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#7073: Authorities arrest husband of woman killed in Haiti
From: Robert Charles IV <email@example.com>
Authorities arrest husband of
woman killed in Haiti
The Associated Press
9/10/00 11:38 PM
SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) -- Federal authorities have
arrested a Shreveport business man on charges he plotted
his wife's death in Haiti last January so he could collect
Curtis Wharton originally told police that his 28-year-old
wife, Sheila, was killed during a carjacking near the capital
city of Port-au-Prince.
The Whartons reportedly had stopped in Haiti on the last
leg of a business-vacation trip in the Caribbean. Haitian
police reported that Curtis Wharton flagged down a
motorist on a dark highway and told him the couple had
been run down by men on motorcycles.
But FBI officials say Curtis Wharton wanted his wife dead
so he could collect on her life insurance policy.
Authorities arrested Wharton Saturday at a residence in
Naples, Fla., saying they feared he was about to leave the
Wharton's family owns insurance, finance and auto sales
companies in Shreveport.
One of his secretaries, Judy Nipper, was arrested in
Wharton, 38, and Nipper, 52, have been charged with
insurance fraud -- not murder. They were expected to make
an initial appearance in court Monday -- Wharton in Fort
Myers, Fla., and Nipper in Shreveport. Their attorneys said
they were not involved in Sheila Wharton's death.
Sheila Wharton's mother, Dorothy Upshaw, called the
arrest "shocking and hurtful."
"It is painful for our family to lose a child, to know that
someone she loved so much could have been involved,"
A grand jury has been going over evidence in the case and
is expected to decide whether to return an indictment
within the next month, said U.S. Attorney Bill Flanagan in
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