Rusty DeCook – Toni Natalie’s third husband – has disputed several of the stories in her new book – more specifically, the ones that concern him.
In short, he has joined the growing chorus of people who claim Toni wrote some pretty outrageous lies in her book.
Rusty wrote a post for Frank Report on the topic.
In it, he wrote: “Toni has written a book in which she saw fit to trash me as well as several people that are now gone, but that I still care very deeply about. I cannot see how painting me in a disparaging light would add to the story she hoped to tell. So, I find it necessary at this time to say my piece.”
In her book, Toni saw fit to compare Rusty’s lovemaking skills to Keith’s, suggesting that Rusty was a “paper airplane” while Keith was a “Concorde jet.”
That may or may not be true – but her critics say, even if true, “how classless for her to mention it in her book.”
She may have had a good reason for including it. One that serves herself.
It is, arguably, one of her “justifications” for committing adultery with Keith Alan Raniere, a psychopath.
Still, ample evidence throws doubt on Toni’s claims of Keith’s “Concorde Jet” lovemaking skills.
Numerous women who experienced Raniere in the boudoir have told Frank Report that Keith was decidedly a dud. His pleasure was all he craved and, because he was sleeping with so many women, he was often quite tuckered out – and gave a flaccid performance.
In the past, Toni told Susan Dones, Joe O’Hara, Heidi Hutchinson and others that Keith was a slug in bed and she was required to suckle his nipples to get him erect, as he lay back and played the woman and sometimes fell asleep when they were in the middle of having sex.
Toni never described sex with Keith to anyone I know of as Concorde style – and usually just the opposite.
But it changed in her book: Keith went from slug to Concorde – the king of lovemakers.
Was she lying then or now?
If Keith “really was a slug, I suspect Toni is altering the truth as part of her overall “justification” for committing adultery.
Her first justification is, as she says in her book, that Rusty did not have sex with her for almost three years – prior to Toni beginning her affair with Keith.
So “Justification #1” is “Sexless Marriage.”
Toni writes, “I had not had sex of any kind for almost three years—and even then, my partner had been, at best, uninterested. Going from Rusty to Keith was like upgrading from a paper plane to a Concorde.”
Rusty has said it was not a sexless marriage.
While we cannot know for certain which one of them is telling the truth – it is true that “sexless marriage” would be grounds for divorce in New York State.
Is Toni setting the stage?
Rusty said he was faithful throughout his marriage to Toni. By her own admission, Toni cheated on Rusty with Raniere.
So, does she feel she has to justify her adultery both ways? i.e., that she and Rusty were in a sexless marriage – and that Keith was super studly.
Toni also throws in another justification:”Meddling Mother-in-Law.”
According to her book, Keith asked Toni to leave Rusty and come with him, but Toni said, “Keith, I’m married. Rusty and I have a son together.”
“I know, I know, I know.”
[Keith] kissed me on the forehead. “But wouldn’t it be nice?”
Yes, it would be nice. So nice that, when I had a big blowup with Rusty concerning his meddling mother, I decided to leave him. It’s not quite right to say I left him for Keith, as I probably would have gone anyway, but there’s no question that Keith’s attention accelerated the process.
Toni says she did not exactly leave Rusty for Keith. She was likely leaving anyway – and that her meddling mother-in-law cinched the deal.
She Left for Money?
Rusty told Frank Report, “We didn’t have a problem in our marriage, as far as I knew. Of course, Toni cost a lot of money to maintain and I was struggling in my business. I could not afford to buy her everything she wanted. We had a son to raise and what with our European nanny, the new house, and Toni’s constant need for $2,000-$4,000 outfits, I was having a hard time keeping up. One day, Keith called her and said to Toni, ‘If you come to meet me in Albany, I can offer you a position where you can make $3 million per year in commissions with this new product line coming out called Awaken.” He said, because of her previous experience in skincare, she could head up the new company. I put her on a train and stayed home with our son, Michael. She was supposed to stay a day or two and she called and said she needed to stay another day. Right then I knew something was up.
“She came back and said ‘That’s it.’ She moved to Albany and Michael stayed with me for about seven months. We were going to do a half year with me and half a year with her. Then I thought he was better off with his mother during the school year.
“He was about six. He stayed three school years with Toni in Albany. Summers with me. During the summer after third grade, Michael did not want to go back with Toni anymore. She did not object to him staying with me. Keith, I believe, convinced her to let him go.
“She likes to tell the story that she sent Michael back to me to keep him safe from Keith but the truth is Michael did not want to go back. And Toni remained with Keith well after Michael came to live with me full-time. Even after Toni left Keith, Michael never returned to Toni. I raised him alone from the time he was eight until he grew up and got his own place.”
