

Air Force retiree Dennis Dawley, 61, with the help of prostitute and mistress, Brandita Taliano, bludgeoned to death his wife Joan Dawley of 35 years for financial gain in Van Nuys, California. Joan wanted a divorce and Dennis and Brandita wanted her inheritance money. The 1991 case went cold for years until DNA technology under Joan’s fingernails yielded a match to Brandita Taliano. Both Dennis and Brandita were charged with murder, conspiracy & solicitation and faced the death penalty. On April 15, 1997, a California jury sentenced Dawley and Taliano to life in prison without the possibility of parole. The pair were spared the death penalty because they didn’t have any prior violent felony records and the jury heard the emotional pleas from Dawley’s daughters.

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch all of the Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. Download the ID Go app and binge away. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $2.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict.


There’s an old saying that a burden shared is a burden halved. But when people team up to commit murder, the weight of their guilt remains just as heavy. Investigators must rely on forensic science to capture partners in crime. -Partners in Crime, New Detectives (Season 5, Episode 2)


Preview: Brandita Taliano of Los Angeles, California wanted to live the high life. -Deadly Women, Investigation Discovery


Seeking freedom from his controlling wife, Joan, Dennis Hawley begins seeing drug-addicted prostitute Brandita Taliano and supporting her financially. -Female Killers (Deadly Women)


Being the ‘other woman’ is a lonely life. Some turn rejection into rage. A call girl craved the high life, a teen mom eradicated her rival, and a lesbian love affair ripped a family apart. These Deadly Women refused to play ‘Second Best’. -Deadly Women, Investigation Discovery

Related Links:
Murder Suspects’ Trip Tipped Off Police : Slaying: Widower visited Las Vegas with mistress two days after his wife’s death. The pair are now charged in the killing. (1997)
American Monster: Meet Dennis Dawley – Air Force Vet, Golf Pro & Brutal Wife Killer
Man, 61, Testifies in Wife’s 1991 Slaying (1997)
Husband, Former Mistress Get Life in Wife’s Slaying (1997)
BRANDITA TALIANO, Plaintiff, v. D. L. JOHNSON, et al., Defendant. | United States District Court, E.D. California. | May 14, 2014
The New Detectives: Season 5 – Ep 2 “Partners in Crime”
Mistress Kills Her Lover’s Wife to Escape | Deadly Women (S8, E10, ID)
They Killed His Wife Then Decided To Go On A Las Vegas Holiday | Deadly Women
Second Best | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (Season 8, Episode 10)
Brandita Taliano Documentary | Female Killers (Deadly Women)
Stages of Grief | American Monster | Investigation Discovery (Season 3, Episode 1)
Psycho For Love: Dennis Dawley and his mistress, Brandita Taliano, killed his wife, Joan Dawley for the money
Monstresses: Katie Belflower & Brandita Taliano (Season 1: Ep. 2) (2013)
Killer Call Girl: The True Story of Brandita Taliano by Greta Harris (book)

‘Black Widow’ Judy Buenoano Executed by the State of Florida for Three Homicides; First Woman to Die by Death Penalty in Florida Since 1848 (March 30, 1998)

Judy Buenoano

Judy Buenoano was executed by the State of Florida on March 30, 1998.

Air Force Sergeant James Goodyear, 37, died on September 16, 1971 in Orlando, Florida. Sergeant Goodyear died just three months after completing a year long tour of duty in Vietnam. He left behind his wife Judy Buenoano Goodyear and her son Michael Buenoano. Judy received $28,000 in military life insurance benefits and military death benefits to help support the family. When her son Michael turned eighteen, he joined the US Army. On his way to his post in Georgia, he stopped in to visit his mother Judy, she fed him, and afterwards he became ill. The illness led to a crippling condition that left him paralyzed in his lower extremities and he was subsequently discharged from the Army as a Private. Michael was disabled and Judy was taking care of him. On May 13, 1980 Judy took Michael for a canoe ride. Judy reported to local authorities that her canoe capsized and her son Michael had drowned. She collected $125,000 in military life insurance benefits for her son’s death.

