Episode 6 - P. Buff & M. McSwain
On a hot July day in 1966, 11-year-old Brenda Sue Brown walked her little sister, Patricia, to a Head Start program in Shelby, NC. But Brenda Sue never made it back home. She was found beaten to death under a bush. Near her body, police found a shoe with a bloody handprint. It was the only clue to the brutal murder. Two years later, a local teenager, Robert Roseboro, was charged and convicted of the murder of a woman whose body was found in similar circumstances. Police became convinced that Roseboro was also Brenda Sue's killer, but couldn't come up with enough evidence to prove it. As time wore on, the case went cold, and appeared to be forgotten. But, Brenda Sue's two sisters, Patricia Buff and Mary McSwain, hadn't forgotten. As decades passed, they hounded police to reopen the case. Then one morning in 2005, the sisters called each other-they had both had the same dream on the same night. It was Brenda Sue, telling them not to give up. Together the sisters went to the police, again asking them to reopen the investigation. But as it turned out, the case file had been lost. Undeterred, Patricia and Mary went to the local paper and convinced a writer to do a series of articles on the case, including the information about how police had lost the case file. Embarrassed by the publicity, the police station was turned upside down and the file was found in a box with information from the Roseboro case. Inside the file was a photo of the handprint on the shoe. That week, a woman who'd read the newspaper articles called police with a tip. She said her grandfather, Earl Parker, had confessed to her that he and a friend of his named Thurman 'Soupy' Price, had killed Brenda Sue. Incredibly, the story she relayed perfectly matched how the crime scene was found, and included details that had never been released. When police looked into Parker's background, they discovered that Parker and Price had been convicted together of the rape of a 12-year-old girl ten years before Brenda Sue's murder. Parker had died in 2002, but the 77-year-old Price was still alive, and in early 2007, he was indicted for first-degree murder. Price is awaiting trial as investigators exhume Earl Parker's body, which is buried right across from Brenda Sue's grave, to compare his handprint to the photograph of the murder scene. Whether or not there is a match, investigators believe they have enough evidence to convict Thurman Price.