Talk about your eye-poppin' assignment. Sometime about 1987 I was working on a story about a Rochester Hills woman who had been mercilessly stalking an attorney.
The woman was so taken with the attorney, who was happily married and wanted nothing to do with Judith W. (I'm going to hold back her last name in case she's listening) and eventually she was arrested.
The arrest occurred after Judith showed up to the attorney's Rochester Hills home wearing nothing but a fur coat and a smile. All this while the attorney's wife was at home.
At the time there was a popular movie "Fatal Attraction" with Michael Douglas and Glenn Close that had every man reconsidering any temptation to stray.
Naturally the story was dubbed "The Fatal Attraction" case for obvious reasons. On a whim, I called the woman's Rochester Hills home after she was arraigned and bonded out of jail and she answered. I pitched an interview and to my surprise she agreed. Pushing the issue, I asked if I could bring a photographer. Again she was more than cooperative.
Chief Photographer Ed Noble and I met at her condo in Rochester Hills and approached the front door. Judith met us at the door in a see-through teddy that barely covered, well barely covered anything. She said she wanted us to show her at her best and invited us inside.
Considering the woman's alleged history, we declined the invitation to enter her home, but Ed got her to pose in all her glory by a tree in front of her condo, which brought some strange inquiring looks from the neighbors.
At one point, it was cool outside, she slipped on a short fur coat and Ed snapped a few shots with the fur, which was a good thing because the prudes at the office almost immediately nixed any of the skimpy nightgown photos for the front page story that was to come.
The interview went well, we had our pictures and we headed back to the office.
Editors who had been thrilled that I had secured the interview quickly began to second guess the whole thing when they saw the pictures and read her quotes.
"Do you think we're exploiting her?," an editor asked me. Since when did we worry about that?, I asked
After some hand wringing and careful editing the story survived mostly intact, but alas, the sexy photos did not. The photo that ran in the Oakland Press was a well cropped photo of Judith in her fur. The Oakland Press could have sold an extra 5,000 copies if they had used Ed's best photos.
Ed and I, with permission from an editor, did make a few extra bucks selling the sexy photos and better quotes to "The Weekly World News" which did a big splash on the story with the better photos.
The story actually got stranger as it went through court. Judith was hauled before a circuit judge, who despite Judith's history took a shine to her and began dating her.
When the relationship with the judge soured, she appeared in his courtroom and in front of attorneys and spectators announced that she still loved him and believed she was carrying his baby, which was a lie.
The whole episode erupted into a very embarrassing episode for the judge who had to admit he carried on an inappropriate relationship with a person who had appeared before him.
This was one of a series of "wacky women" stories I did at the Oakland Press. Next up, the lottery lady and at some point I'll tell the strange story of the Farmington Hills woman scammed out of thousands of dollars by a man pretending to be "Randy Bachman" of Bachman, Turner Overdive fame.