1. FROM: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deborah_Jeane_Palfrey
For Educational and Information Purposes – i.e. of PUBLIC Interest
Deborah Jeane Palfrey
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Deborah Jeane Palfrey
Deborah Jeane Palfrey aka DC Madam; at a court
hearing, on 30 April 2007.
March 18, 1956
North Charleroi, Pennsylvania
May 1, 2008 (aged 52)
Tarpon Springs, Florida
Cause of death Suicide by hanging
Other names D.C. Madam
Alma mater Rollins College
Deborah Jeane Palfrey (March 18, 1956 – May 1, 2008) (dubbed the D.C. Madam by the news media)
operated Pamela Martin and Associates, an escort agency in Washington, D.C. Although she argued that the
company's services were legal, she was convicted on April 15, 2008 of racketeering, using the mail for illegal
purposes, and money laundering. Slightly over two weeks later, facing a prison sentence of five or six years,
she was found hanged. Autopsy results and the final police investigative report concluded that her death was a
1 Early life
2 D.C. Madam scandal
o 3.1 Suicide notes
2. o 3.2 Speculation surrounding her death
5 External links
 Early life
Palfrey was born in the Pittsburgh suburb of Charleroi, Pennsylvania, but grew up in her teens in Orlando, Florida.
Her father was a grocer. She graduated from Rollins College with a degree in criminal justice, and attended
Thomas Jefferson School of Law, but did not graduate. Working as a paralegal in San Diego, California, and
later as a cocktail waitress, she became involved in the escort business. Dismayed at how most services were run,
including widespread drug abuse, she started her own company recruiting mostly women over 25.  In 1990 she
was arrested on charges of pimping, pandering and extortion; after fleeing to Montana she was captured while
trying to cross the Canadian border and brought back for trial. Following her conviction in 1992 she spent 18
months in jail.  After her release, she founded Pamela Martin and Associates. 
 D.C. Madam scandal
In October 2006, United States Postal Inspection Service agents posed as a couple who were interested in buying
Palfrey's home as a means of accessing her property without a warrant. Agents froze bank accounts worth
over US$500,000, seizing papers relating to money laundering and prostitution charges.
According to the government's criminal charges, Palfrey's service recruited escorts using The Diamondback, an
independent University of Maryland student newspaper, and the Washington City Paper. Her escorts charged as
much as $300 per hour. Many have had professional careers. Palfrey continued to reside in California, and cleared
some US$2 million over 13 years in operation.  Palfrey appeared on ABC's 20/20 as part of an investigative
report on 4 May 2007. In combination with Palfrey's statement that she had 10,000 to 15,000 phone numbers of
clients, this caused several clients' lawyers to contact Palfrey to see whether accommodations could be made to
keep their identities private. Ultimately, ABC News, after going through what was described as "46 lb" [21 kg]
of phone records, decided that none of the potential clients was sufficiently "newsworthy" to bother
The scandal led to the resignation of Ambassador Randall L. Tobias from his State Department position and as the
Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development. Also named as a regular client was columnist
and military strategist Harlan Ullman, creator of the concept of "shock and awe", of the Center for Strategic and
International Studies and the Washington Times. Neither testified at Palfrey's trial. 
On July 9, 2007, Palfrey released the supposed entirety of her phone records for public viewing and downloading
on the Internet in TIFF format, though days prior to this, her civil attorney Montgomery Blair Sibley had
dispatched 54 CD-ROM copies to researchers, activists, and journalists. Senator David Vitter (R-LA)
acknowledged on the night of July 9 that he had been a customer of her escort service.
In early 2007, Palfrey reacted to the suicide by hanging of Brandy Britton, one of her former escort service
employees, by saying, "I guess I'm made of something that Brandy Britton wasn't made of." 
Thirteen former escorts and three former clients testified at her trial.  The witnesses were compelled to
testify, after being granted immunity from prosecution.
