Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Fatal Attraction Murder Case

Rendezvous at the Tree Tops

Solomon made a right turn outside the apartment complex and drove south on Central Avenue. He pulled into the Brunswick Lanes parking lot in Yonkers, a distance of less than five miles from his apartment, within a few minutes. He bowled at Brunswick frequently and knew a lot of people there. When he walked onto the lanes he saw some friends and made a point to say hello. After exchanging greetings, he sat for a few minutes and watched the game. Then without explanation or good-byes he suddenly got up and walked out of the alleys.

At exactly 7:15 p.m., about the same time Solomon left the bowling alley, a telephone operator in Westchester received a disturbing call. She answered the phone call with the usual "New York Telephone." She immediately heard screaming on the other end of the line.

"Can I help you?" she said, "can I help you?" The response on the line was very quick, sudden and was not repeated. She may have misunderstood the first word of the response, but the message was clear.

"He's trying to kill me!" the female voice screamed. The line then went dead. The operator was not sure if the female said "he's" or "she's." When the number was identified, the police were notified. They checked a reverse directory and dispatched a unit to check out the location. But they could not have known that the very same telephone number had recently been reassigned to the Scarsdale Ridge apartment of Paul Solomon. The police checked out the wrong address and left the scene convinced it was a bogus call.

In the meantime, Paul Solomon got back into Betty Jeanne's car and then drove a few more minutes until he reached the Holiday Inn in Yonkers just off Tuckahoe Road. The restaurant at the hotel was called the Treetops, a dark and comfortable place to eat or pass the time over cocktails. It is located just a stone's throw from the parkway and is easily accessible for travelers northbound from Manhattan. Carolyn met Paul there before and they both enjoyed the atmosphere at the Treetops. It was dimly lit, quiet and had a sort of out-of-the-way ambiance that a man in Solomon's sensitive position could appreciate. When he walked in, he took a seat at the bar, ordered a drink and waited for his date.

At about 7:45 p.m., Carolyn walked in and saw Solomon at the bar. She joined him and for the next hour, they sat together and enjoyed several rounds of drinks. According to the court testimony of the waitress, they soon moved to a table where they ordered their meals and drank for about two hours. Whenever the waitress glanced at the table, she saw the couple absorbed in a deep conversation. Solomon later testified in court that they spoke about their future together: "She said it was difficult finding good people to date. I said I would be so happy to dance at your wedding and see you happy. She said 'What about your happiness, Paul? Don't you deserve to be happy?" When it came time to go, Paul paid the check and both he and Carolyn left the restaurant together. Outside, they sat in Carolyn's car in the corner of a darkened parking lot.

Soon, they were unbuttoning each other's clothes. They kissed and felt each other's warmth. Carolyn's lithe body was too much for Solomon to resist. According to Solomon's later statements, she asked to perform oral sex on him. "Please. Paul. Can I? Will you let me?" she said.

Within a few minutes, the sex was completed. When they were finished, the lovers said good-bye with promises to soon meet again. Carolyn drove out of the parking lot and turned south to Manhattan. Paul Solomon turned left onto Tuckahoe Road and headed home to the Scarsdale Ridge complex.

A short time later, at about 11:40 p.m., Solomon walked through the front door of his apartment and from that moment on, his life would never be the same again.

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