Anatomy of Murder

A murder case has many layers: the victim, the crime, and the investigation. To truly understand it, you need to dissect each piece of a tragic puzzle. Join Anna-Sigga Nicolazzi and Scott Weinberger every Wednesday for an insider’s perspective, as they reveal to you the Anatomy of Murder.

Marion's Legacy - Part 1 (Marion Fye)

Marion's Legacy - Part 1 (Marion Fye)

Tue, 12 Apr 2022 07:00

In the heart of D.C., a family pleads to solve a mother’s murder. Investigators have a possible crime scene and a suspect, but they are missing one key element — there’s no body.

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If you're looking for a new show unlike anything you've ever heard before, check out audio Chuck's latest series killed. Each episode of killed covers a story that you may have never read because it was killed before it got published. I'm Justine Harman, who some of you may know from my show OC swingers, and I'm here to bring these dead stories back to life binge killed right now to get the full story. Hi everyone, Ashley Flowers here and I have exciting news to share. My debut novel, all good people here is officially out now. Our fans are blowing up our social talking about it. You do not want to be left out and the worst thing that could happen is for someone else to spoil it for you because there are some wild twists in this book. If you love true crime content, mysteries, and a grown up Nancy Drew style detective work then I have a good feeling you won't be able to put this book down. So what are you waiting for? Grab your copy of all good people here now, wherever books are sold. Murder is the ultimate crime. To me, a nobody. Murder is the ultimate murder. So it's really the peak of the peak. I'm Scott Weinberger's, investigative journalist and former deputy sheriff. Delizie former New York City homicide prosecutor and host of Investigation Discovery's true conviction, and this is anatomy of murder. I'm excited to talk about today's case for a few reasons. The case itself is the type that the more you hear about it and really unbox it, there's all these other things that come to light that I never even expected to be there at all. We often talk about how some cases have really unique challenges for investigators. You think you have things completely figured out and then bam, the case takes 180 degree turn and today's story does have several of those moments. This case hasn't been profiled. Much before, from what I could gather only once, but here we got that inside look by talking to one of the prosecutors on the case. For today's case, I interviewed Tad Dobias, and his reputation precedes him. He was a former US attorney, and he is now currently the general Counsel for the Capitol Police. But here are something really interesting. Every year at the beginning of the year, I teach a law school class up at Harvard for a week. A friend of mine is texting me because we were virtual this year because of COVID, and he's saying, hey, you know, I know that you're always interviewing people. I have a guy that I really think that you would like speaking to. He's a good friend of mine. And he starts to tell me a bunch about his background and I said, OK, great, what's his name? And he says Tad Dbaas, which I already had in my calendar, that two days later I would be interviewing Ted Dobias because our executive producer had already linked me up with him and set up the interview. And a friend of mine brought me this case one day and said, hey, I just started looking at this and he kind of described the case. And I immediately got really interested because I thought, wow, this is amazing. I don't know if we've ever had these in DC before. The case takes us to Thanksgiving weekend 2003 in Northeast Washington DC, the District of Columbia. More than 24 million tourists come to DC each year, which does bring a lot of big dollars in this city. But the city also has struggled over the years with crime and housing, as many metro areas do. DC was a very much a different place back then and it's always been a city divided by what we would call sort of official DC, which are people who are here because it is the seat of government. And then what, you know, some might call a real DC, which are the people who kind of grew up here, live in the neighborhoods, aren't moving in and out because the new president is inaugurated. So today we're really focusing on one person, Marianne Phi. She was in her late 30s. She came from a large family. She had several siblings, and she also had several kids of her own. She had four sisters and I believe two brothers. Her five children were from three different dads. Her youngest daughter actually lived with his father, but the rest of the kids from an 18 year old down to an 11 year old, lived with her. Now, I tell you about the different fathers because it plays in here just to explain the family dynamics in this case. And, you know, for some people, maybe they raise an eyebrow, but, you know, you take your witnesses or victims and everyone in between as you find them. And I always point out we've had different life experiences from one another, from marrying. That meant different relationships produced her children. The most important thing is that she loved and cared for each one of them. As we know, families come in different shapes and sizes, and this is Marianne's. During this time, Marian and her kids, along with her boyfriend, were moving out of the home to another home in the same area of TC. But before they can even move, she just disappears. Since the day