Elizabeth Turpin, the Kentucky wife who had her lesbian lover kill her newlywed husband, Michael Turpin, 30 years ago, is the next story of murder to air on ID’s successful crime series Scorned: Love Kills. Each Saturday night this season, Scorned details a new crime story. The episode, titled “Kentucky Thrill Ride,” will tell the story of a young groom who thought he’d found eternal love with his sizzling new bride until he is found dead in a pond just months after the wedding. The Elizabeth Turpin, Michael Turpin story will be told through reenactments and commentary from police detectives, crime and psychological experts, and some friends and family members who can add some information relevant to the case.
Circumstances Of Michael Turpin’s Disappearance And Death
Michael Turpin was reported missing after his wife, Elizabeth Turpin, was unable to locate him at the home they shared in Kentucky. Elizabeth told police that when she arrived back at the apartment after a night out with friends, she found blood on the walls and on the floor. When detectives probed further, Elizabeth Turpin told them that it was possible that her husband had been hurt by armed drug dealers, since at one time, he was known to deal drugs for an organization called “The Family.”
Straight away, the detectives began searching for the missing husband. During the investigation, they learned that Elizabeth and Michael Turpin had a short courtship and had only been married a little over five months.
The Relationship Was Fast And Sexual
Friends and family members say that their relationship started fast, and that Michael Turpin fell in love with Elizabeth Zehnder almost immediately after meeting her in 1984. Michael, the family stated, was a shy, conservative man that didn’t have a lot of experience with women.
In fact, Elizabeth was the one who asked him out. From the looks of it, Elizabeth Turpin had a fiery personality and was considered quite sexy by most men. Keeping herself sexy was something that was important to her. She relished in the attention that she received from both men and women.
This sizzling side of Beth drove Michael crazy, and the two of them were constantly making love. People who knew the couple say they did it any and everywhere, because that’s the kind of woman Beth Turpin was — a woman who liked to entice and seduce her lovers.
However, things changed after they married. Elizabeth Turpin was just 19-years-old and wasn’t ready to settle down. After all, she was still going out partying with friends and meeting new lovers. The marriage was causing Michael Turpin a great deal of stress as he dealt with her lavish spending and immature ways. The sad part is he really tried to make it work. He even resorted to stealing money from his company to keep Elizabeth happy.
The Lesbian Affair With Karen Brown
Authorities learned that the situation took an even darker turn when Elizabeth Turpin began a lesbian affair with 21-year old Karen Brown. She often told her problems to Karen, and even stated that she wanted to see Michael dead at one point. Karen Brown wanted to be with Elizabeth so much that she structured a plan to get rid of Michael by offering a friend named Keith Bouchard part of a $60,000 insurance policy to kill her lover’s husband.
They put their plan in motion on a cold night in February, 1986, by knocking on the front door of apartment 22, located at 3200 Lochness Road. When Michael Turpin answered, he was killed in a vicious knife attack. After the murder, Keith Bouchard and Karen Brown wrapped the dead man’s body in a blanket and drove it out to Lakeside Golf Course in Lexington and dumped it in a pond. The body was later found by city employees, according to Justia court records.
For Michael Turpin’s death, Elizabeth Zehnder Turpin, Karen L. Brown, and Keith R. Bouchard were all found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. Elizabeth was denied parole several times.
Watch Scorned: Love Kills tonight to see how police put the pieces of the puzzle together to solve the Turpin murder case. It airs tonight at 10/9 p.m. central on ID. Last Saturday, Investigation Discovery’s Scorned debuted the case of Diane Borchardt, a teacher who hired her students to kill her husband.
[Image via Kentucky Dept. of Corrections]