Bonny Lee Bakley's checkered past: Part 4

Friends say Bakley was a con-artist who was intent on marrying a celebrity. She was already involved with Christian Brando, son of famed actor Marlon Brando, when she met Robert Blake.
7:42 | 01/12/19

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Transcript for Bonny Lee Bakley's checkered past: Part 4
Bonnie Lee Bakley. She was a professional con artist. She was involved in pornography. She had over 50 aliases. She had been married countless times. Ten times? I heard 8 or 9 times. Six, ten. Bonnie wanted to be famous, or be married to somebody who was famous. The word "Grifter" was always attached to her. This con artist who just moves from place to place, basically robbing lonely men of their money with a promise of romance and sex. Bonnie Lee Bakley always wanted to be in show business. She tried to sing. She tried to dance. At one point, she went into a studio and made a record. Hello, my name is leebonnie. I'd like to tell you my story. Unfortunately, Bonnie was not blessed with any noticeable talent. When Bonnie found that she was not succeeding in show business, she decided to put ads in swinger magazines. She would use different names and different professions, and come up with a variety of reasons as to why she needed money. There was one ad that said, "My name is Julia, and I'm a nursing student, and I need money to pay for tuition." He'd send them sexy pictures of herself and they would fall for the bait. How does a woman who comes from very meager beginnings manage to con so many men and so many well known men. Bonnie grew up in rural New Jersey. And actually her mother gave her to her grandmother to raise. Bonnie, like Robert Blake, had had a troubled childhood. My father was an alcoholic. My mother had given up other children for adoption. It just was not a good environment. She said that at just 10 years old, she was already having sexual experiences with men. Growing up, Bonnie lived near a nudist colony, which one day a week, it was known in the neighborhood, had a day that you could swim with your clothes on. When she was 11, she and her sister margerry went there, only to find out that the day they'd gone was in fact the day they had to take their clothes off. Margerry never went back, but Bonnie went back all the time after that. Bonnie was swimming there a lot. That's where Bonnie got her start in the taking of nude photos. She was under age, people were taking photos of her and selling them. At 21, Bonnie married her first cousin, a guy named Paul. And they had a daughter holly and a son. Bonnie's children didn't mind what she did for a living. Her daughter, holly, did an interview with Barbara Walters at one point, and of course, Barbara asked about it. Describe her as a mother? She was everything to me. She was my best friend. She supported me in anything I wanted to do. She allowed us to grow into anything we wanted to. Your mother was described in the press as a con woman? Yes. Help me with that? She did do things that most people wouldn't approve of. But it wasn't all that she did. She was a shrewd businesswoman. She ran the business. What was the business? Well, for the most part, she sold pictures of naked women, a little bit of pornography. And she'd spend time on the phone, asking for plane tickets, or just whatever she wanted. What'd you think of your mother? I thought she was great. I love her. I will tell you that her kids loved her. She was a hell of a mom. So as Bonnie gets older, her cons become more elaborate. She would lure lonely older men into a trap where they would put her on their will, where they would put her on life insurance policies. And once she had bilked them of whatever she could get from them, she would disappear. One of her involvements was with a retired lawman. He discovers that there's case after case, man after man of people who've been fleeced and hoodwinked by her from all over the country. The cases fill 400 pages of a manuscript he puts together and that he entitles, "Ubiquitous bonny: Mistress of sham, of lust, greed and deceit." He told his niece that at some point, someone was going to put a bullet in her head. To establish her different aliases, Bonnie starts stealing credit cards and forging drivers license. This ends up in her getting charged with fraud in 1998 in Arkansas. One of Bonnie's stranger hobbies was that she would record her telephone conversations. If you were talking to Bonnie, you were being recorded. It was an obsession. I don't exactly know why, but she always figured she could use them later. I got three years probation just for having different ids, you know? And it wasn't even like I was really using them for anything totally, you know, too, too illegal, either, you know. In the 1990s, Bonnie moved to Memphis because she wanted to be Jerry Lee Lewis's girlfriend. Jerry Lee Lewis recorded "Great balls of fire." He was a killer. He was one of the great rock-and-rollers of all time. Bonnie Lee was very, very determined. She just had her way of working her way in. She was just everywhere. Bonnie Lee as far as I know never had a physical intimate relationship with Jerry Lewis. Bonnie wouldn't have been with him if they weren't sleeping together. Bonnie was going around saying she was pregnant with Jerry Lee Lewis' love child as they call it. We all laughed because we knew better. It would have been a miracle for it to be his baby. Trust me. He was sterile. He couldn't have any children. A subsequent DNA test proved that he was not the father. She told the world that Jerry Lee Lewis was the father of her baby and, in fact, named the child Jeri Lee. After Jerry Lee, Bonnie decides to set her sights even higher. And she picks up and leaves Memphis, and move to Hollywood. She started stalking Dean martin. He's an older guy. He's 78 years old. He ends up dying before she can actually get close to him. So Bonnie focused on someone she'd been pursuing for a while, Christian brando, the troubled son of Marlon brando. Bonnie had been interested in Christian brando since 1991 when he'd been convicted of shooting his sister's boyfriend in the face. What she did was she sent nude photos to him, FedEx'd them to him while he was in jail. And then they met when they got out, when he got out of jail. And that was it. That's all it took. So Christian brando isn't the only person that Bonnie has her sights on. She was about to meet Robert Blake. On that first night, Robert Blake had no idea who Bonnie really was. She will be famous, but not for the reasons that she ever, ever would have wanted.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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