Unsolved Mysteries with Robert Stack – Season 3, Episode 20 – Full Episode
ANNOUNCER: This program isabout unsolved mysteries. Whenever possible, theactual family membersand police officialshave participatedin recreating the events. What you are about to seeis not a news broadcast. ROBERT STACK :In the 1920s,Edgar Cayce gainedwidespread notorietyfor his apparent ability tomake complex medical diagnoseswhile in a self-induced trance. Even now, 45 yearsafter Cayce’s death,thousands claimed tohave benefited and beencured by his knowledge. Some say it is merelya combination of luckand the power of suggestion. 28-year-old Crystal Spencer wasa small-town girl determinedto make it big in the movies. But for Crystal,the road to stardomled through Hollywood’sseamy underside and, sadly,a confusing andmysterious death. According to her family andfriends, Crystal was murdered. Easter Sunday, 1990, justoutside Coldwater, Michigan. Ray and Marie Thornton wereenjoying their weekly drivethrough the country. Quite by accident, thisquiet Sunday outingwould place the Thorntons at thecenter of an unsolved mystery. These intriguingstories all needone final clue, one finalpiece of informationbefore they can be solved. Perhaps someone watchingtonight can help. Perhaps it’s you. Kathy, you have a conditioncalled optic neuritis. This is a conditionwhere the optic nerve–ROBERT STACK : In1986, 27-year-old Cathy Comoravisited her ophthalmologist. OK. You can sit back now, Cathy. ROBERT STACK :Cathy thoughtshe had a minor problem,but the doctor’sverdict was horrifying. Cathy might be going blind. It may return. It may not return. CATHY COMORA: It was a veryfrightening experience. He said I wouldn’t run outright away and buy a white cane,but it’s very serious. And I was scared. I mean, I suddenly realizedthat there was a possibilitythat I could go blind. I hadn’t taken itseriously all along. ROBERT STACK :Cathy’s troublehad begun one week earlier. CATHY COMORA: Iwoke up one morningand I just saw thatthere was a little areain my field of vision thatI couldn’t see out of. And I just thought therewas a speck on my eye. I tried to rub it awayand nothing happened. It didn’t leave. I didn’t really thinktoo much about it. I just thought it wasunusual and I just let it go. And throughout the day,it didn’t disappear. And the next day it wasa little larger area. By the end of theweek, when I couldn’tsee at all out ofthe eye, I decidedthis probably isn’tnormal and I probablyshould do something about it. ROBERT STACK :Cathy consultedtwo other ophthalmologists. The diagnosis wasunanimous, optic neuritis. Possible consequence, blindness. There is no known cure. Her doctor recommended steroids. Cathy was strongly opposedto the use of steroidsand was determined tofind an alternative. She consulted a doctorwho was well-versedin the mysterious methodsof a man named Edgar Cayce. Edgar Cayce became famous inthe 1920s as a diagnostician,even though he had absolutelyno medical training. In his lifetime, Cayce mademore than 9,000 diagnoses,which he called readings, whilein a deep, self-induced trance. In 1937, Cayce did a readingon this 18-year-old womanwho suffered fromscleroderma, a disfiguringchronic disease with no cure inwhich a person’s skin hardens. Cayce prescribed a number oftreatments and her sclerodermawent into immediate remission. The reading wasgiven in Januaryand the readings werefollowed to the letter. ROBERT STACK : Inan interview 40 years later,the woman gave Edgar Caycefull credit for her cure. –in June of 19–ROBERT STACK : In 1976,six-year-old Andrew Senzonsuffered from severe psoriasis. In desperation, Andrew’smother sought outa doctor who utilizedmethods set down by EdgarCayce 30 years earlier. Within four months,the psoriasis was gone. Today, Andrew Senzonis 21 years oldand has had only onerecurrence, which also respondedto the Cayce treatments. Some people write offEdgar Cayce’s curesas lucky coincidence orthe power of suggestionacting on psychosomatic illness. But for those diagnosed withthe disease that modern medicinecannot cure or in somecases even explain,Edgar Cayce’s methodscontinue to hold out hope. Cayce died in 1945. Even so, each year, thousandsof inquiries from allover the world pour intoCayce’s nonprofit centerin Virginia Beach, Virginia. The thriving centeris an unlikely legacyfor Edgar Cayce, aquiet, unpretentious manwho came of agein rural Kentuckyat the turn of