“Leave No Soldier Behind”: The Unsolved Mystery of the Soldier Who Died in the Watchtower | Vanity Fair (January 8, 2019)

Matthew Brown Army.png

Matthew Warren Brown, U.S. Army (via Vanity Fair Facebook)

Is the Army botching its investigations into noncombatant deaths?

I. The Gun Tower

“On the morning of May 11, 2008, a U.S. Army private second class named Matthew Warren Brown died of a single gunshot wound to the head while manning a watchtower at a forward operating base in Afghanistan. Brown was 20 years old. He was a skinny, all-American kid, a bit aimless but affable and unassuming. He was a good guy. You could see it in his face. At his funeral back home in Pennsylvania, some 200 people showed up. In the aftermath of Brown’s death, army investigators created files about the circumstances. The bullet that killed him was fired from his own weapon, an M4 carbine. He was working the six A.M. shift, alone in the watchtower by the fortified main gate to the base. The tower was known as the Gun Tower. It was made of concrete, and looked medieval when viewed from the outside. It was three stories tall. On the second and third floors it had openings covered with two-piece Plexiglas windows, some of which had broken off and been left lying in shards on the floors.” Read more from Vanity Fair here.

Related Links:
Pvt Matthew Warren Brown | Find A Grave
DoD Identifies Army Casualty: Pvt. Matthew W. Brown
Army Pvt. Matthew W. Brown | Honor the Fallen
Fort Bragg Soldier dies in Afghanistan
Soldier from Fort Bragg dies in Afghanistan
Fort Bragg soldier dies from injuries in Afghanistan
Zelienople soldier killed in Afghanistan, father says
Soldier from Zelienople killed in Afghanistan
Zelienople soldier who died in Afghanistan buried today
“Leave No Soldier Behind”: The Unsolved Mystery of the Soldier Who Died in the Watchtower | Vanity Fair
Family of soldier found dead in Afghanistan in 2008 says he did not commit suicide as claimed
Family of soldier who was found dead in Afghanistan watchtower in 2008 says he did not commit suicide, as the military claims, and had told them he feared he would be killed over his role in a drug ring that was being run on-base by a ‘thug’ sergeant
Army Pvt. Matthew Brown Died As a Result of a Non-Combat Related Incident in Afghanistan; Death Ruled Suicide But Family Alleges Murder in Vanity Fair Publication (May 11, 2008)

Scorned, Love Kills: 6 Active Duty Military Homicide Cases Featured on Investigation Discovery

Preview: An Army Major lay lifeless in his bed, shot twice at close range while sleeping next to his wife. Investigators would soon uncover an intricately planned murder plot involving sex parties, adultery and coercion. -Behind the Picket Fence, Scorned: Love Kills (S1, E1)

Scorned, Love Kills Premiered ‘Behind the Picket Fence’ on Investigation Discovery: Army Spouse Joan Shannon Finds the Perfect Hitman (January 21, 2012)

The young and wild Monique Wallace is married to 40-year-old Paul Berkley, a navy reservist and father of two in suburban North Carolina. But with Paul leaving on a mission overseas, temptation and lust will lead them all down a dark path to murder. -Rules of Engagement, Scorned: Love Kills (S2, E7)

Scorned, Love Kills Premiered ‘Rules of Engagement’ on Investigation Discovery: Navy Reservist Paul Berkley Murdered While Home on Leave (March 9, 2013)

Fred and Jennifer have a picture perfect marriage. But when Fred meets Danielle, a young doctor in the Navy, Jennifer fights to keep Fred for herself. The love triangle explodes, leaving police struggling to understand a grisly crime scene. -Naval Affairs, Scorned: Love Kills (S3, E1)

Scorned, Love Kills Premiered ‘Naval Affairs’ on Investigation Discovery: Jealous Wife Kills Fred Trayers After Learning About Affair (January 4, 2014)

Sexy psychologist and doting Air Force wife Michelle begins a swinging affair with Army Sgt. Diamond while her husband, Captain Marty Theer, is away. But all’s fair in love and war, and Marty’s return will remind them that love is a battlefield. -Sergeant Swinger, Scorned: Love Kills (S4, E1)

