Mitchell Sims and Ruby Padgett were two lovers who killed three Domino’s Pizza employees during a cross country crime spree in the mid 1980s. Their bizarre case will be presented on Oxygen’s Killer Couples, also known as Snapped: Killer Couples. On tonight’s episode, titled “Ruby Padgett/Mitchell Sims,” viewers will listen as the story is told by detectives, a retired FBI agent, a reporter, and a psychologist. Family and friends may also participate in the show.
Oxygen’s Killer Couples will detail how Mitchell Sims and Ruby Padgett made headlines all over the nation in December, 1985, after they killed three Domino’s Pizza employees. Mitchell Sims had worked at the establishment as a cook, then worked his way up to manager. But, he wanted revenge after he left the chain due to a dispute with his boss, the Los Angeles Times reveals. Police say what happened next would leave three victims dead and several families devastated for years to come.
Mitchell Sims and Ruby Padgett were at a motel in Glendale, California, when they called to order pizza from the local Domino’s. When the pizza delivery driver arrived, he was attacked, then bound, gagged, and drowned in a bathtub filled with water. The victim was identified as John Steven Harrigan. Then, the twisted duo headed to the Domino’s Pizza restaurant and robbed the employees at gunpoint, Killer Couples will show.
While Sims was holding up the Glendale store, an off-duty employee came in and had a feeling that the store was being robbed. He contacted authorities, who later returned to the Domino’s and found two employees still alive in the freezer. They also found the body of pizza delivery driver John Steven Harrigan at the motel.
Once Mitchell Sims and Ruby Padgett were apprehended, authorities also connected Sims to the double murder of two more Domino’s employees in Hanahan, South Carolina. In that attack, Mitchell Sims robbed and shot two workers. Christopher Zerr died at the scene. The other victim in the attack, Gary Melke, was able to drive to a nearby police station, where he told cops that an ex-employee named Mitch had shot him. Melke later died at a local hospital.
Shortly before the killings, Mitchell Sims already had a common-law wife and children. But, he left his family for Ruby Padgett, a 20-year-old runaway. When they met, there was an instant and intense attraction between them, especially since they both were having a hard time in life.
People who knew Ruby Padgett couldn’t believe that she could be connected to a crime like this. And as for Mitchell Sims, his upbringing was so bad, it made people hearing the case feel sorry for him. According to court records, Sims was physically, emotionally, and sexually abused as a child by his mother’s man. Siblings of Mitchell Sims stated that the man made Mitch have sex with his own mother and sister. Mitchell never got over it, and at times, he would fall into a deep depression–even when something good happened for him.
As for those who lost their family members, they have never felt an ounce of sympathy for Mitchell Sims or Ruby Padgett. The jurors at his trial were also unmoved and found him guilty of murder. One of the key pieces of evidence that helped prosecutors secure a guilty verdict was seeing a video of John Steven Harrigan’s tightly wrapped body in a bathtub filled with water.
For their heinous crimes, Ruby Padgett was sentenced to life in prison without parole, and Mitchell Carlton Sims was given the death penalty.
You won’t want to miss tonight’s story about Mitchell Sims and Ruby Padgett. To get an inside look, be sure to watch Killer Couples tonight at 9/8 p.m. central on Oxygen.
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