the century. EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: My fatherwas a very ordinary person. He liked the garden. He liked to fish. We had gardenswherever we lived. He taught Sunday school. I mean, in everydaylife you wouldn’tknow him from anybody else. It was only when hewas asleep that hehad extraordinary ability. ROBERT STACK : Edgar Caycediscovered his mysteriousability when he was 13. Time for yourlessons, young man. ROBERT STACK : Aborderline student, Edgar fellasleep over his spelling book. Cabin. ROBERT STACK :When his father quizzed him,Edgar could spellevery word in the bookand even knew the page numberswhere each word appeared. Cattle. EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: From thattime on, all he had to dowas sleep on his books atnight and he moved alongvery rapidly, whether it wasspelling or math or historyor whatever. And he became anexceptional studentrather than an average student. ROBERT STACK :It 1900, when Edgar was 23,he suddenly lostthe power of speech. For an entire year, physicianswere unable to explain or curehis illness. Continue to breathe deeply. ROBERT STACK :As a last resort,Cayce’s parents convincedhim to see a hypnotist. His family physicianattended and recordedthe session in minute detail. Cayce sank into a deep sleep. Edgar. ROBERT STACK :Everyone presentwas stunned when, forthe first time in a year,Edgar Cayce spoke. Um. Mhm. Yes. We have the body before us. EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: Dad neverhad any formal medical training. In fact, his educationalcareer stoppedat what would be an equivalentto the ninth grade now. Due to a paralysisof the anterior musclesof the vocal cords. He would suggestthings and describethings, the parts of the body,that he had no knowledge of. This will remove the trouble. He started to talk and say,yes, we have the condition. It was a constrictionto the throat. Some constrictionof the blood flow. He’d say, we will correct it. LANE: The body will now awaken. EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: Andwhen Lane, the hypnotist,told him to wake up, he sat upand coughed up a little bloodand he could talk. Are you all right?EDGAR EVANS CAYCE:And I think that wasprobably the first reading,though it was on himself. Hello. ROBERT STACK :Cayce’s doctorpersuaded him toattempt diagnoseson other patientswho had not respondedto traditional medicine. Cayce agreed, but the endresult left him disillusioned. EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: Theproblem developed when,at the end of someof the readings,people would start asking himquestions about what horse wasgoing to win a raceor what was goingto happen in thecommodities of stock marketor results of a ball game. And when he foundout what had happenedand what people were doing,he said, I’m giving it up. ROBERT STACK : Cayceabandoned his psychic readings,married, and moved toSelma, Alabama, wherehe worked as a photographer. By 1914, he had two sons,Edgar Evans and Hugh Lynn. When Hugh Lynn waseight years old,he was terribly injuredin a darkroom explosion. A local doctor heldout little hope. How is he, Doctor? I’ve managed to remove mostof the powder from his eyes,but I found that thedamage to the tissuewas so extensive thathe may lose his sight. EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: My brotherwas playing in the studioand dropped a match ina partially-filled canof flashlight powder andit blew up in his faceand burned his eyes very badly. The doctors examinedhim and said, well,we think we’re going tohave to take out one eye. He’s probably going to losethe sight in both of them. And my brother said,Daddy, give me a reading. Let’s go into the parlor. ROBERT STACK :For Edgar Cayce,it was the ultimate test. He had not attempteda reading in years. Could he now save his ownson from a life of blindness?EDGAR: Although tannic acidwould not be normally usedunder these circumstances–EDGAR EVANS CAYCE: He describedan application for the eyesthat included tannic acid. Well, that wasunheard of at the timeand the doctors thoughtit was too strong,but they thought he was goingto lose his eyes anyway,so it wouldn’t hurt to try. And when they first putit on, Hugh then said,this must be Daddy’s medicine. It doesn’t hurt. ROBERT STACK :It seemed like a miracle. Within six weeks, Hugh Lynn’ssight was completely restored. Word of the boy’srecovery spread. Edgar Cayce soon