Tonight, Dr. Phil kicks off with its 17th season, and the case Dr. Phil McGraw is examining in the episode is one that he says audiences will “be unable to turn away from”. McGraw will interview model Tara Lambert, also known as Tara Arbogast, who hired a hitman to kill her husband’s ex, Kellie Cooke.
What do you need to know about Cooke? How does she feel about the situation? Read on for details.
1. Lambert Wanted to Kill Her Using a Wood Chipper
According to The Columbus Dispatch, Lambert made a down payment in July 2015 of $125 to executive Kellie Cooke.
Speaking to a hitman about getting rid of Cooke, Lambert said, “I need her away. Just put her in a chopper, you know like one of those lumberjack chopper things.” As it turns out, the hitman was an undercover detective who recorded the conversation.
At the time that she began voicing these threats, Lambert and Cooke were arguing over visitation rights for Cooke’s daughters.
2. Lambert Is the Former Stepmother of Her Two Children
Aspen Lambert and Kiersten Lambert are the former stepdaughters of Lambert.
According to The Columbus Dispatch, Aspen and Kiersten wrote a letter about their former stepmother that they hoped they would be able to read aloud in court; the judge didn’t allow the letter to be read.
In the letter, which has since been obtained by the outlet, the girls wrote a number of troubling stories involving Tara, like the time she used fake ultrasound pictures to pretend that she was pregnant. She also told the girls that their parents were going to hell because they had kids before marriage.
The girls write that Tara became “obsessed with the idea of hating our mother.”
3. Lambert Was Sentenced to 5 Years in Prison
In court, Lambert pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy to commit aggravated murder.
She was sentenced to five years in prison by Judge. P. Randall Knece.
She received a credit for 16 months of prison which had already been served, according to The Columbus Dispatch. In 2017, Lambert’s conviction was overturned because of “an error in language in the original charges”. Lambert was subsequently freed from her seven-year sentence.
When she was re-indicted in 2017, a five year sentence was agreed upon by prosecutors and the defense attorney.
4. Cooke Says Lambert Is ‘One of the Most Evil People I’ve Ever Met’
Speaking to Dr. Phil, Cooke says of Lambert, “She’s just one of the most evil people I’ve ever met.”
Immediately after receiving a threatening phone call from a woman whom Lambert told to call Cooke, she went to the authorities. “I was scared,” she admits to Dr. Phil. Cooke was told by this woman, Ginny, that she was going to “beat her so bad her kids wouldn’t recognize her.”
5. Her Daughter Read Her Mother’s Victim Impact Statement in Court Before the Sentencing
In her mother’s victim impact statement, Aspen Lambert, Cooke’s daughter, said, “I knew what you were capable of… You lied, manipulated and controlled everything my girls done… You wanted my girls.”
She continued, When you figured out I was on to you, you snapped. You tormented my family for a long time with no punishment. It’s time that you are held responsible for your actions and all of the harm you have caused.”
After Brandon Lambert and Kellie Cooke split up, the two did their best to get along for their daughters. Cooke went on to marry a man named Shawn Cooke, and Brandon went on to marry Tara.