Authors and Prosecutors Richard Muti and Charles Buckley will be at the library discussing their book "The Charmer" about the popular Robert Reldan murder case.
“In crisp prose, with the precision of former prosecutors and curiosity of good reporters, Richard Muti and Charles Buckley recount how Robert Reldan went from a carefree, handsome young man to first a thief, then a rapist, and, finally, a killer. This story alone is compelling. What elevates this tale is the authors’ account of how these tragedies could have been avoided. The book could read like sociology. It does not. It is almost Dreiser-esque.” –Ken Auletta, bestselling author of eleven books, including Googled: The End of the World As We Know It.
“One of the best, in-depth examinations of the criminal mind I have read in a long time. I highly recommend this book. It will not disappoint.” – Vincent Bugliosi, Charles Manson prosecutor and author of Helter Skelter, the best selling true crime book of all time.
Serial rapist/murderer Robert Reldan—a handsome, personable charmer of the Ted Bundy mold—had an engaging, friendly smile—a smile that promised a charming personality and inspired trust. A smile that would, over the next 20 years, cause a dozen or more unsuspecting women to drop their guard and place themselves under the power of one of New Jersey's most ruthless criminals.
Two of those women—Susan Heynes, a nurse, and Susan Reeve, a recent college graduate—achieved unwanted fame as victims in what a prominent newspaper would call "the Susan strangulations." Both were abducted within days of each other—Heynes from her home in Haworth, NJ, and Reeve after getting off a commuter bus in Demarest, NJ. Their nude and battered bodies were soon discovered, also within days of each other, in Rockland County, NY, not far from the New Jersey border. Each had been strangled with her own pantyhose.
While in prison awaiting trial for the Susan murders, Reldan tried to hire a hit man to kill his wealthy aunt, from whom he hoped to inherit money to retain a top criminal defense attorney. A jailhouse snitch ratted on Reldan, and authorities were able to substitute an undercover cop as the putative hit man.
In an ironic twist of fate, Reldan, while serving life plus 30 years for the Heynes and Reeve murders, would become, briefly, the wealthiest lifer in the prison system. The aunt he'd tried to have killed—still charmed by her beloved nephew and never believing he'd plotted to murder her—left him an $8.9 million trust fund when she died in 2007. Arthur Reeve, father of victim Susan Reeve, would go after Reldan in the courts and, eventually, deprive him of his inheritance.