Charmed To Death

Con Man Claims He Is Not Violent

Raymond Stone was a career con man. A good-looking charmer, he sweet talked his way into women's lives, then exited with their money and valuables.

But in 1990, 41-year-old Stone was charged with a much more brutal sort of crime, as 48 Hours Correspondent Richard Schlesinger reported.

Police and prosecutors in San Diego said that in March 1989, Stone, then operating under the alias of Nick Martinelli, went on a date with a 50-year-old recovering alcoholic and schizophrenic named Anita Dalfoss. No one ever saw her alive again.

The day after she disappeared, Stone pawned some of her rings in San Diego and Las Vegas.

Four months later, a group of surveyors discovered some of her remains, including an arm bone with her ticking watch still attached, near Lake Henshaw in rugged country outside San Diego. Her skull, however, was missing. It was never found. Lake Henshaw was where Raymond Stone sometimes took his dates, robbed them and ditched them.

This was not the first time Stone had been suspected of murdering someone. In 1981 in Las Vegas, a woman he had lived with for a few weeks, Rose Crisp, was discovered outside town with bullet hole between the eyes. Detectives strongly suspected that he was the killer, but because all the evidence was circumstantial, the district attorney dropped the case.

At the trial, Stone's lawyer, Sharon Leonard, admitted that he was a criminal, but said that he was not violent. She also pointed out that Dalfoss' remains did not connect Stone to her death, and in fact did not even show whether or not she had been murdered. Leonard suggested that she could have simply fallen.

Although the case was based on circumstantial evidence, the jury found Stone guilty. On May 25, 1990, he was sentenced to life in prison, with no chance of parole.

Produced by David Kohn