Murders of Paul Vados and Kenneth McDavid by Olga Rutterschmidt and Helen Golay investigated on Accident, Suicide, or Murder

Police tape

Accident, Suicide, or Murder is investigating the murders of Paul Vados and Kenneth McDavid, who were both killed by two elder ladies, Olga Rutterschmidt and Helen Golay, in a case known as the Black Widow Murders in Los Angeles, California.

On November 8, 1999, 73-year-old homeless man Paul Vados died in what the police initially believed was a hit-and-run accident. Vados was found in a back alley, and he appeared to have been lying on the ground when a vehicle drove over him.

Vados’s torso was twisted and crushed, and he had abrasions and cuts on his face. His injuries suggested a car had driven over him very slowly; there was also no glass or visible damage from the vehicle at the scene.

The following week, Rutterschmidt reported Vados missing while pretending to be his cousin. In the previous two years, Rutterschmidt and Golay had applied for no less than six life insurance policies in Vados’s name, listing themselves as the beneficiaries. After his death, the pair pocketed tens of thousands of dollars.

On June 21, 2005, another homeless man, 50-year-old Kenneth McDavid, was killed. Once again, the scene looked like a hit-and-run, and there appeared to be no damage from the car. McDavid’s chest and shoulders were crushed, and he had two tracks over his body where a vehicle had seemingly driven slowly over him. An autopsy revealed a sedative in his bloodstream.

It later emerged that Rutterschmidt and Golay had taken out multiple life insurance policies on McDavid, which they subsequently claimed. They received over $2 million between them.

Helen Golay and Olga Rutterschmidt targeted homeless men

Rutterschmidt and Golay were both in their seventies and had been friends for over 20 years. The gruesome pair had specifically targeted the two homeless men, befriended them, given them a place to stay, and then murdered them for life insurance.

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The pair were only caught when a detective overheard a colleague talking about McDavid’s death and recognized its similarity with the murder of Vados six years previously.

A third homeless man, Jimmy Covington, later claimed Rutterschmidt had approached him and taken him to a fast-food restaurant, where she offered him money and a place to stay. Covington lived with them for a few days but grew suspicious and moved out after they asked him to sign some official documents. They had already applied for a life insurance policy in his name.

Helen Golay and Olga Rutterschmidt sentenced to life

Rutterschmidt and Golay were arrested and charged. The pair had already fallen out after Golay took a higher share of the insurance money.

Rutterschmidt was recorded saying to Golay, “You did all these insurances extra. That’s what raised the suspicion. You can’t do that. Stupidity. You’re going to go to jail, honey. They going to lock you up.”

The two killers were found guilty and sentenced to life in prison.

Golay is incarcerated at the California Institution for Women in Chino, CA. She is 93 years old. Rutterschmidt is housed at the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla, CA. She is 91.

Accident, Suicide, or Murder airs Saturdays at 8/7c on Oxygen.

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