tv Forensic Files CNN May 16, 2015 9:00pm-9:31pm PDT
am still doing will still shine a light and give them hope at some point. ♪ ♪ up next, a woman fears for her life. >> judy was afraid. >> she expected something to happen to her. >> he was waiting for her in the house! >> does she know who shot her? >> the evidence shows it was an ambush. was it someone she knew? >> possibly a murder-for-hire type situation. >> or a random attack, the hardest to solve? >> most screwed up in the head defendant that i have prosecuted in my 15 years as a prosecutor. >> it was the end of a long day, and judy southern returned home
from work to what she thought would be an empty house. instead, she encountered something unexpected. judy tried calling her husband at work, but he'd already left. he got home a few minutes later. >> and i heard her call my name. i can't remember if i rolled her over. i think i said, "what happened?" and she said she had been shot. >> allen saw the bullet wound, carries her to his car and rushed her to the hospital. >> where is she bleeding from, sir? >> she's been shot! >> who shot her? >> i do not have a clue. when i got there, there's a bullet wound in her right lower abdomen. >> does she know who shot her? >> she gave me a name of somebody barry. he was waiting for her in the house! >> by the time they got to the hospital, there was little doctors could do. >> and then when they finally brought the gurney out and got her on the gurney, they started yelling "code blue, code blue!"
and i know that stuff don't sound right. >> judy died on the operating table before her twin sister could get there. >> if i had been able to see her in that hospital, i would ask her, judy, were you afraid, and did you even think of us? because i would have been there for you. i would have so been there for you. i would have given any part of my body that you would have needed. and i would ask her, did she really, really know how much she was loved. >> at the crime scene, police found evidence that the killer spent time in virtually every room in the couple's house. >> i know he showered. i know he played with a child's video game. and i know that he used a sex toy on himself. i can't tell you the order in which he did it. >> there were cigarette butts everywhere, and they weren't the brand that either allen or judy smoked. >> which would lead one to conclude or at least need to investigate whether or not the
assailant left those cigarette butts, because it was a different brand. >> there was no sign of forced entry. from shell casings at the scene, the murder weapon was a 9-millimeter handgun. in the yard near judy's body was a crumpled note. >> "this is for my wife, melanie. i love you. sorry it had to end like this. i leave everything that i have to my loving, caring wife." >> the note was signed jonathan, but his last name was hard to decipher. it looked like binney or barry. judy had mentioned this name to her husband before she died. >> does she know who shot her? >> she gave me a name of somebody barry? he was waiting for her in the house! >> allen claimed he didn't know anyone by that name. in a search for suspects, police usually start with the spouse.
>> any time a wife is shot, particularly at home, the husband is not only a suspect, but the prime suspect. >> allen said he was driving home from work when the shooting took place. >> i have to be honest, at that point, my suspicions were on allen. >> i had nothing to do with it. i don't know what else to say other than it wasn't me. ave mode rheumatoid arthritis like me, and you're talking to your rheumatologist about a biologic... this is humira. this is humira helping to relieve my pain and protect my joints from further damage. this is humira giving me new perspective. doctors have been prescribing humira for ten years. humira works for many adults. it targets and helps to block a specific source of inflammation that contributes to ra symptoms. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened, as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems,
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no one knew the motive for judy southern's murder, but the evidence indicated the killer entered the home planning to do violence. >> the phone lines, they had been cut, so that someone entering the residence would not be able to call out for help, 911, or for any matter. >> it appeared that the killer was inside the house, waiting. >> she comes home. it is an average day for her. there is nothing to indicate that there is someone in the home. >> it appeared that the killer fired twice. one bullet hit judy in the abdomen, the other missed. >> the shot that took place in the hallway traveled across the hall and actually lodged in an adjacent bedroom in the box
spring. and we believe that is the shot that struck judy. >> when investigators searched through the crime scene, they discovered something unexpected in allen southern's private office. >> once inside the house, we discovered a recording device on the phones. >> allen had been recording phone conversations on the home phone out of his suspicions for an ongoing affair. >> police soon learned that relations between allen and judy southern were extraordinarily strained. >> marital discord was well documented between judy and allen. recorded phone calls is unusual. it is a sign of a troublesome marriage. >> judy's twin sister said both partners were having affairs, and that judy knew allen was rcording her phone calls. >> we kind of figured we were being recorded, so there was some things that we completely fabricated, just to see if it would come back, and it did.
and at that point, knowing my sister and knowing how bull-headed she is, at that point, it was almost like a game. >> he had had at least two affairs in the past that she knew of, and that she had an ongoing affair at the time this occurred. >> allen and judy slept in separate bedrooms. they told friends they only stayed together for the sake of their 5-year-old son. >> jacob loved his daddy, and judy wanted that love to be preserved. she didn't want to separate the two of them. >> but their relationship became increasingly tense. two days before her murder, judy told her sister she and allen had decided to separate. >> she was very afraid that day. she was afraid that day that allen was going to kill her, because it had gotten to the point where their relationship was maybe a little more hostile, not in a violent way, not in a hitting way, just in a verbal way.
