Arizona attorney predicts death penalty for PV dentist who murdered wife on safari trip

Larry Rudolph, a former Paradise Valley dentist, was found guilty of murdering his wife during a 2016 safari and one lawyer thinks he'll get the death penalty.
Published: Jun. 29, 2023 at 9:04 PM MST|Updated: Jun. 30, 2023 at 6:16 AM MST
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PARADISE VALLEY, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — The mistress of a well-known Paradise Valley dentist was sentenced to 17 years in prison for being an accessory to the murder of his longtime wife while on a 2016 African safari trip. But Larry Rudolph still awaits his fate after being convicted of the murder last year, and after all the details that surfaced about the crime, a local attorney said all signs point in one direction.

This case has so much to it. It has a bizarre death on an African safari, a secret affair, a $5 million life insurance policy, and a dental empire. One of the conspirators of murder is now behind bars for nearly two decades, but the main mastermind of it all, Rudolph, should learn soon whether it’s life in prison for him or death.

They were once a power couple. Larry Rudolph and his wife Bianca Rudolph were the epitome of work hard, play hard.

Larry Rudolph was a well-known Pennsylvania dentist who spent part of the year living in Paradise Valley, and he and his wife would often jet off on big safari trips. But now, it’s a stark difference. “My thought is this guy is probably better than an 80% chance of getting the death penalty. That’s pretty high,” said local attorney Tom Ryan, who analyzed the case for Arizona’s Family.

It’s a massive fall from grace for Larry Rudolph after Bianca died during their 2016 safari trip in Zambia. At the time, Zambian police ruled it an accident; Larry Rudolph said the shotgun accidentally went off while Bianca was putting it away before they were heading home. “And then he cremated her before anybody could investigate anything,” said Ryan.

Ryan said once the FBI got involved years later, the proper resources and investigative knowledge brought to light so much more that showed Bianca Rudolph’s death was no accident.

Turns out, Larry Rudolph had taken out a $5 million life insurance policy on Bianca, and he was having an affair with his dental office manager, Lori Milliron. During the trials, it came out there was an argument between Larry Rudolph and Milliron in the upscale Steak 44 restaurant in Phoenix, after they learned the FBI was investigating Bianca’s death. “One of things that Dr. Rudolph said was, ‘I murdered my f***ing wife for you so you could have a beautiful house in Paradise Valley.’ I mean, that’s testimony that came in against him,” said Ryan.

Larry Rudolph was convicted of first-degree murder and mail fraud, and Milliron was convicted of perjury, being an accessory to a murder after the fact and obstructing a grand jury. Before she was sentenced to 17 years in prison, Larry Rudolph and Bianca’s daughter, Anabianca, had a message to her in court. “Lori, you have taken my parents. Despite everything you have done you will never take my soul. This might be difficult to understand ... Because you don’t have one,” she said.

Her father now facing life in prison or the death penalty. “This man is a sociopath. You have to have no sense of empathy, no sense of humanity, no sense of compassion,” said Ryan. “Money sometimes speaks louder than ethics and morality, unfortunately.”

Larry Rudolph’s sentencing was supposed to happen last week but was postponed. Ryan said even though he believes the evidence is so egregious the death penalty is likely, he said the jury must unanimously agree on it. Larry Rudolph was tried in the United States even though his wife was murdered in Zambia. That’s because that was to complete a plan of insurance fraud in the U.S. with that life insurance money. That makes him eligible to be tried for first-degree murder in the U.S.

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