after Thanksgiving, no one has seen or spoken to Marian Phi, none of her five children, none of her sisters, and not even her boyfriend. Adding to the mystery, she left behind her car, her keys, her wallet, and her jewelry. Now, we've talked about this in cases before, some of these warning signs, and while Marian, who wouldn't her past go off the grid for a few days, she had her life back together and her family knew this was different. She was particularly close to her sisters, one of whom she was close to Peaches, and some of her other sisters. But when Peaches didn't hear from her, that struck her as very odd. And that's when she started calling around to the children and to others to say, hey, where's your mom? Why isn't she, you know, reaching out? But it was one of her sisters, her name was Peaches, who went to the police because something just didn't seem right this time. When Marian didn't come home, it was really just treated like a missing persons. And when the police said, well, has she ever gone missing before, the family honestly answered, yeah, she has gone missing for a day or two, but she's always communicated with her kids. She would never miss holidays and she didn't technically Miss Thanksgiving, but immediately, the day after she was gone. So even though the police initially. Really kind of blew it off in, one officer literally said when speaking to Marion's sister Peaches. He literally wrote in his police report that Peaches appeared to be a crackhead, which even back then was kind of like astonishing. Like, how do you put that in a police report? And Peaches, her sister had been drug free for about 6 years. She was very discounted by the police and others, but her family was so passionate and adamant that no, she's not missing. In the initial hours of this missing persons investigation, police were trying to ascertain whether the film is concerned was unwarranted and that perhaps the mother of five just needed a break and she would likely just return. Mother. She had five children. She clearly had had some prior arrests for drugs. She had a lot of check marks against her from a society viewpoint. Peaches, her sister, had been drug free for about 6 years and she and the other sisters also believed that Marian had not been using drugs anymore and had not for a few years. Hearing about Marian and her disappearance, like she is not the woman that you're seeing on the cover of the local paper or on the Evening News because now she's up and disappeared. But her, for her family, she is no different than the person that you do see. And so often, Scott, you know, it comes down to the family and what they know about the person, no matter what their lifestyle was like or going through that, you know, they know the person and if something seems suspect about their disappearance or not. When they responded to the call, they began to question the family and many of them would just routine questions that evolve into your timeline. Also asking what was her state of mind when she left? Could that have anything to do with it? So the children are starting to be asked. Well, where's your mother? They don't really say much about her. Oh, she had just left. She's supposedly with Harold Austins grandmother down in North Carolina. Harold Divine Austin was Mary's boyfriend and everyone just called him divine. Marian and Divine started dating earlier that summer in 2003, and the first time she met divine like a day later, he was moving in. So it was kind of a very rapid relationship where she eventually introduced him to the kids and then said, oh, he's moving in, and he definitely became this sort of authority figure to the children and became someone that the children liked. They thought he seemed like a good guy. Find little treats and snacks. Here's something interesting. When police spoke to Devine after Marion was reported missing, he told a different story than her kids. He said that different from the kids, it wasn't that she had gone to see his mother. Divine described her as going on a drug binge and having had an 8 ball. Was the film's concerns completely legitimate, or did divine have better insight into what Marion may have been dealing with in the days up to her disappearance? Both theories are completely plausible. The family immediately said, well, that's just not true because she hasn't used drugs in many, many years. If you'd said she'd gone on a drunken binge, they would have believed it, but this whole kind of drug use thing didn't make sense to them. You know, certainly, Scott, what the boyfriend is saying is plausible, but the rest of the family disagrees, and I'm thinking about it myself from different perspectives. You know, for kids, if their mom has gone down a bad path, certainly with narcotics or alcohol, maybe they don't want to embarrass her, you know, by giving that up. Or maybe they just didn't know and the boyfriend did. Or maybe the family is right and he's got it wrong, or there's something more there. More than a week had passed since anyone had seen Marion, and without getting any answers from police, the family insisted that. Investigators step up and assign a full-time detective to the case. Peaches finally went back where she kind of demanded. I want to talk to someone from homicide, so it's a detective, he said. I'll take this case, I'll see what it's about. And he pretty quickly realized, wait, there's a lot more to this. So who is this new investigator? His name is Chris Kaufman, but everyone called him a rhino. Nobody actually calls him Chris Kaufman. Everybody calls him