48 Hours: Diary of a Showgirl

In a Series of Exclusive Video Diaries, a Showgirl Reveals Secrets about the Web Of Sex, Lies and Greed that Ended in Murder

Diary of a Showgirl 43:02

This story was originally broadcast on Nov. 21, 2009.

It was the start of a murder mystery that had it all: sex, lies, greed, a savage crime and a beautiful showgirl.

That showgirl, Marjorie Orbin, is now in Phoenix, Arizona's Estrella Jail, charged with the brutal murder of her husband, Jay Orbin.

"On Oct. 23, 2004, a man - a transient living in the desert - came across a container wrapped in heavy black plastic. He decides to open the container. He sees the torso of a body," Det. Dave Barnes of the Phoenix Police Department explained. "All of the insides, all of the internal organs, intestines were missing… I thought, 'Who could do this to human being? Cut off his arms, his legs, his head?'"

Prison stripes are a far cry from the diamonds and furs Marjorie was accustomed to.

In a "48 Hours" exclusive - six months of Marjorie's video diaries from jail and unprecedented access to a woman facing the possibility of death row.

Marjorie's Video Diary: At 18, I was told that I could not have children. So I made a conscious decision at that point in my life I would only be responsible for myself. I danced, I traveled. I worked hard, played hard, went through a few marriages.

Marjorie was married seven times by the age of 35.

"I went into every relationship that I had looking for the Prince Charming," she said.

In between Prince Charmings, Marjorie's fairytale sometimes took an x-rated detour: she became a stripper.

"I never felt disrespected and I didn't do anything that I wouldn't be afraid of telling my mother," she told "48 Hours Mystery" correspondent Peter Van Sant.

It was at one of these strip joints that Marjorie got to know one of the regulars, a gregarious, big-hearted 26-year-old named Jay Orbin.

He did have a real good personality. And he was funny. …He was definitely interested in me and was pursuing me.

Marjorie finally agreed to go out with Jay.

"We went out dancing, we had a number drinks. And were really having a fun time and it was very romantic and he was very, very amorous," she said.

Jay fell head over heels. But Marjorie, who was only 24, wanted a more glamorous life.

He was a good guy. And I didn't want to hurt him. But I needed to get out of there. So, I left.

Marjorie went back home to Florida and reconnected with a man who became her ticket to a life in the fast lane.

"I've known him since I was 17 and when I went back to Florida, I began to work for him," she said of Michael J. Peter, a multi-millionaire who created upscale strip clubs around the world.

"We traveled all over the world. We did a lot of things together," explained Marjorie.

Peter made Marjorie his star dancer and choreographer in his clubs and gave her a featured role in his movie, "No More Dirty Deals."

"We had lived together for a number of years and were engaged. The industry is very difficult," Marjorie told Van Sant. "When someone that you love has girls climbing all over them all the time and offering him everything, it's difficult to take."

Peter's wandering eye caused a breakup and Marjorie took her talents back to Las Vegas. In 1993, a traveling salesman from Phoenix called. It was Jay Orbin, a man she hadn't seen in 10 years.

"He said that he was going through Vegas and saw a billboard across the strip with my picture on it. Said, ya know, 'I'm here in town would you like to meet for a drink?' And after we talked for a while, I agreed to come have a drink with him. We spent the entire night talking and having drinks here and snacks there. And talked all night until the sun came up."

Jay returned to Phoenix the next day, but their relationship continued.

"People like to paint us as polar opposites, but really, we were not. We had the exact same ideals on everything important," Marjorie told Van Sant.

The most important, she said, was having children.

The only thing that I ever wanted that I never was able to have was a child, and he wanted a wife and a child more than anything in the world. And he told me, he said, "I want you to come here. I'll do anything that you want.

Jay, by then, the owner of a successful Native American arts business, offered to pay for fertility treatments if Marjorie would marry him and move to Phoenix. But Jay's mother, Joanne Orbin, wasn't certain that this was the girl for her son.

"I couldn't believe that my son was bringing her into the house and saying he was engaged to her," she told Van Sant.

When asked if she was impressed by Marjorie, Joanne said, "Not really."

"Did she look beautiful to you?" Van Sant asked.

"She was beautiful, yes," Joanne replied, adding, "not as beautiful as she thought she was."

She was so jealous, so jealous of the way he adored and - and catered and - and accommodated me in any way. She was very jealous.

If Jay noticed any tension, he didn't seem to care. The seemingly mismatched couple eloped.

We got married at the Little White Wedding Chapel on Las Vegas Boulevard. And it was beautiful.

"He calls me up and he says, 'I met the love of my life…and we got married," recalled Jay's big brother, Jake.

Jake Orbin, who was then living in San Diego, came to visit a few months later.

"They both love each other," he said. "She was the perfect housewife… made the meals and cleaned the house… took care of everything that needed to be done around the house."

But the fertility treatments were taking a toll, often making Marjorie ill.

But I was willing to take the bad stuff in hopes of having more chance of having a child.

And finally it happened. Marjorie gave birth to what they called their miracle baby: a boy named Noah.

"It was the most important - most important day of my life," Marjorie cried, when asked how she felt the first time she held her son.

"It meant everything to you?" asked Van Sant.

"Yeah. Yeah," she replied. "Both of us. It meant everything to both of us."

They seemed the perfect family. But then everything changed.

I spent 10 years here in Phoenix being a mom, a wife, a business partner… That all ended in September of 2004. An unforeseen, tragic incident that I came upon after the fact - caused the death of Jay Orbin.