48 Hours - Season 2007

Saturday 10:00 PM on CBS Premiered Jan 19, 1988 In Season


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Episode Guide

  • Stolen Beauty
    Stolen Beauty
    Episode 32
    (CBS) Tara Grinstead, an 11th-grade history teacher in Ocilla, Ga., disappeared without a trace in October 2005. Three months later, another young woman, Jennifer Kesse, also vanished in Orlando, Fla. There were some similarities in the cases, leading investigators to wonder: are these disappearances somehow linked? 48 Hours Mystery correspondent Peter Van Sant reports.moreless
  • The Secret Life Of Paige Birgfeld
    By all accounts, 34-year old Paige Birgfeld was a devoted mother to her three young children. So when she suddenly disappeared last June, police in Grand Junction, Colorado suspected foul play. But while police and volunteers searched for the missing mother of three, disturbing evidence of a secret life she led shifted the investigation in a totally new direction. Did that secret life-which Paige kept hidden from her family-play a role in her disappearance? Harold Dow reports for 48 Hours.moreless
  • Polygamy: A World Apart
  • Point Blank
    Point Blank
    Episode 30
    (CBS) The story was originally broadcast on May 17, 2008. It was updated on March 21, 2009. On Oct. 15, 2003, police were called to the Brownsville, Texas, home of Scott and Traci Rhode. Inside, in the couple's bed, lay Scott with a gunshot wound to the head. That morning, Traci says she rose early, went for a walk, took a shower, and then heard a moaning sound. It was then, she says, that she discovered her husband was wounded. Scott was still alive, but later died at the hospital. Traci maintains Scott shot himself, but authorities charge she is a cold-blooded killer with a motive for murder. Life, as Traci knew it, ended that October day. As Scott lay dying, Traci's ordeal was only just beginning. "I was shocked when they asked me to go to the police station. I had already told them all that I knew that had happened. I mean, I wasn't there, I didn't see it, I didn't hear it. I only know what I found," Traci tells correspondent Harold Dow.moreless
  • Betrayal
    Episode 29
    California computer whiz Hans Reiser seemed to have it all-a beautiful Russian wife, two children, and a successful career. But the seemingly perfect life hit turbulence when several years into the marriage his wife Nina had an affair with one of his friends. The couple eventually separated and would become embroiled in a nasty custody fight. Fast forward to September 2006, Labor Day weekend, when Nina dropped the children off at their father's house and mysteriously vanished in the hours that followed. Nina's body has never been found. Was her husband-or someone else-somehow involved in her disappearance? Correspondent Maureen Maher reports.moreless
  • The Preacher's Wife
    The Preacher's Wife
    Episode 28
    Since the sudden death of his wife Kari in April 2006, Matt Baker has gone from grieving husband to a murder suspect maintaining his innocence. Kari Baker was a beloved school teacher who shared a seemingly perfect life with her husband Matt, a pastor. But the couple suffered a devastating blow when one of their daughters succumbed to cancer shortly after her first birthday. According to Matt, Kari became withdrawn, leaving him struggling to take care of his family. Then, seven years later, tragedy struck again when Matt discovered Kari's lifeless body in the couple's Waco, Tex. home. Despite being ruled a suicide by authorities, Kari's family was convinced she had been murdered and set out to prove it. Dubbing themselves "Charlie's Angels," Kari's three aunts and cousin launched their own investigation, retracing the couple's relationship and Matt's steps the night Kari died. Their probe unearthed a number of women who accuse Matt Baker of inappropriate sexual behavior, painting a very different portrait of the charismatic Baptist preacher known to the community. Matt Baker denies these claims, but at the urging of her family and armed with new information, authorities reopened the investigation into Kari's death. Did this bright young loving mother really take her own life? Or, did her preacher husband commit the ultimate sin? 48 Hours correspondent Erin Moriarty sits down with Kari's family and her mother, Linda, who opens up for the first time on television..moreless
  • Courting Disaster
    Courting Disaster
    Episode 27
  • The Last Take
    The Last Take
    Episode 26
