Susan Cummings (heiress)

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Susan Cummings (born August 19, 1959 in Monte Carlo, Monaco) is an American heiress, best known for killing her boyfriend in 1997. She had been charged with homicide, but subsequently convicted of voluntary manslaughter only.


Cummings was convicted on May 13, 1998 of voluntary manslaughter in the death of her boyfriend, Argentine polo player Roberto Villegas, and was sentenced to 60 days in jail and ordered to pay $2,500; she was released after serving 51 days.

Cummings and her fraternal twin sister, Diana, are the only children of billionaire arms dealer Samuel Cummings (1927–1998). After the family moved to the United States, Samuel Cummings bought his daughters a lavish estate in Warrenton, Virginia he named Ashland Farms. It was here that Cummings shot Villegas on September 7, 1997. She told the 911 dispatcher and police that he had turned abusive towards her, threatening her with a knife. Villegas was found with a knife crossing his arm. Cummings had cuts on her arm, which police suspected were self-inflicted. She was arrested on charges of homicide. She was represented by Blair Howard.

Ms. Cummings sold the 340-acre (1.4 km2) Ashland Farm estate on the edge of Warrenton in Fauquier County, Virginia for $4.9 million in 2004. She and her twin sister Diana moved to the 450-acre (1.8 km2) LeBaron Farm in Culpeper County, Virginia. Their manor house, designed by the firm of Versaci Neumann Partners, won recognition in the 2006 Washingtonian Residential Design awards.

In 2004, Lisa Pulitzer wrote a book on the case called A Woman Scorned.

A Biography Channel program about the case included an interview with a young Tareq Salahi, who was a friend of Roberto Villegas.

Susan Cummings' case was featured in an episode of Behind Mansion Walls on the Investigation Discovery channel.


  • The Middleburg Mystique: A Peek Inside the Gates by Vicky Moon, Capital Books, 2002 ISBN 1-892123-47-9
  • Homicide by the Rich and Famous: A Century of Prominent Killers by Gini Graham Scott, Praeger/Greenwood, 2005 ISBN 0-275-98346-3

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