Blanche Taylor Moore (copy)

Blanche Taylor Moore listens to witness testimony in the Forsyth County Courthouse Nov. 4, 1990. Moore was accused of poisoning her boyfriend Raymond Reid.

u Oct. 2, 1973: James Taylor dies of apparent heart attack at home.

u Mid-1976: Blanche Taylor begins dating Raymond Reid, a co-worker at Kroger.

u April 7, 1985: Blanche Taylor meets the Rev. Dwight Moore at Easter sunrise service.

u Oct. 16, 1985: Blanche Taylor accuses Kroger manager Robert Hutton of sexual harassment. She later files a $15 million lawsuit against Kroger, her long-time employer.

u May 30, 1986: Raymond Reid enters Wesley Long Community Hospital with severe nausea and vomiting.

u June 13, 1986: Reid transferred to N.C. Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem; his condition a mystery to doctors.

u Sept. 2, 1986: Reid appears to be recovering. He signs his will making Blanche Taylor the executor and one-third beneficiary of his estate.

u Oct. 1, 1986: Nurses observe Blanche Taylor feeding Reid banana pudding in the hospital.

u Oct. 7, 1986: Reid dies, apparently of heart failure.

u Nov. 4, 1986: Dwight Moore buys a $571 ruby and diamond engagement ring for Blanche Taylor.

u July 29, 1987: Blanche Taylor accepts a $275,000 settlement from Kroger in the harassment suit.

u Nov. 26, 1988: Dwight Moore’s planned marriage to Blanche Taylor canceled because he must be hospitalized for nausea and vomiting.

u April 19, 1989: Dwight Moore and Blanche Taylor marry.

u April 24, 1989: Dwight Moore hospitalized again for nausea and vomiting.

u May 13, 1989: Doctors in Chapel Hill determine that the near-dead Dwight Moore had been poisoned with arsenic.

u May 21, 1989: Investigators talk with Dwight Moore for first time. He tells them of Reid’s mysterious death.

u June 13, 1989: Reid’s body exhumed. Autopsy reveals he died of arsenic poisoning.

u July 6, 1989: James Taylor’s body exhumed. Autopsy reveals he died of arsenic poisoning.

u July 18, 1989: Police arrest Blanche Taylor Moore and charge her with two counts of murder and one count of assault.

u July 21, 1989: The body of Parker D. Kiser Sr., Moore’s father, is exhumed. Autopsy reveals elevated but non-lethal levels of arsenic.

u Aug. 29, 1989: Moore pleads not guilty to all charges.

u May 29, 1990: Moore receives in jail the controversial “deathbed confession” attributed to Garvin Thomas. Prosecutors believe Moore wrote the letter.

u Oct. 15, 1990: Jury selection begins in Moore’s murder trial.

u Nov. 14, 1990: Jury convicts Moore of first-degree murder in Reid’s death.


u Nov. 16, 1990: Jury sentences Moore to death.

u Dec. 4, 1990: Dwight Moore files for divorce from Blanche Taylor Moore in Alamance County.

u Oct. 12, 1991: Branch is arrested on charges that she hit her estranged husband, Larry Branch, with a tire iron.

u Oct. 30, 1991: Moore’s attorney says she is attacked by another death-row inmate at N.C. Correctional Institution for Women who objected to Moore’s afternoon shower. Prison officials say there’s no evidence the other prisoner touched Moore.

u February 1993: The N.C. State Bar reprimands Branch for courting a TV movie deal during the trial.

u May 3, 1993: A made-for-TV movie about Moore, “Black Widow Murders: The Blanche Taylor Moore Story,” airs on NBC. Former “Bewitched” star Elizabeth Montgomery plays Moore.

u 1994: The N.C. Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court each refuse to hear Moore’s appeals.

u March 1995: Moore gets a new attorney — William Taylor III of Washington, D.C.

u Dec. 11, 1997: A Forsyth County Superior Court judge denies Moore’s third request for a new trial.

u Oct. 6, 2000: The N.C. Supreme Court refuses to consider another request for a new trial.

2010: Moore is one of more than 150 death row inmates asking that their sentences be converted to life in prison under the Racial Justice Act. N.C. Gov. Pat McCrory repealed the act in 2013.

Oct. 10, 2015: Janet Branch, now Janet Downing, commits suicide by stepping into traffic on Interstate 485 in Charlotte.

— Updated by Staff Writer Margaret Moffett

Recommended for you

Load comments