    In 1977, aspiring actress Christa Helm, who appeared in television shows such as "Wonder Woman" and "Starsky & Hutch," was found stabbed and bludgeoned to death in front of her agent's house. Now, 31 years after the case went cold, Helm's daughter and investigators sort through a twisted web of sex, celebrity and possible blackmail in the hopes of finally finding her killer. Helm was the classic small-town girl with big Hollywood dreams. Armed with her model-looks, the seductive blond left Milwaukee, Wis., and her daughter, eventually making her way to Hollywood. A fixture in the L.A. party scene, Helm was rubbing elbows with the rich and famous. Never at a loss for male attention, she kept company with a who's who of A-list actors and musicians including Warren Beatty, Jack Nicholson, Mick Jagger and even the Shah of Iran. In what many suspect was groundwork for blackmail, Helm kept a diary and even tape recordings of her star-studded sexcapades, both of which mysteriously disappeared after her murder. But Helm's sex life was not limited to celebrities. A special cold case squad recently uncovered a long string of boyfriends and girlfriends that Helm had left in her wake, sometimes having multiple affairs at the same time and possibly breeding jealousy among those involved. With many of Helm's friends now dead or missing, and other insiders refusing to talk, the case has hit numerous dead ends. Among those declining to speak with police is Tony Sirico, better known for his role as Paulie Walnuts on "The Sopranos," who investigators believe may have some useful information. Despite these obstacles, Helm's daughter and authorities remain undeterred in their quest for answers. Was Helm in over her head, murdered to shut her up? Was she the victim of a jealous lover? Or, was this simply a case of robbery? 48 Hours correspondent Maureen Maher reports.moreless
  • Deadline For Justice
    Jennifer Servo was a recent graduate from the University of Montana's school of journalism with dreams of becoming the next great news anchor. But in September 2002, just weeks after moving to Abilene, Texas to take a job as a reporter at KRBC-TV, the 22-year-old became news when she was found murdered in her apartment. Servo died from strangulation and blunt force trauma to the head and, with no signs of forced entry to her apartment, police suspected that she knew her killer. With a contaminated crime scene producing little evidence, investigators focused their investigation on Jennifer's newly ex-boyfriend, Ralph Sepulveda, and a co-worker, weatherman Brian Travers, with whom she had begun a romantic relationship. Both men deny any involvement in the murder. While a cold case squad has been working the investigation since 2002, Jennifer's own family has been independently pursuing leads, and both are hopeful that their relentless efforts will soon lead them to Jennifer's killer. Like Jennifer Servo, Patricia Scoville moved to a new town to pursue her dreams. It was 1991, when Scoville relocated from Massachusetts to Stowe, Vt., abandoning her corporate career in the hopes of becoming a ski instructor. And like Servo, Scoville's hope that her life was just beginning was cut short when she disappeared while on a bike ride. After an intense search her body was discovered in the woods hidden under leaves. She had been raped and murdered. When police collected DNA from Scoville's crime scene, they were hoping they would be able to quickly match it to a suspect. But their search was hindered by the lack of a Vermont state DNA database. Determined to find their daughter's killer, Scoville's parents lobbied relentlessly for a bill to create a database, but despite support from then-governor Howard Dean, it took seven years for the bill to be signed into law. After thousands of leads and DNA tests at their fingertips, in 2005 police eventually found themselves backmoreless
  • Cold Case
    Cold Case
    Episode 24
  • The Letter
    The Letter
    Episode 23
    In December 1998, police in Pleasant Prairie, Wis., were called to the Lake Shore Drive home of Mark and Julie Jensen. Inside, Mark had found his wife's body lying in her bed. Initially, investigators thought suicide was a strong possibility. But a letter written by Julie before her death pointed police in a different direction. Was the husband somehow involved in his wife's death, as the letter hints? Or did Julie poison herself and pen the letter to implicate Mark in a twisted plot gone wrong, as his parents allege? Erin Moriarty reports for 48 Hours Mystery.moreless
  • A Long Way From Home
