The investigation threatens to blow the lid off Mrs. Cleaver's sordid life that, up until now, had been quashed by her handlers.
Born in abject poverty in the gritty mill town of Wilmerding, PA, young June Zeglowitsch soon found her way to the bright lights of Los Angeles and married insurance salesman, Ward Cleaver. They had two sons, Walter and the younger, Theodore, also known as "The Beaver," for reasons that are not entirely clear.
"She wasn't a bad lady," said retired Detective Sgt. Joseph Friday of the LAPD, "she just made bad choices. She didn't think she'd get caught. They never do. But they all do eventually. That's where I came in."
Sgt. Friday was the arresting officer when Mrs. Cleaver attempted to knock over a liquor store on Sunset Blvd. that ended in a shoot-out with police, earning her a one-way ticket to Chino Prison for Women for 15 years.
It was during her stint in prison that June Cleaver re-invented herself.
She became.................Eldridge Cleaver.
In 1966, following a brazen escape from prison in which she walked right out the front gate of the facility, having tricked the guards into thinking she was a tall, black male, she continued her gender-bending charade and fell in with the likes of radicals Huey Newton and Bobby Seale, forming the Black Panthers. The group espoused violence to achieve their means and had numerous confrontations with police.
Wounded in an Oakland, CA, gun battle with authorities, Cleaver was returned to prison, where she wrote her now famous treatise on urban guerilla warfare, Pearls on Ice.
Upon her release from prison in 1998, she and her cohorts had a mock funeral for her black revolutionary persona, "Eldridge" Cleaver, and she retured to being "June" Cleaver, white suburban housewife.
She lived in relative obscurity in a comfortable suburb of Los Angeles for several years, until she began telling friends that an old acquaintance of her family was trying to extort money from her. Edward Haskell, who had attended high school with the eldest Cleaver son, Wally, was a moderately successful, if somewhat sleazy, businessman who, with another classmate, Clarence "Lumpy" Rutherford, had opened a string of used car lots around Bakersfield and Modesto. Haskell apparently had claimed that he and June Cleaver had an affair when he was still in high school and threatened to take that information to authorities, believing that June's parole would be revoked for corrupting the morals of a minor.
Eddie "You Always Get Plenty From Eddie" Haskell
Clarence "Lumpy" Rutherford
When sons, Wally and "The Beav", learned that Haskell was terrorizing their elderly mother, they allegedly hired Mafia hitman, Larry "The Mole" Mondello to have Haskell murdered. As luck would have it, Mondello was hit and killed by a speeding bus on Santa Monica Blvd. they day before the murder was to take place.
Police theorize that Haskell, who had loudly professed his undying love for June Cleaver for nearly 60 years, killed her in a fit of rage, often claiming that, "If I can't have her, no one can have her."
The Cleavers, just before June's death. Left to right, Theodore, "The Beav", is a successful LA gynecologist, the late Mrs. Cleaver, and Walter, who owns a medical marijuana store .