Scorned, Love Kills Premiered ‘Sergeant Swinger’ on ID: Air Force Captain’s Murder Reveals Wife’s Evil Intent, Adultery & Greed (October 4, 2014)

American soldier Megan Touma has left her husband for her lover Edgar. Turns out Edgar has a spouse of his own. When Megan gets pregnant Edgar must make a decision between two women. Someone will be left brokenhearted and someone will be left dead. -Love is a Battlefield, Scorned: Love Kills (S5, E2)

Scorned, Love Kills Premiered ‘Love is a Battlefield’ on ID: Married Army Soldier Edgar Patino Murders Girlfriend & Unborn Child (March 14, 2015)

Preview: While Kathy Lipscomb spends late nights at the hospital with the handsome Dr. Pearle, her husband’s career in the Air Force is taking off, but so is his relationship with a hot young officer. When the affairs are exposed the consequences are fatal. -Sex, Secrets & Sergeants, Scorned: Love Kills (S5, E5)

Scorned, Love Kills Premiered ‘Sex, Secrets & Sergeants’ on Investigation Discovery: Kathy Lipscomb Found Dead on Side of Texas Highway (April 10, 2015)

Editor’s note: With a cable subscription, you can download the free ID Go app and watch Investigation Discovery programming at your convenience. And for those who do not have cable, you can watch “unlocked” episodes on the ID Go app including the latest premieres. For those who prefer commercial free programming during your binge session, Prime Video has an ID channel: ‘True Crime Files by Investigation Discovery” available for $3.99 a month. It’s a compilation of older seasons but totally worth the cost if you are a true crime addict. Download the ID Go app or purchase ID True Crime Files & binge away.

Related Links:
About the Show | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery
Sex Helps Wife Plan Murder | Scorned – Love Kills (Preview)
Behind the Picket Fence | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (S1, E1)
Behind the Picket Fence | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (website)
Behind the Picket Fence | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Rules of Engagement | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (S2,E7)
Rules of Engagement | Scorned: Love Kills |Investigation Discovery  (website)
Rules of Engagement | Scorned: Love Kills |Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Naval Affairs | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (S3,E1)
Naval Affairs | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (website)
Naval Affairs | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Sergeant Swinger | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (S4,E1)
Sergeant Swinger | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (website)
Sergeant Swinger | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Love is a Battlefield | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (S5,E2)
Love is a Battlefield | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (website)
Love is a Battlefield | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
Two Couples, Two Dangerous Affairs | Scorned: Love Kills (Preview)
Sex, Secrets & Sergeants | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (S5,E5)
Sex, Secrets & Sergeants | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (website)
Sex, Secrets & Sergeants | Scorned: Love Kills | Investigation Discovery (Amazon)
True Lies | Forensic Files [Full Episode]

Snapped Premiered ‘Crystal Mangum’ on Oxygen: Duke Lacrosse False Accuser Fatally Stabbed Boyfriend Reginald Daye, Sentenced to 14-18 Years in Prison (October 7, 2018)

For sale: One of the most notorious citizens of Durham, North Carolina finds herself under scrutiny after her boyfriend is stabbed. -Crystal Mangum, Snapped (S24, E7)