became famous. In 1925, he moved toVirginia Beach, Virginia. Within five years,Cayce establisheda center there to catalogand interpret the readings. The center received thousands ofletters, most of them requestsfor readings. Although Cayce normally didonly two readings a day,he was unable to turn hisback on those who seemedto need him so desperately. He felt like hecouldn’t refusepeople so he started doing twoand three and four and five. And it got up to, Iunderstand, nine or 10 a day,and it was justtoo much for him. ROBERT STACK :On the brink of exhaustion,Edgar Cayce suffereda massive stroke. He died on January3, 1945, leavingbehind more than 120,000 pagesof readings, which continueto serve as a wellspringof hope for thosein search of cures that may haveeluded established medicine. Now Cathy, an X-rayexamination of your neck showsthat you have the deviation–ROBERT STACK : WhenCathy Comora’s optic neuritiswas diagnosed in 1986, shewent to Dr. John Pagano,a chiropractor in NewJersey who studied EdgarCayce’s readings for 30 years. JOHN PAGANO: Cayce wasvery specific on whatareas of the spine to adjust. The fact that Cayce suggestedthe certain procedure for eyeproblems does not meanthat he specificallydiagnosed it as optic neuritis. He talked about visionproblems, blindness,and that’s what I approachedit at, not as optic neuritis. First I’m going to stretchyou out a little bit. It’ll sort of get theblood circulating. JOHN PAGANO: After Igave her an adjustment,she called me the next day totell me there’s an improvement. We continued treatment,and within seven days,her sight was restored. ROBERT STACK : Dr. Paganobelieves that Edgar Cayce’streatments set forthin several readings givendecades earlier broughtback Cathy Comora’s vision. Skeptics disagree. PAUL KURTZ: I think muchof the Cayce materialis based upon illusion. And I think there’s aplacebo effect here at work. Often if you believe thatsomeone is going to cure you–you give themwhite sugar pills–they might be cured. So the power of the mindcan have a powerful effect. I do believe in thepower of the mind. And I tried to will the sightback before I had gone to Dr. Pagano, and it didn’t work. And it was only after Ihad gone to Dr. Paganoand after he had adjusted myneck that the sight came back. I don’t think that EdgarCayce had any psychic powers. I don’t think there’s sucha thing as psychic medicine. I think one ought to be verycautious about the claimthat you can diagnoseillnesses in some mystical way. ROBERT STACK :How can the unique lifeof Edgar Cayce be explained?He has been denouncedas a soothsayer. He has been heraldedas a prophet. But medicalestablishment refusesto endorse Cayce’s methods,yet at the same time,is unwilling to dismiss them. Before his death, EdgarCayce wrote to a friend. “In my life and in the livesof many who come in contactwith the readings, there seemsto be much that is of help,but you must judge for yourself. Facts and results arethe only measuring rods. If this knowledge is tobe of any lasting benefit,it will require open-minded,intelligent research. “Perhaps the readingsof Edgar Cayceare one mystery thatwill be solved onlythrough patients, medicalevaluation, and that greatestof all healers, time. Next, an aspiringactress is found deadin her Los Angeles apartment. The coroner ruled her deathdue to undetermined causes,but some say it was murder. Hollywood, California. The dream factory. A fantasy land ofmyth and legend,fueled by the tantalizingfable that anyonecan become famous overnight. Ever since the moviesbegan, beautiful young girlshave flocked to Hollywood, luredby the glamor of Tinseltownand the promise of stardom. It was this dream whichbrought 23-year-old CrystalSpencer to Los Angelesin the summer of 1982. For as long as shecould remember,Crystal Spencerpictured herself as notjust an actress, but a star. Sadly, her searchfor fame and fortuneled only to frustration,failure, and, some say, murder. Crystal Lene Spencer wasraised in the small northernCalifornia town of Ukiah. When she was eight,her father died,leaving her mother to raisethree small children alone. At 17, Crystal droppedout of high schooland took a job to helpsupport the family. Soon, Hollywood beckoned and shemoved to the Los Angeles areato actively pursue her dream. Her early years werea struggle, resultingonly in a few bit parts. Crystal quickly realizedthat true stardom was elusiveand perhaps