In June 1983, Judy was suspected in the car bombing of her fiancé John Gentry of Pensacola, Florida. She stood to gain $500,000 in life insurance money for this death. Judy Buenoano was first convicted of the attempted murder of John Gentry. As a result of her involvement in the attempted murder of John, investigators looked into the ‘accidental deaths’ of her husband James Goodyear and her son Michael. They exhumed John’s body a decade later and an autopsy revealed he had been poisoned with arsenic. Testimony revealed long-term arsenic poisoning had actually caused her son Michael’s disability. And when Judy drowned him, he was wearing an extra 15 pounds of weighted braces. Judy reportedly admitted to being involved in the 1978 death of her boyfriend Bobby Joe Morris as well. She received $50,000 in life insurance benefits for his death. Judy Buenoano was found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to death. She was executed by the electric chair in Florida on March 30, 1998. Judy Buenoano was motivated by money, profit, and greed.

Source: Dark Secrets’ Deadly Women

Full Episode: While drugs can cure disease and ease pain, they can also be agents of murder. Toxicologists can examine blood and tissue to uncover cases where death is not as natural as it may seem – from slow arsenic poisoning to quick cocaine overdoses. -Lethal Dosage, The New Detectives (S3, E5)

Full Episode: Dark Secrets are the stock-in-trade of Deadly Women -Dark Secrets, Deadly Women (S2, E4)

My Favorite Murder – MFM #96: Live at the Hard Rock in Orlando | Aileen Wuornos & Judy Buenoano

Related Links:
The Black Widow
Wikipedia: Judy Buenoano
Michael Buenoano Goodyear
The prosecutor in the murder trial of a woman…
New Twist In Trial Of Buenoano Daughter Says Brother Poisoned Stepfather
Jury deliberates ‘Black Widow’ case
`Black Widow` Convicted Of Murder
The Black Widow
No tears for the ‘Black Widow’ of Death Row
Supreme Court of Florida: Judy A. Buenoano (1988)
United States Court of Appeals: Judy A. Buenoano (1998)
Florida court denies appeal to killer known as ‘black widow’
‘Black Widow’ Faces Electric Chair Judy Buenoano Was Convicted Of Killing Husband And Son, And Bombing Boyfriend
Buenoano Goes To Chair Appearing Small, Scared
Florida woman dies in electric chair
`Black Widow’ Executed In Florida
Florida Executes ‘Black Widow’
Florida Puts to Death First Woman in 150 Years
Judy Buenoano was executed by electrocution
After a series of insurance fraud schemes — and several poisoned lovers — a southern con artist met her electrifying end
These 20 Lethal Ladies Will Give You The Chills. Seriously Creepy.
The Black Widows of Death Row
On Death Row, Women Want Salad for Last Meal
Women Who Murder: 10 Deadliest ‘Black Widows’
5 Super-Twisted Serial Killers You’ve Never Heard Of
12 Female Poisoners Who Killed With Arsenic
Pensacola’s most memorable crime stories
A Look Back: The Execution of Florida “Black Widow” Judy Buenoano
Air Force Sgt. James Goodyear Died of Arsenic Poisoning; Judy Buenoano Murdered Husband and Son Michael for Military Life Insurance Benefits, Executed in Florida (September 16, 1971)
Deadly Women Premiered ‘Dark Secrets’ on Investigation Discovery: Judy Buenoano (October 30, 2008)
International Men’s Day: FIVE Female Killers who Murdered Soldiers, Veterans and Spouses (November 19, 2017)
Life Insurance Fraud is a Common Motive for Murder in the Military
The New Detectives: Season 3 – Ep 5 “Lethal Dosage”
Judy Buenoano Documentary | Female Killers (Deadly Women)
About the Show | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery
Dark Secrets | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (website)
Season 2 | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Judy Buenoano | Death Penalty Information Center
Judy Buenoano | The Next to Die | The Marshall Project
My Favorite Murder – MFM #96: Live at the Hard Rock in Orlando | Aileen Wuornos & Judy Buenoano
Judy Buenoano | Crime Museum

