Murder In Vegas: Death of Casino Boss Ted Binion

Sex, drugs, gambling and murder in the glow of Glitter Gulch

Posted by Chuckmonster

Much like his dad Benny, Ted Binion was a gambling man, but he had no idea what his ultimate wager would be the night he went to Cheetah's strip club in Las Vegas and met Sandy Murphy.

Freshy divorced and freshly forced to relinquish his holdings in Binion's Horseshoe after a heroin bust suspended his gaming operators license, Teddy was a man in transition. Family members had talked to Ted about kicking his heroin habit (much like Jerry Garcia, Binion preferred to smoke it - 'chasing the dragon') and Teddy had seemed to turn a corner. At 3:55 pm, Sandy Murphy, Ted Binion's live-in girlfriend placed a hysterical call to 911 saying that her husband had stopped breathing. When paramedics arrived, the found Binion's body lying neatly on a mat in the center of the couple's living room, remote control, magazines and an empty bottle of Xanax nearby. It was obvious by the rigor mortis that Ted had been dead for some time. They pronounced him dead at the scene and made no attempts at resuscitation. The only person to leave the scene in an ambulance was Sandy Murphy... her hysterical cries caused her to hyperventilate and nearly pass out.

As word spread throughout Vegas, friends, family and curious onlookers began to converge on the Binion home. Among those, a Binion business associate Rick Tabish who expressed shock and disbelief when interviewed by local TV news crews. Police investigators believed originally that this was an open and shut case of accidental overdose, but the Binion family, particularly Ted's sister Becky Binion Behnen though otherwise.

On the evening of September 18th 1998, the day after Binion's death, police are called to investigate a suspicious midnight excavation nearby Binion's ranch in Pahrump. They find Rick Tabish and some workers completing an excavation of an underground vault. It's contents - millions of dollars in rare coins and silver bars - we're already loaded into a belly dumper truck owned by Tabish's construction company. Tabish claims that he was given instructions by Binion to excavate the vault in the event of his death.

The surviving Binion family smelled fish and hired noted Vegas gumshoe Tom Dillard to sniff out rest of the details. Subpoenaing of phone records revealed a phone call from the Binion home to Tabish's cellphone immediately before Murphy's hysterical 911 call. Credit card receipts revealed a trip to the Beverly Hilton and a hotel registration book signed by "Mrs. Sandy Tabish". $300,000 worth of rare coins were stolen from the safe at Binion's residence, except for one coin placed on the center of the middle shelf. After exhuming the Pahrump vault, investigators noticed that one single coin was left in the center of the middle shelf. A mountain of circumstantial evidence was growing.

Toxicology reports showed that Binion died of a lethal overdose of Xanax and heroin. Teddy often used Xanax to help him kick heroin and had told some associates that he was planning to kick heroin after an extended trip to his ranch in Pahrump. It must be noted that people who smoke heroin rarely overdose, but three balloons worth of heroin are found in Binion's stomach during the autopsy. Would a heroin smoker 'eat' their stash?



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Comments & Discussion


Is it possible to compress this story into 1000 words? Tabish and Murphy are evil. Straight Up.

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