A Millionaire Has An Affair. His Wife Throws Him Out. She Gets The
Mansion, The Business, The Cash. His Parents' Business. His
Parents' Cash. She Gets Shot And Doesn't Know It. The Bullet
Disappears. He Goes To Prison. His Parents Flee The Country. He
Weds The Other Woman Behind Bars. Has There Ever Been A Case Like
This? -The Miami Herald "Flower delivery for Marie Luskin " That
was a curious surprise. Her husband Paul used to send her flowers
all the time, but those days had passed forever. A year and a half
before, following Paul's affair with another woman, Marie kicked
him out of the house his parents had helped them buy-the biggest
house in Emerald Hills, which was the most luxurious section of
Hollywood, Florida-then filed for divorce. And what a spectacular
divorce. If nastiness could be judged quantitatively, the civil war
of the Luskins was the meanest, most aggressive divorce Broward
County had ever seen. "Who is it from?" "There's no name on the
card." "What florist are you from?" "Emerald Hills Florist." Still
apprehensive, she cracked open the wooden door just enough to see
him. With a sudden incongruous movement, the man stuck his foot in
the doorway and thrust the flowers at her with his left hand. As
she reached to take them, he stuck a silver pistol in her face.
Marie started shrieking uncontrollably. She tried to run inside,
but the man grabbed her, one arm around her neck, grasping for her
mouth with his hand. The flower pot fell to the black-and-white
marble parquet floor and shattered, pink petals scattering. "Shut
up Shut up " he yelled, closing the door behind him. "I'm not going
to hurt you. Shut the hell up, stop screaming " She finally stopped
when his hand formed a gag hard around her mouth, and she realized
the gun was at her temple. She couldn't stop looking at the gun,
which framed his cruel eyes. Then the man made an odd demand: "Give
me all your cash Give me all your cash Show me where you keep your
cash I'm not going to hurt you, but if you don't cooperate, I'm
gonna blow your brains out " With the man clenching her long blond
hair, the gun to the side of her head, she led him upstairs to a
small room where she showed him a hundred-dollar bill. "Where's all
your cash Give me all your cash " "It's in the bank " she whined.
"It's in the bank This is it. This is all I have at home, I keep
all my money in the bank " As the crescendo of voices in the Luskin
house rose to a climax, exactly what happened next remains in
dispute. Marie fell to the floor, a terrible pain in the back of
her head. She didn't lose consciousness, but pretended to. Meekly,
she opened her eyes and noticed there was blood all over her. She
thought she was going to die... The man had left without taking
anything. The issue would become, had she been hit like she
thought, or shot? That would seem to be the difference between a
robbery and an attempt to kill her that might have descended from
her husband. Doctors found three minuscule pieces of lead in her
bloody scalp. If they were fragments from a bullet, could she have
been shot without realizing it? Or were they from the gun or
whatever it was that hit her, or the decorative metal hair barrette
she was wearing that had broken, separating its clip that had been
held together by lead-based solder? Also, if a gun was fired in
that small room, where was the rest of the bullet? The police
didn't find it. And why hadn't it shattered one of the room's three
full-length mirrors? That would become the story's essential
mystery, and the answer would determine whether Paul and three
alleged accomplices would go to prison. It must have been a shot, a
federal court jury determined, because they convicted all four of
attempted murder-for-hire. Doubting it, to discover the truth for
himself, Miami true crime author Arthur Jay Harris went on an
Odyssey through the heights and depths of Miami and Baltimore. To
the very last page, what he found kep
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