Date: April 3, 2011
Victim: Reginald Daye, 46, professional painter
Offender: Crystal Mangum, 32, Navy veteran, college student
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Circumstances: Reginald Daye grew up in Durham, North Carolina, family described him as kind and caring and looking for a long-term relationship, he met Crystal in 2011, she was 14 years younger, Crystal’s family was low income but loving, she served in the Navy for 3 1/2 years, while in the service, Crystal met another Navy sailor and they had two children, the relationship didn’t last because he was married the entire time, Crystal was honorably discharged as a result, she returned to Durham to be closer to family, she earned a college degree in psychology and was pursuing her masters, she met another man and had a third child but this relationship ended as well, she was struggling financially and moved in with her aunt in 2010, this is where she met Reginald, Reginald asked Crystal to move in with him to help share the rent, they became romantically involved, Reggie fell quickly for Crystal, he loved her kids too, they appeared to have a good relationship, he wanted a family & love, barely a month after Crystal moved in, she stabbed Reggie after a violent confrontation, Reggie was rushed into surgery, the police walked into a crime scene of violence, the living room was destroyed, a door to the bathroom was ripped off its hinges, Reggie revealed that Crystal had stabbed him, police learned the offender was “the Crystal Mangum,” in 2006, Crystal was working as an exotic dancer for private parties, she needed the money while attending school, on March 13, 2006, Crystal got a job at an off campus party, that same night, Crystal reported she was raped by three Duke Lacrosse players, they gave her a picture of the team and she picked out three men from the photo, the DA took on the case with vigor and the media descended on Durham, NC, it was the privileged versus the low income single mom, she claimed they were drunk and abusive, the university acted quickly, cancelled the teams events and the coach was fired, it polarized the community, it split America right down the middle, it dominated the national news, but the case began to unravel, the DNA came back and none of the men she accused matched the DNA sample from the sexual assault kit, it was a case of a false accusation and these men were totally innocent, the DA was disgraced and disbarred, CM was a pariah in the community, she couldn’t get a job or an apartment because of the reputation she had, initially, the attack on Reggie stemmed from a domestic dispute with CM, police couldn’t find CM and they actively looked for her to ask her about the altercation, then the police got a mysterious phone call from a child, the boy told 911 his mom was in a fight and had to leave, they responded to the call at the neighbors apartment, CM was there, she had injuries and the police needed pictures of them, one of the detectives believed that she may have stabbed Reggie in self-defense, CM knew not to talk to the police without an attorney, she was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury (stabbing), after she was booked into jail, the police called the hospital to get a status, it appeared Reggie was going to make a full recovery, after his surgery, he gave the police a statement, Reggie told the police he introduced CM to his family at a party, when they got home, he got jealous because she was flirting with someone, once they got in the apartment, the argument escalated quickly, he went into a jealous rage and admitted hitting and jumping on CM, he forced the bathroom door open to get to CM and pulled her out of the bathroom, he finally stopped and then CM went to the kitchen, got a knife, and stabbed him in his side, but doctor’s saved him, he admitted they were fighting and he got mad which gave her what looked like a reason for self-defense, but on April 6, Reggie’s condition took an unexpected turn for the worse and he died, they were concerned he was detoxing from alcohol, ran a fever and went into cardiac arrest, he was in a coma and had substantial brain damage, the family had to make the decision to pull the life support, he died on April 13, 2011, his family was devastated, Crystal was in jail at the time Reggie passed away, Reggie’s death had dire repercussions for CM, her charges went from assault to a first degree murder charge, CM decided its time to talk directly to the DA, she said after they returned from the party, Reggie became jealous and hit her in the head once they got in the apartment, she hid in the bathroom and he kicked the door in and dragged her out by her hair, he finally relented but she said Reggie got some knives out of the kitchen and started throwing them at her, she stabbed him in the side and ran out of the apartment, the police had a chaotic scene to decipher, CM was charged with second degree murder, CM’s advocates claimed she couldn’t get a fair trial in Durham because of her high profile notorious past, 2 1/2 years later, 35 yo CM headed to trial in Durham County Courthouse, she had a lot of supporters in Durham and said it was an altercation to save her life but the prosecution said she was a dangerous and unstable woman who had a lack of self control and was on the edge, the judge did not allow the Duke Lacrosse case in the trial, but an ex-boyfriend of CM testified against her, he didn’t want to but did testify that 14 months prior to Reggie’s attack, she threatened him with a knife as well, she also set some of his belongings on fire, he called the police and they intervened, CM was arrested for arson and spent 90 days in jail, then she moved in with her aunt and met Reggie, the similarities were no coincidence, it was a pattern of abusing men, some people thought she should have been prosecuted for the false rape allegations and this was vindication for them, Crystal’s supporters see a travesty of justice
Disposition: On November 22, 2014, Crystal Mangum was found guilty of second degree murder of Reginald Daye and sentenced to fourteen-eighteen years in prison, on appeal, she asked for a new trial but it was denied

Source: ‘Crystal Mangum’ Snapped

Crystal Mangum’s name became synonymous with scandal and was known throughout Durham, North Carolina. -Snapped (S24, E7)

Friend of Crystal Mangum, Jacqueline Wagstaff, expresses Crystal didn’t receive a fair trial. -Snapped (S24, E7)