>> we were learning from her friends that if anything happened to her, that allen had something to do with it. >> allen denied any involvement in judy's murder. however, he clearly had a motive. judy was seeing another man. and if judy were to die, allen would gain sole custody of their son in addition to her life insurance. but he had no history of violence and didn't own a 9 millimeter handgun. >> i understand people's suspicions. there was nothing other than a husband and a wife who are having troubles. lord knows if every marriage that i just described resulted in homicide, we'd have to build a lot more cemeteries than we have. >> investigators were perplexed and turned to the note found at the murder scene. although the signature was illegible, the name at the top
of the note was clear, melanie binney. since the note was addressed to "my wife, melanie," investigators checked marriage records and identified the woman's husband as 26-year-old jonathan binney. the binneys lived just three miles away from the southerns' home. allen southern said they didn't know the binneys. >> they're not any more neighbors than people who live a mile apart in manhattan are neighbors. >> investigators needed to know whether this might have been a murder-for-hire, with jonathan binney as the shooter. >> the cell phone records, and trust me, we checked, looking to see whether allen southern had called jonathan binney, no -- not an scintilla of connection, other than both were members of the same public library, along with the rest of spartanburg county. >> investigators decided to pay jonathan binney a visit.
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and on the note was her address, just a few miles from the southerns' home. a background check revealed melanie's husband, 26-year-old jonathan binney, had recently been arrested. >> jonathan binney is out on bond for the rape of his 3-month-old daughter. >> in the suicide note, binney said he planned to kill himself because the thought of going to prison for the rape of his child was too much for him to bear. >> "the pressure i am or was under was intense. i couldn't deal with it. >> certainly found it to be a vital piece of evidence in the case. knew that we would be able to get handwriting analysis. >> document examiner gail heath compared the handwriting on the note to jonathan binney's handwriting samples. >> in this particular case, we were looking at hand printing.
and hand printing can also be extremely identifiable back to an individual. most individuals when they first learn to write do learn to write from something called copy book style, which is printed letters within a textbook. >> there were a number of clear similarities. the lowercase "g," especially at the end of words, was unusually open. the lowercase "f" was almost always tilted at an angle to the rest of the letters in the word. >> in examining the question to the known, i pretty much was able to account for each and every pen movement and pen characteristic that i saw in the question. >> gail heath concluded that jonathan binney most likely wrote this note. >> on the nine-point scale, this was at the first position, a total identification of the handwriting. that's pretty much it. that's top of the -- top of the scale. >> and prints on the note matched binney's. when police went looking for
jonathan binney at his home, he was gone. >> we used a helicopter, which has a flare during the night, trying to get thermal imaging of anyone that would be out in the woods, as well as continued with the k-9 team, trying to track the suspect, jonathan binney. >> the next morning, investigators returned to binney's house, and this time, found him hiding in the basement. he was shirtless, with six nicotine patches on his chest. >> jonathan binney indicated to us that he had applied numerous nicotine patches to his body in hopes that he could overdose and eventually commit suicide. >> if you would have bought six boxes and put on 50 nicotine patches, then i'll hear you out on your bona fide effort to kill yourself. four? i know people studying for exams that do that just to stay up. >> they were bringing him out of the basement, and jonathan binney made what we refer to as
a spontaneous utterance of "she's dead, isn't she?" and the deputy just replied "who?" and he said, "the woman i shot." >> but without saying anything more, jonathan binney asked for an attorney and he recanted his confession. the cigarette butts at the scene were given to analyst ken bogan. he cut them open to extract any cells that might be present from saliva. >> there usually is no problem in extracting dna from cigarette butts. it's just usually a matter of how much dna is deposited on the cigarette butts. >> the saliva on the cigarettes came from jonathan binney, proof he was at the scene. investigators found a 9 millimeter weapon in the open field in between the binneys' home and the crime scene. scientists fired a test bullet and compared it to the bullet
from the crime scene. >> just like looking through a pair of binoculars. you're actually looking at one specimen on the left stage, one specimen on the right. and you're looking for commonality of markings between the two items. >> the test left no doubt. the gun found in the field was the murder weapon. investigators discovered evidence in binney's room that proved the gun was in his possession. >> we found blue jeans that had one unspent, 9 millimeter bullet in the pocket. we found a holster, magazine holders, and a security badge, as well as some other items that related to the possession of a gun. >> all the evidence pointed to binney, but what was his motive? >> we looked for every conceivable connection.
