During divorce, man realizes wife of nine years was already married
ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MO (KTVI) – A St. Louis County man says he just found out he was never married to the woman he thought was his wife. That's because during divorce proceedings, he found out she was already married.
Ken Cherry said, 'What kind of dummy was I to get myself caught up in something like this? He added, 'I was supposed to be husband number five.'
Cherry says he met Susan Bozich about 11 years ago. He said they decided to 'get together, have a few drinks, you know relax and have fun, listen to the band. I had met her through some other friends she had.'
They got married in St. Louis in 2005, then last year Cherry filed for divorce. After months of legal wrangling, a private investigator, hired by Cherry's attorney, found a trail that led where no one expected.
P.I. Rick Burrows said, 'Truth right now is stranger than fiction.'
Burrows described how he discovered bigamy. He said, 'I started looking for the divorce file from husband number four. I couldn't find it. So I found him.' Burrows continued, 'I said `Did you two ever get divorced?` He (said) 'No.''
Cherry added, 'It's bigamy, no doubt about it.'
So it turned out Cherry could not get a divorce. Instead, a Judge issued a 'consent judgment,' signed by Cherry and the woman he thought was his wife. It declares a 'void marriage.'
Cherry said, 'Well a lot of people find the humor in it. I find a little bit of humor in it sometimes, but it's also kind of sad.'
Cherry struggled to talk when I asked, 'How would you define those nine years?' Cherry answered, 'Wasted.' After a few moments he said, 'There was some good, just not the marriage part.' He said adamantly, 'You`d never be able to convince me it was an innocent mistake.'
The accused bigamist, Susan Bozich, is now on a free dating web site. She calls herself 'single.' Private Investigator Burrows says she's still married. He said, 'There's been nothing as far as a divorce file between her and number four.'
A sign on her door says No Trespassing, so we mailed her a letter asking for a response. We returned to the home a week later and yelled from the street. 'Susan!' reporter Chris Hayes yelled.
She never answered. Ken says it's his house, but Susan's locked him out. Her name's also on the title. Meanwhile, Ken says he can't get police to write a report for bigamy. He said, 'The're treating it like it was a divorce or an annulment.' I asked him, 'What is it to you?' He answered, 'Fraud.'
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department also told me this should be a civil matter and added that there's only a one year statute of limitations to prosecute bigamy.
Cherry's believed 'marriage' was nine years ago. However, a prosecutor in St. Francois County, MO recently charged a similar case and got a conviction, even though the marriage was years earlier.
The prosecutor got a conviction by pointing out the statute of limitations should begin when the bigamy is discovered. Ken Cherry says he discovered the bigamy a few months ago, at about the same time a Judge ruled his marriage 'void' on December 11th, 2014.
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