Friday, February 26, 2010

Perfect Husband,Perfect Killer

"Never marry a man who can't control his emotions,"
rang an old adage about marrying right.But for Cherryl
Keaton,the brilliant and talented attorney from Washing
ton University,such assumption was a bit hard to digest.
Especially so when it was a bit late to realize the dama-
ge done.
When Cherryl was found abandoned in her vehicle on
a busy day in Portland,Oregon,she was bludgeoned to
death.Her face was swollen and puffy.And her mass of
injuries consisted of lacerations,contusions,and abras-
ions.She had been brutally beaten that she looked unre-
It certainly would have taken a person so full of RAGE .
That he kept striking and hitting.Again and again and
again and again.
Her family were baffled.How could a cherished friend
by dozens of people die despicably and in such a brazen,
bloody fashion.She was warmly received for her warmth
and vivacity. She was a very studious girl back in law school
and was a noted member of Gamma Phi Beta Sorority.In
no time at all, she became a full partner in the law firm of
Garvey,Schubert and Barer.
But somewhere along the way, she became madly,
insanely and irrationally in love with someone.The object of
maladjusted affection was Bradley Morris Cunningham,
a banker and a real estate developer.
Cherryl was deliriously quoted:"I was very much in love
with him,and I thought he was very much in love with me.
She had met very few men in her life who were not intimi-
dated by her intelligence and income.
And who was the lucky guy? Bradley Cunningham was
said to be a superb lover.An ex-wife nostalgically confes-
sed."When Bradley kissed you,it's as if you're the only
being living on earth." Indeed, his courtships were exqui-
sitely planned. In fact,he was a virile,marrying man. Un-
known to Cherryl,however, she was his fourth wife,and not
the second.And she had no inkling he would get himself a
fifth wife later.
There were to be five women who became Mrs.Bradley
Cunningham before he reached his 30th birthday.
Was Bradley indeed a compassionate lover or was it pos-
sible that he was not what he seemed,that he was a man
who had brutally murdered his wife?
Cherryl's brother,Jim Karr,was not fully convinced about
the car accident theory.He was a bit stoic when he said,
It wasn't just the brother who was skeptical about his sis-
ter's death,the other women in Bradley's past unanimously
felt the same way,albeit in deep hesitation. Bradley scared
them to death in such a frightening ardor.They looked like
trembling kittens when Bradley was around.
His wives.
His sister.
His daughter.
His mother.
They believed that given Bradley's impeccable temper, he
His ex-wives all swore and testified How Bradley tortured
hit them profusely,and abused them constantly.He even
kicked his mother a couple of times,which drove her to fore-
warn her daugher-in-law,"Cherryl,you've got to be careful
around my son.You don't know him that well!".
He was never an ounce sorry for it.He was mean to his
only daughter too and often bullied his lone sister over a
petty argument.
Women in Brad's life were disposable,dispensable,
objects of derision and hatred-expendable.He once spat,
"A woman's place is in the kitchen,in the bedroom.
What she is good for is to be in the kitchen and be a whore
in bed. A known psychologist stated firmly that "WHAT WE ARE ,
Unfortunately,there was absolutely no physical evidence
to link Bradley with the crime.The blood hair,and finger scrapings
taken from him were not enough to convict him.It was futile to
file a case against him because there were no physical witnes-
ses to pinpoint him at the scene fo the crime.
So he was a free man...but not for long.
In due time, he was faced with a civil case. Easier to prove than
a criminal case,the jury in a civil case would only decide the
most compelling evidence.
The facts of the case involved three siblings from the Cunning-
ham marriage-Jess,Michael and Philip.Prior to the crime,
the couple had an acrimonious divorce proceeding and it
involved full custody fo the boys. Both Bradley and Cherryl
were fighting on the edge to be the primary parent.
Cherryl added fuel to the fire when she stripped Bradley to be
the inheritor of her estate.She drew out a new will,stating the
bulk of her assets to be divided equally among her boys,
leaving Bradley with nothing. She was dealing with a manipulator
and a master puppeeter.
And she was no longer willing to abide by him.
Through a series of tests, Bradley was labeled having a character
disaster.He was a NARCISSIST. It meant he could not relate
meaningfully with anyone.He had no conscience.A narcissist
cannot love in a genuine way.It's an incapacity.
Bardley was a sadist. He was comfortable with cruelty.He wan-
ted to dominate,to control.Individuals who believe that their mothers
are that bad almost instinctively reenact the same rage toward
in their lives.
In the end, Bradley got what he deserved in justice. He was convicted.
"Did you kill Cherryl?" ,The judge asked him for the final moment.
Bradley was as cold as a dead fish.
"How long does it take to strike a struggling adult, human being 24 times?" The jury insinuated.
In September 21,1986,Cherryl was about to pick her lovely boys from a weekly visit with their deranged
dad. She was vehemently shaking from hysteria, since she was not sure about the safety of her boys.Bradley
might take them forever away from her. So Cherryl told her mother randomly,"Mother,write this down. He told me he's at the Mobil Station by theIGA." Cherryl had no vision about the kind of devilish entrapment awaiting her.


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  2. Dear Lord!!! This is an awesome narration.Why don't you write a book???

  3. This is a sad post. Unfortunately, this wonderful woman became victim of a man with low self-esteem issues. It was apparent his "skin" was camouflaged with malice intent. He convinced this woman that "finally" someone did not have an issue with her being so independent, when actually it reads that he was just the opposite and the worse of them. He needed to hold onto her long enough for her to believe and become involved in this type of relationship. Unfortunately, it was too late for her to get out.

  4. Really a very very sad one. Equally sad though, in our country, Article 36 of our Family Code as an inadequate remedy....But it's a great narrative.

  5. I just finished the book on this crime written by Ann Rule. I couldn't put it down until I finished it. When I did, I cried. The book is called, "Dead by Sunset".

    1. Incredible book. The details ARE accurate in the book as well, Ann Rule was a former Seattle detective and the best author of the crime I've read, ever (she passed away within the last year) So, Brad is SO incredibly unable to emotionally handle a woman cutting him down to size and considering his convoluted, manipulative, and dysfunctional mind, this book inscensed him. HE wrote a book that is COMPLETE BS called "Ann Rule Deconstructed" where he attempts to destroy Ann Rule by trying to dismantle facts from her book "Dead by Sunset" one by one... He has never ONCE had a genuine, positive, and amicable break from any woman that has humiliated or in his opinion, wronged him in any way. His pathological lies have himself convinced that women are evil, and in no way sees himself as the problem. You don't end up with FIVE wives before 30 years old because you're an agreeable, rational, great guy. I have a driving urge to write him in prison (with a kind beginning so he actually reads it) than I'll tell him EXACTLY what he is and how disgusting and despicable a spineless, weak, pathetic little boy he is... He is NO man. I'll even send a picture for good measure. I've done it to other murderers I've read about... It makes me feel better after reading these books, to point out to the scum that they are scum... It's cathartic.

  6. Good article, but a correction: He had 2 daughters, not 1. He had a daughter and a son with his 1st wife, Loni Ann(e), named Brent & Kit. He married an older woman to be his 2nd wife, and he only married her (briefly) to convince the court that he was more stable and would be a better parent to the kids than the 1st wife. He & the 2nd wife had no kids. Then he married Lauren, and she was pregnant with daughter Amy when he left her for Cheryl. Then he had the 3 boys with Cheryl. Finally, he married Sara(h). She left him when she realized what a psycho he is.

    1. He took Kit to live in Houston and he terrorized her down there. I believe he never had much to do with Amy.