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.
Tue, 11 Jan 2022 08:00
A young wife goes for a walk on Christmas Eve, but never returns home. While her husband steps into the intense media spotlight, police question a mystery man she met through work.
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. Because all houses are decorated with lights. Some people have Christmas music playing and. Everybody is all happy. And we're desperately looking for somebody who's missing. I'm Scott Weinberger's, investigative journalist and former deputy sheriff. Malasi former New York City homicide prosecutor and host of Investigation Discovery's true conviction, and this is anatomy of murder. Today's story takes us out to Suffolk County, Long Island, which is about 80 miles east of Manhattan. It is 1987. And anesthesia, I know you grew up on Long Island in the 80s, so I did grow up on Long Island and also in Suffolk County. And I was there from the time I was five until I went to college, so I certainly remembered the 80s. Well, it was about the hair. And if you lived a Long Island, you maybe had the nails, the makeup, and I certainly had maybe not the nails, but everything else going on. And maybe, just maybe, I'll put up a picture on. Social media, if I am brave enough to do so, ohh please do I certainly look different. But you know, they say like a Long Island girl and it was definitely the time of the mall and the music, all of that was really on fire. For today's podcast we spoke to Howard Clark, who also grew up on Long Island, and he can recall how it's changed over the years. When we were growing up, it was like being way out in the country. We had a huge chicken farm. When I was growing up, we had about 10,000 chickens. And his niece was Lisa Weaver, and our story today is about her. She also grew up on Long Island during the 80s and in the 80s. She was in her early 20s. She was a very pretty girl, very vivacious. She was also a cheerleader in high school. Lisa Weaver was extremely popular in high school. She was about 5 foot three. She was a standout gymnast and also a cheerleader. She was a member of the kick team. She was a member of the Ecology Club. I mean, my God, every guy in town I think, wants to go out with Lisa at one time or another. She was that pretty and that charming. And while Howard may have been her uncle, the two shared an incredibly special tight bond. Biologically, Lisa was my sister's daughter and my niece, but over the course of the years as she was growing up, I actually became a surrogate father. Because of some complications within Lisa's own family, Howard really raised her as a father would a daughter. I spent some time actually helping her grow up. So to me, she was a daughter. I mean, there was no two ways about it. She lived with us for a long period of time. In fact, Lisa thought so much of her uncle that on October 25th, 1987, at the age of 22, she had him walk her down the aisle. She was as happy as could be at the wedding. My God. And she smiled. Any bigger face would have fallen apart. It would just. It was her day. I mean, my God, she was on Cloud 9. But sadly, 2 months after Lisa began her happily ever after, tragedy struck. And for so many reasons, this wasn't just any day. I mean, this was Christmas morning. We were up in Maine early Christmas morning. I got a call from my youngest son and he told me that Lisa was missing and I said, what are you talking about? He's missing? Howard and his family got a call from her husband, Matthew, that Lisa had gone for a walk the night before and had never come home. They had spent the night together, they had dinner, they were watching television and she said she wanted to go out for a walk and needed to clear her head. He fell asleep and waking up about 3 hours later, only to find out that she had never returned. And so when he woke up and realized she was missing, Matthew right away called the police. Matthew went on to tell Lisa's mom that he went out searching for her and he was really, really concerned that he could not find her. You know, whenever there's someone missing an obviously you're going to look at what was crime like at the time. In the 80s we did definitely see an uptick in crime because drugs crack were on fire. Now in the suburbs, you didn't see those. And type of numbers as you did in the city, but it was definitely the type of thing that was lurking below the top. It was not a very safe place to be. A friend of mine was a police officer and that was part of what he patrolled. A day didn't go by where he wasn't rolling in the street with somebody. But for Howard and his family, it was right away, all hands on deck. They weren't even thinking about the what, they just wanted to know the where. And that meant finding Lisa. So early in the morning of the 26th of December of 87, we got in the car and we started heading back to Long Island to try to find out what the heck went wrong and then we started the search release. You know, Scott, if we just think for a moment any loved one, spouse, significant other, just knowing that that partner didn't come home after an entire night thought. Well, there's definitely some red flags here. I mean, she left in the middle of a New York winter with no coat on. She also had an asthma condition, and she always carried an inhaler with her. No matter where she went. She didn't have the inhaler, she didn't have her pocketbook, she didn't have her car keys, she didn't have her wallet. So this is definitely a suspicious missing person. But it also could be a medical situation where she did take that walk and then became disabled or disoriented to be able to find her. Home. So