The Dirty, White Coat
- Thursday, March 15, 2012 by The Eyewitness
Here is a Private Detective storty we've written loosley based on past cases. We hope you enjoy it.
It was June of 2007 in beautiful Melbourne, Florida. Two doctors of a large medical group, husband and wife, moved to Melbourne to enjoy the warm weather. Dr. John Wilkenson and Dr. Mary Hardy, originally from Michigan, had met during their internships. By all appearances, they were the perfect couple with a bright future together. They enjoyed golfing, eating at fine restaurants, and taking their boat out on the weekend. Up until a month before I took the case, Dr. Hardy said they were trying to get pregnant, and start a family. They lived in a beautiful, three story beach house, equipped with an elevator and huge pane windows that looked out onto the ocean. The couple had two cats, Oscar and Penelope. Both doctors were in their thirties, and had been married four to five years. Their marriage was a huge affair in their native Michigan. Dr. Hardy was a daddy’s girl, and came from a large, middle class family. Her father was a machinist. He lost a thumb while working on a machine that flattened aluminum, and was living on pension. Her mother was a nurse who worked in a pediatrician’s office. Dr. Hardy’s mother was her inspiration to become a doctor, and when she met Dr. Wilkenson, she immediately was charmed by his intellectual, affluent nature. He enjoyed the Sunday crossword puzzle, concerts, and wine tastings. He introduced her to the finer things, and though they lived modestly during their courtship as interns, he provided well for her. They amassed a substantial savings before moving to Florida, and easily gained bank approval for their home, sports cars, and J24 sailboat.
I remember the night I received a phone call from Dr. Hardy like it was yesterday. The weather was typical Florida. There’s sun in the morning, storms in the afternoon, and gentle night breezes as the sun sets. The orange glow of the sunset reflected against my window as I picked up her call. She wanted to meet with me as soon as possible. Her voice was shaken, almost in a childish way, like she was about to tattle on one of her classmates. I tried to calm her down enough to get the details I needed from her. She breathed deeply, and went on to say her and her husband had been arguing a lot and not getting along in general. At that point I asked her how long this had been going on. She said a couple weeks. He had told her he “needed space”. That was a phrase I always dreaded hearing from a spouse. It usually meant infidelity was in play. She asked him what was wrong, and why he needed space, but he did not have an answer for her. He shook his shoulders and said he didn’t know. I asked her if he looked her in the eyes anymore. She said no. He had moved out of the home, and she didn’t know where he was staying.
I had my assignment. I was to follow Dr. Wilkenson from the doctor’s office, to find out where he was staying and if he was with anyone. The doctor’s office was located at 2865 Papaya Trail in Melbourne, and was the end building in a string of healthcare offices. One of my investigators set up surveillance at the doctor’s office on a balmy, sunny, Tuesday evening. At approximately 5:30PM, Dr. Wilkenson left the office in a sleek, Mercedes Benz. He was a very good looking man, clearly wearing clothes that were professionally pressed and tailored for his frame. His hair was dark and glossed with hair gel, and glistened in the Florida sun. His wedding ring also glistened as he opened the door of his car. He navigated through the jungle of cars in the parking lot like a race car driver. Then we were off. He was followed to an ABC liquor store, which he left with what appeared to be a bottle of expensive vodka. He laughed and smiled as he talked on his cell phone in the liquor store parking lot. We then followed him to a Budget Suites hotel on the beachside. This wasn’t a hotel that seemed to fit his lifestyle standards. It was two story, and in need of a paint job. The sun had started to peel the room number decals off the door. The doctor walked briskly to one of the rooms, vodka in tow, and quickly shut the door behind him. Before the investigator could follow him to the room, Wilkenson came out and retrieved a dozen red roses from the backseat of his car. There was a small card attached to one of the stems. Through a fast grab of binoculars, the investigator was able to read the printed name, “Jen”.
A half hour later a tall, attractive lady showed up at the hotel. She was driving a silver, late-model Nissan Altima. The front left fender had been keyed multiple times. My investigator ran a tag check, which provided us with a name. Jennifer Woodsen. She worked as the office manager at the doctor’s office.
