Dawn Viens, the missing California wife of chef David Viens, is the focus of tonight’s The Perfect Murder on Investigation Discovery. Dawn Viens disappeared eight years ago. Her body has never been found. Law enforcement investigators say David Viens is responsible for her disappearance and death. Today, he is serving a sentence of 15 years in prison. The Perfect Murder is produced by Kaufman Films.
Teaser: The Perfect Murder–Episode “Murder Well Done”
A wife goes missing after finishing her shift at an upscale restaurant. As months pass and no body is found, police zero in on the woman’s husband, a well-known chef who police believe cooked up more than rosemary and basil in the kitchen.
Case File: Dawn Viens and David Viens
Dawn Viens, 39, disappeared in October of 2009. She was last seen leaving Thyme Contemporary Café in Lomita, California where she worked. She was described in the missing person posters as 5’7 inches tall and 110 pounds. The red-haired, brown-eyed woman had two tattoos–one of a butterfly and a star.
The evidence suggested that Dawn Viens did not disappear by choice. As police dug deep, they discovered that the couple had marital problems and that Dawn had accused David Viens, 49, of abuse.
Their love for each other started out fiery, but after 15 years of marriage, friends say Dawn Viens was prepared to make a move. David Viens was not only abusive but very controlling. By the time she disappeared, Dawn Viens no longer found the once- powerful and irresistible chef appealing.
Puzzled detectives finally got the break they were looking for from David Viens’ daughter, who told police that her father confessed to killing Dawn Viens. They also found out that David had taken on a much younger lover right after his wife disappeared.
With no body, police had several theories about where they could find her. One explored theory was the possibility that Dawn Viens was buried under the restaurant. However, when that theory was thrown out, there was an even more grim possibility.
It was possible that David Vien had done the unthinkable: leaving Dawn to simmer on the stove for four days. When police came to arrest him, David took the plunge by jumping from an 80-foot cliff. To his disappointment, David Viens actually survived.
After waking up from a coma, police charged him and arrested him for murder.
Dawn Viens Timeline
- October 2009: Dawn Viens disappears
- February 2011: David Viens jumps from a rocky cliff
- March 2012: David Viens is convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison
The Perfect Murder will provide exclusive details on their show tonight at 9 p.m. on Investigation Discovery. Sadly, Dawn Viens remains missing. The case of Dawn and David Viens is similar to the story of Exondia and Manny Salado.
— Kaufman Films (@kaufman_films) July 20, 2017
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