In 1936 Ethel Whittaker was murdered in a fake hold-up plot. The transient who faked the hold-up was hired by her husband, Samuel Whittaker. Samuel Whittaker had taken out two life insurance polices before his wife's death, in addition to the ones she already had. Samuel T. Whittaker was found guilty of murder and sentenced to life in prison. He died in San Quentin in 1937.