Law enforcement, friends and reporters describe their opinions of the verdict of Crystal Mangum. -Snapped (S24, E7)

In the News:

Duke Lacrosse Rape Case Dismissed – False Rape Allegations, David R. Usher, Extra Edition

Ed Bradley of “60 Minutes” speaks with Hannah Storm about his exclusive interview with Duke University lacrosse players accused of raping an exotic dancer. -CBS News

The woman who prosecutors determined falsely accused three Duke lacrosse players of rape maintains in a new memoir that she was attacked, a claim that provoked an angry lawsuit threat from one player’s family. -Associated Press

Crystal Mangum found guilty of 2nd-degree murder. -The News & Observer

Duke Lacrosse Rape Accuser Crystal Magnum Found Guilty Of Murder. -The Advise TV Show

Crystal Gail Mangum made headlines for falsely accusing members of the Duke University men’s lacrosse team of rape. A few years later, Mangum is charged with attempted murder. -Corrupt Crimes, True Crime Network

Presumed Guilty: Due Process Lessons of the Duke Lacrosse Case. -The FIRE Org

Join Chuck Woolery as he revisits Crystal Magnum and how she falsely accused three Duke University lacrosse players of rape in 2006. -Blunt Force Truth

Investigation Discovery:

Crystal Mangum, Stripped to the Bone, Wives with Knives

Related Links:
Obituary: Reginald Eugene “Reggie” Daye
Duke Lacrosse Accuser Crystal Mangum’s Tragic Life
Judge Ordered Psychiatric Evaluation For Woman Charged With Murder Who Falsely Accused Duke Lacrosse Players
Duke Rape Accuser Crystal Mangum May Face Murder Charges
Duke rape accuser might face murder charge
Duke lacrosse accuser Crystal Mangum charged with murder
Duke lacrosse accuser charged with murder in boyfriend’s stabbing
Duke lax accuser indicted for murder
Duke lacrosse accuser indicted on murder charge
Duke Lacrosse: Crystal Mangum Indicted for First-Degree Murder
Duke lacrosse accuser out of jail after murder charge
Duke lacrosse accuser makes bond on murder charge
Jury selection starts in Crystal Mangum murder trial
Verdict Watch: Crystal Mangum Murder Trial
Mangum jurors see alleged murder weapon
Prosecution rests its case in Crystal Mangum murder trial
Mangum found guilty in boyfriend’s stabbing death
Crystal Mangum, Duke lacrosse accuser, convicted, sentenced in boyfriend’s stabbing death
Crystal Mangum, Duke lacrosse accuser, convicted of murder
Duke lacrosse accuser found guilty of murder
Duke Lacrosse Fake “Victim” Was Convicted of Murder
Duke lacrosse accuser Crystal Mangum guilty of murder
Duke Lacrosse accuser Crystal Mangum found guilty of second-degree murder
Woman who falsely accused Duke lacrosse players of rape found guilty of murder
Crystal Mangum, Duke lacrosse accuser, gets 14 years for murder
Duke rape accuser Crystal Mangum sentenced to 14 years for murder
Is Sidney Harr’s crusade for Crystal Mangum backfiring?
Former Duke Lacrosse accuser Crystal Mangum speaks to ABC11 from behind bars
The Duke Lacrosse Accuser Stands by Her Story
Crystal Mangum appeals murder conviction in 2011 Durham stabbing
Duke lacrosse accuser wants cash, new murder trial, but will ally land in court?
Accuser from Duke lacrosse case seeks damages, new murder trial in latest legal battle
Duke lacrosse rape accuser loses bid for a new murder trial
Judge dismisses lawsuits filed by Duke lacrosse accuser
“I’m Broken”: The Duke Lacrosse Rape Accuser, 10 Years Later
Here’s the latest on the Duke lacrosse accuser
Duke University Lacrosse Team Rape Scandal
Duke Rape Accuser Got 160 TV News Stories on Accusation, 3 on Murder Conviction
Remembering (and Misremembering) the Duke Lacrosse Case
A New ESPN Doc Exposes the Real Villains in the Duke Lacrosse Case
Former Exotic Dancer who Accused Duke Lacrosse Players of Sexual Assault Fatally Stabs Boyfriend
Durham’s Crystal Mangum the subject of an episode of true crime series ‘Snapped’
Fantastic Lies, ESPN Films
Fantastic Lies, ESPN Films: 30 for 30 (Amazon Prime)
Crystal Mangum | Murderpedia