unobtainable. Within two years ofher arrival, Crystalreluctantly took a job as anexotic dancer to pay her bills. On a good night, shecleared up to $400 in tips. But Crystal never fully acceptedthe fact that, in essence, shewas a stripper. PATTI JO MILLHOUSE:Sometimes she would juststart crying, like she feltdegraded about herself,of what she’d done. ROBERT STACK :In May of 1987,friends invited Crystalto an outdoor barbecue. She was eager to mix andmingle with people who mighthelp further her acting career. I’m Crystal. – I’m Anton. – Nice to meet you. It’s nice meeting you. – Oh!This is your place, then. This is your party?ANTON KLINE: Therewas something veryalluring and compellingabout Crystal thatwould readily catch your eye. She knew that she wouldbecome not only an actress,but she would becamea very famous actress,and it was justa matter of time. ROBERT STACK : Crystalwas taken with Anton Kline,a would-be screenwriterand a PhD candidate in history. Though they came from totallydifferent backgrounds,they soon fell in love. Anton took it uponhimself to helpCrystal broaden her horizons. He introduced herto art galleries,museums, and concerts. Crystal was dazzled. ANTON KLINE: Sheloved classical music. She loved fine art. She wanted to know more aboutthese other wonderful thingsof life that she had neverbeen exposed to before. ROBERT STACK :Anton had no ideahow crystal earned her living. She walked a precarioustightrope, discoveringart and culture by day, immersedin Hollywood’s dark sideby night. PATTI JO MILLHOUSE: Crystalloved Anton very much. She was very scaredabout him finding out. She says, well, I better change. I better quit dancingthen before he finds out. I better quit doing thisbefore he finds out. I want to get married. I want to have a future. I want to start doingsomething for my life. ROBERT STACK : Finally,four months afterthey met, Anton foundout about Crystal’s other life. ANTON KLINE: A neighborsaw her dancing at the clubby the airport where she worked. And he said, I saw that girlon stage the other night. I said, no, you couldn’t have. He said, that was her. Of course it was her. And I was shocked. He was very upset,but he said it was OK. He accepted it,which shocked her. She didn’t know what to say. –sit right there. No, Anton, you’ll catch my cold. ROBERT STACK :On Wednesday, May 4, 1988,Crystal was home with a cold. Anton stopped by and they talkedabout a promising offer she hadreceived to work in the Orient. So what’shappening with Japan? I don’t know. They haven’t called yet. When are you leaving? I’m not even sure if Ihave the job or not yet. ANTON KLINE: She was verynervous, but excited,about the possibilityof traveling to Japanand seeing a wholedifferent world than whatshe was accustomed to. I spoke to Crystal Thursdayevening– the next evening–on the telephone. How you doing?You feeling better?CRYSTAL :Much better, thanks. That’s good. ANTON KLINE: Andthe conversationlasted about 15 minutes. I said, I’ll be intouch, and she said, OK. I hung up the phone, andthat was the last timeI ever spoke with her. ROBERT STACK :Three days later,Anton tried to reach Crystal butcontinuously got a busy signal. An operator told him thereceiver was off the hook. Can I help you? Yeah, I’m lookingfor Crystal Spencer. She’s not working tonight. Did she work here last night? She didn’t punch in. ROBERT STACK :Confused, Antonassumed that Crystalhad left for Japanwithout saying goodbye. Excuse me. Have you seen Crystal Spencer? What? Have you seen Crystal Spencer? No, I haven’t seenher in a couple of days. Do you know where she is?ANTON KLINE: I was expecting anyday to receive a very excitedphone call from a veryexcited Crystal saying,it’s wonderful here. It’s a wholedifferent world here. And instead, I got a phonecall from the Burbank PoliceDepartment. ROBERT STACK :Friday, the 13th of May, 1988. Police discovered the decomposedbody of Crystal Spencer. She had been deadfor nearly a week. ANTON KLINE: They, atfirst, just said she wasfound dead in her apartment. And they wanted to knowwhen I’d last seen her. And I said, I lastsaw her on Wednesday. And how was she?I said, well, she had a cold. And they said they believeshe died of natural causes. ROBERT STACK : An autopsyrevealed no trace of drugs oralcohol in Crystal’s system. There were no obvious signsof foul play or suicide. The coroner ruled thather death was the resultof undetermined causes. ROBERT COHEN: Thebody of Ms. Spencerwas in such an advancedstate of decomposition,they were not able toascribe the cause of death,so they have no finding. I was suspicious because Idid not believe that CrystalSpencer died of illness. She was not a sickwoman when I lastsaw her or last spoke with her. She was a youngwoman with a cold. I was suspicious because the wayI was told the body was found–in an obscure cornerof her apartment,nude from the waist down. The phone went offthe hook for days. And I becameextremely suspiciouswhen I learned that neighborshad heard terrible screamsand shrills comingfrom her apartmentthat some had describedas the sounds of torture. ROBERT STACK :On the night of May 7, twoof Crystal’s neighborshad been awakenedby a strangeintermittent wailing. SUSAN AKIN-TAYLOR: Two or threeminutes after 4:00, I rememberlooking at the clockand I heard some moansand some funny sounds. You know how you arewhen you wake up. You just don’t knowwhat’s going on. Somebody’s screaming. But even before I even wokehim up, I laid there thinking,someone’s being tortured. Someone’s being hurt. Something’s going on. But I had no past, priorexperience to what the soundswere because they were sobloodcurdling eerie that theyfrightened me very much. Sounds terrible, doesn’t it? Do you think it’scoming from here, or–SUSAN AKIN-TAYLOR: All I couldthink about, for some reason,was someone taking acigarette and putting itagainst her body, torturingher, because we had heardlike choking and moaning,but then when this started,that’s all we heard. JET TAYLOR: Susan wasvery adamant about callingthe police, but out ofmy fear of what I heard,I didn’t want to get involved. That was my first reaction. SUSAN AKIN-TAYLOR:I don’t think I’llever be able tolive with the factthat I didn’t call the police. If I had, maybe shewould still be alive. ROBERT STACK : Aweek later, Crystal’s body wasdiscovered and theTaylors finallytold their story to the police. –witnesses, you sawor heard something? About a week ago,about 4:00 in–JET TAYLOR: He just tookmy statement, took my name,asked me for my driver’slicense, and that was it. He was just verynonchalant about it. I believe most sincerely, asdoes her family, that CrystalLene Spencer was murderedin the early morninghours of May 7, 1988. ROBERT STACK :Crystal’s family requestedto view the body several times. The coroner’s office continuallyrefused, claiming the bodywas in no condition to be seen. For months, AntonKline was deniedaccess to the police records. However, inSeptember of 1988, hewas able to obtainthe autopsy report. Anton was shocked by thediscrepancies he found. ANTON KLINE: Crystal Spencerwas barely 5-foot tall. The autopsy report claimsthat she’s an amazing 5’7″. Crystal Spencer weighedapproximately 105 poundswhen I last saw her. The autopsy claims the body isa “well-nourished” 140 pounds. I was stunned. I said, this is not thebody of Crystal Spencer. And where is the realbody of Crystal Spencer?You don’t grow 7inches and gain 50to 60 pounds when you’re dead. The only thingthat comes to my mindis a possible documentaryerror at the coroner’s office. They are overwhelmed with work. However, we do havethe remains identifiedby fingerprints fromtwo different agencies,as I mentioned before. And those really eliminate anypossibility of the coroner’sautopsy and the wrong remains. I was told byone law enforcementofficial, quote unquote, “badthings happen to bad girls. “And I said, you mean badgirls die of natural causes?And he said, youknow what I meanand hung up on me on the phone. ROBERT STACK : Two weeksafter the discovery ofher body, Crystal’s familyand friends gathered for aprivate memorial service. Fittingly, CrystalSpencer’s asheswere scattered beneaththe famous Hollywood sign. ANTON KLINE: I believe theinvestigation was bungled. And I am angered thatthey are attemptingnow to suppress the policereports in this case forever. We need to know whathappened to her. It’s important toall of us who caredabout her to learn the truth. That’s all we want is the truth. ROBERT STACK : Next, policeneed your help to find a mansuspected in the brutal murderof his ex-wife. Easter Sunday, 1990. A lonely road 12 miles outsideof Coldwater, Michigan. Ray and Marie Thornton setoff on a leisurely drivein the country, asthey did every weekend. But in just a matter of minutes,their routine Sunday outingwould place this ordinary,law-abiding coupleat the center