rhino, because he looks like a rhinoceros. Let's be frank. He's got a brush cut. He's got a big neck. He looks like a, you know, former football player, which I think he was Scott, did you have any nicknames when you were on the force? Not so much with my colleagues, but when I was in uniform, there was a time that some colorful characters on the street called Me New York. And that was kind of based on my accent. And I would always reply, you know, what accent I would jump into. Hey, how you doing? They loved it, or at least that's what they told me. I like that. You know, The funny thing is that, you know, you love to have a rapport with people on the street. Call me whatever you want, but just call me when you have information because that information could really help me solve a case when investigator. Chris Kaufman dug into the file that had landed on his desk. One thing stood out to him right away is that when Marian's kids were interviewed, they were interviewed in the presence of her boyfriend, Devine. That is a potential concern, for sure. I mean, if Devine had anything to do with the disappearance of their mother, would her sons be willing to say something in front of him? You know, why weren't they separated? Because if something happened, someone is maybe to blame. And digging down little deeper, here's some other things that may have been a factor. Vine is nearly 6 foot four and £250.00, so let that sit with you for a second. He's a big dude, he's an intimidating person and it was only later when they began to tell their aunt about what had happened that then they were at that point the aunt and others going back to the police and saying that no, she's not missing, she's been killed. While the kids told teachers their aunt that divine killed Marion, that information wasn't told to her until weeks into the investigation. And there's more than that. Because divine actually took on the role of caregiver, he is still caring for all these kids. Constantly around them, offering rides, offering them to, you know, buy them candy and things like that. And they felt like it was so that he could keep an eye on them because he knew they had been in the house the night of the murder. And at the time that Marian disappeared, the family was actually in the process of a move. And so now that move still happens, except rather than Marion moving with her children, it is divine the then boyfriend who now moves and still stays with the kids. And in fact, he helped pack up the house for this move, and he very helpfully threw out a whole bunch of stuff that belonged to Marion. Considering their reminders, perhaps divine was using that fact to put himself in between the kids and the officers. So anything you think it would be easy for investigators to get those statements from those children with divine being right there. And I think we both know the answer to that is no. Especially if they're starting to suspect that there is more to it. You know, if he is hovering on purpose, we'll think about it from the kids perspective, you know, even if police can physically get the kids away from. The boyfriend? Divine? Well then they have to worry about if they say something to police, well, the person they're still coming home to is that same guy. The only time it began to be looked at carefully was when Detective Kaufman took over. He pretty quickly determined, hey, this does sound like a homicide. And so one of the first steps he takes while he is really mulling over and thinking about how to approach the kids, and the best way to take that tact is to get into the home itself. And one of the first things he did was he went over to the house, thankfully before they moved, and he convinced Devine, who was there at the house, to let him in the house and let him look around. And as the detective is walking through the house, it's a 3 level house and he goes upstairs. Detective Kaufman had a crime scene search person with him, and that crime scene search person immediately went upstairs to the bedroom. In one of the bedrooms, there's a mattress, and the first thing Detective Kauffman does is flip over that mattress. And underneath that mattress was a large pool of blood. This is definitely a homicide. There's a large blood stain on the underside of this mattress. But at the same time, Detective Kaufman turns around to look at Devine, who had just led him into the house and he was right there when they were doing the search, and now he was gone. Before we keep going, we want to give you a little bit more background about our interviewee tad. He has a brother who's a police officer, another who's a firefighter, so public service runs in the veins of his family. And for Tad, he had really set his sights on being an FBI agent. And I looked into becoming an FBI agent, but unfortunately I have really, really poor vision. And at the time, you couldn't get the surgery to correct your eyes. And so I was basically out as an FBI agent, so I thought. What's like the next closest thing? And I guess it's being a prosecutor. So I ended up going to the US Attorney's office in DC, which I've said to people may not be the best prosecutors office in the country because there's certainly, you know, a handful of you all in New York that probably have the best reputation. But it's the best place to be a prosecutor because it's the only place where you get to do the DA stuff that I really love. But you can also do the federal US attorney, you know, traditional stuff, the large. And I cried the narcotics cases. That office that Tad was in was quite different because