So, according to Rusty, Toni left him for money – which, by the way, she never got.
The end of her relationship with Keith saw her allegedly stealing cash from the business she was partners in with Keith and running off with a married man – 12 years her junior. Toni filed for bankruptcy in 1999 and her younger man, Scott Foley, who left his wife and abandoned his own daughter to take up with Toni, filed for bankruptcy too.
It seems – as a matter of strict fact – that Toni committed adultery again – with Scott, who later became husband #4. The two of them went off to the Florida Keys in a recreational vehicle that Toni’s affluent stepfather bought her – as she left her son behind – while Scott abandoned his daughter.
The Great and Powerful Keith Raniere
Getting back to Rusty, and why Toni left her third husband and son – we have yet to come to the greatest justification of all: “Keith mind-controlled me.”
Toni makes Keith seem superhuman in her book. What could she do – a mere simple-minded, [but, of course, beautiful] 10th-grade dropout, versus this man who was a super-genius with dark magical power?
One of Toni’s oldest stories – one she has told for years – and included in her book – with new details – is how she was hypnotized by Keith and quit smoking forever.
This may be in fact justification #1 for Toni – for committing adultery – for it allegedly happened before she started cheating on Rusty.
The background is this: Toni and Rusty were top salespeople for Keith’s company, Consumer’s Buyline. They drove from Rochester to Albany to meet with Keith and collect an award and a bonus. Here is Toni’s version from her book:
… We arrived late in the day… There were dozens of employees milling around, all of them with pep in their step, all of them thrilled to be there….
Keith burst out of his office, his glasses slightly askew, to welcome us to the home office. He wore a dress shirt, swirls of black chest hair peeking over the top button, and gray sweatpants—an eclectic ensemble, but he managed to pull it off…. he talked a mile a minute. “We’re changing the world here,” he said. “This is where the magic happens.” ….
We were joined then by a cocky blonde [Kristin Keeffe] …. “Keith”—she looked at me and grinned, like we were sharing an inside joke—”is Valerie Bertinelli working here now?”
[I spoke with Keeffe about this and she denied making that statement. Bertinelli was an attractive actress of the time -1991.]
Keith seemed not to understand the reference, but I did, and I smiled at the compliment.
….Kristin [said]… “I was gonna go have a smoke … Want to come with?”
….[I] had been craving a cigarette….
“Sure.” I reached into my pocketbook and produced a pack of Marlboro Reds. “If you’ll excuse me.”
“Yes, yes, of course,” Keith said. He paused thoughtfully. “Do you have any desire to quit?”
“Of course,” I said. “I quit before. For a long time. But then my brother got sick, and I was spending all my time at the hospital. His girlfriend offered me a cigarette, and… you know how it is. It’s a hard habit to break.”
“I think I can help you with that.”
“Yes, I think I can help. But we have to find a quiet spot, just you and me. We have to not be disturbed.”
He looked over at my husband, as if for approval, and Rusty shrugged.
[Keith had something else to do] “Tell you what…. [Keith said] Why don’t you have your cigarette, and we’ll circle back in twenty minutes?”
…. Kristin Keeffe and I went out … and we had a smoke. I never would have guessed that it would be my last cigarette.
There was nothing remotely fancy about Keith’s office….
“Come in,” he said, gesturing toward a futon couch along one wall. “Make yourself comfortable.”
I sat on the edge of the futon, my posture ramrod straight, my back two feet from the cushion. I crossed my legs and watched as he plopped down next to me.
“May I?” he asked, and he took my hand…..
With short, stubby fingers, he opened my hand, rubbing his meaty thumb into the contours of my palm, surveying my life line, my love line, my fate line. He registered the chiromantic information as a blind man “sees” a new face. With his 240 IQ, he could probably read palms and read Braille.
“What I’m going to do today,” he said, his voice soft and hypnotic, “what I’m going to do is relieve you of the urge to smoke.”
I could barely suppress a chortle. “Good luck with that.”
He gazed deep into my eyes, and I met his gaze—his bright blues burning into my greens. “You have lovely eyes,” he said matter-of-factly.
“I’m going to ask you some questions,” he told me. “And as I do so, I’m going to stimulate certain pressure points on your hand. Later, when you feel like you want to smoke, all you have to do is apply pressure to these trigger points, and the urge will vanish.”
“If you say so.”
“I say so,” he said, raising his eyebrows. “Please, sit back. Relax.” He smiled. “No wonder you crave nicotine. You’re literally on edge.”
I uncrossed my legs and leaned back, falling into the soft cushion of the futon.
“Close your eyes… good… now, tell me about some things that make you relax.”
“I like to get facials,” I said. “I like to get massages.”