    Although she has not officially been charged, 20-year-old Amanda Knox sits in a maximum security Italian prison, a suspect at the center of an Italian murder and sex mystery. Knox was enrolled for a year of study at the University for Foreigners in Perugia, Italy, a picturesque town north of Rome. Now, the University of Washington honor student, along with her Italian boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito, 24, and former student Rudy Guede, is being held for the slaying of her English roommate, Meredith Kercher. But a 48 Hours Mystery investigation raises serious doubts about Knox's involvement. "This is a railroad job from hell. There's not a shred of evidence putting this girl at the murder scene," says Chicago private investigator Paul Ciolino, who 48 Hours Mystery took to Italy. On November 2, 2007 Kercher was found in her bedroom, semi-naked with her throat slashed. Knox initially told police that she arrived home that morning to find the front door open, blood on the floor and no answer from Kercher's locked room. But within days Knox went from being a witness to a murder suspect. At the end of a 14-hour police interrogation Knox said that she and a local bar owner went to the apartment that night. The bar owner had sex with Kercher and then murdered her, a story that later proved false. Knox's story has spread around the world, first dubbed a tale of kinky sex and drugs and now a case of robbery gone wrong. Ciolino and 48 Hours unearthed a number of inconsistencies that raise questions about the accuracy of the police theory of what happened that night. Ciolino even goes so far as to call it "a police generated fairy tale." "They're so desperate to make a case against this kid that they'll do anything," says Ciolino. "They've put so much into Amanda Knox, they've gotta convict her now or they look like fools." While Meredith Kercher's death was a violent tragedy, skepticism surrounds the case against Amanda Knox, who may also be an innocent victim in thismoreless
  • Stolen Dreams
    Stolen Dreams
    Episode 21
    A Wall Street trader lives a secret life as a serial bank robber. Richard Schlesinger reports.
  • Love and Death in the Wild
  • The Long Road
    The Long Road
    Episode 18
    (CBS) The 1986 wedding pictures of Dyke and Karen Rhoads show a predictably joyous young couple, ready for a wonderful life together in the small town of Paris, Ill. Karen was 24 when they married, and had a job as an office assistant at a factory; Dyke worked in landscaping. There was no hint that just months after their wedding their lives would come to a violent end. As correspondent Susan Spencer reports, in the early morning hours of July 6, 1986, a fire engulfed their home.moreless
  • Addicted To Love
    Addicted To Love
    Episode 18
    For many, July 4 weekend invokes images of picnics and fireworks. However, for Lesa Buchanan and her boyfriend Christ Koulis, it was a weekend of sex and drugs that eventually resulted in Buchanan's death. Buchanan was struggling to make it as an actress and model when she had a chance meeting with Koulis, a handsome, ambitious plastic surgeon. She became his patient and his girlfriend. Although the couple maintained a five and-a-half-year relationship, according to Buchanan's family it was marred by Koulis' manipulative and controlling behavior. They say that as a doctor, Koulis would convince Buchanan she was ill so he could make her better. Koulis admits he introduced her to illegal drug use, which authorities say the couple engaged in to enhance their sexual encounters. According to a police investigator, the only time Buchanan experienced those drugs was when Koulis gave them to her. On the weekend of July 4, 2005, paramedics were called to Buchanan's Franklin, Tenn., apartment because she had stopped breathing. Police would later discover a cache of sex toys and prescription drugs. An autopsy concluded that Buchanan died of a narcotic overdose. Authorities launched a five-month investigation, eventually charging Koulis with her death. Despite Koulis' denials, detectives say that his grip on Buchanan led to her drug use - that he supplied the drugs, injected them and was responsible for her death. Prosecutors were convinced they had a strong case. Koulis, a once-promising young doctor, finds himself standing trial and facing 25 years in prison for the death of his one-time patient and girlfriend, and Buchanan's family hopes that justice is served in the name of their loved one. 48 Hours correspondent Troy Roberts reports on the case this Saturday, Feb. 16, at 10 p.m. ET/PT.moreless
  • Who Killed The Beauty Queen?