the closest we could ever find was that they may have both had public library cards at the same library, which is not very close at all. >> but there was someone who had a motive -- judy's husband, allen. >> some domestic problems that they were having in their relationship. we immediately began to investigate that aspect of it, as was jonathan binney the go-between to end judy southern's life for allen southern? >> did binney and allen southern know each other? as police attempted to answer that question, they got a call from the jail. jonathan binney wanted to talk. >> we were expecting him to tell us that her husband had hired him to do it and that he was just a paid hand to carry out this act for somebody else. ♪
police had to consider the possibility that allen southern hired jonathan binney to kill his wife, judy. >> one of her co-workers was quoted as saying that she expected something to happen to her, and she expected the culprit to be allen. >> police checked everywhere, but couldn't establish a connection between jonathan binney and allen southern. >> there was no phone records or
anything to indicate any type of relationship between the two. allen actually took a polygraph test and was able to pass that. >> because of the evidence against him, jonathan binney was in jail. after several days, he told police he wanted to talk without his lawyer present. >> he wanted the death penalty. he was wanting to plea to the death penalty. he told us everything we asked. he told us, and even that and more. >> what binney proceeded to tell investigators ranks among the most bizarre confessions any of them can recall. >> he is the most sexually deviant, screwed up in the head defendant that i have prosecuted in my 15 years as a prosecutor. >> binney admitted to the rape of his 3-month-old daughter. he knew he was going to prison and it scared him into murder. >> he didn't want to go to prison as a child molester, because he said he would be
somebody's bitch in prison, that he wanted to go as a murderer. >> binney said he didn't know the southern family and that allen had nothing to do with the murder. based on the forensic evidence and his confession, binney chose the southerns' home at random while driving down the street on his moped. he entered the empty home through an unlocked window, then cut the phone lines. since his intent was murder, he would have killed whoever came home, and he had no way of knowing whether it would be allen, judy, or their 5-year-old child. while waiting, the evidence shows he had some lunch, went through the family's personal belongings, and even took a shower. judy came home at 3:30 from her mail carrier job and probably found binney's suicide note. she and binney stumbled upon
each other. as she tried to run, he fired two shots. one missed. the second hit her in the abdomen. [ gunshots ] binney got on his moped and fled through the fields. judy used her cell phone to call her husband, who arrived a short time later and rushed her to the hospital. since she saw the suicide note, she knew the perpetrator's name. >> she gave me a name of somebody barry? bar? >> she died later in the hospital. >> apparently, he felt like that he was not going to go to prison as a child molester. he decided that he was going to be a murderer. and from what i understand, he was supposedly going to be a mass murderer. me and my son just didn't come home at the right time. >> jonathan binney was convicted of judy southern's murder and
for the rape of his infant daughter. he was sentenced to death. >> what is most troubling about jonathan binney's case is that he picked a total stranger. and that's what the jury and others and even judy's family members have such a hard time with. >> it ranks among the strangest and most senseless of crimes. despite the unusual nature of the crime and the lack of witnesses, science proved that jonathan binney murdered judy southern, despite having no connection to her whatsoever. >> they could prove without a doubt that yes, he was there. so, the science that's out there today is more than anybody can -- actually knows until you're going through it, because you never think about it, but you're way happy that it's there. you're glad that they do have that knowledge. >> we were genuinely concerned
that we had too much evidence, that there were no missing links for the jury to have to -- you know, sometimes jurors like to connect the dots themselves. there was nothing to connect here. up next, the peeping tom goes one step further and commits an unspeakable crime. >> the scenario here, thankfully, is not a scenario we see very often. >> this was someone that was an avid window peeper and been there before. >> for 20 years, he eludes police and even returns to the crime scene. >> in the kitchen is the bra. the guy had made his way back to the sink to relive it. >> eventually, he goes one step too far. >> it's one of those ah hah moments that you get. >> we assumed that it would be, you know, a 14-year-old kid. >> on a stifling, hot night in oklahoma, gary elwood went to
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