LOVE GONE BAD. MURDER GONE WRONG.
West Coast doctor Kenneth Stahl would do anything to free himself from his wife Carolyn. Then Adriana Vasco--Kenneth's former receptionist and mistress of nine years--obliged by introducing him to ex-con Dennis Earl Godley. The deal was set. Godley would murder Carolyn for thirty-thousand dollars. On the day after her 44th birthday, the trusting victim was lured to a lonely stretch of road. The deadly rendezvous took a shocking turn. Not only was Carolyn gunned down with a .357 Magnum, but Kenneth would also be killed.
The hit man's getaway driver was the other woman, Adriana Vasco.
In a sensational trial, a tangled web of lies, sex, and betrayal unfolded as Adriana and Dennis turned against each other...
There are no customer reviews available at this time. Would you like to write a review?
St. Martin's True Crime
November 28, 2005
Number of Print Pages*
Adobe DRM EPUB
* Number of eBook pages may differ. Click here for more information.
Excerpt from Deadly Mistress by Michael Fleeman
The silver car idled on the side of Ortega Highway next to a telephone pole and an emergency call box. The high beams cut into the black nothingness that is Saturday night in the last wild region of Orange County. Nobody much drove this straight section of the one-lane highway this late on a weekend in the cool of fall. There were no street lamps, no house lights, nothing on either side of the car but dead brush, dirt, straggly bushes, barbed wire, broken bottles, rusty cans and darkness. Somewhere off to the east loomed the Santa Ana Mountains, and over them Lake Elsinore. Behind the car, eight miles to the west, was San Juan Capistrano.
At about 10 p.m., Tony Castillo drove his security patrol cruiser east on Ortega Highway. Working a routine patrol shift, Castillo was headed for the Ortega Rock cement plant to check the entrance gate. At Mile Marker 9 his headlights illuminated the rear of the silver car, which looked like a ten-year-old Dodge sedan. The passenger-side door was open and somebody's foot stuck outside.
Castillo gave it only passing thought. Out here, where the Ortega Highway winds through sandstone canyons, rugged ravines and strands of native coastal live oak and California sycamores, it's not unusual to see the occasional car parked to the side at night: drivers sleeping off a drunk, kids making out. Castillo drove on to the cement plant, glancing at the car to his right as he passed. He couldn't see anything inside.
He got to the entrance gate and "secured the lock and chain," he later wrote in a report. Castillo worked for Rancho Mission Viejo---his title was ranch deputy---patrolling the holdings of the big landowner out here, with 23,000 acres, some of it left alone to nature, some of it bulldozed into stucco housing developments. At this late hour, Ranch Deputy Castillo was the closest thing to law enforcement the Ortega Highway would see; an hour or two could pass before a CHP unit or Orange County Sheriff's Deputy car passed by.
That's why the Ortega Highway is so popular with criminals. It's here that "Freeway Killer" William Bonin deposited three of his estimated twenty-one victims; where serial killer Randy Kraft allegedly dumped the first of at least forty-five bodies; where many other victims of less notorious crimes found their final resting places in shallow graves.
After inspecting the cement plant gate, Castillo turned around and drove west on Ortega Highway, approaching the silver car, now to his left. Its high beams hit him in the face. As he moved away from the glare, he could see that the passenger door was still open and that foot was still sticking out. He saw no movement inside.
Now more wary than before, Castillo headed for his next security check: a small collection of homes for about twenty ranch hands, located on a small side road north of the highway. Castillo was already behind schedule on his nightly security rounds for his 5 p.m.--to--1 a.m. shift.
But he couldn't shake the sight of that parked car. He decided against going to the ranch worker homes, pulled his patrol car into the entrance of Caspers Campground, made a U-turn, and drove back a mile to the silver car. He pulled over to the shoulder about fifteen yards behind it.
Up close, he could see that the car was a four-door Dodge Stratus, license plate 4AIV-340.
Castillo got out of his patrol car and walked up to the driver's side of the silver car. The engine was running, the gear in park. Broken glass littered the pavement beneath the door.
Castillo peered in through the open window.
He only looked briefly, and it was dark inside, but he could make out the figures of two people, a man, who was slumped over in the driver's seat, and a woman next to him, lying on her left side, her head near the man's legs. Neither moved nor made any noises. They didn't appear to be breathing. He thought they might be dead.
He rushed back to his security patrol car and tried to contact the Orange County Sheriff's emergency communications center on his radio. It took a few attempts---radio and cell phone reception was spotty out here. A dispatcher finally answered. Castillo told her where he was and what he had found. The dispatcher said fire department paramedics and sheriff's deputies were on their way from San Juan Capistrano, nine miles away