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All Episodes Talk: Crime And Punishment

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The Matthew Podolak case is rerunning this morning on ID, I think I missed it the first time as it doesn’t seem familiar. I’m recording the second half as we’re leaving for church shortly. Did they ever get married, after having the 2 kids? Why on earth did she want to poison him, why not just walk away?

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That guy last night, Harold.... what does he get, the 12 year itch? Both wives murdered, both after 12 years of marriage. The second wife, Toni, reminds me of someone and it’s driving me crazy who it is. Can’t believe it took them an hour and 43 minutes to get to the life insurance policies.

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The wife pushed off the Colorado mountain episode was a rerun. I was waiting for them to investigate the wife "murdered by car" to make sure it was the same guy. So I turned over and quit watching. I wish Dateline would come up with some new episodes. Even the ones marked NEW in the listings are repeats. Still, some nice scenery in Rocky Mountain park.

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8 hours ago, saber5055 said:

The wife pushed off the Colorado mountain episode was a rerun. I was waiting for them to investigate the wife "murdered by car" to make sure it was the same guy. So I turned over and quit watching. I wish Dateline would come up with some new episodes. Even the ones marked NEW in the listings are repeats. Still, some nice scenery in Rocky Mountain park.

Even with several networks now airing Dateline, they show the same ones over and over.   It's ridiculous.

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For me, the Rob and Kandi Hall one is always on. Wife has affair, then the two men get into a shootout at Walgreens and one dies. Kandi is super annoying. 

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I watched a Married With Secrets episode that I’d recorded, about Dana McKay’s murder. Wow, four people in prison for that one! Her husband and his lover, and her husband, should have gotten life, in my opinion.

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Hey, guys, according to my listing, tonight's Dateline is "The Farm ... A murder outside Pleasantville, Iowa." There was another Dateline about a murder in small-town Iowa, so I looked up Pleasantville and it is indeed a different location. Pleasantville is southeast of Des Moines and not all that far from me, so I would remember if it were a rerun. That, plus the title, since I live on a farm. I always map Dateline towns. Crossing fingers I am correct and it is new.

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LOL Cooks. When you get old, EVERYTHING old will be new again ... tv shows, jokes, people you thought you knew. I'm not quite there yet, but I'm close.

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11 hours ago, saber5055 said:

Hey, guys, according to my listing, tonight's Dateline is "The Farm ... A murder outside Pleasantville, Iowa." There was another Dateline about a murder in small-town Iowa, so I looked up Pleasantville and it is indeed a different location. Pleasantville is southeast of Des Moines and not all that far from me, so I would remember if it were a rerun. That, plus the title, since I live on a farm. I always map Dateline towns. Crossing fingers I am correct and it is new.

Ah, another story from my home state. So proud :/. 

I saw some of it-I had a bit of a headache earlier so I kinda nodded off here and there-but from what I did see, it looked like a new story to me. 

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i just watched The Farm. Admittedly, my attention was split (my dog wanted to play catch) so I missed what the motive was. Also, it didn’t seem like they had iron-clad evidence. 

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The farm land was worth millions and the son was in debt. This could easily been the husband too-he was a controlling SOB. The son’scall to 911 was a little strange though.

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The whole episode was strange to me.   If the son killed his mom for the money why did he let his dad live?   Why was the father so willing to throw his favorite son under the bus with so little evidence?

Edited by partofme
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1 minute ago, partofme said:

If the son killed kid mom for the money why did he let his dad live?

My mom was wondering the same thing. She thinks the dad looked awfully suspicious as well. 

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Dad was too far away to have killed her, that much was proven. 

Son gave too much info to the 911 operator. Telling her that there’s a bullet hole in the ‘fridge and on the floor. If you found your mother dead, would you be looking around for evidence, or would you be trying to revive them and get help immediately? He also said she looked like she’d been dead for 2 hours.... trying to implicate his father, and not himself. Who knows about time of death, not a farmer, that’s for sure. 

Dad filed the civil suit in order to get the DA off his ass and it worked. He said it wasn’t about the money, it was about finding justice for his wife. It certainly wasn’t about money, the son was half a million dollars in debt. And his dumb wife stuck by him and tried to also implicate the father. Who knows if what she said about conversations with Shirley were true? They looked like a happy couple to me, and from what friends and neighbors said.

