Tarantula Pie, and other ways to kill a husband

In 1977, Carol Louise Hargis was convicted of killing her husband by beating him over the head with a lead weight. She was helped by an accomplice, Terry DePew. Apparently their plan was to split the insurance money.

But what made the case unusual was the various ways the duo had earlier tried to off the husband, without success:

  • feeding him pie containing tarantula venom
  • throwing a live electric cord into the shower with him
  • shooting air into his vein
  • lacing his toast with LSD
  • Putting a poisonous snake into his bed
  • Putting bullets in the carburetor of his truck

San Francisco Examiner - Dec 2, 1977

LA Times - Dec 8, 1977

     Posted By: Alex - Wed Jun 24, 2020
     Category: Crime | Stupid Criminals | 1970s

I found two later mentions of the wife, one in which she had lost an appeal (https://cdnc.ucr.edu/?a=d&d=SCS19791128.1.6&e=-------en--20--1--txt-txIN--------1) and one where she was dying of chronic pulmonary disease (https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd;=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiq296E1JrqAhVVlXIEHYo4DXw4ChAWMAB6BAgEEAE&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.latimes.com%2Fla-tm-oldcons26jun26-story.html&usg=AOvVaw0sxVSjMNqtY78mt57m_EnA). The latter is behind a paywall.
Posted by ges on 06/24/20 at 09:33 AM
Sounds like Jimmy Breslim's story "The Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight." Or the legendary story of killing Rasputin.
Posted by KDP on 06/24/20 at 10:26 AM
A doctor told me the whole 'air in the vein' thing wasn't something to worry about. In med school, they had to put down a dog that way, and it took a long time and multiple syringes to get enough in. The reason they tap on the syringe and force a drop out is to test the needle isn't clogged, which was sometimes a problem pre-1940, and because in the early days of hypodermics, careless doctors sometimes did, over the course of multiple injections, actually get enough air in, and stories of it happening scared many of the general public away from getting shots. (It's amazing what people will tell you when they know you're a writer!)
Posted by Phideaux on 06/24/20 at 02:44 PM
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