Did Linda Taylor From "The Queen" Podcast Steal a Baby?
Slate’s new miniseries The Queen is a companion to Josh Levin’s newly released book The Queen: The Forgotten Life Behind an American Myth. The four-part series provides an entryway into the life and scams of the infamous Linda Taylor, dubbed the “welfare queen.” Taylor was the ultimate chameleon. She used dozens of aliases, changed her hair often, and could pass for different races. She had multiple social security cards, was married at least 8 times, and often filed false police reports claiming that all of her insured jewelry had been stolen. Exemplified by President Ronald Reagan as the fur-wearing, Cadillac-driving face of his welfare reform campaign, Taylor was the ultimate grifter.
Eventually Taylor was tried and served time, but she was never implicated in what may have been her greatest crime.
Currently on the 3rd of 4 episodes, The Queen hasn’t yet divulged that Taylor is still the primary suspect in the well-publicized Fronczak kidnapping, which occurred in 1964 when a newborn baby boy was taken from a hospital by a woman posing as a nurse. In 2014, Linda’s son Johnnie Harbaugh, said he recognized photos of the child he called “Tiger” and remembers playing with him as a boy. The Fronczak baby has never been located, but Johnnie believes that his mother was involved with trafficking children on the black market.
The story of the Linda Taylor is instantly captivating, and proves that her actions were not just urban legend, but actually much more terrifying than originally publicized. With only 1 part left to the miniseries, it’s safe to say many of us will ultimately be reading Levin’s book.