The son’s baby voice and fake crying on the witness stand didn’t fool me, either.

41 minutes ago, partofme said:

If the son killed his mom for the money why did he let his dad live?

I’m thinking that Dad would have been killed in due time had the son not been put under the microscope so quickly.

And don’t forget the son getting hellbent out of shape when he found out his dad was talking to an attorney. He was terrified that Dad was changing the will.

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1 hour ago, Madding crowd said:

The farm land was worth millions and the son was in debt. This could easily been the husband too-he was a controlling SOB. The son’scall to 911 was a little strange though.

Did anyone else say how controlling the husband was, or just the idiot daughter-in-law?

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Husband still got tears in his eyes when talking about how pretty his wife was when they were dating in high school.  And little things like the neighbor woman who commented . . . "She put on a little bit of makeup before going out to plow in the fields" . . . just doesn't seem like an overly controlled woman to  me.

Son, on the other hand, couldn't squeeze out even one tear while crying about his mother's death in front of the jury.  Husband had no motive for killing her.  Son had - potentially - 8,000,000 of them . . . each worth $1.

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9 minutes ago, Madding crowd said:

She had a lot of specific details though so I believed her. Doesn’t mean he killer his wife though.

Well, of course, she was well-rehearsed (just my own observation), crocodile tears and all.  Sh had as much to gain as her whiny husband.

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1 hour ago, cooksdelight said:

He also said she looked like she’d been dead for 2 hours....

Yes, I could buy seeing the hole in the floor and the fridge from the pictures, but the two hours stuck out like a sore thumb.  There would be no way of being THAT specific if Jason supposedly just walked in the house.

While younger generations may believe that men of Bill's generation might trend toward the controlling side of the spectrum, I'd want more evidence of such behavior than just the daughter-in-law's word.

I've seen family members turn on each other in a blink for amounts far less than $8 million.  I totally think Jason could have done what he did because of money.

I also wondered what his siblings would get "above ground" that would equal $8 million.  The Carters probably had more assets than we know, but it sure looked like Jason was going to make out like a bandit.

As for Jason not killing Bill, I think he might have spared Bill because he was not with Shirley at the time.  To kill Bill later would have been highly suspicious in that community.  Two "intruders" at the same farmhouse in small-town Iowa at two different points in time?  People wouldn't buy that as plausible.  Jason couldn't kill Bill without throwing tons of suspicion in his own direction.

Edited by Ohmo
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I also don't think Bill is a possibility because he drove the civil lawsuit.  It involved a private investigator who was originally from Texas.  Even if the PI was now living in Iowa, this was not someone who had been part of the community for an extended period of time.  There was no guarantee that Bill would have been able to move the investigation in a certain way.  The PI was also a former cop.  If he had discovered evidence that busted Bill, I think the PI would have been likely to turn it over to the cops.

It would take a tremendous amount of arrogance to pay $1 million for an investigation on the expectation that you would be able to put one over on this PI if you were Bill and you were the killer.  I have a difficult time believing Bill would willingly bring the possibility of such a risk upon himself AND pay to create that risk.  That seems far-fetched to me.

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56 minutes ago, Ohmo said:

Yes, I could buy seeing the hole in the floor and the fridge from the pictures . . . 

How could he see the hole in the floor if his mother was lying on top of it?  (Serious question . . . not being argumentative.)

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1 hour ago, Ohmo said:

I also wondered what his siblings would get "above ground" that would equal $8 million.  The Carters probably had more assets than we know, but it sure looked like Jason was going to make out like a bandit.

The house, barn, tractors, anything tangible that they could then sell to Jason. He’d have plenty of money to buy them out. And no, it wasn’t equal, but Jason stayed at home and worked the farm therefore Dad and Mom felt he deserved more.

Boy, did that come back to bite them.

 

1 hour ago, Ohmo said:

Jason couldn't kill Bill without throwing tons of suspicion in his own direction.

Unless he made it look like a suicide. People would buy that Bill was so distraught and depressed over the loss of his wife.