YouTube:
Duke Lacrosse Rape Case Dismissed – False Rape Allegations, David R. Usher, Extra Edition
Accused Lacrosse Players Talk: CBS News
Duke Accuser Restates Claims in New Book
Crystal Mangum found guilty of 2nd-degree murder
Duke Lacrosse Rape Accuser Crystal Magnum Found Guilty Of Murder
Crystal Gail Mangum, Duke Lacrosse Scandal
Presumed Guilty: Due Process Lessons of the Duke Lacrosse Case
Blunt Force Truth Minute – Duke Lacrosse Accuser
Wives with Knives co-starring Riko Bay from ID Channel
Crystal Mangum | Snapped | Oxygen (S24, E7)
Crystal Mangum | Snapped | Oxygen (website)
Snapped: Preview – What Is The Truth (Season 24, Episode 7) | Oxygen
Snapped: Bonus Clip – I Won’t Stop Being An Advocate (Season 24, Episode 7) | Oxygen
Snapped: Bonus Clip – Was There More To The Case? (Season 24, Episode 7) | Oxygen

48 Hours NCIS Premiered ‘Trail of Fire’ on CBS: Holley Wimunc, Domestic Violence, and the Holley Lynn James Act (June 26, 2018)

Friends searching for a missing Army nurse find her apartment smoldering and no sign of their friend. Can NCIS agents find her? -Trail of Fire, 48 Hours NCIS

The apartment of a missing Army nurse was found smoldering. This was the season finale of “48 Hours: NCIS” and producer Jonathan Leach joined CBS News to discuss the episode. -Trail of Fire, 48 Hours NCIS

Holley Lynn James Wimunc 2

Lt. Holley Lynn James, US Army

Fort Bragg Army nurse, Lt Holley (Lynn James) Wimunc, 24, was murdered by her Marine husband John Wimunc on July 9, 2008 in Fayetteville, North Carolina. After Holley didn’t show up to work, her friends went looking for her. They found her apartment had been set on fire but Holley was nowhere to be found. Three days later authorities discovered Holley’s mutilated remains in a shallow grave outside of Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Her body had been chopped up with an axe and burned repeatedly in an effort to try and destroy evidence. John Wimunc also started her apartment on fire in an effort to hide evidence with no regard for any of the nineteen other families in the apartment building. Holley’s father Jesse James shared that she planned on divorcing John Wimunc after putting up with the domestic abuse for over seven months. It would be the day after she told John that she was leaving him that she would go missing. Marine Cpl. John Wimunc, 23, was charged with first-degree murder, second-degree arson and conspiracy to commit arson. An accomplice, Lance Cpl. Kyle Alden, 22, was charged with being an accessory after the fact of a felony, second-degree arson and conspiracy to commit arson. John Wimunc plead guilty to avoid the death penalty and was sentenced to life in prison. Kyle Alden plead guilty and was sentenced to 44 to 62 months in prison. Jesse James worked with Representative Bruce Braley on legislation that would improve conditions for both domestic violence and sexual assault victims in the military. The Holley Lynn James Act (H.R. 1517) was introduced to the 112th Congress in 2011 but did not pass.

“I didn’t know much about domestic violence. But the thought that he would murder Holley is a thought that never occurred to me. I wish it had occurred to me. I wish for one moment I would have thought maybe he’ll kill Holley or murder Holley. My reaction would have been so different. I didn’t know about domestic violence.” -Jesse James (Holley’s father)

MJFA Link:
Army Nurse Lt. Holley Lynn James Murdered by Marine Husband the Day After She Announced Divorce; John Wimunc Plead Guilty, Sentenced to Life in Prison (July 9, 2008)
History: The Military And Domestic Abuse (January 28, 2009)
30 Domestic Abuse Cases in the Military That Ended in the Murder of Female Partners (2017)

Editor’s Note: If you would like to watch the full episode of ‘Trail of Fire,’ please visit the CBS All Access website, visit the 48 Hours website, or download the 48 Hours app for iPad. The most recent episodes are unlocked on the 48 Hours website and app. If you would like to watch past episodes on the 48 Hours app, it cost’s $4.99 a year. There’s programming dating back to 2005 on the 48 Hours app, including some classics, to feed your true crime addiction.  

