History Channel’s Dead Reckoning (air date: September 13, 2003)
A step-by-step account of the first murder case in New Mexico to go to trial without a body.
Examine landmark cases that have contributed to the current state of trace evidence law and technology.
See how the smallest of clues, properly analyzed, can point to a killer.
Girly Chew Hossencroft, a well-liked Albuquerque resident, vanished without a trace in 1999. Almost immediately, her estranged husband and his new girlfriend emerged as the chief suspects in the case, but the only evidence investigators had to work with was blood from the scene, cat hairs and strangely colored sand.
Despite the lack of a body and paucity of material evidence, Hossencroft’s killers were ultimately convicted, and TRACINGS IN BLOOD shows how with the help of forensic experts, investigators who worked on the case and others who were intimately involved. We’ll also see how similar techniques were used to solve another New Mexico case, where five workers at a Hollywood Video Store were murdered in 1996. There, one piece of plastic proved to be the vital link that led to the killers.
(product description taken from The History Channel’s Web site. Contrary to text above, Girly’s murder is not the first New Mexico case with a conviction in a no body case. I’m aware of at least one other. In a case I investigated at the time, Roy Yancy was convicted in the death of Marie Parker. Parker’s body has still not been found. Yancy was an associate of the man at the center of the 1999 Elephant Butte Sex/Torture case, David Parker Ray. Yancy told investigators Ray forced him to strangle Parker at gun point inside Ray’s trailer, known as “The Toy Box.”)