Candy Barr, the famous stripper who was a friend of'Lee Harvey Oswald' 's assassin 'Jack Ruby (I)' , was bornJuanita Dale Slusher on July 6, 1935 in Edna, Texas. She began herstripping career in her native Texas, becoming famous in the clubs ofDallas (particularly after a drug bust) before playing lucrative venuesin Los Angeles, Las Vegas and New Orleans in the late 1950s. Shereportedly made $2,000 a week (approximately $15,500 in 2012 dollars). Barr served as a technical adviser on the movie Seven Thieves (1960) , in which 'Joan Collins (I)' played anexotic dancer.
It was not the first movie she was associated with: shemade a pornographic film (back when they were called "stag movies"), Smart Alec (1951) , in 1951, when she was only 16 years old. Shortly thereafter she went to work as a stripper at Barney Weinstein'sDallas strip club The Theater Lounge. She also worked at Weinstein'sColony Club, where she became known for her Texas-themed outfit inwhich she sported a cowboy hat, cowboy boots and a pair of cap guns ina holster slung low on her hips. She first met Jack Ruby in 1952, as heoperated clubs near her own clubs. They developed a casual friendshipthat would later deepen after her imprisonment, but she never workedfor him.
In 1953 she married for a second time and had a daughter. Three yeaslater she shot that husband, Troy Phillips--they were separated at thetime--when he broke down the door of her apartment. Police arrested herand charged her with assault with a deadly weapon, but the case wasdropped. She tried acting, appearing a 1957 Dallas production of "Will SuccessSpoil Rock Hunter?". In October of that year she was arrested by Dallaspolice for possessing nearly an ounce of marijuana.
Convicted of drugpossession, she was sentenced under the Lone Star State's draconiandrug laws to 15 years in the hoosegow. She always claimed she wasmerely holding the weed for someone else who set her up with the cops. The pot bust only increased her fame and propelled her into the big timewhile she was still free on appeal. During a Los Angeles stripping gig,she met gangster 'Mickey Cohen' and became his mistress. Cohenwanted to marry her and sent her and her daughter off to Mexico toevade imprisonment, but she returned to the US, as she was bored southof the border, and her relationship with Cohen cooled off.
In 1959 shewas hired by 20th Century-Fox to tutor star Joan Collins in the fineart of the strip-tease. Collins wrote in her autobiography that Barrwas "a down-to-earth girl with an incredibly gorgeous body and anangelic face. "Having divorced Phillips, she married hairdresser-actor'Jack Sahakian' . When her final appeal was rejected by the U. S.
Supreme Court, she was arrested by the FBI and returned to Texas tobegin her imprisonment. She later was a witness in Cohen's 1961 taxevasion trial. When Barr was paroled in April 1963, she was not allowed to move toDallas. Instead, she returned to her hometown of Edna, where sheintended to become an animal breeder. Jack Ruby, with whom she was intouch via telephone, visited her and gave her a pair of dogs.
At thetime of the assassination of 'John F. Kennedy' , after Ruby shotand killed JFK's alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald . Barr wasinterviewed by the FBI. The agency was likely probing Ruby's ties to apossible conspiracy. As Barr had been in regular telephonic contactwith him after her release from prison, the FBI, in Barr's own words, ".
. . thought Ruby had told me names and places and people, which hedidn't. " Ironically, Texas Governor 'John Connally (I)' , who waswounded riding in the presidential limousine during the JFKassassination, pardoned her in 1967. Barr claimed she did not know whyhe did it, unless he had read her record and realized she had beenframed.
Now free of the legal restrictions of her parole, she went back tostripping in 1968, appearing in L. A. and Las Vegas. She returned toTexas to take care of her dying father the following year, and oncemore was busted for pot possession. Barr again claimed a set-up, andthe case was dismissed for lack of evidence.
In 1970 she legally changed her name to Candy Barr. Two years later shepublished a book of poems she had composed in prison, "A Gentle Mind . . . Confused".
In 1976, at the age of 41, she appeared nude in "Oui"Magazine. She then avoided notoriety, though there were plans to make afilm of her life starring fellow Texan 'Farrah Fawcett' . The moviewas never made. Candy Barr died on December 30, 2005, in Victoria, Texas. She was 70years old.