of a strangeand ominous mystery. RAY THORNTON: Wewere driving southon Snow Prairie Road and, allof a sudden, a van just on usand passed. Look at this guycoming around us, honey. Sure is in a hurry. There he goes. GZ. Jeez!He must be in a hurry. RAY THORNTON: Oneof the things wedo when we’re outdriving around is we makenames out of license plates. Marie came up with the,jeez, he’s really in a hurrybecause the first two lettersof his license plate were GZ. And it was just spontaneous. Really no thought behind it. ROBERT STACK :Several miles down the road,the Thorntons came across theman and the van a second time. MARIE THORNTON: As weapproached an old schoolhouse,I saw a man behindit and he had whatappeared to be a bloody sheet. MARIE: The man backthere has a bloody sheet!RAY: Where? He’s behind the building–MARIE THORNTON: As wecontinued passing the school,I saw the van parked betweenthe building and a big tank. There’s the vanthat passed us. RAY: Where? It’s right there!RAY: There was theone that passed us?MARIE: Yes, I’m sure it was. It was the van that passed us. ROBERT STACK :Minutes later, the vanpulled up behind themagain and rode their bumperfor nearly two miles. I’m gonna startwriting this stuff down. RAY: Good idea. MARIE THORNTON: Ourgame really paid offbecause that helped meremember the first two lettersof his license plate number. But we wanted to getmore, if possible. RAY: He’s got a white skullcapon right now like mine. ROBERT STACK :Finally, a nervous Ray Thorntonturned off the highway. When he did, the van pulledto the side of the road. RAY THORNTON: Wedecided to turn aroundand come back andsee if we couldget a license plate number. We felt if we couldget the license number,then we could turnit in to the police. The guy was actingvery suspicious. We just felt that authoritiesshould be notified. There he is. MARIE: What is he doing? Now he’s in theback of the van. He looks like he’schanging– he is. He’s changing his plates. MARIE THORNTON: He was behindhis van with the passengerfront door open. And I saw that the passengerdoor was covered with blood. There’s bloodall over that door. RAY: What door? The passenger door. That guy has done something. He has. ROBERT STACK : TheThorntons feared that somethingunspeakable had happened. They returned to the schoolyardto search for the sheet. MARIE THORNTON: I wasbeginning to get nervous whenwe got back to the schoolhouse. We were very carefulabout where we walked. Where’d you see him? Back over this way. OK. MARIE THORNTON: We tried tofind what this white thingwas that he had been carrying. Look!Look! I see it. That’s probably it. Honey, what is it?ROBERT STACK :Partially stuffedinto a small animal holewas a blood-soaked blanket. It’s definitelyblood all right. Let’s go call the police. On an otherwisepleasant spring afternoon,Ray and Marie Thorntonhad chanced upon evidenceof a shockingcrime, a crime whichmarked the complete and tragicdisintegration of a family. Unwittingly the Thorntons werewitness to the final chapterof a bitter, heated conflictbetween a husband and his wife,which ended in murder. He sees man in the open. He throws. ROBERT STACK : Tooutward appearances, Dennisand Marilyn DePue ofColdwater, Michigan,had a comfortablemiddle-class life. Both had gratifying careers. Dennis was a state of Michiganproperty assessor, Marilyna high school counselor. Together, they were raisingthree healthy children. But beneath the surface,smoldering tensions threatenedto erupt at any moment. After the childrenwere born, Dennisgrew sullen and withdrawn. He began to isolatehimself from the familyand accused Marilyn of turningthe children against him. It’s not that they fought allthe time because they didn’t. They just didn’t really talk. She would just say ingeneral that she was unhappy. And when the lawyeror someone elsewould ask her why shewanted to get a divorce,she would say becausethe marriage is broken upand because there was nolonger a marriage there. You want to make surethat you want to gothrough with it this time. If you do, you’re gonnasign it on this pageand sign it on the last page. ROBERT STACK : In 1989,after 18 years of marriage,Marilyn DePue finally gave up. Thank you. Now, do you have anyquestions at all, Marilyn? What about him seeingthe children, then? We’ll have to wait till thehearing a week from Friday–RICHARD COLBECK: Marilyn wantedto be more of her own person,raising her familyas