  • No Way Out
    No Way Out
    Episode 16
    Among the countless stories of catastrophe from Hurricane Katrina, perhaps one of the most horrific was that of St. Rita's Nursing Home in St. Bernard Parish, where 35 elderly residents drowned because their caregivers decided not to evacuate the home. In the days before Katrina hit, numerous evacuation warnings were issued in the New Orleans area, but over the years many residents had grown accustomed to storm warnings and were reluctant to leave. Among those who chose to stay were Sal and Mabel Mangano, who ran St. Rita's. Their failure to evacuate resulted in the death of over half their patients. Subsequently, the Manganos were charged with 35 counts of negligent homicide for those that perished and 24 counts of cruelty to the infirm for those who survived. They faced over 200 years in prison if convicted. "We lost people that we loved, but the decision is made and we can't go back and change it," says Mabel. "We have a stigma that's going to follow us for a long time." The couple did not testify at their trial and until now, has refused to speak publicly about why they didn't evacuate. In their first and only interview, Sal, 67, and Mabel, 65, tell 48 Hours Mystery that, at the time, they believed they were doing the right thing by staying. In the absence of a direct evacuation order of St. Bernard Parish, the Manganos claim they considered the warnings to be just that - warnings. "If it was mandatory, we felt like they would have come to help us, and we would have evacuated," says Mabel. "We don't know how many would pass away by doing an evacuation. For 20 years we've never lost a resident during a hurricane," says Sal. The couple also claims that it was the breakage of the levees that killed their residents and not the actual hurricane. "The hurricane came that night and it was windy," explains Mabel. "The parking lot didn't have any water in it...So we felt real good the morning of the hurricane. We felt like, 'God, it's gone. We have made it. All ofmoreless
  • Flood of Blame
    Flood of Blame
    Episode 15
  • Trigger Point
    Trigger Point
    Episode 14
    In 2004, a woman named Jenny Eisenman shot her estranged husband Drew in her apartment. The soft-spoken elementary school teacher claimed she had suffered abuse at the hands of her husband for years, and that the shooting was in self-defense. But prosecutors say Jenny was a woman scorned and shot her husband out of anger. Was Jenny - described by many as gentle and caring - a victim or, as prosecutors asserted, a woman capable of cold-blooded murder? Correspondent Richard Schlesinger reports.moreless
  • Lost in Paradise
    Lost in Paradise
    Episode 13
  • Fight for the Truth
    Fight for the Truth
    Episode 12
    Twenty years ago Seymour and Arlene Tankleff were murdered. Seventeen years ago their teenage son, Marty Tankleff, was convicted of the crime and sentenced to 50 years to life in prison. Five years ago, 48 Hours began reporting on this fascinating story and now, that story is about to change. The crime took place in the Tankleffs' Long Island home. With no sign of forced entry, cops immediately brought in a then-17-year-old Marty for questioning during which he confessed to stabbing and beating his parents, after being told that his father had temporarily awakened from his coma and fingered him. Although he never signed this confession and immediately recanted, detectives arrested and charged Tankleff with murder. His friends and family have been fighting for his freedom ever since. Throughout the years, legal experts have speculated that Tankleff's confession was coerced and that he was the victim of a cop who rushed to judgment and refused to reconsider his conclusions and pursue other leads, even after the crime-scene evidence raised doubts. And it seems that what was once speculation may now be proved true thanks to new evidence and new witnesses, including one who came forward after watching a 48 Hours update. Tankleff also got some high profile support from award winning actor James Gandolfini, who became convinced Tankleff was innocent, and visited Marty in prison. In late 2007, Marty Tankleff got the news he and his supporters had been dreaming of: his murder conviction was overturned and he was released. But as Tankleff adjusts to his newfound freedom, the question remains - will it last? Tankleff speaks exclusively with 48 Hours Mystery correspondent Erin Moriarty in his only television interview.moreless
  • In Too Deep
    In Too Deep
    Episode 11
    A college student is accused of being involved in a gruesome crime. Was she an accomplice or a lost soul in over her head? Maureen Maher reports.
  • The Socialite's Secret
  • Death Without Mercy
    Jimmy and Shelly Michael had a seemingly perfect marriage. They were young and attractive, with a beautiful home and a loving family. Jimmy ran his own hospital supply business and Shelly was a nurse at Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown, W.Va., where they met when Jimmy was working as a respiratory therapist. Although their relationship started as an affair, it seemed they were destined to be together. But on the morning of Nov. 29, 2005, everything changed when the Michaels' bedroom burst into flames as Jimmy slept, shattering the perfect life that Shelly portrayed. Shelly's perky demeanor in the wake of her husband's death raised suspicion among authorities who had discovered that Jimmy did not die in the fire, but was actually dead before the blaze had been set. Furthermore, the revelation of her affair with another man, inconsistencies in her alibi, and lies during police questioning further convinced investigators that they were eyeing the right person. But the last piece of the puzzle came in February 2006, when the toxicology report revealed that Jimmy Michael died from a lethal dose of Rocuronium, a drug used in hospitals and one that Shelly had access to. Faced with a mountain of circumstantial evidence, it is up to a jury to decide - is Shelly Michael, a woman who prided herself on perfection, really a cold-blooded murderer or is she merely guilty of not being as perfect as she would have everyone believe? In her first and only television interview, Shelly Michael sits down with correspondent Susan Spencer and tells 48 Hours Mystery her side of the story.moreless
  • An Invisible Enemy
    An Invisible Enemy
    Episode 8
    (CBS) It was February 2002 when Cynthia Sommer, her husband, Marine Sgt. Todd Sommer, and their four children were coming home from a family weekend at an amusement park. But as Richard Schlesinger reports, no one could have predicted the rollercoaster ride was just beginning.