no matter what this is, it's extremely troublesome. We've all probably been in a fight with somebody we care about at some point, and I admittedly had to take a walk to get that breath. And you do like, you walk out of the house and you don't have anything with you because it's just going to be a short walk. So the fact that she didn't come home with all those other factors at play, it definitely sounds like something bad has happened. Whether it is natural, medical or more sinister, we have yet to find out. By the next morning, Matthew had assembled several of their friends, organizing search parties to go out and look for Lisa. We were going out day and night, going almost around the clock until we just couldn't go anymore when we get a few hours sleep and go out and do some more searching. But by this point, police still hadn't considered Lisa a missing person. And just the stress of this situation proved to be too much for Lisa's mom. She was kind of sedated at the time, you know, trying to keep her down because she was worried. She was scared, obviously, because Elisa was missing. But at the same time, everybody is still hoping for the best. Everybody was hoping that we'd see Lisa again. I mean, everybody loved her. I mean, she was that great. I mean, she was a lovable individual and, like I say, a major part of the family. And as far as my sons were concerned, she was their sister. I mean, that's the way it was. Scott, I'm turning to your journalist hat for a moment. A young woman goes missing in the middle of the night, Christmas Eve, the type of story that media is going to jump on. Just add these words together, you know, and the headlines would be obvious. Newlywed, missing Christmas Eve, popular cheerleader. That headline would write itself. It is a very big story and one that will draw a lot of coverage. And that's exactly what this story did. We had reporters everywhere. I mean, my God, you were afraid to go to the bathroom in case it was a reporter in the bathroom. They were newlyweds. It was Christmas Eve, you know, Christmas. It was just a a big, big thing that happened. But Matthew was doing everything he could to bring attention to his missing wife. Oh my God. Every time there was a reporter, he was right there. He was standing in front of TV cameras pleading for her safe return. And we have all seen that on the news. I mean, people understand the power of media and so when they want to get the word out quickly, they look to the public for help. And that often means family and friends getting in front of the mic. Lisa's husband, Matthew Solomon, was a 23 year old sheet metal worker who was very physically fit, and Lisa and Matthew had met while he was a mechanic at a local garage in town. Lisa had a car accident, so she didn't have a car. She walked to the stores, which weren't that far away from the house, and coming back she went past this shell gas station and this guy in there came walking out and started talking to her, and that's how she met him. She was smitten with him from the beginning and according to her family and friends, they seemed to be off to a fantastic life together. And then it was an on off situation. For a number of years they'd be going out together and they'd fall apart. They'd go back together, they'd fall apart again and back and forth. It went for about four years. And I'm going to go there again, because the more I heard it, the more I started to think it. Husband, husband, husband, right. I mean, we've seen too many of those stories that that's exactly where it leads. But again, innocent until proven guilty. And I had to pull myself back. And I started to think about the unfortunate, so many other cases that ended up very different about who had done something bad in the end, whether it is a stranger out there lurking, whether there was something else going on at play. And quite honestly, in my own life, and I think I've referenced this before, you know, I have unfortunately had family that has been the victim of homicide on just a scenario like this, walking home when all of a sudden they were taken and knowing that all those factors are at play, I have to take a step back on this one and start to look at these other things. Matthew, her husband, he was being extremely cooperative. No matter what police want to talk to him about, if they want to look inside the house, he said yes, yes, yes. He was up front. Told them that they had been drinking and he had fallen asleep while they were watching television and then they had this argument that night which is what led her outside. Apparently she became very angry at him saying how can you fall asleep on Christmas Eve. He also said that she has in the past asked to leave to clear her head to go out for a walk when they may have had an argument, but she normally would come back within 15 or 20 minutes, but this time it obviously was different. And that could have been any one of us on that set of facts. Matthew was always making a point to Lisa's family that he was doing everything he could do to bring her home, and within days of a disappearance, Matthew would be out doing his own detective work, and Matthew offered up all the information he had to police. He also gave police a name, Rob. He didn't know his last name. He knew that it was someone that Lisa had known through work, and he also knew that this guy liked Lisa, liked her a lot, but that Lisa had not reciprocated those feelings. So could lisas unreturned. Affection for Rob have led him to do something sinister. In her job working as a loan officer at a local bank in town, Lisa would have frequent contact with many people, and there was one in particular