Committed suicide by lethal injection on July 3, 2003
Made a bet with his fraternity brothers that he could get Marah Lewis to lose her virginity to him. (failed) [November 2001 - February 21, 2002]
Colluded with Catalina Quesada to keep Marah Lewis and Tony Santos apart [December 2001 - February 1, 2002]
Erased a message, from Danny Santos, on Marah Lewis's answering machine in her dorm room [April 1, 2002]
Bounced a check [January 17, 2003]
Worked as a gigolo [March 10, 2003 - May 26, 2003]
Lied to Marina Cooper what his job (gigolo) really was [March 11, 2003 - May 26, 2003]
Murdered Jed Simmons [May 2003]
Murdered one of Eden's female escorts, Renee [May 19, 2003]
Accused of the murder of Ramona Hendon; cleared [May 26, 2003 - July 31, 2003]
Sent Eden August threatening note about another murder [June 10, 2003]
Murdered another of Eden's escorts, Arianna [June 10, 2003]
Falsified a threatening note from the killer of Jed Simmons, Renee and Ariana [June 25, 2003]
Tried to frame Eden August for murder [June 25,2003]
Held Marina hostage at the Lakeland Country Club prom (Marina was saved by Reva) [June 30, 2003]
Knocked out Marina Cooper [July 25, 2003]
Kidnapped and held Marina Cooper hostage [July 25, 2003 - July 30, 2003]
Attempted to murder Shayne Lewis & Marina Cooper [July 30, 2003]Final Words
The final words Ben Reade spoke, spoken to his former stepmother Holly Reade and former stepsister Blake Marler on his death bed at Cedars:
"Help. Help me."
Ben Stoddard was born among a cloud of secrecy in 1986. Since his parents were divorcing, his mother, Maeve, told his father, Kyle, that she miscarried their child. Months later, she revealed the truth: she had given birth and left the baby with her friend Louie Darnell so that Kyle wouldn't be a part of his life. In early 1987, Kyle honored Maeve's wishes and left Ben in her care. Later, Maeve fell in love with Fletcher Reade who loved Ben like his own son. After Fletcher's and Maeve's wedding in July 1988, tragedy struck when Maeve was killed in a helicopter crash. Only three years old, Ben found himself in a custody war between his grandmother, Julia Stoddard, and his new stepfather Fletcher. The judge, learning that Maeve wanted Fletcher to adopt Ben and that he could provide for him, granted him custody. From that point on, Ben Stoddard became Ben Reade. Under Fletcher's care, Ben grew up to be a confidant, uncomplicated young man. Ben's closest friends growing up were Michelle Bauer and Bill Lewis; the three were inseparable and spent many happy times together.
In 1995, when Ben was a teenager, Fletcher married Holly Lindsey. Ben quickly accepted his stepmother, who loved and supported Ben as well. In 1996, when Fletcher and Holly’s daughter, Meg, was born with Down’s syndrome, Ben (who had spent most of his life up to then living alone with Fletcher) felt he was in the way, and although Fletcher didn't agree, he allowed Ben to go to boarding school.
In late 2001, an adult Ben returned to Springfield, this time with a nasty streak. Having inherited his mother's fortune, he enrolled in Springfield University and avoided the people who knew him. Ben set out to establish himself as a real player and, preoccupied with winning, made a bet with his friends to see how quickly he could bed the vulnerable virgin Marah Lewis, and worked with her roommate, Catalina Quesada,to keep Marah and Tony Santos apart. When Cat became pregnant with Tony's child in early 2002 and soon miscarried, Ben drove her to the hospital and posed as the baby's father so that Tony wouldn't learn about the miscarriage. TBen was now really in love with Marah. Soon, Cat blackmailed Ben sleeping with her, which Ben would have done if Maria Santos hadn’t had interrupted. At this time, Ben's conscience finally got to him and he paid off the bet without seducing Marah. However, when he confessed all to her, Marah was hurt and left him. Ben pined for Marah though, and continued his efforts to win her back.