  • Capture the Queen
    Capture the Queen
    Episode 7
    In the summer of 2006, Lisa Henson received the call that she patiently waited seven years for - police had found her missing niece, Brooke, enrolled at Columbia University and were on their way to meet her. But just as Henson's greatest hope was realized, it was quickly dashed when police discovered that the woman they had found was not Brooke. In fact, they had stumbled onto the trail of Esther Reed, a young woman who is still outsmarting them all. Esther Elizabeth Reed disappeared from her Seattle home in the summer of 1999, right around the time of Brooke Henson's disappearance from her home in Travelers Rest, S.C. While Brooke was a free spirit, Esther was a sullen teen, a gifted chess player whose intelligence far exceeded her age and, as police would uncover, one whose life became a cross-country con of fake identities and frustrated dreams. From Seattle to Arizona to California, Chicago, Boston and New York, among others, Reed has reinvented herself as a career chess player, a debate champion and even an Ivy League student attending Columbia and Harvard Universities. Over the course of her journey, Reed has used at least four different names, seduced military personnel, and allegedly stole over $100,000 in student loans. With a federal indictment and the Secret Service on the hunt, Reed, a high school dropout, remains one step ahead, giving authorities a run for their money. "She is not Esther Reed. She is not Brooke Henson," says Sgt. John Urquhart of the King County Sheriff's Office, "but she is somewhere and she is somebody." Now, 48 Hours Mystery launches its own investigation in conjunction with local police, private investigators, friends and family, and obtains exclusive interviews with one of Esther Reed's victims, a number of former lovers, an ex-con in Chicago, and a medical student who remained best friends with Reed for years, never suspecting what she was really up to. Additionally FBI consultant Frank Abagnale, whose exploits asmoreless
  • Where's Maddie?
    Where's Maddie?
    Episode 6
  • A Time to Kill - Michelle Harris
    To the outside world, Michele and Calvin Harris had a perfect life -- they were young, attractive and successful with a beautiful family and a home in a picturesque upstate New York town. But Michele's disappearance in the early morning hours of Sept. 12, 2001, revealed a much darker story. With much of New York State Police and canine forces diverted to New York City in response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks, local investigators were slowed by the limited resources available to them. Was this the perfect time for murder? Michele's disappearance remained shrouded in mystery, until state police discovered tiny drops of blood in the Harris home. After four years, with no body or murder weapon, investigators felt they had enough circumstantial evidence and arrested Calvin Harris for Michele's murder. In May 2007, the case went to trial, but even after the jury's verdict, the final outcome of this story remains a mystery.moreless
  • An Eye for an Eye
    An Eye for an Eye
    Episode 4
    A 37-year-old doctor who graduated from Harvard Medical School had a career that was taking off when he moved his family from Texas to Tucson. In October 2004 he was found murdered in the parking lot outside his office. He was stabbed 15 times. An investigation into his death revealed shocking revelations about a former partner involving a secret life that included extramarital affairs, an addiction to Vicodin, jealousy and ultimately, revenge.moreless
  • Sugar Land Conspiracy
    A man accused of murder is being passionately defended in a Texas courtroom by one of the people he tried to kill. Peter Van Sant reports.
  • Storm of Murder
    Storm of Murder
    Episode 2
  • The McGuire Diaries
    Chilling video diaries reveal the intimate thoughts of a suburban wife, mother and nurse on trial for the murder of her husband. Maureen Maher reports.