For obvious reasons most of the people who got away with murder will never end up on a list like this one, due to the fact that the overlap between ‘people who got away with murder’ and ‘people who openly boast about getting away with murder’ is pretty slim.
Although most of us can probably name several rich and famous people who got away with murder, for the aspiring murderer without the bank balance to pay for a fancy lawyer it seems that getting away with murder requires keeping quiet and hoping that you live in one of the 55 US cities where 50% of homicides in the last ten years did not result in an arrest.
Wife Kills Husband With Stone Frog Ornament, Keeps His Body In The Shed For 18 Years
Friends of Leigh Ann Sabine were devastated when the vivacious 74-year-old died of cancer in October 2015. Neighbors in the small Welsh village of Beddau knew that the glamorous New Zealand born, former cabaret singer had lived a colorful life… but they could never have guessed that Leigh Ann was hiding a literal skeleton in her closet.
Eighteen years earlier Leigh Ann had bludgeoned her husband of 37 years to death, in the bedroom of their south Wales flat. She then tied the body in string and wrapped it in plastic sheeting, initially concealing the corpse underneath the couple’s bed and later moving it out into her garden shed.
Leigh Ann had married John Sabine in New Zealand in 1960. The couple had five children together, but abandoned them to in order to dodge fraud charges. For a few years they lived a glamorous life in Australia, where Leigh Ann attempted to launch a modelling career while the couple’s children were left to grow up in foster care. In 1990 the couple moved to the UK, but the marriage was tempestuous, with infidelities on both sides.
Although Leigh Ann Sabine occasionally talked openly about having killed John in the years following the murder, friends assumed the comments were just morbid jokes. It was only when they went to sort through her belongings after her death, that they discovered the ‘plastic teaching skeleton’ Leigh Ann had told them about, was in fact the mummified remains of her missing husband.
Although Leigh Ann Sabine ranks pretty low on any list of ‘decent humans’, when it comes to ‘people who got away with murder’ she’s near the top.
Teen Girl Kills Her Coworkers, Gets Away With Murder For Forty Years Until Death Bed Confession
When Sharron Diane Crawford Smith’s coworkers at a High’s Ice Cream Shop in Staunton, western Virginia mocked her for being a lesbian in 1967, she shot them in the head.
She then took $138 from the cash register and fled the scene, leaving police to investigate the double homicide as a robbery gone wrong.
Sharron went on to marry a man and have two daughters, but after a decade of marriage she left her husband and lived the rest of her life with a female partner.
Although the 1967 murders of 19-year-old Constance Smootz Hevener and 20-year-old Carolyn Hevener Perry shook the small city, the crime remained unsolved for the next four decades. With no good leads, it seemed to many in the small town that the truth behind the shocking murders would never be known.
But in 2009, as she lay dying of heart and kidney failure in a nursing home, the penitent Sharron asked to speak to police. However, her confession raised almost as many questions as it answered.
In her sometimes incoherent account of the murders – heavily medicated and on the verge of death – Sharron implicated the lead detective on the case, Davie Bocock, for helping cover up the crime.
An influential local cop, Bocock was a neighbor of the Crawford family at the time of the murders. Sharron would practice shooting on Bocock’s farm and he would often visit the teenager at her home.
In her deathbed confession Sharron Diane Crawford Smith claimed that after the ice cream shop shootings, the cop helped her bury the murder weapon on his farm and shielded her from suspicion.
Bocock died in 2006, before the confessions came to light. Many theories have been suggested as to why he might have protected the young murderer, with some claiming that the married cop was having a sexual relationship with the young girl and others that he was Sharron’s biological father; a claim Sharron’s mother has flatly denied.
A month after making her confession, Sharron Diane Crawford Smith died of organ failure in a terminal care facility, having never once seen the inside of a police cell.
Man Shoots Friend In The Head, Confesses Twice And Still Gets Away With Murder
In the history of people who got away with murder, Isaac Turnbaugh, must be the only one who called the police to confess and will still never serve a day behind bars.
In 2002 Isaac Turnbaugh was working at a Vermont pizza restaurant, along with newly-married Declan Lyons. While Lyons was stirring a pot of sauce in a large caldron outside of the pizza restaurant, Turnbaugh shot his 24-year-old coworker in the head with a rifle.
Not long after shooting the then 20-year-old, confessed what he had done to friends and was promptly arrested. The only problem was that Isaac Turnbaugh had also claimed responsibility the 9/11 terror attacks and a host of other high-profile crimes.
While awaiting trial he was diagnosed with serious mental illness, and at his trial Turnbaugh’s lawyer successfully argued that his client’s confession had been a product of his delusions. Forensic and ballistic evidence were inconclusive, so Turnbaugh walked free.
But in 2011, police got a very unexpected phone call. Isaac Turnbaugh confessed that eight years earlier he really had murdered Declan Lyons.
Unfortunately for prosecutors, Turnbaugh had already been acquitted at trial and US double jeopardy laws meant that he could not be put on trial again for the same offense. The statute of limitations on other crimes related to slaying had already expired, so police had no option but to let Isaac Turnbaugh go.