Air Force Retiree Dennis Dawley & Mistress Brandita Taliano Sentenced to Life in Prison, No Parole for the 1991 Bludgeoning Death of Joan Dawley in California (April 15, 1997)

Full Episode: Seeking freedom from his controlling wife, Dennis Hawley begins seeing drug-addicted prostitute Brandita Taliano and supporting her financially. In 1993, when Joan receives an inheritance and makes plans to divorce, Dennis, fearing financial ruin, enlists his lover to help murder his wife. -Second Best, Deadly Women (S8, E10)

Air Force retiree Dennis Dawley, 61, with the help of prostitute and mistress, Brandita Taliano, bludgeoned to death his wife Joan Dawley of 35 years for financial gain in Van Nuys, California. Joan wanted a divorce and Dennis and Brandita wanted her inheritance money. The 1991 case went cold for years until DNA technology under Joan’s fingernails yielded a match to Brandita Taliano. Both Dennis and Brandita were charged with murder, conspiracy & solicitation and faced the death penalty. On April 15, 1997, a California jury sentenced Dawley and Taliano to life in prison without the possibility of parole. The pair were spared the death penalty because they didn’t have any prior violent felony records and the jury heard the emotional pleas from Dawley’s daughters.

Investigation Discovery:

Full Episode: There’s an old saying that a burden shared is a burden halved. But when people team up to commit murder, the weight of their guilt remains just as heavy. Investigators must rely on forensic science to capture partners in crime. -Partners in Crime, New Detectives (S5, E2)

Preview: Brandita Taliano of Los Angeles, California wanted to live the high life. -Second Best, Deadly Women (S8, E10)

ID Go: Being the ‘other woman’ is a lonely life. Some turn rejection into rage. A call girl craved the high life, a teen mom eradicated her rival, and a lesbian love affair ripped a family apart. These Deadly Women refused to play ‘Second Best’. -Second Best, Deadly Women (S8, E10)

ID Go: In suburban California, an intruder brutally attacks and kills Joan Dawley. As the Dawley family grieves, it’s up to LAPD detectives to crack the case. Secret home movies uncover a shocking tale of deceit, and a monster lurking behind the scenes. -Stages of Grief, American Monster (S3, E1)

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch all of the Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. Download the ID Go app and binge away. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $2.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict.

Related Links:
Murder Suspects’ Trip Tipped Off Police : Slaying: Widower visited Las Vegas with mistress two days after his wife’s death. The pair are now charged in the killing. (1997)
American Monster: Meet Dennis Dawley – Air Force Vet, Golf Pro & Brutal Wife Killer
Man, 61, Testifies in Wife’s 1991 Slaying (1997)
Husband, Former Mistress Get Life in Wife’s Slaying (1997)
BRANDITA TALIANO, Plaintiff, v. D. L. JOHNSON, et al., Defendant. | United States District Court, E.D. California. | May 14, 2014
The New Detectives: Season 5 – Ep 2 “Partners in Crime”
Mistress Kills Her Lover’s Wife to Escape | Deadly Women (S8, E10)
They Killed His Wife Then Decided To Go On A Las Vegas Holiday | Deadly Women
Second Best | Deadly Women | Investigation Discovery (S8, E10)
Brandita Taliano Documentary | Female Killers (Deadly Women)
Stages of Grief | American Monster | Investigation Discovery (S3, E1)
American Monster Premiered ‘Stages of Grief’ on Investigation Discovery: Dennis Dawley & Brandita Taliano Murdered Joan Dawley for Cash (July 8, 2018)
Psycho For Love: Dennis Dawley and his mistress, Brandita Taliano, killed his wife, Joan Dawley for the money
Monstresses: Katie Belflower & Brandita Taliano (Season 1: Ep. 2) (2013)
Killer Call Girl: The True Story of Brandita Taliano by Greta Harris (book)