District of Columbia, they not only handled those more traditional federal cases, they also handled all the regular violent crimes. And once he was a prosecutor, all he wanted to do was homicides. They didn't have much of an interest in in anything else. And people would bring me other cases and I would literally ask, is there a dead body? Well into his legal career, Tad was now working with homicide detectives to find out what happened to Marian Phi. These people who are coming forward and saying, no, she's not missing, she's been killed, that really resonated with me because I thought if these people believe this, this strongly, there's got to be something more there. During a walkthrough of the bedroom, detectives decided to flip over her mattress, which revealed a large amount of blood. So what was interesting was when this happened, Devine was in the house. I mean, he may have either been standing in the doorway or standing downstairs. So when they flip it over and, you know, it's clear this is blood, he just says, I'll see you guys later and he walks out. And just picture this for a second. They flip over the mattress, there's blood. And then the guy who right away is at the top of their list just walks out the door. You know, you might even be saying to yourself, how is that even possible? But we have to remember there is still no actual evidence of a crime. The find is a big deal. Let's just say that out front, right? It requires a lot of explanation, but let's step back for a moment. First and foremost, whose blood is it? It was weeks, not hours, after her disappearance. So it's. Unclear how long it could have been there, but when I think about like what are the reasonable good explanation could there be but that he is now worried about something? One of the reasons why he may have felt like he could leave is the fact that he may have had what we call St Knowledge. He may have a criminal past and he may know how the system works. They can't arrest him right there. They don't have anywhere near probable cause. All they have is there's this blood stain and when they dug into divines background, there are definitely some things about his past that Marion's family probably didn't know. While he had this sort of seemingly genial outside to him, he had a very serious criminal record, mostly from North Carolina. He had assault with a dangerous weapon conviction. He had a robbery conviction that he'd done a significant amount of time in North Carolina and prison down there, and I just don't know how much Mary knew about that and and others in the family knew about it. Now, I'm saying I'm sure bells were going off at this point. This really checks off a lot of boxes on whether he may be directly involved in her disappearance. You know, of course, whenever we hear about someone with a long criminal history already, that is just an additional factor why they may rise to your list. But we also know that, of course there's a reason that can't be introduced in court because you can't be proven to have done something just because you've done things in the past and while davines criminal past was coming into view from Mariano's. Then they began to resent his tight hold on them, a heavy-handed disciplinarian, and at a time that they felt he could actually be responsible for their mother's disappearance. And there became some more indications that he was trying to pull some of the older boys, Aaron and Michael and Jimmy in particular, kind of into a life of crime and involved in some of his criminal things that he was doing. And that became a little bit more concerning to the family. Hearing it made me just wince for the kids because they're already dealing with their mom gone. But now he is almost using that opportunity. Whether he had something to do with her disappearance or not, to now almost take these kids to use them for his own purpose. There is nothing that I'm learning about this guy that I'm liking, and I am turning against him every step he takes. Yeah, I think of just one word is premeditation. Could this have been his grand plan? If it is, and he's been able to separate law enforcement from the children? And to be able to control what they say and control their movement, control where they live, what investigators are really need more than ever is to speak to those kids alone and find out if there's more to their story than what they originally told the police. But that isn't easy because not only are they with him, but they are becoming more and more reliant on divine. Don't forget that married and her family had been in the process of moving when she up and disappeared, so they had been packing up at the time of the murder. They weren't fully packed, but in the next I'd say one to two weeks, they fully packed and moved to the new location. Well, part of the problem was they needed to have Marion, FYI, who was the name who was on the lease, and so they had to convince the landlord at the new location to let Davines new girlfriend sign off and be the consenting adult for this house. So that's actually what happened. That was quick. I mean, we're not really hearing about. Anything in his attempt to find her, that's exactly it. But anyone that apparently cares about someone else that's going to take a while to get over, at least that's what you would suspect. But here he is now with another woman, and he is now moving them from one home to another, and they are now reliant not only on the boyfriend, but on his new girlfriend too. And you want to talk about me turning against this guy because of the different