Marie Alexandrine Becker
I am not a trained researcher or writer. I research these topics in my spare time so I can share what I am passionate about with others. I like to add my own thoughts throughout each piece and I like to keep things "light and fun", even when discussing dark subjects like true crime. I do not claim any of these writings as "official articles" and instead call them "stories". They should not be used for official purposes. And Yes - sometimes I use Wikipedia as a resource but never by itself.
Thanks for reading!
Do you ever fantasize of poisoning your husband/boyfriend? Just hypothetically of course, I love my husband to pieces but since I’m constantly elbow deep in the dark world of true crime the thought does drift across my mind sometimes. How would I do it? How would I act if I got caught? What would I do if he were just gone?
Well, Marie Alexandrine Becker had that exact thought but she didn’t just fantasize about it - she acted on it.
Marie was a typical bored housewife in 1932 (Liege, Belgium) when she had a chance encounter with known womanizer Lambert Beyer at a grocery store. He was a few years younger and swept her off her tired, achy feet. They began a tumultuous affair that awakened Marie’s sexual appetite. This is some shit straight from a soap opera, am I right? Bored housewife. Young, hot, sexy man that will just ravage her.
Anyway, Marie was married to a cabinet maker and she was excruciatingly bored with her life. She had gotten married young and become a mother shortly into their marriage. She felt that she had missed out on a big chunk of her life - her youth. She was desperate to recapture it. By any means necessary.
Soon after Marie began her tryst with the young Lambert she came up with the bright idea to shed her “lump of a husband” and poisoned him with digitalis. Digitalis is more commonly known as foxglove.
When this plant is ingested in large amounts it will cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, sometimes xanthopsia (jaundice), halos in the vision, drooling, abnormal heart rate, cardiac arrhythmia, weakness, collapse, dilated pupils, tremors, seizures, and eventually death. In some doses, this drug has been used as a weight loss aid because it has the effect of reducing your appetite - yea, no wonder.
After her husband’s horrifically painful death, Marie collected the payout from his life insurance and opened a dress shop. Free from the bonds of marriage, she became a regular at local nightclubs, danced unrestrained with young men, (yea girl - dance like no one is watching!) slept around and paid for the company of gigolos. As her erratic lifestyle amped up her new boy toy, Lambert, was finding it difficult to keep up. So, she poisoned him and collected life insurance on him.
Marie’s lifestyle was a costly one and with the meager profits she was making from her dress shop she couldn’t live up to her own high standards. What else is a woman to do? Yep, let’s poison some little old ladies who just wanted a new dress. Marie would befriend the women that came into her shop and make them ill with tea that she had laced with digitalis. She would rob them then escort them back to their homes where she would watch them suffer and die. All of these women, maybe 10 or more, all died of “unknown causes” as they were otherwise healthy.
At their funerals, Marie would put on a show. She would grieve with passion! Her grief was described as “hysterical”.
All of these women came to trust Marie and eventually wrote them into their wills or she would take out a life insurance policy on them. Geez lady.
But as happens with a lot of serial killers, she let her guard down and got sloppy.
Marie was in her home visiting with a friend who was having trouble with her husband. She was venting and said that “she wished her no-good rascal” of a husband was dead. I imagine that she didn’t really want him killed and was just upset. Well, Marie had just the cure for her troubles. She offered her a small vile of poison that would “leave no trace”.
The woman did mull over the action for a few days but ultimately decided against it and went with her gut - straight to the police station. The police were thankful for her tip because they had suspected Marie because of anonymous letters they had received which accused her of foul play. I bet it was suspicious family members of the deceased and friends.
After Marie was arrested in October 1936 (she really flew through all of those murders quickly, didn’t she?), she began to gloat about her murder spree. She described one of her victims as looking “like an angel choked with sauerkraut.” Another victims she said “died beautifully, lying flat on her back”.
She was quickly convicted of multiple murders after the bodies of her husband and some possible victims were exhumed.
She did not serve much of her sentence because she died in prison during World War II.
Well, that is the short and sweet story of Mrs. Marie Alexandrine Becker. A woman who took her fantasies of a lavish, crazy lifestyle into reality after she couldn’t bare the weight of being a bored, desperate housewife any longer. For about 99.9% I think she was a bat-shit crazy woman who should have just left her life and started over somewhere, since this was at a time in history when you could just disappear like that but there is that small percent where I can see her point of view. Being a wife and mother is the fucking hardest job I could have ever committed to. I love it but damn…sometimes I wish everyone would just go away. Maybe just for a little bit.
Thanks for hanging out with me today. If you want to read more then may I suggest:
I don’t have new artwork to go along with this story because I have been hard at work on some custom pieces for some friends and clients. You should still check out my Art Shop (click the link to go to the shop) and see what other pieces I have available.