Lists Recaps Reviews Interviews Explainers

Donna Yaklich: ‘Nightmare’ stepmother who plotted to kill police detective featured on ID

Accused killers Donna Yaklich, Edward Greenwell and Charles Greenwell. Pic: Bonnie’s Blog of Crime

This week, Investigation Discovery’s Evil Stepmothers features the case of Donna Yaklich, who was convicted of hiring a teenager and his brother to murder her husband, a police detective, in Colorado in 1985.

The episode, titled Nanny Nightmare, revisits how Donna Yaklich stole money from her husband, Dennis Yaklich, and tormented his four children in the lead-up to the cold-blooded plot.

“Donna is fit, beautiful, and maternal — exactly what Dennis Yaklich needs as a single dad to four kids,” says a press release from ID. “Soon his children see another side to their new stepmom.”

Dennis Yaklich, a weightlifter and steroid user, was gunned down in his driveway in Pueblo, Colorado. Donna Yaklich claimed he had abused her and also said she feared for her life. She further accused Dennis Yaklich of having been involved the death of his first wife, Barbara Yaklich, who died after an overdose of diet drugs in 1977.

Donna Yaklich was later arrested and accused of hiring brothers Edward Greenwell, 25, and Charles Greenwell, 16, to kill her late husband.

She was eventually convicted of conspiracy to commit murder and sentenced to 40 years in prison. Edward and Charles Greenwell, meanwhile, were sentenced to 30 and 20 years behind bars, respectively.

In 1994, a made-for-TV movie that told Donna Yaklich’s story and starred Jaclyn Smith of “Charlie’s Angels” was released.

In October 2005, a judge ordered that Donna Yaklich be released from prison and moved to a halfway house.

Evil Stepmothers airs Sundays at 10/9c on Investigation Discovery.

Leave a Comment