the family was aware about a man by the name of Rob. Rob was somebody who made an application for a car loan at the bank where Lisa worked. Even though they had never met in person, he constantly asked her out during their phone calls together. He was smitten by her. This was before they were even engaged. He called her up on a few occasions and she said no, don't bother me anymore. Lisa would always decline, saying that she was getting married, but those calls persisted and Rob wouldn't take no for an answer. So hearing about this, would police be thinking and looking for this guy Rob? And the answer is, of course, and with her husband being cooperative and giving this name and saying that this was unrequited love, they've heard that line before and it usually doesn't turn to something good once the police are involved. As it turns out, Rob would also take his affection to the next level by calling Lisa's family to wish them a Merry Christmas. Now, he never talked to Lisa's mom, he talked to Lisa's sister Donna. But the question is, could he be involved in her disappearance? But by all accounts, there was no relationship. So I find that call particularly odd because what it says to me is that someone who doesn't know boundaries, they're telling you they don't want to be in a relationship, and they're telling you they're in a relationship with someone else. Now why are you reaching out to the family? Right. And it is because obviously it sounds like he's trying to get to her. So is he going to leave it alone there or is he going to go deeper? And does that interest turn sinister? You know, and I think that is a very bold move to call someone else's family that you're trying to date. I mean, definitely forward leaning, but here's where the case takes a very interesting turn. Investigators were already trying to identify and question Rob, but then an interesting lead comes in unsolicited a woman. Calls to say that she's a psychic and she has information about Lisa's disappearance and I have a copy of the officer's note from that conversation. I wanted to read it to you. Here's a portion. On the night of the incident, Lisa was out in front of her home and someone she knew from high school came by in a Chevy van or Corvette and stopped in front of the residence and they had a conversation and then the car took off. Quote like a bat out of hell. Now, I've said this before in the podcast I don't ever remember. Relying on any psychic information for cases. But you know, where do you come out on that end of Sega? Again, you know, could it be something? Sure. But in and of itself, we don't know. He definitely is interested. He definitely is lurking about. But really what police decided is that while he's definitely on their radar, the best way to try to go one way or the other was to sit down and see if he would talk to them. Using the documentation from the car loan, police were able to fully identify Rob and once they tracked him down and brought him in for questioning, he said he knew about the missing woman, Lisa Solomon, but he only knew his loan officer, the woman he was trying to date as Lisa Weaver. And since they never physically met and remember this is the 80s where there was no Facebook or social media, he didn't really know what she looked like. He only really knew her voice and he gave police a solid alibi for Christmas Eve. And that alibi checked out. Rob, on Christmas Eve, was in Connecticut with his family. He wasn't even in the state. Rob was cleared by investigators. So while Rob might be off police radar, they don't know who took Lisa, if anyone. Because more importantly, they still don't know where Lisa is. She's still a missing person. So the big question, the most important question, is where could she be? We just went all over the place and they checked open fields. They say they went to crack houses, they went everywhere and we just kept going in different places. As Matthew and the family continue to search for Lisa, Howard made an interesting discovery at a vacant Boy Scout Campground. One day we went all and there was a big Boy Scout camp nearby. The camp was closed for the winter, but there were these small buildings throughout the camp. We went through whatever building we could. We we checked the doors and if they were open we went in and we checked them all out and they say we found this one building. We went in there and the fireplace was actually warm. You wonder like holy cow, with somebody really held captive in here for a while. Could it be that maybe she was abducted or something happened? That she was there alone, or more likely with somebody and they had stayed in that place to keep warm? Your mind just keeps working and just hoping for the best. Like maybe she was here and maybe she's somewhere else. You know? Maybe she's still alive. After a couple of days, you start realizing like maybe she's not alive anymore. You know what always drives the adrenaline for search is hope. And even if it goes on for days and days, 20 hours a day, it's that adrenaline hoping that you'll find the person you're searching for. We just kept going in different places. They even went out further on the island and checked the woods and so on. The news coverage was continuing and Lisa was still missing. You know, Matthew was also expanding the search for Lisa. The more they widen out the search area, the more he asked for the public's help. He actually had a motorcycle group and evidently it was like 100 them. They went all over the place. Just picture what that site must have been like. There was some nasty nasty places they went to. Matthew was so determined to find her, he repeatedly put himself