she saw fit. I believe that shefelt at that timethat Dennis was, in effect,trying to domineer her–that is, run her life and notallow her to make decisionsthat she wanted to make. He was agreeable tohis wife having custody. As far as propertywas concerned,he was very willingto allow his wifeto have most of theproperty that she wanted. Many times, I hadto fight with himto get a fair shareof the property,but he was very willing togive her whatever she wanted. I don’t–I don’t want thisthing to happen. I don’t want this divorce. It’s not– it’s not–it’s not something I wantor want to deal with and–ROBERT STACK :Despite Dennis’ attemptsto keep the marriageintact, the divorce becamefinal in December of 1989. I’m sitting in the front. Bye. Gotta keep your jacket on, now. ROBERT STACK : Denniswas granted biweekly visitationrights, but the children wereoften reluctant to spend timewith him. Dennis was also granted accessto the guesthouse, which heuses an office and asan excuse to maintaincontrol over his family. ANN DUNKEL: Marilynhad to changeall the locks on the doors. Even after she changedthe locks on the doors,she would tell me that therewere some times when she wouldcome home and unlockthe house and go in,and there was Dennissitting on the couch. She didn’t know howhe got in because shehad different keys made andnew locks and everything. And she seemed a littlefrightened about that. He sort of, outof the blue, justindicated to me one daythat he was contemplatingsuicide and murder. ROBERT STACK :Easter Sunday, April 15, 1990. Dennis arrived to pick up twoof the children for a visit. His younger daughter, Julie, hadalready refused to go with him. Come on, Scott. Get your things. Put the game down. Let’s go. Get your jacket. – Can’t we go a little later? No, we can’t. Look, I came here now. You’re going now. I’m not hangingaround here anymore. But Julie doesn’t have to go. I don’t carewhat Julie has to– Dennis. No, stop. Just calm–– No!Every time, you’returning him against– He’s old enough tomake his own decisions. You ruin everything. He is. He is coming with me. Leave him alone!You’re making things terrible!I hate you!You’re ruining my life–– No!Stop it! Stop it! You’re hurting me! Daddy, help her!No!No!Stop it, Daddy!Stop!No! You’re hurting her!ROBERT STACK :The DePues’ eldest daughter,Jennifer, ran toa neighbor’s houseto call the sheriff’s office. JULIE DEPUE: She wasn’twalking completely on her own. We’re going to the hospital. JULIE DEPUE: He waslike holding her up. We’re going to the hospital. You kids stay here. And when they were walkingby, I just said, Mom. Mom. And she didn’t even look at me. She was just kindof like in a daze. ROBERT STACK : The DePuesnever arrived at the hospital. Sheriff’s deputies andthe Michigan State Policeimmediately began a searchfor the missing couple. That same afternoon,Ray and Marie Thorntonfound the bloodiedblanket in the schoolyard. The area was quicklycordoned off. The authorities beganto assume the worst. Marilyn DePue was probably dead. How’s it look, guys?ROBERT STACK : Deputiesdiscovered severalfresh tire tracksand a large pool of blood. Good reproduction here. ROBERT STACK :The tracks werelater matched to Dennis’ van. The blood was Marilyn’s. –get a handwith the stretcher? All right. What time do you get off here?ROBERT STACK : Thenext day, a highway workerdiscovered Marilyn DePue’sbody just off a deserted road,midway between theschoolhouse and her home. She had been shot oncein the back of the head. BETTY MCCLENAHEN: We hada feeling that he hadreally done something terrible. It was so brutal andpremeditated that itmakes you so angry. If she’d been killed inan automobile accident,you could get overthat, but not this. ROBERT STACK :Just days after the murder,Dennis sent a series ofwild, rambling lettersto friends and relativesin which he triedto justify Marilyn’s death. To coworker JanMarkowski, Dennis wrote–DENNIS: “Marilyn had many,many opportunities to treatme fairly during this divorce,but she chose to stringit out, trick me, lie to me. And when you lose yourwife, children, and home,there’s not much left. I was too old to start over. “ROBERT STACK :All together, Dennissent a total of 17 letterspostmarked in Virginia,Iowa, and Oklahoma. ANN DUNKEL: It seemedas if Dennis was tryingto say that those of uswho were friends of Marilynwere the ones who caused herdeath, when, in effect, it wasDennis who pulled the