Black Widow Feels the Sting of the Long, Long Arm of the Law

The Black Widow, whose bond was set this week at $1.5 million, has seen better days.

When Sandra Camille Bridewell -- you recall, the Black Widow? -- appeared in the court of State District Judge Tom Aldridge yesterday, she appeared "very calm, almost like she was going to a doctor's office," says Lisa Stites, a reporter with The State Port Pilot in Southport, North Carolina. Bridewell was taken into custody on Friday in Charlotte, North Carolina, on three warrants for fraud and forgery. Bridewell stands accused of forging checks and using the credit card of an elderly woman who had taken Bridewell into her home.

Extradited from Charlotte to Brunswick County, North Carolina, Bridewell occasionally smiled as she looked around the courtroom but seemed unconcerned. Once dressed in designer clothes, Bridewell was wearing the white T-shirt and white pants issued to inmates at the county jail at the arraignment. Her hair was disheveled.

"She looked a little rough," says Stites. In her defense, not too many woman look their best in prison garb.

The courtroom appearance illustrated the fall of epic proportions for a woman who once lived on Versailles Street in Highland Park. Bridewell still is the only suspect in her third husband's murder.

The only time Bridewell spoke at the hearing was to ask Aldridge why her bond had been raised from $3,000 to $1.5 million by Superior Court Judge Ola Lewis. Since Bridewell has hopscotched around the country for years, preying on the kindness of strangers to survive, prosecutors were concerned she might not show up for her next court date on March 27. Go figure.

Read this story in this week's paper version of Unfair Park for the inside story on how Bridewell finally got busted. --Glenna Whitley