After millionaire Ted Binion’s death under suspicious circumstances in 1998, the authorities believed he was murdered. The investigation led them to suspect his girlfriend and an associate of involvement. At the time, Sandy Murphy was Ted’s live-in girlfriend, and Rick Tabish was hired to do some contractor work by Ted. NBC News’ ‘Dateline: What Happened in Vegas?’ aims to answer some questions regarding Ted’s death and the contents of a vault that became a point of contention throughout the investigation. So, if you’re wondering what happened to the millionaire’s money after his death, we’ve got you covered.
Did Sandy Murphy Get Ted Binion’s Money?
Sandy Murphy was only in her 20s when she met Ted Binion in Las Vegas, Nevada. At the time, she had been dancing at a club named Cheetah’s to make some money because she had reportedly lost all of it gambling. Sandy said of Ted, “He became more flirtatious throughout the night. And, you know, Ted’s the kind of guy that’s like larger than life, and when he’s in the room, you just want to be close to him.”
The two then began dating, and in no time, Sandy moved into Ted’s mansion in Las Vegas. She had a luxury car to herself, jewelry, and a credit card. But cracks soon began developing in their happy relationship, with Ted’s heroin usage becoming an issue. Sandy said, “He would smoke it. His favorite kind was the black tar heroin.” The drug problem showed no signs of slowing down with access to money. In late 1998, Ted’s addiction to heroin seemed to take a fatal turn when he was found dead in his house of an apparent overdose.
Later, the investigators learned that Sandy had been having an affair with Rick Tabish, who was seen digging into the vault just days after Ted’s death. The vault in Pahrump, Nevada, contained silver and other items worth between 7$ to $14 million. Not just that, Ted’s daughter, Bonnie, claimed that money and other valuable items were missing from her father’s house after his death.
Sandy and Rick eventually stood trial for Ted’s murder. They were convicted of murder and grand larceny, among other things. This meant that Sandy or Rick never got Ted’s assets from the vault. As for the money allegedly missing from Ted’s house, there have been no leads. In 2003, Sandy and Rick’s murder convictions were overturned, and a judge ordered a new trial. In November 2004, they were acquitted of murder but found guilty of robbing the vault.
What Happened to Ted Binion’s Money?
After Ted’s death and the subsequent arrests, his daughter, Bonnie, received a chunk of the silver from her father’s vault. She was also a witness for the prosecution and testified regarding Sandy’s behavior. She said, “She (Sandy) threatened to hit me a lot of times. She would definitely get in my face. She would definitely scream at me … At first, she started doing it in front of my father, and then she started getting where she would … um … wait till he was gone and start speaking for him and putting me in a really bad position.”
Reports indicated that a lot of the treasure from Ted’s vault has remained at the courthouse, unclaimed. There have been rumors of Ted hiding money and diamonds all around his property, but so far, there has been no proof to substantiate that claim. Apart from the contents of the vault, Bonnie also stood to inherit a majority of her father’s estate.
Read More: Is Sandy Murphy Married? Who is Her Husband?