Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Murder in Miami: Stan and Joyce Cohen

Fabulous Life

It's no surprise that Joyce caught the boss's famously wandering eye at SAC Construction.

She was young, pretty and petite, at just 5 feet tall. Her raven hair and ochre eyes gave Joyce an exotic appeal. And she was ambitious and well-spoken, despite modest education.

Joyce and Stan together, happier times
Joyce and Stan together, happier times

Her marriage to Cohenjust 10 days after her divorce from McDillon was officialgave Joyce the good life she desired.

Author Cope wrote that Joyce and her son made a triumphant return to Carpentersville not long after the Vegas nuptials. She showed up in a shiny new luxury car and reported that she had lassoed a Jewish millionaire.

Cohen gave Joyce a fabulous life.

The Miami Ski Club
The Miami Ski Club

Their social connections were centered around the Miami Ski Club and Stan's tight circle of college fraternity brothers. Joyce became a featured model in one of the year's most important social events, the ski club's annual fashion gala. Stanley paid Joyce's way through interior design school and referred clients from his building firm.

But Joyce was too busy shopping to work much.

She furnished their new Coconut Grove mansion like a showplace, and she kept abreast of the latest designer clothing styles. When she wasn't shopping, she was planning their bimonthly vacation trips to the continent's finest sandy or snowy resorts.

Author Cope said Stanley Cohen once joked to his stepson, "Your mother's going to shop me to death."

For skiing, the couple favored laid back Steamboat Springs, Colo., where blue jeans were more plentiful than furs.

Steamboat Springs, Colorado map
Steamboat Springs, Colorado map

Stan bought a 650-acre spread there that he called Wolf Run Ranch, then constructed an elaborate cedar-sided cabin on the property. To get back and forth to the mountains he bought his own planefirst a prop-driven Cessna, then a much faster small jet.

The couple invested Stan's money in whatever struck their fancyland, shopping centers, restaurants and resorts.

Their Steamboat Springs home was completed about the time that their marriage reached the seven-year itch phase. Joyce began spending longer stretches alone in Colorado, where she developed her own circle of friends, includingbrieflycountry singer Tanya Tucker.

Dominic Dunne's Power, Priviledge and Justice

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