Authorities in North Carolina have charged the husband of a Fort Bragg Army nurse with murder after the woman’s remains were found in a brush fire three days after she went missing. -AP (July 14, 2008)

The husband of an Army nurse who worked in the maternity ward at Fort Bragg’s hospital was charged Monday with murder in her death, a day after her body was discovered by authorities. -AP (July 14, 2008)

Rep. Bruce Braley introduces the Holley Lynn James Act — a bill to help victims of sexual assault and domestic violence in the military get justice. The bill is named after Holley Lynn James, a constituent of Rep. Braley who was killed by her husband while both were in the service.

Domestic Violence: Holley Wimunc

Related Links:
Obituary: Lt Holley Lynn James
Second Missing Ft. Bragg Soldier Is Divorcing Husband
Evidence to be preserved in case of slain Army nurse
Authorities suspect charred remains could be Fort Bragg nurse
Fort Bragg nurse sought protection from Marine husband after gun incident
Apartment complex denies access to slain soldier’s family
Slain soldier’s brother retrieves belongings from apartment
Autopsy: Army nurse was shot, buried
Funeral set for Army nurse Holley Wimunc
Vigil planned for slain Army nurse
Fort Bragg hosts memorial service for slain nurse
Wimunc’s father: Daughter ‘never met a stranger’
Family, attorney: Marine charged in wife’s death is innocent
Marine’s parents: Claims of violence against wife ‘unfounded’
Husband, 2nd man arrested in slaying of Bragg-based soldier
2 Marines charged in nurse’s death due in NC court
Marine charged in wife’s death
Marine charged in death of Army nurse wife
Husband charged with murdering soldier wife
Missing Nurse’s Marine Husband Charged With Murder
Dead Army nurse’s husband charged with murder
Camp Lejeune husband charged with the murder of his Fort Bragg wife
Soldier’s Husband Charged With Murder
Marines appear in court in Army nurse’s death
Marines charged in slaying appear in court
Marines indicted in Army nurse’s slaying
Death penalty sought in Army nurse’s slaying
NC to seek death penalty in killing of Army wife from Dubuque
Wimunc Faces Death Penalty
Plea deal reached in Marine murder case
Camp Lejeune Marine pleads guilty to killing wife
Second Marine pleads guilty in Army nurse’s death
Marine Pleads Guilty in Army Wife’s Murder
Slain Army nurse’s dad in war against domestic violence
Death on the Home Front
The Fort Bragg Murders
U.S. Military Is Keeping Secrets About Female Soldiers’ ‘Suicides’
When a Military Nurse Fails to Show Up for Work, Worried Friends Rush to Her Apartment Only to Find her Home Burned & Their Friend Missing
Did a Missing Army Nurse Fall Prey to a Serial Killer Targeting Military Women?
Fort Bragg soldier Holley Wimunc’s 2008 murder featured on CBS’ ’48 Hours: NCIS’
Fort Bragg soldier Holley Wimunc’s 2008 murder featured on CBS’ ’48 Hours: NCIS’
History: The Military And Domestic Abuse (January 28, 2009)
30 Domestic Abuse Cases in the Military That Ended in the Murder of Female Partners (2017)

Video Links:
AP Top Stories: Holley Wimunc
Dead Army Nurse’s Husband Charged With Murder
Marine Charged in Army Wife’s Death
Holley James we miss you
Domestic Violence in the Military Part 1 | CBS News
Domestic Violence in the Military Part 2 | CBS News
Rep. Braley introduces Holley Lynn James Act
Domestic Violence: Holley Wimunc
Did a missing Army nurse fall prey to a serial killer targeting military women?
“48 Hours: NCIS” sneak peek: Trail of Fire
“48 Hours: NCIS: Trail of Fire” preview

48 Hours NCIS Premiered ‘Deadly Lies’ on CBS: Marine Corporal Justin Huff Accused of Fake Rape by a Catfisher; Navy Sailor Cooper Jackson Found Guilty of Murder (June 19, 2018)