On April 15, 2008, a jury found Palfrey guilty of money laundering, using the mail for illegal purposes and
racketeering. Palfrey believed that contrary to the U.S. Attorney's Office lower estimate, she might spend six or
3. seven years behind bars. She faced a maximum of 55 years in prison.  Palfrey's death resulted in her
conviction being vacated.
On May 1, 2008, Palfrey was found hanging in a storage shed outside her mother's mobile home in Tarpon
Springs, Florida. Officials determined her death to be a suicide. Police found handwritten suicide notes in the
bedroom where she was staying, dated a week before her death. The autopsy and the final police investigation
concluded her death was a suicide.
 Suicide notes
Palfrey's two handwritten notes were released to the public. In one of them, she wrote to her sister, "You must
comprehend there was no way out, I.E. 'exit strategy,' for me other than the one I have chosen here." In another,
she described her predicament as a "modern-day lynching". She said she feared that, at the end of serving her
sentence, she would be "in my late 50s a broken, penniless and very much alone woman". 
 Speculation surrounding her death
The New York Times's Patrick J. Lyons wrote on the Times' blog, The Lede, that some on the Internet were
skeptical that her death was a suicide. News accounts at the time reported that her mother said she had "no
indication" that Palfrey was planning to commit suicide, though she later stated, "I was afraid constantly [for
her]. I watched her like a hawk." Palfrey had stated in an interview on the Alex Jones show that she was not
thinking of suicide and was motivated to present her case at trial. After investigating the crime scene, police found
"no new evidence [that] would indicate anything other than suicide by hanging" nor did the final police
investigative report released six months later.  The police stated that Palfrey's family believed the notes were
written by Palfrey.  Palfrey sought to put her affairs in order before her death as she turned over the ownership
of her high school alumni web site to a classmate,  had moved her possessions to her mother's home, whom
she was staying with at the time, and had transferred money from her accounts to her mother's.  The day
before, she reviewed her pre-incarceration papers and watched videos of her deceased father.
Journalist Dan Moldea, who was working with Palfrey on a book, recalled that in a 2007 conversation, Palfrey told
him, "I am not going back to prison. I will commit suicide first."  He said her previous prison experience had
traumatized her and she felt she couldn't do it again. 
1. ^ a b c d e Stacy, Mitch (2008-05-03). "`D.C. madam' who vowed not to go to prison kills herself". The
Associated Press. Archived from the original on 2008-05-05. Retrieved 2008-05-04.
2. ^ a b c Rood, Justin (2008-04-15). "D.C. Madam: Guilty". ABC news. Retrieved 2008-05-02.
3. ^ a b c d e "Police Close 'D.C. Madam' Investigation, Confirm She Died by Suicide". Associated Press. 2008-
10-31. Retrieved 2008-10-31.
4. ^ "D.C. Madam: 'There was no way out'". CNN. 2008-05-05. Retrieved 2008-05-05.
5. ^ a b c d Thompson, Stephen (2008-10-31). "Police Officially Conclude 'D.C. Madam' Hanged Herself". The
Suncoast News. Retrieved 2008-10-31.
6. ^ a b c d "'I Abhor Injustice,' Alleged Madam Says". The Washington Post. 29 April 2007. Retrieved 2007-
7. ^ a b Susie Bright (2007-08-27). "The D.C. Madam Speaks". 10 Zen Monkeys. Retrieved 2008-05-05.
8. ^ "Former madam comes across as an enigma". San Francisco Chronicle. 1 April 2007. Retrieved 2007-04-
9. ^ "Death of a Madam". Retrieved 2008-11-16.
4. 10. ^ a b "New D.C. Sex Scandal Looming? Feds target escort service in money launder, prostitution probe".
The Smoking Gun. 9 October 2006. Retrieved 2007-04-29.
11. ^ ""D.C. Madam" Speaks with ABC News". ABC News' The Blotter. 2007-04-29.
12. ^ "Focus of D.C. sex scandal remains a mystery". The Register-Guard. 2007-04-29.
13. ^ "Deborah Jeane Palfrey - Telephone Records".
