Todd Bertolet told CBS4 his sister had been misled about how Harold Henthorn’s first wife perished.
“My sister didn’t have that information. I feel like if she knew the real story about the first wife there would have been a lot more scrutiny of Harold Henthorn as a fiancée and husband. I think she was deceived a lot about a lot of things. I think the deception started from day one and it never ended. To have two wives die in freak accidents,” said Bertolet, “the odds are better you will win the Powerball lottery.”
CBS4 has learned that shortly before his first wife’s death in 1995, Harold Henthorn had taken out at least one $300,000 insurance policy on his wife, Lynn. The family of Toni Henthorn has told CBS4 that Harold Henthorn told them he had also taken out significant life insurance policies on Toni Henthorn.
They say Henthorn told them the insurance policies were necessary due to his wife’s status as a doctor. They also told CBS4 that Toni Henthorn’s death led to a significant inheritance going directly to Harold Henthorn.
During several hours of family interviews, Toni Henthorn’s mother, Yvonne Bertolet, told CBS4 that about a year before her daughter died, there had been another serious accident involving Harold Henthorn.
“Toni called me about 2011 one year before she died,” recounted the mother. “And she said ‘Momma, we were up at the cabin and Harold called me outside and he was up working on the porch’ … and a beam fell and hit her on the back of the head and they called an ambulance and she was taken to the hospital.”
The mother told CBS4 that her daughter was seriously injured by the falling beam and suffered long-lasting health effects.
Yvonne Bertolet said her daughter told her that when her husband accidentally dropped a beam on her head, she was bending over to pick something up.
“She said if I had not gone to get whatever it was on the floor, I think it would have killed me on the spot. I don’t know what happened,” said the mother. “But the beam did fall on Toni and she did have a severe injury.”
That incident left Yvonne Bertolet uneasy about her daughter’s wellbeing.
“Later I told her ‘Toni, I don’t think I would be with him alone in a secluded place. I just don’t have a good feeling about it.’ ”
Toni Henthorn’s father, Bob Bertolet, told CBS4 that not long before his daughter’s death, she had spoken to her parents about financial issues between her and her husband.
“‘I don’t know where our money goes — we ought to be doing better,’ ” Bob Bertolet remembers his daughter saying. “And so we got suspicious of him and his braggadocio about making so much money. We thought he was inflating what he earned on his jobs.”
It was only later that the Bertolet family says Harold Henthorn admitted he never really worked at all.
Neighbors of Toni and Harold Henthorn along their Highlands Ranch cul de sac agreed that Harold Henthorn seemed nice, but was extremely controlling. They requested their names not be used. Others who were close friends of Harold Henthorn’s conceded he was extremely controlling.
However one friend of Harold Henthorn’s, Steve Reynolds, told CBS4 the accusations against Harold Henthorn are groundless.
“He adored her,” said Reynolds. “The FBI does not have one shred of evidence. They do not deserve this.”
“It was a horrible, horrible, terrible accident,” said Reynolds who described the federal investigation as a witch hunt.
As new questions emerge about the death of his latest wife, several people close to Harold Henthorn say he has repeatedly told them he expects to be indicted for Toni Henthorn’s death.
– Written by Brian Maass for CBSDenver.com