Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Murder in Miami: Stan and Joyce Cohen

Murder Mystery

A hysterical Joyce Cohen telephoned 911 in Miami at 5:25 a.m. on March 7, 1986, to report that her husband had been shot in their Coconut Grove home.

Police found Stanley Cohen, 52, naked and dead in bed, with gunshot wounds to the head.

The Cohens' home in Coconut Grove
The Cohens' home in Coconut Grove

When Joyce calmed down, she managed to report that Stan had been upstairs asleep while she was up late, busy with a charity project in a downstairs room. The couple's pet Doberman pinscher napped at her feet.

She said she was suddenly startled by a loud noisea gunshot. She crept toward the sound and glimpsed two men running out of the house.

The mansion was filled with fine furnishings, and the intruders might have found stashes of cocaine and cash had they bothered to look.

But nothing was missing. The crime was not a robbery.

If Joyce's story was true and accurate, someone had entered the house for the express purpose of putting a bullet in the head of Stanley Cohen. 

Someone clearly wanted him dead.

But who?

Dominic Dunne's Power, Priviledge and Justice

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