 

13 minutes ago, AZChristian said:

How could he see the hole in the floor if his mother was lying on top of it?  (Serious question . . . not being argumentative.)

He couldn’t. That was the dead giveaway he was guilty as hell.

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12 minutes ago, AZChristian said:

How could he see the hole in the floor if his mother was lying on top of it?  (Serious question . . . not being argumentative.)

When the pictures of the scene were shown, I thought I saw a glimpse of the hole in the floor.  That's why someone else also seeing it made sense to me.  The other things that implicated Jason caught my attention more than the hole in the floor did.

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2 minutes ago, cooksdelight said:

Unless he made it look like a suicide. People would buy that Bill was so distraught and depressed over the loss of his wife.

Anything's possible, but I watched an episode of Bull several weeks ago that essentially said that oftentimes the simple, logical explanation is the correct one.  Bill could have created some convoluted scenario, but I found the PI to be very credible.  I think if he would have suspected some BS from Bill, he would have alerted the cops.  I think it's Jason.

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They said Jason expected both of his parents to be home and was planning to kill both of them. He shot his mom right after stepping into the house and I’ll bet the panic in his voice when he called 911 was because he didn’t get to kill his dad too. I always think suspects who talk the way he did on the stand are guilty. And they usually are. Murderers just aren’t good actors as a whole. Don’t judge me. Lol

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29 minutes ago, hoosiermom said:

They said Jason expected both of his parents to be home and was planning to kill both of them. He shot his mom right after stepping into the house and I’ll bet the panic in his voice when he called 911 was because he didn’t get to kill his dad too.

Yes!! Dateline needs us to help them point out pertinent things like that. :)

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I really liked this episode and was in it from beginning to end. I've never seen anyone so affected by someone's death as Bill was, crying and upset beyond words, two years later. That was no acting. And son Jason couldn't squeeze out a single tear as he fake-sobbed in court. I suspect Jason planned on shooting both of his parents that day, and Bill ruined it by dropping the wife off and delivering a load of corn instead of going into the house. And remember, Mom made a phone call from the house after Bill was long gone.

If I come into my parent's house and found Mom dead on the floor, I don't look around at the fridge to see a bullet hole. WTH was that about? Yeah, everyone can see it in the photos, but with a person laying on the floor, dead or maybe NOT dead? And Jason had what, less than $100 to his name in checking and savings combined? And he knew he was going to inherit more than $8 million from his (dead) parents? Yeah, clear motive. If I were Jason's wife, I would be thinking I'm next after Jason inherited. That he was screwing his mistress multiple times a week, even in the bed he shared with his wife, tells me Jason wasn't thinking of his wife and kids, just himself.

When Bill broke down saying people in town, people he'd known all his life, wouldn't look at him, that broke my heart. And I call BS on his being so controlling that Mom couldn't even mow her yard the right way. Baloney. Bill bought his wife a CUSTOM-MADE TRACTOR because she loved being in the field. Plus no one else said anything about Bill being "controlling" ... not even Jason. And I assume the other two kids were in court and elected not to be shown or interviewed.

Jason also was a dumb ass by throwing papers around in the office (what would be in there?) and pulling drawers out in the bedroom, then leaving her purse sitting in the kitchen and pills in the bathroom.

That Bill and his wife went every day to the Casey's for a big coffee speaks volumes to me. So sweet, and not something people who do not like each other do.

The sad thing is that Bill was so happy Jason wanted to continue with the farm, that's a huge plus for a farm family, to know what you've worked your whole life for will be passed down in the family. Now I assume when Bill passes, everything will be sold and divided up between the two remaining kids.

Kudos to Bill for leaving Jason's name off of his wife's headstone. I can't wait to hear what his sentence will be. I hope it's life. And good on Bill for going the civil route, which got the law up off its lazy ass to arrest Jason.

And while it wasn't mentioned on the episode, I'm sure Bill thinks every day that only by the grace of God he is not dead too, by Jason's hand. I can't imagine living with what Bill lives with. My heart aches for him.