“48 Hours: NCIS” takes you inside the real-life investigation of a marine, Justin Huff, who mysteriously disappeared. “48 Hours” Senior Executive Producer Susan Zirinsky joined CBSN to discuss the episode. -CBS News

Preview: Did a duplicitous online love affair between two people who never met lead to an innocent Marine being murdered? -Deadly Lies, 48 Hours

Marine Corporal Justin Lee Huff, 23, of Camp Pendleton, California passed away January 2, 2006 in Currituck County, North Carolina. Justin was attending the Navy and Marine Corps Intelligence Training Center in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Initially, fellow Marines at Dam Neck Annex of Oceana Naval Air Station and his family considered his absence a disappearance because this wasn’t like Justin. But the US Marine Corps considered it an unauthorized absence and NCIS was tasked with investigating the suspicious circumstances. And during the course of their investigation, they would learn that Navy sailor Cooper Jackson was involved and that this wasn’t a disappearance, it was a murder. Jackson was also attending the Intelligence Training Center and he admitted to impersonating a NCIS officer in an attempt to lure Justin Huff and ultimately kill him. The reason: Jackson’s internet girlfriend (who he had never met in person) told him she had sex with a Marine and Jackson insisted it was rape because she was too intoxicated to consent. Jackson wanted revenge for a rape that turned out to be a rape hoax. As it turns out, Cooper Jackson’s girlfriend “Samantha” went along with the fake rape simply to agree with him, not realizing he had sinister plans.

Cooper Jackson admitted he impersonated a NCIS officer so he could handcuff Justin and trick him into going for a ride with him. Jackson told NCIS agents he confronted Justin about the rape and after Justin denied it, he slit his throat. Jackson basically picked a Marine, any Marine, to exact his vengeance. He told NCIS agents where Justin’s body was and where he disposed of the murder weapon and handcuffs used to subdue Justin. NCIS found Justin and recovered the instruments of murder from the river where Cooper said he tossed them. Jackson was charged with kidnapping and murder in a death penalty trial. Jackson froze when he finally laid eyes on “Samantha” in the courtroom. Cooper Jackson couldn’t even look at her and apologized to the court for his actions. Jackson was found guilty and he was sentenced to life in prison without parole. Samantha on the other hand wouldn’t spend a single day in jail. The investigators discovered she did not ask Cooper Jackson to kill Justin Huff but Justin’s fellow Marines feel differently. They say she may not have done anything criminally wrong but her actions lead to Justin’s death. Huff’s Marine brothers, who served two tours overseas with him, said if everybody was like Huff, this world would be a better place.

Editor’s Note: If you would like to watch the full episode of ‘Deadly Lies,’ please visit the CBS All Access website, visit the 48 Hours website, or download the 48 Hours app for iPad. The most recent episodes are unlocked on the 48 Hours website and app. If you would like to watch past episodes on the 48 Hours app, it cost’s $4.99 a year. There’s programming dating back to 2005 on the 48 Hours app, including some classics, to feed your true crime addiction.  

Related Links:
Fallen Heroes Project: Justin Huff
Marine from Indiana killed in N.C.
Marine remembered by peers from all walks of life
Sailor, 22, Charged In Death Of Marine
Boones Mill sailor charged in slaying of Marine
Woman’s fake rape story led to Marine’s killing, prosecutors say
Sailor Fell for a Lie and Killed a Marine
Sailor Kills Marine After Lie About Rape
Sailor kills Marine after lie about rape
Sailor admits killing Camp Pendleton Marine
Virginia: Sailor Pleads Guilty to Killing Marine
Sailor pleads guilty to killing Marine, is spared death penalty
Sailor Pleads Guilty to Killing Marine He Mistakenly Thought Was Rapist
Murdered Marine’s family, friends testify in sailor’s sentencing
Virginia sailor to face capital charges in Marine’s death
Sailor who was duped gets life for Marine’s slaying
Woman says she ”feels bad” that her deceit led to Marine’s killing
Brought together by grief
The Search for a Marine who Failed to Show up for Roll Call Launches NCIS Agents into a World of Calls and Texts, A Relationship Built on Lies, and an Ill-Fated Case of Mistaken Identity in “48 Hours: NCIS: Deadly Lies”
Cases they can’t forget: Local attorney details case of murdered Marine in exclusive interview
Catfishing Relationship Between Strangers Leads to the Murder of an Innocent Marine
“48 Hours: NCIS”: How a catfishing relationship between strangers led to the homicide of an harmless Marine
“48 Hours: NCIS”: Investigating the mysterious disappearance of a marine (msn.com)
“48 Hours: NCIS”: Investigating the mysterious disappearance of a marine (YouTube)
“48 Hours: NCIS” sneak peek: Deadly Lies