Ms. Woodsen exited the vehicle, and my investigator took photo and video documentation of her. She was wearing a flirty, summer sundress, which accented her long, dark legs. She skipped like a schoolgirl to the hotel room. At approximately 9:30 PM, Ms. Woodsen and Dr. Wilkenson came out of the hotel together, and additional photo and video documentation was taken. He walked her to her car and gave her several kisses and a long embrace. She drove off, and investigator #2 followed her to her house in Palm Bay, Florida. Her house was a small brick ranch that mimicked the other houses on the street. At her house, a black pickup truck, tricycle, and several children’s toys were in the front yard. A background check revealed that she was married at the time to a man named Rupert. Rupert, her husband, had a history of DUI and domestic violence charges, which was revealed in a background check.
The next morning, Dr. Hardy came to my office for an update. She appeared very tired, as the dark circles under her eyes showed. She was biting at her fingernails as I opened her file. I told her where he has been living, at the Budget Suites hotel, and then briefed her on what went on the night before. I showed her a picture of Ms. Woodsen. She instantly recognized the woman as the office manager of the doctor’s office, and said that they were all good friends who often went out to eat together. She did not appear surprised. She asked me to continue surveillance on her husband, and that she would be in touch with an attorney.
The next day, we followed Dr. Wilkenson from his office back to the hotel. Around 7:00pm, Ms. Woodsen arrived. They were inside for a brief amount to time, and then left in his Mercedes dressed casually. They drove approximately 20 miles south to Vero Beach and ate at a Subway restaurant. After eating, they went to a movie together, holding hands affectionately as they entered the theater. After leaving the movie, he took her back to her car at the Budget Suites. They hugged, and she kissed him on the neck as he held her buttocks and their smiles were inches apart. They kissed. Then she left for home.
I reported back to my client, Dr. Hardy, the next morning. She asked that I hold everything, including surveillance footage taken, until she meets with her attorney.
Approximately one week went by, and then I received a call from Dr. Hardy. She said she had some disturbing news. She had taken it on her own to have a key made to the front door of Dr. Wilkinson’s office. One week night, around sunset, she drove by and noticed both of their cars there. She entered the office using her key, and knowing her way around, walked throughout the dark office looking for her husband and Ms. Woodsen. She said her heart raced as she looked inside each room. She noticed the door was closed in Exam Room #12. She could tell a dim light was on from the glow through the bottom of the door. Slowly she opened the door. There was her husband and Ms. Woodsen having sex on the exam table, under the light. They both were completely nude, except for his tie, which was wrapped gently around her neck in a loose knot. It was a tie Dr. Hardy had bought him for his birthday, during their courtship. She lunged at the woman, and went to grab the tie, as her husband clenched her arm in a motion to stop. He pushed her across the room and fumbled at putting his boxer shorts back on. Ms. Woodsen clumsily put a medical gown over her. Her husband closed the door and told his wife to leave or he would call the police.
Dr. Hardy then went on to inform me that she had received a call from the physician in charge. There was a restraining order against her to not go anywhere near the doctor’s office. She asked if she could have contact information for Ms. Woodsen’s husband. We advised her where Rupert worked. He was the manager of a pest control company. He had been there for ten years, and despite his past arrests, was well enamored with his employees. She met him at a breakfast diner in Rockledge, FL the next morning. She gave him copies of the photos we had taken. After he looked at the photos, he was surprised, but said that in a previous marriage, his wife was having an affair. He told my client that he would divorce her, because due to his religious beliefs he couldn’t be with someone who was unfaithful.
The following day, Rupert knew his wife only worked a half day at the doctor’s office. He took all of his wife’s clothes and put them out in the driveway. As Ms. Woodsen pulled up in the driveway, she noticed a small fire where Rupert had placed the clothes. Rupert was standing in the driveway with his arms crossed and a smile on his face. She tried to retrieve her belongings from the fire, but her hands were only able to grasp the ashes.
My client came in soon afterwards and said she had to move on with life, and closed the case. Since that time both couples ended up getting divorced. Dr. Wilkenson married Ms. Woodsen, and adopted her two children. My client, Dr. Hardy, moved to Montana where she now has a family practice. Rupert moved back to his native Haiti to be with his family. I moved on to my next case.