Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Desperately Seeking Photos

We're still waiting for some photos of the actual people. I have been in contact with the family. I am hoping they are still considering giving us exclusive photos of the people involved. If anyone else knew Patsy or Jim and you have pictures to donate to the site let us know at brooklolly@aol.com

Friday, May 23, 2014

Interview with Dale Cupp Bennett Patsy Hester Bennett's Son

 My Interview with Dale Cupp Bennett and His Perspective of the True Story that Inspired Her Deadly Rival
by Traciy Curry-Reyes

Wow....so I had the opportunity to speak with Patsy Bennett's son Dale Cupp (Bennett) today. Thanks so much Dale, for contacting me to discuss your story. Dale wanted to clear up some things that he felt were inaccurate on the site. He told me that he has been living outside the state of Georgia for quite some time, and he only recently returned to Georgia within the past year. I told him that I had received an email from his sister as well. She told me that she wanted to talk about her mother's case. She also wanted me to know how much the case has ruined her life. Dale, was shocked that she had written me. He said that he has not spoken with his sister in about 15 years. I asked him why they have not spoken, and he basically stated that they had just drifted apart. Here are some of the things that he wants to clear up on this site:

The Children's Ages at the Time of the Incident

He said that the ages are incorrect. He said that at the time he was 14 years old, and his sister was 5 years younger. So she was only about 9 years old. He stated that he didn't really know his step sister that well. He has only met her a few times. (Remember the step sister is the one who originally told me what she knew about the true story. Remember that there were no news articles on this case at all. So everything that I have written about came from someone close to the movie as well as the step sister, which is who I interviewed first.) Dale, said that the only two people who know exactly what happened was him and his sister because no one else was living with them.

How They Were Living

According to Dale, at the time of the incident they were not staying in a seedy motel. He remembers staying in some very nice apartments or condos. The condos had a swimming pool. This was located in Antioch, California. 

Jim Bennett's Dark Side
In the movie he was portrayed as a loving and doting husband. Dale said this is completely untrue. He was a monster actually. He was abusive and mean. He abused him, his sister, and his mother both psychologically and physically. He said that he would wake them up, sometimes in the middle of the night, "line them up," aim the gun and them, and then pretend to shoot. He did things like this consistently from the time he first came into their lives. Dale was 4 or 5 years old when his mother started seeing Jim. Jim had been best friends with Dale's biological father. His biological father was "not a good father". He didn't work, so they didn't have much. He also liked to drink all the time. Patsy grew tired of the relationship and decided to go off with Jim. Jim was sort of a hustler and he knew how to make money.  Anyway, he stated that Jim and Patsy never legally married. Dale can write a book just on Jim Bennett's dark side alone. Some of the things Jim put them through haunts him to this day. He has a feeling that it really has affected his little sister.

On the Other Woman Mary Alexander...or Alexandria
He said it all started when his mother got a phone call in the middle of the night. He remembers that it was around 1 or 2 am in the morning. The woman called from California. She said that she was seeing Jim. His mother, Patsy, became extremely upset. This is when he really started to see a change in her personality. She confronted Jim about the other woman. (They ended up going out to California). While in California, he would see his mother buying gifts, cards, flowers gold necklaces, and other sorts of jewelry. I asked him, "You saw your mother doing this?" Dale said, "yes." His mother would call Jim and pretend to be the other woman. Now remember when I spoke with Jim's oldest daughter by his first wife, she thought that Jim was making this up when he told her about Mary Alexander. In fact, Dale said no one believed it, but he knew that it was true because he witnessed it. According to Dale, Jim didn't know that Mary Alexander was really Patsy at first, but he thinks Jim figured it out at some point. Patsy would pack the room with flowers and gifts, wait for Jim to come back home from work, and then she would tell him that Mary Alexander sent it. 

Patsy as a Mom and Her Mental State
He said that his mother was a good mom. A loving mom. "She took really good care of us." I asked, "Is it true that your mom had multiple personality disorder?" He said, "Yes, she did. She had something." Dale always knew that Patsy had some mental condition because one minute she would be extremely happy one minute, and then the next minute she was mean. But, her behavior didn't start to become really bizarre until after the phone call from the other woman in California.

That Fateful Day and Patsy's Suicide
Dale stated that before her death, she had tried to commit suicide twice before. Her method of choice was sleeping pills. One time, she told Dale that she was going to take a nap. When Jim came home from work he stated "Where is your mom.?" Dale told him that Patsy was in the room sleeping. When they went into the room they found Patsy unconscious and took her to the hospital. Once she was released from the hospital they headed to Las Vegas, and Jim abused her really badly. He did this the whole way to Las Vegas and the whole time they were in Las Vegas. It was worse than ever.