things he's doing to the kids and maybe getting them involved in criminal activity, but now to have a replacement mom? Quote UN quote with these children while their mom is freshly missing. It just continues to be additional levels of awful. But in this missing person's case, police do have some evidence that does indicate that maybe this is a homicide and that is a large pool of blood under the upstairs mattress in Marion's home. So the first step for investigators is of course going to be whose blood is that? But that's not going to be such an easily answered question here. You don't have the body, so how are they going to get DNA that they can use to show this blood if it is indeed Marion Fizz? As Marian Fives, as I mentioned, they were moving. And in that move we believe divine had packed up a lot of personal items of Marians and thrown them away. Toothbrush, hair brush, clothing, all of that was all tossed out. Which of course was another indication of, hey, she's not just missing, she's murdered. Because otherwise, why is this dude throwing out all of her stuff? Doesn't make sense if he just is saying she's missing. So we had to figure out, well, what are we going to do? How are we going to prove this blood on the mattress? But investigators didn't give up because what they did now is this. They went to her family members here. She had sisters, she had a mom and they got Mariano's mother's DNA. And when they got the profile of that now known sample of her mother, what they could tell when they compared it to the blood found under the mattress was that that blood on the mattress came back to a female descendant of the mom. We took DNA from the sisters, compared them to the blood. They were, of course, not matches and also each of the sisters. But I've never spent any time in that bed. That blood had to have been left by Marian because she was the only female descendant, wasn't eliminated as a source. As weeks go by, there's still no sign of marrying no digital footprint. She never accessed her bank account, but divine still sticks to his theory about what happened to Marion. I think what divine was trying to do was to make Marion out to be a drug addict and to make it sound like she was a bad mother, that she had just walked away, and make it harder in his mind for the police to be interested in investigating her disappearance because people disappear all the time. What's the big deal? She's done this before, she's done it for days at a time, and one day this investigation takes a completely different turn. Police. Call Marian cell phone and get this. They find out Marion's back. When a DC Detective, Donald Marion cell phone, the hope was to get further information about her whereabouts. And in fact that's what happened. DC police called her cell phone and they actually found out that Marion is still in DC, which as you remember goes right along with how the majority of these missing person cases go. The person is still alive and well. So DC police closed the missing persons case. Job well done, right? But that call and the fact that they closed the case. Was not how it was supposed to go down. Remember how Maria's case started as a missing person's case and then handed over to homicide detectives? But the missing persons report was still on the books at MPD, the DC police, and they closed out the missing persons case, which is completely against procedures. Never should have happened. But that case was actually closed out as a missing persons case, while the homicide case is kind of running on a completely separate and parallel track. And so it's part of the. A missing persons police investigation that police call her phone number and a person picks up on the other line and says, Oh no, no, she's here and she's alive and well, they never actually speak to Marian. They just go on that person's word. The Protocol for Missing Persons case says the investigator has to lay eyes on the person. You can't say, Oh yeah, she's back. It's all good. OK, thanks. Boom, case closed. That was kind of a black eye for the department. On top of that, the other person on the end of that line is her, according to homicide investigators. Her presumed killer? Her boyfriend Devine. The missing persons detective called Marion Fizz cell phone divine answered and said, oh, she's back calling her phone too. Oh yeah, this is her phone. Oh yeah, she's right here. I'm looking at her. OK. Yeah, all good. Bye. I mean, ridiculous. Ridiculous is an understatement. That's just really poor police work and a complete failure of the system. Fortunately, it was found out pretty quickly and that was always something that was particularly upsetting to me, that that never should have happened. This is something you just can't look past. This is something you just can't breeze through. This is a missing persons case, and you're taking the word of the person who's not the missing person that she's there and she's healthy and she's well, that doesn't work and that's not the way to close the case. Yeah, there's no sugarcoating this, whether it is because of laziness and someone just wanted to close out a file the easy way because now technically they had the answers that they could, or whether it is someone that's just brand new and just really didn't understand. The good policing and the protocols that were in place and why, and so they just don't know any better. The outcome is the same, that there is just no good reason for what happened there. Let me just say this. This was not just closed by the person on the other end of that line. That closure had