Edited by saber5055
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I was distracted by watching this (so this may had been mentioned but I missed it).  Was the only mention of the daughter was the fact that mom got pregnant in high school and had to drop out. Then Jason called his sister after mom was murdered.  I don't recall the other son until the end when they showed his name on the headstone.  Am I missing something or were these two kids just forgotten about?  I'm guessing they didn't want to be interviewed, but wondering what kind of relationship they had with their parents considering Jason was obviously the favorite.  

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Lisa, I don't believe Jason was "the favorite." He was the only one of the three kids who wanted to farm. The other son and daughter got jobs doing something else, one went to Des Moines for some professional position. Dateline said, I just don't remember. The will stated that Jason would get the land (valued at $8 million at that time) and the other two would get everything above the land ... house, tractors (just the one the mom was driving was worth probably one-half million dollars, and a farm of that size has multiple tractors of all sizes, combines, trucks --the semi kind -- bins, all worth probably $8 million by themselves). Yes, it's disappointing for a farm family when children don't want to continue, but as Bill said, he did not guide them into farming and let them make their own decisions. Farming is hard, dangerous work and very expensive. Bankers (loan) are a farmer's best friend. He was thrilled that Jason wanted to farm though, so maybe underneath he WAS the favorite, just because of that. "A life in common."

If my brother murdered my mom, I wouldn't want to appear on Dateline either, and I respect both of them for staying out of the limelight. I also hope they stay away from online chat rooms and social media.

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In the beginning of the episode during Bill’s interview, he said about Jason “He was my favorite.....” and his voice trailed off. That’s when I knew this was a show about his son killing his own mother, due to the “was” and not “is”.

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From the Des Moines Register, Feb. 1, 2018:

Shirley's son, Jason Carter, 45, was identified as a suspect early in the police investigation, but two years later, no charges had been filed. Shirley's husband, Bill Carter, 71, sued Jason last year, contending the lawsuit was the only way he and other family members who suspected Jason killed Shirley could find justice. He cried as the verdict was read in December when a civil jury found Jason responsible for his mother's death, deciding Jason Carter must pay $10 million to the estate of his slain mother. 

Two days later, Jason Carter was charged with first-degree murder. He pleaded not guilty Wednesday.

"It had 'Dateline' written all over it," Dennis Murphy, who has been a correspondent with the television newsmagazine show since 1994, said Wednesday. 

A description for the segment said the killing divided the family and forced "one man to take the investigation into his own hands." Murphy said the show takes viewer through the entire civil case, from the 911 call to the murder charge.

The "Dateline" team interviewed Bill, his attorney Mark Weinhardt, Wandro and a Texas-based crime scene reconstruction expert Bill hired, among others. Jason, however, declined to sit down for an interview, Murphy said.

Murphy described interviewing Bill, a man full of grief who has told the Register he attempted suicide twice after Shirley's death, as watching him come undone. He called Bill's looks "the most pained expressions I’ve ever seen." In the show's teaser, Bill told Murphy, "My life ended that day."

A pretrial conference in Jason Carter's criminal trial has been set for March 1 at the Marion County Courthouse in Knoxville. 

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I have not read all the responses about The Farm yet, but I really found the father suspect. I am speaking from nothing but a feeling though. I would have been very interested to hear from his other kids.

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Just from what we were shown, I was torn, but I believed the husband, Bill, was not involved. ALso, a red flag for me was Jason's 911 call. FLAG! However, I was undecided if Jason intended to kill both and it just lucked out for Bill that he was not home and was supposed to have been.

 Also, I wondered since the mother knew of the son's affair (how did she know?) and Jason couldn't risk her telling Bill that maybe that was part of a motive since Bill would flip out at infidelity to the point of disinheritance. (?) Although that, revealing an affair, seems like a weak reason/motive to kill your mother. (well, there's no good reason , but you get my point)

Edited by ari333
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23 minutes ago, saber5055 said:

the killing divided the family

Maybe this is why the other two children didn’t appear? Or it could be since they had nothing to offer in the form of testimony. I feel so sad for Bill, and to now find out he’s attempted suicide.... I hope he’s getting professional help to deal with his depression and emotional upheaval.

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This is from https://iowacoldcases.org/case-summaries/shirley-carter/

As the year passed, Bill’s grief morphed into frustration, despair and suspicion, the Register said. The following events occur in the year following his wife’s murder:

• Bill provides officers with bullets previously fired from the rifle, and they match those recovered from Shirley’s body.

