Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Alice Crimmins Case

A Romeo Named Rorech

At the same time that investigators were tracking down the writer of an anonymous letter, they were applying pressure to Joseph Rorech, one of Crimmins major boyfriends. 

Joseph Rorech
Joseph Rorech

The tall, muscular Rorech had chiseled features and wore his dark, wavy hair combed straight back from his forehead. He was a high-rolling, hard-drinking home repair contractor with a loud and blustery manner who had lived a very compartmentalized life. There was the devoutly Roman Catholic family man with seven children and the compulsive womanizer. Far more secretly, he was a bisexual who sought and enjoyed the company of men who cross-dressed.

At the time of the Crimmins case, Joe Rorech was a man in serious trouble. His business dealings were going sour and he was drowning in debt. His long-suffering wife had a job selling encyclopedias door-to-door. He had written a raft of bad checks to attempt to hold off his creditors and was in serious legal trouble. Trying to stay one step ahead of cops and creditors, he had taken to using a variety of aliases.

The Crimmins case investigators put a wire on him to listen in to his conversations with Alice but she said nothing indicating culpability in the deaths of the children. The sleuths also repeatedly interviewed him. He recalled Alice talking about the custody suit and saying, Id rather see them dead than with Eddie. Had she actually murdered her kids so that her ex-husband would not get custody of them? There were people willing to believe so. However, the investigators realized that a jury could regard this statement as hyperbole. Throughout several months of intense drilling, Rorech denied that she had ever said anything directly incriminating

Then he received immunity from prosecution for all crimes except adultery and murder and changed his mind, recalling that she had told him something quite damning.

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