Retired detective featured on national TV show

BUCKHANNON – Upshur County native, and retired Marion County, Florida, Homicide Detective David D. Taylor will be featured on a new HLN Network series titled Very Scary People on April 7 at 9 p.m. regarding his experience in helping apprehend one of this country’s most prolific female predatory serial killers.

Aileen Wuornos murdered seven men in Florida between 1989 and 1990 by shooting them at point-blank range and two of her victims were former law enforcement officers.

For his part, Taylor, a French Creek resident, is humble about the path his career took starting out as a deputy with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department in 1981.

“As a youngster growing up in rural Upshur County, I was riveted by such police shows as Hawaii Five-O, Dragnet and others.  These shows sparked my desire to seek a law enforcement career just like the Emergency! show did for those who sought out careers in emergency medicine in the paramedic field.”

“Going from working here at a small-town sheriff’s office in Upshur back in the early 80s under the late Sheriff Fred Gaudet to the fast-paced metropolitan policing in a large sheriff’s office in Florida, in the mid 80s was quite the culture shock.”

“After being hired by Marion Sheriff Don R. Moreland, I was assigned to the uniform patrol division for just a few years and was then promoted to the Detective Bureau.  I spent just a little over two years as a property crimes detective before being promoted to the major crimes unit where I spent about half of my law enforcement career investigating some of the most complex and high-profile violent crimes known to humanity.”

“Never, ever in my wildest dreams did I imagine that from my law enforcement career while serving with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office in Ocala, Florida, that this would lead to having the homicide cases I successfully investigated featured on true-crime shows as seen on networks like Court TV, or TruTV, or Discovery ID, or the Oxygen Channel or CNN’s HLN Network.” 

“It still seems so surreal when I watch these episodes on TV.”

“There are times, still today, when someone who knows me from around the country or a family member will text or call me saying they just watched one of my shows on TV.  I sit back and just say, wow.”

“I have met some of the most intriguing folk from around the world and have been interviewed by some people who over the years I have learned to most admire, such as Deborah Norvell.  She is in fact the real deal, as genuine and sincere as they come.”

Taylor has appeared on a number of television shows over the years regarding a number of different cases. Shows have included Unsolved Mysteries; World’s Most Evil Killers; Deadly Women, Predators; American Monster; Snapped Notorious; Reel Crime/Real Stories; two episodes of Body of Evidence, From the Case Files of Dayle Hinman and many others.

He’s been on the following networks, NBC, Court TV, TruTV, Discovery ID, Oxygen Channel, CNN’s HLN Network, and Reelz TV as well as others.

Taylor is grateful for the opportunities he has had in sharing his experiences and work with the public through his appearances on television.

“I have been so blessed to have worked with film crews from Australia, New Zealand, Scotland, and England and other countries from around the world.  Years ago, I shot a show with a production company and crew who produced many of the episodes of Myth Busters and just last year I worked with an on-set director who actually worked on the Dukes of Hazard TV series.”

He further pointed out that he has never sought out or solicited an appearance on a television show. He has always been contacted by production companies and others interested in sharing his law enforcement experiences.

“As I reminisce upon my career in law enforcement, I have been most blessed to have surrounded myself with highly successful people, who in turn made me a better person. While in Florida, I have worked with the best of the best in the policing business.”

Taylor served as a sworn law enforcement from 1981 to 2000.

During his time as a detective he also attended law school at night and earned his Juris Doctorate from the Florida Coastal School of Law in Jacksonville, Fl., along with raising a family. He was a very busy man.

“Back in 2000 just before graduating from law school with aspirations of eventually becoming one of the staff attorneys in the sheriff’s office Legal Services Bureau, I was offered a position I simply could not refuse with a company home-based in Indianapolis, Indiana, as a nationwide law enforcement consultant.  This position took me to a different state every week somewhere in the country and I traveled 40-45 weeks a year for nearly 10 years.  This position was significantly more financially lucrative than practicing law would have ever been and 100 times less stressful, plus I eventually got to travel to all 50 states on the company dime.”

He returned to his native Upshur County in 2009 and finally retired in 2012.

He is also scheduled to appear with Dr. Oz in New York City in front of a live audience on April 16, though the topic of that show is top secret and won’t be known until after its broadcast date.

Very Scary People series with host Donnie Wahlberg, will air on April 7, 2019, at 9:00 p.m. on the HLN Network.  This was filmed in Florida in August 2018.


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