I could feel him pressing down on the fleshy part of my hand, south of the thumb. “I like to take walks outside, especially in the fall, when the leaves turn gold and orange and brown, and the weather is perfect: when the sun is warm but not hot.”
“I like to listen to music.”
“What kind of music?”
“Oh, all kinds. Everything from Frank Sinatra to Genesis.”
After a few minutes of this line of questioning, he asked what made me nervous.
“My mom,” I told him. “She worries so much about me, and that makes me worry about her.” I didn’t go into great detail. I didn’t tell him anything too personal. I opened up just enough for Keith to do his little palmistry trick. Or so I thought.
Ten minutes later, he was caressing my hand and calling my name: “Toni… Toni.. .Toni.. .we’re all done, Toni.. .we’re all done.”
When I stepped out of the office, I felt at once fuzzy but energized. Invigorated. But something was off: the light had changed. The sun was beginning to set. The place had thinned out. Many of the employees had left for the day. Kristin Keeffe was gone. I found Rusty in an empty cubicle, leaning back in the chair, feet propped on the desk, flipping idly through a back issue of Forbes magazine.
“There you are,” he said. “Another half an hour, I would have filed a missing person’s report.”
“What are you talking about?”
“What were you doing in there for so long?”
“I was in there for fifteen minutes.”
“No, you were in there for”—he glanced at the Timex on his well-tanned wrist —”two hours and forty-five minutes.”
“Get out of here.”
“I’m serious. I could have watched The Godfather in the time you were in there.”
To me, the time went by in the blink of an eye. It was like waking up after major surgery. Where did those lost hours go? What happened in that office?
For a split second, I thought I knew. A pathway appeared in my mind that might have led me to the memory of the lost two and a half hours…
Rusty tossed the magazine onto the desk, like he was folding a bad poker hand. “I’m going to have a smoke,” he said. “You want one?”
I pressed down hard with my left hand on the trigger point on my right. Waves of relaxation radiated from my palm to the rest of my body.
“Actually,” I said, “I don’t. I think I’m okay.”
And I was. I haven’t smoked since.
… It was only after I left his dimly lit office that August day, with a feature-film-length hole in my memory—only then did I feel a primal connection with Keith Raniere….. On that summer day in Clifton Park, he claimed me.
To this day, I have no recollection of what went on during that two-and-a-half-hour blackout in his office. But this much is clear: nicotine is one of the most addictive drugs out there. Cigarettes are notoriously difficult to give up. If Keith, in just a few hours, could compel me to quit smoking forever… what else could he get me to do?
Wow! What a Great story.
Here is what Rusty said:
“No. She keeps telling that story. There’s no way I would have waited more than half an hour. I would have been breaking the door down. I remember he told her he could hypnotize her. I don’t think she stopped smoking right after that either. She eventually stopped smoking, maybe when she went to live with him.
“We used to smoke together and smoke a lot. And I can tell you this – I would have definitely remembered if Toni had gone in alone with Keith and came out never smoking again. I would have asked him to help me quit too. I think we smoked, we usually did, on the way back home to Rochester.”
Do You Believe in Magic?
Hmmm. So this magical story about Keith hypnotizing Toni and getting her to quit smoking is perhaps another way of justifying – via lying – why she left her husband for a psychopath.
She was “claimed” by Raniere. She felt “a connection” she was powerless to resist.
He put in her in a trance, where she forgot time and space – and quit smoking. Perhaps she went into another dimension.
Who reading this story wouldn’t be impressed?
Who would not understand that she was a philandering woman – but was, in fact, in the presence of a man who mentally overwhelmed her?
She was a victim – not a dirtbag schemer.
Instead of leaving her good husband and her young son for a man who promised millions, she left because Rusty was not having sex with her, because her mother-in-law was meddling in her marriage, and because Raniere was a super stud with superhuman powers – who could make her forget time and space and control her.
But what if the story is pure hogwash – just a lie – another lie – Toni has told for years to conflate her story – and justify all the shitty things she’s done?
I don’t know the answers. I can investigate. I have already caught Toni in a number of provable lies – but this story is a “she said, he said” story.
And the other witnesses are not very helpful in sorting out the truth here.
Rusty’s mother is deceased.
Keith Raniere is not going to talk – at least not before sentencing.
Kristin Keeffe disputes at least part of the story – the part about saying that Toni looked liked Valerie Bertinelli (Actually Keeffe does not recall any of the events recounted by Toni). But note – Toni says Kristin had already gone when Toni left the room with Keith two and a half hours later – so Keeffe would not be able to confirm or deny the length of time they spend alone together.
All we have is Toni’s word, versus Rusty’s word.
And so we leave the reader to decide for himself or herself which of them is telling the truth here…