When Patsy and the kids finally moved to California, she was living sort of a fantasy life. As if she was living as someone else. She bought all kinds of lavish items, but what tipped the scale was when she received a bank loan using Jim's cars and the house. She also sold all seven horses and the cattle that they had on a farm. Jim went ballistic when he learned that they were about to lose the house and the cars. On Tuesday,  June 28, 1988, Dale and his sister were outside. His sister, then just 9 years old, was swimming in the swimming pool. Dale decided to come in for a drink of water. At that exact moment, Jim was on the phone arguing with the bank representative. Patsy had walked to the back towards the bathroom. She then went into the bathroom and closed the door. After a few minutes Dale went to the bathroom door, and tried to get the door open. While Jim was on the phone, Dale snatched the door open and at that exact moment, he heard two gunshots. When he got all the way inside he saw that his mother had shot herself in the head and she had fallen into the bathtub. Another shot went off, but that bullet hit the ceiling. 
After that happened, Dale was traumatized. When his little sister came inside, she went ballistic. She was taken away by the neighbors so that she wouldn't see everything that was going on. Dale said that he saw Jim, go into the bathroom, pull Patsy from the tub, and literally dragged her across the floor into the kitchen. I said, "But I was told that she was on top of the kitchen table." He said, "No, she was on the floor," and that Jim had wrapped a towel around her head. She was still alive, but unconscious. Jim waited 45 minutes to an hour before he ever picked up the phone to call the police. It was as if he was waiting until she had expired. The police came, and at first they suspected Jim. But, they ruled it a suicide. Dale stated they thought he did it, "but he didn't do it.. But, he drove her to do it."

Afterward, they flew out to Georgia. This is when they stopped at Jim's oldest daughter's home. They had the funeral there in Georgia. They left and returned to Antioch, California to get their things. They drove from California, all the way to Georgia. Dale, who did not have a license at the time, helped drive. Jim's drinking got even worse. He blamed Dale for what happened. He told him "It's your fault." For a time, he sort of believed that. He finally left Jim and went to stay with his aunt.


Tidbits
Dale has not seen the movie Her Deadly Rival. He told me that he would like to buy a copy of the movie. He was shocked when I told him that the movie had been on LMN the day before. I asked him how he found out about the movie. He stated that his aunt had told him about it. He said that she was not at all pleased with the making of the movie because it was told from Jim Bennett's perspective.  

Dale and his sister had lived all over the United States with Jim. They never stayed in one place for any length of time. The farm with the horses was back in Georgia. They also had a home in Georgia. That house has been torn down. He does not know whatever happened to the farm. 

This has ruined Dale's life. He has never gotten over what he witnessed that day, nor the trauma that Jim put them through. He is unable to cope at times. "I can't deal with society. I can't work. I'm on disability." 

After Patsy's suicide, Jim started acting weird with Dale's sister. He started trying to make her take her mother's place. According to Dale.

I asked Dale if he knew how his father was able to get the attention of the producers since his story did not make headlines. Dale, didn't know. He said he thinks that his father met someone. But, I recall someone telling me that the policeman had a hand in telling the true story....hmmmm

Side note: I wonder if that call that Patsy received really was another woman or if that was Patsy as Mary Alexander....

Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Case of Patsy Bennet aka Patsy Ann Hester and James Mcdonald Bennett of Georgia

 The Case of Patsy Bennet aka Patsy Ann Hester and James Mcdonald Bennett of Georgia by Traciy Curry-Reyes


The real case took place in Antioch, California in 1988. I had the opportunity to speak to one of Jim's daughters by his first wife. This daughter had a very distant relationship with him since there were some harsh feelings over the break up between Jim and her mother. According to her and others who knew Jim, he had a dark side.

The daughter describes the first time she met Patsy as follows:

Out of the blue, Jim came to her home with a young girl, young enough to be his daughter, named Patsy Hester. Patsy met Jim while he was working as a foreman in Georgia. Patsy was immediately taken by Jim. He was quite the talker. He could charm the pants off of any woman. At the time Patsy was a single mom with a young son. Patsy stated that she met Jim while working as a cleaning lady for a local motel. Jim was staying there while he worked on a construction site. She described how she had been having a really difficult time, and was struggling to raise her son with low paying work. So when she met James Bennett, she fell in love and became dependent on him. Jim's daughter described Patty as a petite woman who stood about 5 feet tall with a very sweet personality.

James Mcdonald Bennet, has been described as the kind of guy that you would invite over for dinner, and probably let spend the night. He was very charasmatic and made friends easily. He also had a dark side. Patsy told several people that she was deathly afraid of him. She told his older daughter, that he was always showering her with gifts when there was money. He liked for her to dye her hair dark and to wear really red lipstick. She said that one minute he would shower her with gifts, such as roses, beautiful dresses, perfume, and candy, and the next minute he was someone she didn't recognize.

The movie was completely made up. It was Jim's side of what happened. Here are the real facts in the case.

