Where are they Now? Murderers Dr. Bernard Finch and Carole Tregoff

About the scandalous murderers Dr. Bernard Finch and Carole Tregoff, biography and history of the couple.



At the Peak: Here's one that takes you back to 1959, when automobile tailfins were at their height, Ike was still in the White House, and newspapers were full of stories about the doctor, his girl friend, and his murdered wife.

Finch was a middle-aged Los Angles--area surgeon who was having a torrid romance with his shapely young receptionist, Carole Tregoff. The only problem was that Finch was already married, and his wealthy and socially prominent wife would clean him out financially in the event of a divorce.

What to do? Murder seemed like the most profitable solution, but a hired assassin failed to get the job done. So the determined lovers were left to do it themselves. In July of 1959, 35-year-old Barbara Finch was found dead in the garage of her home from the combined effects of a bullet in the back and blows that fractured her skull.

At their first two trials, Finch and his paramour beat the rap when the juries failed to agree on a verdict. But after a third sensational trial, during which the prosecutor accused them of "acting out of greed, avarice, lust, and frustration," they were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment. Tregoff served eight years and last in the news when she was released on parole in 1969. Finch, who became a fitness addict and kept up with the latest medical literature while behind bars, was released after 12 years and said he wanted to return to the practice of medicine.

And Today: That's just what he's doing in the small, out-of-the-way town of Bolivar on the edge of the Ozark Mountains in Missouri, where he's been licensed to practice by the state medical board and has become an accepted member of the community. At age 63 he's naturally reluctant to discuss the past, though he has said, "It was a terrible thing I did and I have paid heavily for it and I expect to pay for the rest of my life."

And Carole?

Both her mother and her former lawyer say she's doing well at age 44 as supervisor of medical records at a large southern California hospital, where she has a staff of 12 working under her. She has a new name, remains unmarried, and has had no further contact with Finch.

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