Myrle Miller’s arrest Thursday in her husband’s poisoning marks the second time she has been brought before a judge on such charges, but this time it resulted in a homicide charge.
Following a grand jury investigation, state police charged Miller, 76, of Winfield, with first degree homicide and counts relating to the 2018 death of John W. Nichols , 77 years old. She is charged in Union County and is being held without bond in the Northumberland County Jail.
Then known as Myrle Rovenolt, she was acquitted in July 1988 of attempted homicide by a jury in Montour County. Police alleged that she poisoned drinks with an ant killer in 1986 and served them to her former husband, her first, Ronald Rovenolt.
SUNBURY – The mother and brother of a Sunbury man who was murdered 22 years ago is hoping State Police can find answers about who killed Charles B.
A Winfield woman arrested Thursday in the poisoning death of her husband, John W. Nichols, has professed her love to other men online, fraudulently …
Rovenolt fell seriously ill, was diagnosed with acute arsenic poisoning and suffered long-term damage to limbs, internal organs and nervous system, according to information published at the time by The Daily Item. His now ex-wife accused him of recklessly using a powerful weedkiller.
The former couple married in 1961 and both were still in high school when they got engaged, according to a wedding announcement at the time. Miller filed for divorce a month before his arrest in 1988, The Daily Item reported, citing Northumberland County court records.
Miller is the grandmother of Corey Edkin, a 2-year-old boy who went missing from his home in Union County in 1986 and has not been seen since. Edkin was the son of his daughter, Debbie Mowery, the former girlfriend of Charles Burgess III of Sunbury who died suspiciously in a New Jersey motel in 1999 and was the subject of a homicide in a cold case.
These are Miller’s most serious cases brought to court, but not his only arrests. Miller has several arrests and convictions in the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s on charges related to theft and bad checks, including at least one stint in state prison.
The grand jury report from Nichols’ homicide notes that Miller had 10 summary convictions for bad checks between 1977 and 1988 – bad checks to Sears, Bell of Pennsylvania, and PPL, among others.
Miller was sentenced in 1992 as Myrle Plotts to serve 14 1/2 to 59 months at Muncy Women’s Prison for her involvement in a burglary ring in Northumberland County. That sentence included a revocation of probation for a previous conviction on charges of stealing two guns from an elderly couple, also in Northumberland County, for whom she worked as a home nurse.
She was in jail when police charged Miller and her then-husband Jack Plotts, her second husband, with theft and related charges for allegedly stealing around $ 30,000 from the Milton Eagles Club.
The couple married in 1990, just 11 days after Miller’s divorce from Rovenolt was settled, court records show. In this attempted murder arrest, Miller was charged with having an affair with Plotts, who has been identified in court documents, according to reports on file by The Daily Item.
Police said both conspiracies admitted to writing checks for themselves and spending money on Christmas presents and other personal effects. Jack Plotts was the club secretary. They both pleaded guilty and received probation terms along with orders to pay off the club in full – six years probation for Myrle and five years probation plus up to 23 days in jail for Jack.
The grand jury report on Nichols ‘homicide states that one of Miller’s sons with Rovenolt said his mother would immediately spend Jack Plotts’ paychecks, $ 700 to $ 1,000 “would literally be gone” but the household bills often went unpaid.
Miller and Plotts moved in 2002 to 391 Lamey Road in Millmont, just 100 yards from Nichols and his then-girlfriend Joan Madden. A house separated the plots and the Nichols houses, Google Maps shows.
The grand jury report says the couples became friends within a few years. Plotts died of cancer in December 2011. The same month, Madden also died unexpectedly.
Miller ultimately lost the house to unpaid mortgage claims after his default on Jan. 1, 2012, according to the grand jury report. She moved in with Nichols and they tied the knot in late 2012, the report says. He was her third husband.
Investigators allege Miller began defrauding Nichols within a year of starting their marriage, ultimately draining at least $ 87,000 from his bank accounts, fraudulently gaining sole beneficiary status on at least two life insurance policies and opening loans against these policies on his behalf without his consent.
Some time after Nichols’ death on April 14, 2018, Miller remarried again – her fourth marriage. She is now accused of killing her husband with her own heart medication, shortly after an investigation into the alleged abuse of her finances was authorized by Nichols himself. Attempts to solicit Miller’s comment on Friday at the Northumberland County Jail were unsuccessful.
Daily Item reporter Francis Scarcella contributed to this report.