Woman Kills Husband With Ethylene Glycol - 11/6/1982

US History |

On this day in 1982, a woman by the name Shirley Allen was arrested for killing her husband, Lloyd Allen, with ethylene glycol, usually known as anti-freeze. Her own daughter who saw as her adding the poisonous substance into her father's drink turned her in to the authorities.

Shirley had had six husbands altogether, Lloyd Allen was the sixth spouse and the second to die mysteriously, while the remaining four had separated from her. The first husband to die of a mysterious death was John Gregg, who kicked the bucket a year after he wedded Shirley in 1977; unfortunately, John had the receiver on his life insurance policy changed before his passing. Realizing she was left with nothing after the death of her husband, Shirley became angry.

Lloyd Allen married Shirley in 1981 and the following year, his health declined rapidly, which eventually led to his death. Just as the case with John Gregg, the death of Lloyd aroused suspicion because he also had a $25,000 life insurance policy before his death.

According to report, it was learned that Lloyd complained of a bizarre taste in his refreshments, but trusted Shirley when she told him that it was an iron supplement for his health that she added to his drink. In addition, one of Shirley's former husbands Joe Sinclair who they both got married in October of 1968 was a little bit suspicious of her wife eight months later. Joe found out that his coffee had unusual tastes on a few occasions, and reported to the police. Despite the fact that he sustained internal wounds, he did not file ant charges against his wife; rather, he immediately filed for a divorce and get out of Shirley's life for good.

During the investigation, autopsy carried out on the victim's dead body toxicology reports affirmed that his body tissue contained a deadly quantity of ethyl glycol. In 1983, following a short four-day trial, Shirley Allen was charged with capital murder, convicted and sentenced to life in jail with possibility of parole after 50 years.

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Edward Arroyo


Edward attended college at Northwestern University where he received his bachelors in journalism. After graduation he spent the next several years traveling the world writing about his experiences on his own personal blog. His hobbies include travel, photography, bicycling and hanging out with his dog Milo.