• Bill says law enforcement assure him early on — at least three times — that an arrest is coming soon.

• Bill makes two suicide attempts.

• Bill accuses officials of bungling evidence-gathering and says those facts will come out in a trial and implicate the officers.

• Bill concludes there will not be an arrest without public pressure, and spends $160,000 to hire an attorney and a private investigator.

• The results of the attorney and private investigator lead Bill to file a wrongful death suit against his son, Jason.

• Bill alleges his son used the rifle from the basement safe to kill his mother, hiding the gun on the property and then retrieving it days later before authorities realize it is missing.

• Bill accuses law enforcement of not collecting Jason’s clothing and boots, which might have shown the position of gun powder and blood, until 10 days after the crime.

• Bill suggests a conflict of interest between his son and Marion County Sheriff Jason Sandholdt, who are friends.

• Sandholdt declines to respond but says an active investigation is under way and he’s very confident an arrest will be made “when the DCI, my office and the attorney general’s office all feel a jury would convict who we charge.”

• Bill claims Jason failed a lie detector test given by the DCI and sheriff’s office.

• Jason’s name is excluded from his mother’s headstone.

Bill, along with his other two remaining children, filed the wrongful death lawsuit against Jason on January 5, 2016, naming Jason as the killer.

On March 6, 2016, the family’s attorney, Ron Danks, subpoenaed Shirley’s autopsy results and the 911 call made by Jason the day of Shirley’s murder. According to news reports, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office on March 29 filed a motion to quash the subpoena, saying the release of the 911 call by Jason Carter would be detrimental to the ongoing investigation.

The county sheriff arrived at the home just moments after Bill, and asked Bill to leave the house; the home ended up sealed for several days. Shirley Carter was shot twice in the back.  Bill said that because he wasn’t allowed to look around, he couldn’t see that drawers in the office and bedroom had been pulled out, their contents dumped on the floor. Nothing, however, appeared taken; investigators found Shirley’s purse, containing credit cards and $140, undisturbed, as was an envelope on the dresser containing $1,700 in $100 bills. Bill told the Register he wasn’t allowed to check his safe in the basement, where he kept the gun Jason had given him, to see if it was missing.

Bold face is mine. Dateline did not say Shirley was shot twice IN THE BACK, with the bullets tearing her heart apart. She was found lying on her back, hands folded over her chest. IMO, she should have been face down. Dateline also did not mention the $1,700 in cash.

The Iowa Cold Case site is well worth visiting. Also note that the brother and sister also thought Jason did it. I just can't with anyone who thinks Bill is guilty.

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The investigator said there was virtually no chance Bill could have killed his wife...considering the time of her last phone call, the distance to corn drop-off, etc.  I never believed he'd done it in any case.

The attorney Bill hired for the civil suit pointed out that evidently Shirley did know about Jason's cheating...and if she had told Bill, that disinheritance was a sure thing.  Combine that with the fact that Jason was broke and desperate....I believe he did it.  And I believe Jason intended to kill both of his parents....but Bill's last minute decision to deliver the corn prevented that.

My guess is the two others (sister and brother) just did not want to go in front a camera to discuss the whole nightmare.  The "tearing the familhy apart" probably referred to Jason and idiot wife being sued by the father.  (Her testimony was just so rehearsed -- and not supported by anything else we heard -- that I was disgusted by her.)

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Why did the Dateline people say Shirley had been shot first in the chest, off to the left side? And that once she hit the floor, she was shot again?

The official autopsy says otherwise, which makes me really scratch my head at the Dateline team this time around.

She was shown in crime photos lying on her back, her feet slightly crossed. No one questioned if she’d been moved?

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1 hour ago, sinycalone said:

The investigator said there was virtually no chance Bill could have killed his wife...considering the time of her last phone call, the distance to corn drop-off, etc.  I never believed he'd done it in any case.

The attorney Bill hired for the civil suit pointed out that evidently Shirley did know about Jason's cheating...and if she had told Bill, that disinheritance was a sure thing.  Combine that with the fact that Jason was broke and desperate....I believe he did it.  And I believe Jason intended to kill both of his parents....but Bill's last minute decision to deliver the corn prevented that.