Investigation Discovery Published ‘The Missing Pieces: The Staircase’: The True Crime Story of Michael & Kathleen Peterson (June 18, 2018)

In 2001, Kathleen Peterson’s body was found at the foot of a staircase in her home. The Missing Pieces looks at the nagging questions surrounding her death, dissecting a frantic 911 call, a potentially killer owl, and a blood-soaked stairwell. -The Staircase, Investigation Discovery

Related Links:
The Missing Pieces: The Staircase | Investigation Discovery (YouTube)
Military Widow Elizabeth Ratliff Found Deceased at the Bottom of Stairs in Germany; Michael Peterson Last Person to See Alive, Adopted Ratliff’s 2 Daughters (Nov. 25, 1985)
Kathleen Hunt Found Deceased at Bottom of Stairs in NC Home; Spouse Michael Peterson Pleaded Guilty to Manslaughter to Avoid Second Trial (Dec. 9, 2001)
Marine Corps Veteran Michael Peterson Convicted of the Murder of Wife Kathleen; Sentenced to Life in Prison, No Parole (October 10, 2003)
Marine Vet Michael Peterson Pleaded Guilty to Manslaughter of Wife Kathleen to Avoid 2nd Trial; Agreed to Alford Plea, Released with Time Served (Feb. 24, 2017)
Investigation Discovery Premiered ‘An American Murder Mystery: The Staircase’ (April 8, 2018)
Netflix Premiered ‘The Staircase’: A Docuseries Examining Marine Veteran Michael Peterson’s Durham, North Carolina Murder Trial (2018)

Netflix Premiered ‘The Staircase’: A Docuseries Examining Marine Veteran Michael Peterson’s Durham, North Carolina Murder Trial (June 8, 2018)

On December 9th, 2001, Kathleen Peterson was found dead at the bottom of a staircase. Did he do it? -The Staircase | Netflix

Season 1:

1. Crime or Accident? Following his wife’s suspicious death, Michael Peterson speaks about his version of the events while lawyers and expert witnesses prepare for trial.
2. Secrets and Lies: As Michael’s hidden life comes out into the open, defense experts debate if it will have a significant impact on the coming trial.
3. A Striking Coincidence: The defense team is shaken when a suspicious event from the past comes to light. Later, the team visits Michael’s first wife in Germany.
4. A Proseuction Trickery: As the trial looms and media attention heats up, an autopsy report’s wording ruffles the feathers of the defense team.
5. A Weak Case: The prosecution presents its case while the defense strives to cast a reasonable doubt within the minds of the jury.
6. The Prosecution’s Revenge: A witness brings surprising levity to the stand, the judge rules on an important matter, and Michael’s alleged temper comes under scrutiny.
7. The Blow Poke Returns: Kathleen’s sisters pore over Michael’s writings. Jurors visit the staircase at Michael’s home. A vital piece of evidence reappears.
8. The Verdict: Is Michael Peterson guilty or not guilty? The jury delivers its verdict regarding the mysterious death of his wife, Kathleen.
9. Reopening the Case: Eight years later, the possibility that a key witness for the prosecution may have misled the jury could prompt the need for a new trial.
10. The Last Chance: After more experts testify about the questionable conclusions and claims of Duane Deaver, the judge rules on whether a new trial is necessary.
11. Looking for Closure: Following two and a half years of house arrest, Michael must decide whether to push for a plea or risk his freedom with a new trial.
12. Between Anger and Despair: Their faith in the justice system forever shaken, Michael and his family discuss what they can hope to achieve by continuing the fight.
13. Flawed Justice: Michael speaks to a reporter about the reasons behind his plea. Later, Kathleen’s sister delivers a statement of defiance in court.

Source: The Staircase, Netflix

Continue reading