More than 2,100 miles, 14 states and, since 1974, 11 murders. The Appalachian Trail is a pretty safe place to be, unless you run into the wrong crazed killer. All of the 11 people who were killed on the trail that stretches from Georgia to Maine were killed by a stranger. At least those whose murders were solved.
When 16-year-old Jessica Briggs was found dead under the Maine State Pier in Portland in May 1989 — stabbed, beaten and eviscerated — police quickly narrowed their focus to her fellow street kids. They arrested her sometime boyfriend Tony Sanborn in 1990, he was convicted of her murder in 1992 and an appeal failed in 1994. In April, after 27 years behind bars, Sanborn was let out on bail after attorneys spent more than a year combing through police and prosecution files that show a trail of lies and constitutional violations.
The star witness? 13 at the time of the murder? Turns out she was legally blind and couldn’t see what she’d claimed she’d seen, something the prosecution didn’t share with the defense. Another important witness? Police had threatened to pursue the adult man’s sexual assaults on underage girls unless he testified that Sanborn told him he’d killed Briggs. The defense didn’t know about that, either. And that’s just the beginning.
Sanborn’s release was a first for Maine, but what lead to it will blow your mind.
Join us for Episode 22! And keep an eye out for Episode 22.2, with important updates on this ongoing case.
Maine has one of the lowest murder rates in the country. For the past couple of decades, there have been between 20 to 25 homicides a year in the state. In 2016, there were 16.
Yet, the types of murders Maine has are telling — murder victims are most likely to be killed by someone who professes to love them. We take a look at three of 2016’s Maine homicides on this week’s episode.
We also learn not to take presumption of innocence lightly from a fired-up Matt Nichols in Ask a Lawyer, and what do Abe Vigoda, Prince and Harper Lee all have in common? Come on, we know you know the answer. We take a last look at some of the famous people who died last year on this week’s Crime & Stuff.