14. ^ Buncombe, Andrew (2007-05-06). "Network refuses to name clients of 'DC madam'". London: The
Independent. Retrieved 2007-07-10.
15. ^ "Palfrey Found Guilty In D.C. Madam Trial". WRC-TV. 2008-04-15. Retrieved 2008-05-06.
16. ^ Duggan, Paul (2008-04-09). "Four Former Call Girls Testify at Palfrey Trial". The Washington Post.
17. ^ a b Zagorin, Adam (2008-05-01). "D.C. Madam: Suicide Before Prison". Time. Retrieved 2008-05-01.
18. ^ Chris Amos (2008-04-10). "Navy officer testifies in D.C. Madam case". Navy Times. Retrieved 2010-05-
26. "Lt. Cmdr. Rebecca Dickinson told federal prosecutors at U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., that
she had sex with nearly every client she met while working for Deborah Jeane Palfrey from October 2005
until April 2006." mirror
19. ^ Josh Mitchell (2008-04-13). "Debt forced Naval officer to become call girl". Go Erie. Retrieved 2010-05-
26. "A Navy officer who testified this week that she moonlighted for an alleged prostitution ring while
stationed at the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., was nearly $300,000 in debt at the time despite a Navy
income of more than $93,000, court records show." mirror
20. ^ Paul Duggan (2010-04-10). "Navy Officer Took Call Girl Job: Supply Official Testifies She Moonlighted
at Escort Service". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-05-26. "The women were compelled to testify by
prosecutors under grants of immunity that prevented them from remaining silent under the Fifth
Amendment right against self-incrimination." mirror
21. ^ a b c d Mairano, Willoughby (2008-05-02). "D.C. madam's mystery death: The Orlando connection".
Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 2008-05-02.
22. ^ "911 tapes released in D.C. Madam's death". WTOP-FM. 2008-05-02. Retrieved 2008-05-04.
23. ^ Meek, James Gordon (2008-05-21). "D.C. Madam's Conviction Dead on Arrival". Daily News. Retrieved
2008-05-21. "IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that…the jury verdicts are vacated and the indictment in this
matter is dismissed."
24. ^ a b "D.C. madam calls trial ‘lynching' in death note". Journal Gazette. 2008-05-06. Retrieved 2008-05-19.
25. ^ "D.C. Madam: 'There was no way out' (text of suicide notes)". CNN. 2008-05-05. Retrieved 2008-05-05.
26. ^ Lyons, Patrick J. (2008-05-02). "Skepticism and Sadness After Death of ‘D.C. Madam’". The New York
Times. Retrieved 2008-05-02.
27. ^ Duggan, Paul; Shipley, Amy (2008-05-02). "911 Tapes Are Released in Palfrey Death". The Washington
Post. Retrieved 2008-05-02.
28. ^ Fazan, Sarina (2008=05-21). "Interview with mother of 'DC Madam'". WFTS-TV. Retrieved 2008-05-22.
29. ^ "In suicide note, 'D.C. Madam' said she didn't want prison". Associated Press. 2008-05-05. Retrieved
30. ^ Dvorak, Petula (2008-05-05). "Palfrey Suicide Notes Are Released". The Washington Post. Retrieved
31. ^ Paglia, Ron (2008-06-08). "Charleroi grads sending SOS to perpetuate alumni Web site". Pittsburgh
Tribune-Review. Retrieved 2008-06-08.
32. ^ Augenstein, Neal (2008-05-09). "D.C. Madam wraps up affairs with labor of love". WTOP-FM.
33. ^ Scantz, Mark (2008-05-03). "High-Profile Suicide Creates Media Frenzy In Tarpon". The Suncoast
News. Retrieved 2008-05-05.
 External links
D.C. Madam Suicide Notes, The Smoking Gun
Read the Palfrey indictment PDF, New York Times
Shephard, Alicia. "DC Madam Tells (Not Quite) All", Washingtonian, May 22, 2007.