“48 Hours Mystery” (CBS) first broadcast the episode called, “Murder in Las Vegas” on Nov. 16, 2001. The repeat broadcast aired on June 2, 2002. The late Harold Dow reported & narrated this episode. Dan Rather hosted the TV show for 14 years from 1988 to 2002.
“Murder in Las Vegas” followed a man named Ron Rudin who was a real estate developer worth $12 million. He disappeared on Dec. 18, 1994 & his charred body remains were found inside an antique suitcase in January 1995. His skull was found 30 feet from the burned suitcase. He was shot in the head twice & decapitated.
The gun used in killing Ron was found 14 miles inside a garbage bag at the bottom of a lake. It was owned by Ron & he reported it missing 6 years before. He told his co-workers that his wife Margaret Rudin would not use a gun to kill him because she won’t get any of his money. He wrote in his “Will” that if he died in any brutal kind of way. He pointed a finger at his wife who didn’t know anything about what was written in that will. Ron somehow knew that she would do something to him.
An elderly grandmother named Lee Brown was found by police detectives in Revere, Massachusetts. Her real name was Margaret Rudin who had been on the run for nearly three years. Lee was one of many alias names Margaret had used in Mexico & in Arizona. She was arrested for the murder of her husband Ron in Las Vegas. People described Margaret as a kind, quiet & classy woman. They couldn’t believe she was a murderer.
A grand jury didn’t have enough evidence to charge Margaret with murder. A prosecution team then discovered the gun in that lake, but Margaret left the state. She claimed that she had no money to hire a lawyer. She also felt alone & helpless who panicked. Police detectives said that when Ron died Margaret would receive 60% of his $12 million. Her mother & children were always there for her. They believe she is innocent, but Margaret went on the run anyway.
Ron & Margaret’s marriage was heated, contentious & toxic. Both of them were married five times each. Detectives believe that Margaret stole her husband’s gun & held onto it for 6 years before she killed him. She was also an antiques dealer & the suitcase Ron was stuffed inside of was an antique. Margaret remodeled her master bedroom into an office one month after Ron disappeared. The construction man who remodeled the room had found blood spatter on the carpets & on Margaret’s portrait.
You can watch “Murder in Las Vegas” on “YouTube” for the verdict of Margaret Rudin.