My guess is the two others (sister and brother) just did not want to go in front a camera to discuss the whole nightmare.  The "tearing the familhy apart" probably referred to Jason and idiot wife being sued by the father.  (Her testimony was just so rehearsed -- and not supported by anything else we heard -- that I was disgusted by her.)

Oy Vey-  what a sad story.  First off the dad is was never involved.  Why would you hire a PI of you are guilty?  When the dad said "We left all the land, worth 8 MILLION to Jason (our debt laden son) and everything else above ground to the two others, I just groaned.  Way to sign your death warrants, Mom and Dad.  (I will explain why I made that plural in a minute.)  Why parents divvy things up unequally to kids I will never know.  Sell everything, go live in Bermuda, Florida, wherever, prepay your funeral, spend what you want and leave the rest, IN EQUAL PORTIONS, to your kids.

I think Jason went there to kill both parents, dad was gone, Mom saw the jig was up and Jason killed her.  He made a common error in the 911 call, which is explaining too much on the phone.  I am paraphrasing here but it goes like this:  "She looks like she has been dead for two hours and I just got here five minutes ago!  It also looks like she was hit in the head from the right when I, the caller, am clearly left handed!!"  

Dad was waaaay too emotional, still to be involved,  Either he is the best actor in all of Iowa or he is not guilty.

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Jason also gave himself away when Bill said that he was going to see his lawyer.  I have no reason to doubt what Bill said about that.  He is an older man of means, given the value of the farm.  It makes complete sense that he would have to consult his lawyer for any number of reasons.  Jason flipping out about a simple meeting was a major red flag.

Bill would not gain anything from killing Shirley.  It's not like she came from money and her family owned the farm.  They owned it together.  There was also no mention of Bill taking up with another woman before or after Shirley died (and I can't imagine that Dateline wouldn't have poked around town to discover if there was such a woman.)  If Bill was able to spend $1 million to finance an investigation, he clearly was not in money trouble.

Jason was in debt, had a mistress, and knew he would score big when his parents died.  Maybe Bill seems "off" to some people because he's still grieving.  Maybe he just comes across as a bit odd because he's an older man, but I think this is one of the most clear-cut cases that Dateline has done.  To suggest that Bill did it means he knowingly shelled out $1 million to potentially facilitate his OWN arrest. if the PI had found something.  No one would pay to potentially put THEMSELVES in jail.

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2 hours ago, Ohmo said:

Jason also gave himself away when Bill said that he was going to see his lawyer.  I have no reason to doubt what Bill said about that.  He is an older man of means, given the value of the farm.  It makes complete sense that he would have to consult his lawyer for any number of reasons.  Jason flipping out about a simple meeting was a major red flag.

Bill would not gain anything from killing Shirley.  It's not like she came from money and her family owned the farm.  They owned it together.  There was also no mention of Bill taking up with another woman before or after Shirley died (and I can't imagine that Dateline wouldn't have poked around town to discover if there was such a woman.)  If Bill was able to spend $1 million to finance an investigation, he clearly was not in money trouble.

Jason was in debt, had a mistress, and knew he would score big when his parents died.  Maybe Bill seems "off" to some people because he's still grieving.  Maybe he just comes across as a bit odd because he's an older man, but I think this is one of the most clear-cut cases that Dateline has done.  To suggest that Bill did it means he knowingly shelled out $1 million to potentially facilitate his OWN arrest. if the PI had found something.  No one would pay to potentially put THEMSELVES in jail.

Bolding mine:  100% agree - and as someone from the midwest and farm country, I can tell you all this:  If Bill as much went for coffee on a Saturday with the local widow, the ENTIRE town would know by 3pm.  I think Bill seemed a bit off as he is just still so stunned that his wife is gone and his son killed her!  That would make me a little off, too.  I mean, one day you are farming and plowing and planting, the next day your wife is shot in the kitchen and you suspect your son?  Dateline has a FB page and some comments are as follows:  "He was a traditional man, he wanted her under his thumb." - really?  After how many years of a happy marriage, now you snap?  He bought a custom built tractor for her and beamed with pride at how she drove it - doesn't sound like a Bossy Bobby husband to me.

