Who Was ‘Dirty John’ John Meehan? How did John Meehan Die? – Known as “Dirty John,” John Meehan was actually a criminal, con artist, and master manipulator who preyed on women across the country. Meehan was a former nurse anaesthetist who was accused of drug theft in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Kentucky.
He would charm his victims into believing he was the perfect partner, then use their trust in him to scam their money and turn violent when they threatened to divorce him. Meehan, who recently passed away, was suspected of being a sociopath and left a lengthy paper trail of legal provisions and court documents.
“Dateline: Secrets Uncovered” Season 6 Episode 5, “The Women and Dirty John“, chronicles How John Meehan becomes “Dirty John” and how did he kill.
Who Was “Dirty John” Meehan?
Meehan was a nurse anesthesiologist who had previously been a drug addict, con artist, and law school dropout. One of Meehan’s trademarks was his tendency to embellish his biography. To woo his third and final wife, Debra Newell, he posed as a medical doctor who had just returned from a stint of humanitarian work with Doctors Without Borders.
Within five weeks of meeting on a dating site for people in their 50s in 2014, Meehan and Newell were living together in a $6,500-a-month Newport Beach waterfront mansion that Newell rented. They secretly wed soon after that, much to Newell’s family’s dismay.
According to Meehan’s sisters, John learned at least some of his deviant behaviour from his father, who operated the Diamond Wheel Casino in San Jose, California. What was the most crucial thing Meehan picked up? One of his sisters, Donna Meehan Stewart, claims that “Bogus lawsuits and insurance scams” have been filed against him. Karen Douvillier, another of John’s sisters, said to The Los Angeles Times, “If anybody did anything to John, my dad would tell us, ‘You go there with a stick and take care of it…'” It’s the “you fight, you get even” attitude typical of Brooklyn.
Meehan went to high school at Prospect in Saratoga, California, and he reportedly started having problems as a teen after his parents divorced because of infidelity and domestic violence. Meehan had a reputation for being a conniving womaniser who considered himself superior to those around him intellectually.
Meehan was allegedly given the name “Dirty John” (or “Filthy John” or “Filthy”) due to his notoriously sleazy behaviour toward women and the vulgar language he used to describe them. The name may also refer to his propensity for “dirty” deeds; he was a master manipulator who would do anything for money, including jumping in front of a car and sabotaging a fast food order with broken glass. Meehan has been described as “rotten top to bottom” by a former classmate and roommate.
What Happened to “Dirty John” Meehan? How Did He Die?
Meehan’s criminal history was long, but he never did time for murder. It appeared, however, that he considered murder a reasonable response to the breakdown of his engagement to Debra Newell. In fact, Meehan threatened not only Newell’s nephew but also her four children, becoming violent with one of them.
After her children dug into John’s past and Debra Newell saw his true colours, she decided to call off the wedding. Meehan went after Terra, her daughter, at that point.
Meehan kidnapped Terra Newell in August of 2016 and attacked her in the parking lot of her Newport Beach, California home. The kit he carried included duct tape, cable ties and knives. Terra was stabbed in the head, arms, and chest by Meehan, but she managed to wrestle the knife away and return the favour. According to reports, she called her mother after the violent incident and apologised profusely. In my opinion, I am the one who murdered your husband.
Meehan, who was 57 at the time, succumbed to his wounds in the hospital. They decided she stabbed him in self-defence, so Terra was never charged with anything.
Since Meehan’s passing, more women have come forward with similarly bleak accounts of his manipulation and predation.