Kathy Carpenter and Nancy Pfister

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Of all the stories that actually happened on American Greed and similar programs this one sticks out.

Nancy Pfister did not leave the greatest of legacies.  She went to college for a little while and never held a job.  Well into her fifties she was very attractive.  She was very well-versed in the ‘I am entitled to more’ syndrome.

All she really had was a $4 million house, mostly given the 36 acres, a $90K allowance, and a reputation.

The chances of success for her tenants and the man who murdered her were slim.  There was no lease or background check and they were paying $4K a month in rent, utilities, and expenses plus stress to satisfy Pfister and/or repair hassles and it was impossible.  And, they did not really have the money, at least not liquid.  Their brand new home spa business in tiny Aspen was a fiction if not a delusional fantasy.

But still, Nancy Pfister did not deserve to die, not like that or in any other way.

The hero of the story is Kathy Carpenter.

She is the former bank loan officer demoted because of problems including drinking.  Still, she was sharp enough and likeable enough to stay on as a teller.  How many people wouldn’t want such a job in Aspen?  Apparently the job also came with a subsidized apartment in town.

‘You’ve got something going for you but you are fat.’ Pfister said, or something like that, when they first met.  She used the bank and they saw each other.  Probably or hopefully she apologized and it was accompanied by something like I’m sorry but people who know me know I always say what is on my mind.

While Pfister never really did or accomplish anything, the story goes that she offered Carpenter a job as her personal assistant.  Carpenter turned it down by saying “You can’t afford me.”


Put very simply, the poor woman said headboard–there is blood on the headboard–and had to go through the loss of her friend.  The police harassed her and destroyed her endlessly.  [I think she lost her job and home, and she moved in with her mother.] The police, led by the wise old (that is sarcasm) Lisa Miller, destroyed her.  All she did was find and try to help her now dead friend.

The police were gross.  Luckily, the murder weapon and thus the murderer fell into their hands.  Then he made things even easier by confessing.

Still they did not believe it and they harassed the brave Ms. Carpenter.  It reminds me of the little woman who broke the Eric Conn enterprise.  Her name is Jennifer Griffith.

I was going to write that apparently she and her (later) accomplice in doing the right thing Sarah Carver did not get anything out of it.  That still may be true.  But the whistleblower suit was instrumental in exposing and bringing down the ring.