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I cringed a little when Bill said Jason was his favorite, but I didn't hold it against him.

Why? Because unlike that arrogant asshole mom from a few weeks back who stole a ring from her daughter to give to her favorite son, Bill actually felt some responsibility for how his son turned out. You could see the pain and shame which is rare on these shows. I don't believe for a second that he had anything to do with it.

I really enjoyed the background about their farm and the specially made tractor. They seemed like a sweet couple.

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4 minutes ago, ridethemaverick said:

Bill actually felt some responsibility for how his son turned out. You could see the pain and shame which is rare on these shows

He said something like “I must have done something wrong” or “I didn’t do everything right”.... made me tear up. 

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Cooks, I teared up at the end of this show too. Bill was without a doubt a broken man, two years later he is still living the nightmare, red faced and crying. I've never seen ANY person do that on Dateline before, and my heart broke for him. I can see Jason being his favorite, the last child, a son who wanted to follow his footsteps and farm. That means A LOT in farm families when so many kids leave as soon as they can for city jobs. Writing the will the way they did ensured Jason could continue to farm, and the other two would get BIG MONEY from any equipment sales, or sale of the homestead. To sell everything and divide the money, as another poster suggested, means the family farm is lost. I live in Midwest farm country, on a farm, my neighbors are farmers. I know how it works.

If Bill was some "traditional" man, Shirley would not have gotten that custom-made John Deere ($$$$$$$$) nor be so thrilled to, and WANT to, work the fields. That Bill is a broken man, and let us see that on tv, tells me he was deeply in love and devoted to Shirley.

I can see him dying of a broken heart after Jason is sentenced. Even Dr. Oz says that happens to couples so in love they don't want to live when one passes away ... much less is murdered by their own son.

I didn't get any proof that Shirley knew Jason was cheating on his wife. Although it was common knowledge "around town," it seems.

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6 minutes ago, saber5055 said:

Cooks, I teared up at the end of this show too. Bill was without a doubt a broken man, two years later he is still living the nightmare, red faced and crying. I've never seen ANY person do that on Dateline before, and my heart broke for him. I can see Jason being his favorite, the last child, a son who wanted to follow his footsteps and farm. That means A LOT in farm families when so many kids leave as soon as they can for city jobs. Writing the will the way they did ensured Jason could continue to farm, and the other two would get BIG MONEY from any equipment sales, or sale of the homestead. To sell everything and divide the money, as another poster suggested, means the family farm is lost. I live in Midwest farm country, on a farm, my neighbors are farmers. I know how it works.

If Bill was some "traditional" man, Shirley would not have gotten that custom-made John Deere ($$$$$$$$) nor be so thrilled to, and WANT to, work the fields. That Bill is a broken man, and let us see that on tv, tells me he was deeply in love and devoted to Shirley.

I can see him dying of a broken heart after Jason is sentenced. Even Dr. Oz says that happens to couples so in love they don't want to live when one passes away ... much less is murdered by their own son.

I didn't get any proof that Shirley knew Jason was cheating on his wife. Although it was common knowledge "around town," it seems.

saber5055:  I totally trust that you know more about farm families than I do.  When I heard that the land was worth 8 million and the other two had to split what was left above ground between them, I just winced.  I know farm equipment is NOT cheap but to be fair and equatable that would mean there would need to be 16 million of farm stuff to sell.  It just seems that there could have a more fair way to divide things up, that is all.  I know that farming runs deep in families.  It was Bill himself who said he made a mistake in the will, and I am sure he regrets that now, although that is the least of his problems.  The family is divided beyond measure.  

As for the favorite child thing:  Hey - my two older sibs were my mom's favorite, I was my dad's favorite.  No biggie, it was never really spoken but we all knew.  We all loved each other to bits but no one murdered anyone!!  (My mom and two older were just more alike, my dad and I were quite similar, that's all!)

Bolding mine:  I agree.  And I, too, have never seen anyone so broken on a Dateline.  Or Forensic Files, 48 Hours, 20/20, anything on ID.....nuthin'!

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