Meanwhile, underage Marina Cooper brashly pursued him, first to get a job as a lifeguard, then for his personal attentions. Though he repeatedly rejected her because of her age, he soon found himself taken in by her charms. As he planned to date Marah and show her off to the upper crust, he decided to have private fun with Marina. He promised to take her to a party, but ended up taking her to the beach instead. They flirted and kissed and Marina got him to strip down to his tight white briefs when suddenly her friends Tammy and Lizzie jumped into view, giggling. Marina had known of his true intentions for her and made a bet with her friends on the type of underwear he wore. Humiliated and degraded, Ben tore Marina apart; calling her a brat and telling her he had actually begun caring for her until this mean-spirited stunt of hers. Ben later forgave Marina for her stunt, but they kept the relationship on a game-playing level, each trying to outdo the other. He even took her to Towers while wearing only boxers below the waist! Soon the fun matured into an admission of genuine feelings between the two, and he began courting Marina, trying to persuade her protective and hostile family members, such as her police detective father, Frank, that he meant her no harm. Around this time he also moved into the former Marler carriage house with Remy Boudreau, longtime friend Bill, and Marah. He would need the money he saved with this gesture, because he learned that bad investments had drained his trust fund dry. Ben approached his impending impoverished lifestyle with denial, running up credit cards and buying expensive gifts for Marina and friends.
In 2003, tired of Ben's attitude, Marina told him he had to find himself a job or they were through. Wanting to make good money very quickly, Ben went to Alexandra Spaulding who offered him a job. Ecstatic, Ben thought he hit pay dirt until he learned that being Alexandra's assistant was merely being a gopher. Disappointed, he accepted Eden August's offer to work for her escort service. Though he initially found it demeaning, when he realized how much money he could make with a minimal amount of work, he stayed with the job and soon became the favorite escort of Ramona Hendon, an attractive socialite. Unfortunately that summer, things would take a terrible turn. Though he agreed to sleep with Ramona for extra money, when he later tried stop, she threatened to tell Marina that Ben had acting as a gigolo. Desperate, Ben went to Eden for help, but she refused to intervene. Desperate, the night of Marina’s 18th birthday, Ben went to confront Ramona only to find her dead! The prime suspect in Ramona’s murder, Ben lost Marina that same night when she discovered the truth.
Without Marina, Ben sunk into despair and soon became one of the prime suspects in a series of murders involving people connected to Eden's Escort service. The case against Ben looked grim with weeks later a young woman went to District Attorney, Jeffrey O'Neill with the fear that Ben killed her high school friend, Bridgit Waters, two years earlier! Armed with this, the police investigated and found out that not only did Ben have a habit of dating high school girls, despite being years older, but the first Springfield victim was the coroner was looking into the Bridgit's death! Meanwhile, Ben was becoming more and more obsessed with Marina and confronted her at her prom, where he clearly became unhinged in front of Marina's father and others. Later, he confronted her again at the Bauer Barbecue before being thrown out by Frank. Though Marina softened toward Ben after he was attacked at the barbecue by Ramona's husband, her anger returned when she realized Ben was using his vulnerable position to manipulate her. Though he ended up being cleared of Ramona's death, since it was discovered that her husband killed her, the police were still looking into the other murders.
Finally things came to a head in late July. Learning that he'd received at $ 1 million inheritance from his late grandmother, Julia Stoddard, Ben was convinced that he could win back Marina and set out to find her. Learning from Lizzie Spaulding that she was with Shayne at the Bauer cabin, Ben went to the Bauer cabin and kidnapped her! Clearly delusional, Ben told Marina that everything would be back to the way it was and he took Marina to a secluded cabin. Unbalanced, Ben told her that her first time should be special, and, suspecting something, Marina asked if his wasn't. Now coming unglued, Ben told her his story about being a good boy and volunteering to go to boarding school, only to be molested by a teacher and feeling ashamed because of it. Promising to make it different for her, Ben tried seducing Marina, who tried to tell him she didn't want to make love. Finally Shayne burst in to save Marina, only to be attacked by Ben. Seeing an advantage, Marina tried to stop Ben by wielding a hatchet, only to have Ben threaten to kill Shayne by lethal injection. Though she tried to talk a maniacal Ben down by appealing to the intelligent, sensitive Ben she knew, he merely stated that the man she knew was gone and he didn't know how to be that again; he was empty inside. At that point, Frank burst in, and Ben grabbed Marina, threatening to kill her! Though Frank succeeded in convincing Ben to let her go, Ben stabbed himself with the injector in order to save her from him.
Seeing him near death, Marina went to him and told him to fight for his life. Feigning surprise that anyone would cry for him, Ben asked Marina to never forget him, and slipped into unconsciousness. At the hospital Ben gave Jeffrey his deathbed confession. He killed Brigit Waters after she laughed at him for refusing to sleep with her. Later, upon learning that coroner Jed Simmons found her body, he killed Jed to cover his crimes. Unfortunately, Jed told a female escort, Renee, about his find, and she, after figuring out Ben was connected to it, blackmailed him and also told her roommate Arianna. His sordid story finally out, Ben told Ross to give his entire inheritance to Marina and after a visit from his oldest friends, Michelle and Bill, as well as Blake and Holly, a tormented Ben Reade breathed his last breath.