to go U to the supervisors involved too. You can't just close a missing persons case without getting signed off on. So this is a failure of that system. When spoken to, divine would often say he did see Marian. The police were reaching out to him, Kaufman mainly reaching out to him several times to kind of say, hey, has she come back yet? Have you heard anything? And he'd say, ohh, she was in Dupont Circle trying to buy drugs, and I heard from her, she called me from a payphone and just these kind of crazy stories. Scott went hearing that he is telling people that he has seen her and spoken to her at different times. Like what are some of your questions to his claims? If this was day one of the investigation, I'd have a lot more faith in what Devine would be saying, but at this point it feels a lot more like misdirection. You know, the actual fact is this gut feelings for a detective are really important, but it's the responsibility of that detective to at least find a way to confirm or deny that information if possible. And it's also, if this is true, why only him? You know, whether she isn't getting in touch with her sister, she isn't getting touch with her children, but yet this guy seems to be able to see her. According to him around town, why is he the only one that places eyes on her? And that right there doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me. The mindset now was we have to talk to the children and we have to interview them outside of divine presence. And with that it wasn't going to be easy because they had their relationship with divine to contend with. So they took their time, built rapport until finally those kids were ready to sit down and talk. And that's really what we spent the next few months is working with each of the children, getting them to trust us, getting them to feel comfortable because they were very afraid of the vine. He's roaming free and of course here we are trying to make a case against him. There was a development, not a sighting or information that would lead them to find Marion, but an opportunity to talk to her children outside of the presence of divine and the reason he was arrested and jailed for a completely unrelated crime. What helped us is eventually Devine got arrested for armed robbery and ended up getting because he was on parole for the armed robbery from North Carolina. He got a parole hit and he got locked up on that case. He probably would have been locked up on the robbery anyway. So with Devine out of the picture, at least temporarily, because he's in jail, it lets the kids feel physically more safe because they're away from him. And so investigators also take that opportunity to sit down with those children and hear from them, in their own words, what actually happened just after Thanksgiving. So the story that the children tell in total is basically the following. All five of them are downstairs in the basement. At the time, the family was living in a single family row house, three story home, bedroom upstairs and while the main floor had a communal area, the basement level was unfinished but had a sleeping area and a place for the kids to play. The five kids that were in the house that night, all of them are downstairs in the basement level with the exception of one who was in his bedroom. But when police actually set these children now down individually, basically what they get is this is that the kids in the basement are playing. It's either Friday or Saturday night and all of a sudden they hear Marion. At some point early in the morning hour, they hear Marian say no, divine no, and they hear a single gunshot. Some of them had seen Devine with a gun before, either A22A, douche, douche or a 25, and so they recognized that that was probably that gun being shot. Others are waking up and then they never saw her after that. And so at this point the youngest and perhaps the bravest goes up the stairs and sees divine in the living room does not see her mother, but divine immediately tells her go back downstairs. Now, Anna Seeger, here we are, weeks after the disappearance, and this is the first time police are hearing anything about a gunshot, and it shows you the kind of hole divine had over them. Yeah, of course this is explosive for investigators because, again, they still don't have evidence of where Marion is, whether she is alive or dead. To now hear that she is specifically naming divine in the no divine no, but that they hear a gunshot, it's going more down that path that we all suspect this case is going to lead. We also have to think about the fact that some of these kids may have heard the last few minutes of their mother's life and how tragic is that. The youngest goes back downstairs. She tells the others. Hey, this is what I saw. He's there. And shortly thereafter, Devine comes downstairs to use the bathroom. Downstairs. One of them may have seen a gun. The others did not. They see him holding his hand or washing his hand. He then goes back upstairs, and then all of them hear what appears to be the sound of divine going upstairs to the upper level of the house, and they hear the stairs creaking as if he's carrying something heavy. And they later realized that's probably their mother, that he's carrying back up the stairs. And then after that, their mother's bedroom door was shut. You know, they were being told by divine this is what's happening. And the next day when they all left, and then after that, when they got back to the house, whenever it was, the bedroom was open and they had gone in the bedroom, but they didn't really see