PALM BEACH GARDENS — The murder trial of Alexandria Duval (formerly “Alison Dadow”) for driving the shared car of she and her now-deceased twin off a Hawaii cliff continues to grow more sensational as repeated stories of the sisters’ tumultuous relationship come to light.
Alexandria, along with her sister Anastasia Duval (formerly “Ann Dadow”) operated the successful and popular Twin Power Yoga Studios in Palm Beach Gardens and West Palm Beach before leaving the business in 2014 after various debt crises and alleged failure to pay employees.
They bounced around for a while afterwards, always together, before finally settling in Hawaii, where they began using their new names.
Prosecutors believe that Alexandria—confirmed to have been struggling with Anastasia in their 2016 Ford Explorer—intentionally drove the vehicle over the edge, engineering the wreck that injured her and killed her sister.
The emerging accounts of those acquainted with the sisters make the claim easy to believe.
For one, Anastasia’s friend former boyfriend Federico Bailey (who alleged that the twins “fought [each other] like soldiers”) testified that Alexandria dressed in Anastasia’s clothes and came on to him after the crash.
“She put on Anastasia’s clothes,” he explained. “I started talking to her about what happened; she avoided answering any of my questions.”
Keith Weiss, a Florida chef and another former boyfriend of Anastasia’s, weighed in as well. According to Weiss, he was driving the sisters in his Pontiac Sunfire in 2001 when they went berserk because he wouldn’t pull over so that they could have more wine, with Anastasia even going so far as to kick the steering wheel.
“They were like little kids throwing a temper tantrum,” Weiss recounted. “I almost went off the road. I said, ‘Are you kidding me? You guys are going to wind up killing all of us.’”
Weiss also recalled an incident where the twins broke into a physical fight in the middle of the mall.
“They were great people when they were sober,” Weiss explained, “but the minute they [began] drinking, they were like Jekyll and Hyde.’”
Add to that the insights offered by South Florida acquaintance and physical trainer Victor Ayala.
“They were fantastic teachers, beautiful women, but I also know they were very competitive and very strong-willed,” Ayala said. “They seemed to have a lot of dark demons.”
Another professional colleague, instructor Shelly Slatkin, add to the tales of drunken antics, recalling a time when the sisters burst into her training classroom drunk in 2013.
“They both came in [dressed in] street clothes and changed my music and started adjusting students’ poses, the kind of things they taught me not to do,” Slatkin relayed. “Only afterward did I realize it may have been alcohol-induced.”
Eventually, the twins developed a reputation, in both Florida and points beyond.
“Park City’s a really small town and once you Googled [the twins] . . . you could see what happened in Florida . . . We all kind of stayed away from them,” said Trudee Sanbonmatsu, owner of Yoga Kula Project in Utah, where the sisters settled for a time.
Not surprisingly, Utah was no kinder to the twins in the long run than Florida was. During their short stay, they racked up charges of public intoxication, DUI, fleeing the scene of an accident and even assault of a police officer. They were found crashed in a ditch and fighting on one occasion after being ejected from a restaurant for drunken and disorderly behavior.
Legal issues dogged the pair in Hawaii as well.
All told, the twins kept bouncing back, but Alexandria may have found herself in more trouble than she can handle given recent events. The surviving twin—who is pleading not guilty—will likely have her fate decided before the week is out by presiding Judge Peter T. Cahill.