Pasty Ann Hester and Jim Bennett (they were not legally married) were living together in Georgia. They had a baby girl together. The daughter is not sure, but she thinks they lived near a small lake or pond, and that they had a horse or horses. They lived together for a while until Jim left her and the two kids. He claimed that he had to work in California, and that he had to go alone. Patsy stayed behind, but somehow, they talked, and she really wanted to come out to see him. She suspected that he had taken up with someone else. When she arrived in California with her 2 children, a boy and a girl, she found him staying in a seedy motel in Antioch, California. According to Jim, shortly after, a woman named Mary Alexander began stalking them up until Patsy's death.

Here is how the events unfolded according to the daughter that Jim fathered with Patsy. On June 28, 1988, they (the boy and girl) had been playing outside in front of the motel room on their bikes. Jim came outside, called them in, and showed them their mother, Patsy, who was lying on the kitchen table with a towel wrapped around her head. They were horrified to see their mother in that condition. She was still alive. All the daughter remembers is that Jim was walking around explaining to them "see what she's done?" " I had nothing to do with it." the little girl and her brother who were around 8 and 11 at the time, stood in shock wondering why their father had not called 911. He did not call 911 until after Patsy had passed away. The children slept in the motel room that night. The police investigated the case, and at first Jim was a suspect in what they thought was a homicide. There was a question about the gun shot, and the angle of the bullets that were found. Jim explained to the police that Patsy was mentally ill, and that she had freaked out because Mary Alexander, the other woman, kept calling, and sending letters and roses to the room. She then went into the bathroom and shot herself.  The police eventually rule the case a suicide.

Meanwhile Jim Bennett and the two kids returned to Georgia to bury Pasty. They visited his older daughter, by his first wife. She describes the meeting this way:

She had heard about the shooting, and was feeling quite nervous when she saw Jim at her home with the children. The children were distraught. The small daughter was very fragile and withdrawn. She asked her to brush her hair for her. She said that her mom always brushed her hair. Jim had arrived to tell his side of the story. While telling the story of what happened, Jim opened up a suitcase showing pictures of the scene. The daughter said that in the suitcase, were tons of love letters from Mary Alexander, roses, lipstick, hosiery, and perfume, all across the bed. The room looked like a floral shop. Jim said that they kept getting calls from Mary Alexander, and that she kept insisting she had met him at the local tavern. The daughter said that she never ever believed Jim's story. She said no one believed him, and no one could understand how the police believed it.


Jim went on to tell everyone he knew about the story. James Bennett had actually done a few talk shows about the incident, and eventually Jim along with a detective in the case pitched the idea to a writer for the movie "Her Deadly Rival." The multiple personality disorder, I cannot confirm. I was told that there was some documentation to show that Patsy had been treated for a mental condition, but they felt that she was stressed out over the emotion and psychological abuse that she had received from her husband Jim. Jim had taken her to the er a few times for a so called mental condition, and it is believed that this is the documentation that was used in order to prove that she did have a mental condition which led to her suicide. The younger daughter confirmed that Jim was literally driving her mother crazy with his tricks and mind games.

Aftermath

At the time of Patsy's death, Patsy was 35 and Jim was 59. This case completely ruined the lives of Patsy's children. The son eventually ran away from Jim as a young teen, no one in the family has been in contact with him, and the small daughter was eventually taken away from Jim by the state.. The movie Her Deadly Rival came out in 1995.  James Mcdonald Bennett lived until 1998. He died at age 69 from lung cancer in Georgia. The daughter is now grown, and she is still traumatized by this case according to her older sister.

Here is an entry by Findagrave to view her burial location.

Extra tidbit
Jim always called his daughter "princess"

James Bennett told his story on tabloid shows around the time the movie premiered 

Harry Hamlin had no idea this movie was based on a true 
story at first

Many questions still linger about this case. Why was her death finally ruled a suicide, and did she really have multiple personality disorder?  Also, why hasn't this case been reopened and reexamined to include a homicide finding?

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Her Deadly Rival true story

 It was advertised as a moved based on a true story. This is one of my favorite movies. I especially love the song in the background.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Autobiographical Book on this Case

Dale is interested in writing a book about the true story. He has a lot more information to share on what it was like to grow up with Jim Bennett and how his abusive treatment impacted the mental health of his mother who suffered from some sort of multiple personality disorder.. If anyone is interested in helping him write his autobiography shoot me an email at brooklolly@aol.com

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Song Playing at the Juke Box in the Movie Deadly Rival

I have been asked a lot about the song playing in the background at the jukebox when Jim is in the bar. There is good news and bad news. The good news is the name of it is "You Won't Be There" by Todd Herzog. The bad news is that it is not available for purchase, unless you're willing to shell out $100 for a year's license on the song. It is indeed a beautiful song....one of the most sultry songs I've ever heard. You can order the song at Heavy Hitters if you want it for your personal collection. The song was supposed to be a play on Chris Issak's song called Wicked Games. Here is the website. Keep contacting them. They might make it available.
http://www.heavyhittersmusic.com/

On LMN Today

Her Deadly Rival is on LMN today at 5pm central.