trigger. None of the rest of us did that. The only closure thatwe could get out of itwould be to have Dennis caught. That’s the only thing. I can’t think of anythingelse that would help me. I think of it day and night,and I will the rest of my life. And nothing, evenDennis being caught,will not take this terriblefeeling away and loss. “An eye for an eye,a tooth for a tooth, alie for a lie, alife for a life. “Three months after themurder, Dennis DePuesent copies ofhis 13-page letterto a number offriends and relatives. It reads like a treatise,a chilling 5,000-wordrationalizationwhich takes liberallyfrom the Bible throughout. “I realize that vengeanceis mine, saith the Lord,but sometimes the Lord istoo busy doing other things. “Dennis DePue is 6 feettall and weighs 200 pounds. He has dark brown hairand dark, deep-set eyes. He was last seen driving a1984 cream-colored Chevroletvan with maroonstripes, which may nowbear Illinois license plates. At around 8:30 on thenight of our broadcast,a woman who asked that we callher Mary arrived at her homeoutside Dallas, Texas. Mary’s boyfriend, HankQueen, was already home. MARY: His van was parkedin the driveway, whichwas out of the ordinarybecause he usuallykept it inside the garage. – Hi. – Hi. It’s good you got back. MARY: He told me thathis mother was very illand then he needed to makean emergency trip home. –had a stroke. And I’m gonna drive up–could you make mesome sandwichesthat I can take on the–it’s a really long drive. MARY: I was sure that somethingelse must really be going on,but I didn’t know what. ROBERT STACK : –find aman suspected of brutal murderof his ex-wife. MARY: He was gettingclothes out of the closet,clothes out of somedrawers, gatheringup some of his personal items. At the same time,giving me instructionson preparing some food forhim to take on the long trip. – What do you want to drink?– I don’t care. Anything. DENNIS : No!Every time–– Sodas?Cans of soda would be good. DENNIS : –everything. He is coming with me!Leave him alone!– Stop it! You’re making this terrible!I hate you! Aren’t you gonnagive me a hug?MARY: He just gave mea little peck of a kissand I gave him a big hugand said goodbye to him. I realized that somethingwas troubling him,and I knew I wouldnever see him again. ROBERT STACK :Later Later that night, Marywas shocked to learn thather boyfriend, Hank Queen,was really Dennis DePue, andthat he had just been featuredon “Unsolved Mysteries”. For nearly a year, DennisDePue’s whereaboutsremained a mystery untilthe night of our broadcast. MARY: Looking back on it now,I’m sure he was watching. And I think thathe was deliberatelykeeping my attentiondistracted in the kitchenso that I wouldn’tsee the segmentand so that he could leave. A friend of Mary’scalled our telecenterand provided authoritieswith a Texas license platenumber of Dennis DePue’s van. Four hours later, DePue’slife came to a violent endjust across theLouisiana/Mississippi border. When Louisiana statetroopers spotted DePue’s van,they attempted to pull him over. He led police on a15-mile high-speed chaseand broke through twopolice barricades. PAUL BARRETT: Itold the deputiesif the van refusedto stop to shoota tire off it– a front tire. And they missed the front tire,but they got both back ones. He traveled about half amile and it just wouldn’tgo any further, and he stopped. ROBERT STACK :After firing two shotsthrough his windshieldat deputies and anotherthrough an open window, DePueturned his gun on himselfand took his own life. It was a funny feeling torealize that, the night before,that you had beenwatching this man,that he was wantedfor murder someplaceand then you walk upto the van and yourecognize him asbeing the person thatwas on “Unsolved Mysteries”. It’s a funny feeling. But I think he intendedto die whether hehad to do it by hisown hands or wherehe could get us to kill him. Otherwise he would have stoppedand we would’ve gotten him outof the van aliveand then there neverwould’ve been the shots fired. While living as a fugitive,Dennis DePue sent a chillingletter to several friends tryingto justify his ex-wife’s death. He wrote, “an eye for aneye, a tooth for a tooth,a lie for a lie, alife for a life. “At the time, Dennis DePuehad no idea just howprophetic those words would be. For every mystery, there issomeone, somewhere who holdsthe final piece of the puzzle. Join me next timefor another editionof “Unsolved Mysteries”.