anything. The bed looked like it had been made. Nothing sort of looked out of place in the bedroom. And you have to. And investigators had to also think of this other possibility. Remember, at this point, the kids are not really big fans of divine. He was a strict disciplinarian. He was trying to lead them down these wayward paths so they have to at least look at the possibility that what the kids are saying now are they making it up just to get divine away from them. The problem was the stories had a lot of inconsistencies that had inconsistencies as to who was in the house, who heard what, who saw what, what day it even happened. Because to this day, I don't know if this murder happened on the Friday or the Saturday after Thanksgiving, because you're talking about, you know, kids who were young and they weren't real great at keeping the story together. What they were good at is their stories themselves were consistent, but they weren't necessarily consistent in small ways. With each other. And also, in a house so compact, with so many people inside at the time that that gunshot rang out, how was it possible that the kids would not see their mother being removed from the home if in fact she was dead? You know, that's a question that investigators needed to answer to be able to really determine how much weight they can put on those statements from the children. I have to take up the cause for the children for a moment in this is that I think about what we do know about their life. We know that they had been with this mom who loved them, but who had struggled with narcotics use and with overusing alcohol, and that was while the drugs apparently weren't there, the alcohol was still very present in her day-to-day. We know that there had been different men in and out of the house at different times, and now that this man that they're living with is this imposing figure, I kind of look at it like when these. Kids are told something, they are taught not to question it, and so if divine tells them something, they know better than to ask or to say something else. There was an interesting conversation that Devine did have with the children directly about that gunshot. He was willing to share how it happened, and at some point soon after this incident, divine tells them that he had actually fired the gun that night while sitting in a chair, and that the chair had broken and the bullet had gone. To a computer, while the children knew that the chair that had broken had been broken, it wasn't as if it had recently broken. And then when they looked at the computer, I think there were actually two different computers in the house. Neither one of them had a bullet hole in it. So they began to kind of doubt this story. The question is this, can they or can they not arrest divine yet? And the thing we still don't have is Marion 5 or her body. So they still don't have that proof positive yet that a crime. The fact has even been committed. So do you remember at the beginning of the podcast I talked about the fact that sometimes these cases take 180 degree turn while get ready. Here's one of them. Investigators discover that Marion may not be dead. She was in a car accident and there's even a claim and police get confirmation that someone other than divine saw Marion. The car accident that we're talking about happened after Marion was reported missing. Just a few days after her disappearance, and that also means a few days after she was allegedly killed, her car had been stopped at a stoplight and she gets a rear-ended by a woman who's actually a DC government employee. After that accident, the other driver files a damage claim with insurance. The claim adjuster goes out there, does their investigation, and decides that this is all on the up and up. Wait a second. This is crazy. How could she have gotten this successfully paid claim, taking it to the gas station, had them give an estimate. All this stuff. So honestly, go. What do you think investigators were thinking when they found this out? What? She's alive and well, and she actually had a car accident, and claims adjusters already approved the claim. It just really makes your head spin about whether you could be so wrong. Wrong all along. And was divine right? That she was absolutely fine and she was just off the grid, right? Yeah, I just it's just like, wait, are we could we have all been so off base? Everybody was headed in the same direction. We were all on the same highway, and that highway was to arrest. Divine. But we all had to leave the highway off of a sharp turn exit, because apparently she was alive. It just came across as so normal that we definitely did have a little bit of doubt. We really started to rethink the timeline a little bit like how can this be? There are so many questions still outstanding. Is this a case closed moment or is there much more to this investigation? Next week you will hear there is so much more to this story, including a person from Davines past that is going to reveal even more to this mystery and you will soon hear the real. Story about what happened and where Marion is from. Divine himself. Me and you talk, you can't ask me those things about anything because it's like this. I'm thinking about certain stuff and I'm saying to myself and. It's crazy. Yeah, it's crazy. So what happened in the body? All on the next episode of Anatomy of Murder. Anatomy of Murder is an audio Chuck original produced and created by Weinberger Media and for SETI Media. Ashley Flowers and Summit David are executive producers. So what do you think, Chuck, do you approve?