in harm's way. Even at one point he and a few of his friends went to a local crack house, thinking that she may have been kidnapped and she was being held there. At one point they went to a place there and the police were there. The cops didn't want to go in the building and they went in anyway. They kicked the door down. They could hear people running out the back, but Lisa was nowhere to be seen. So now, by the time New Year's Eve has rolled around, this search party has been going nonstop for a week. They are exhausted, but still relentless. Matthew, myself, that Sergeant, his brother Rick and a whole bunch of us went down once again along by the Northern State Parkway and we started going through the woods. So that night it is freezing. It's well below 0. It's almost midnight. People are tired, but they're not giving up. Around 11:00 o'clock at night we said the hell we just can't couldn't go out anymore. It was just we were all exhausted. We were freezing and everything else. We went back to the apartment and then they noticed that Matthew's friend comes in the house, whisper something in his ear and they ran down the stairs and now the two of them run outside. Could this be the news that everyone was waiting for? Had Lisa been found? But based on the whispers, Howard was thinking the worst. I said to Jerry, I said. Something's wrong here. It's New Year's Eve and Lisa's husband, Matthew has just run out of the apartment. Asked for, his friend has come in, whispering something in his ear. Howard doesn't know what's going on, but it just felt off. So we ran down too, and when we got to my car they would make it a left turn at the end of the road. So I started up, kicked the CB radio on, and I heard my son Steve calling me and I said, what's up, Steve? He said we found Lisa. After those hours and days, they'd been searching. The search was now over. We are going to take a pause here for a moment and go back a few hours in time to give you a bit of a different perspective from a person also involved in the search for Lisa, her cousin Steve. Earlier that night, as Howard and Matthew had called it quits, Steve had decided to search one more spot. There was an auxiliary police officer by the name of Carl Heidenreich, Karl said. I have a couple ideas. I want to go somewhere else. As Steve said, I'm going to go with him. I said, OK, you guys go and we'll stay down here. So they went to the other side of town through the fields. Lisa's cousin Steve is in his fifth day of searching, but even the darkness of night and below freezing temperatures. They were committed to keep their search online and it's again, you know, the dedication here is so apparent, which really is testament to the community and her family and the bonds that they are just not going to give up until they find her and bring her home one way or the other. There was a mound of dirt there, and there were a bunch of garbage bags, you know, actually had leaves and stuff in them that people had thrown in the field, and they started kicking these bags of leaves, and then Steve would only kick this one bag, and he said that he had a different shape. And he kicked his bag and it was solid as a rock. And they split it open. And there was Lisa. And he saw her face frozen her eyeball, looking at it. And that was how Lisa was found. Wow. Just hearing the way Howard describes that. Fine. Just makes the devastation of this loss all the worse. You know, there's a reason, as prosecutors, we don't want to show family members crime scene photographs. You don't want them to remember their loved one the way that they were left dead. In this case, likely murdered. But here, that's exactly what they found. I mean, for the entire family, this is not what they had expected, and they really had held out hope that she would return home. And families of homicide victims often talk about the range of emotions in these types of discoveries. You know, the obvious horror, but also a sense that you have an answer. It's a first step in a long road, hopefully to justice. So at least now the unknowing is solved and they have that answer where she's been. It was a horror scene, I mean, but you know, everything is going on so fast you really don't think about much. And that is indeed Lisa inside garbage bags. And I say garbage bags because it's not one, but five and she is inside in the fetal position. Oh my God. I just, you know, I had to get there. I just had to get there. And and when I got there, the police were putting up the yellow tape, you know, the police line tape. I went right through it like I was the winner of a running race and I just broke right through it. Howard ran towards the police line to where Steve and the police cars were positioned, but that is not where Lisa's body was. When the 1st police officer got there, he put the police line tape on the South side of the road and the body was on the north side. When Matthew showed up, he had seen the same thing that Howard saw, but unlike Howard, he didn't run towards the police tape and police cars and lights. He ran in the other direction, towards Lisa's body. Matthew jumped out of the car and started running cross country to where the body was and Steve said back, come here, come here. And Matthew kept saying is he over here? Is she over here? Steve and Steve said get over here and finally he ran over and he grabbed him and he got him to the ground. How did Matthew know the very spot where her body was if nobody, including police, ever pointed out there was no flights, nothing indicating where Lisa's body was? While they may have always had Matthew still in the mix, in their minds he wasn't there when Steve found Lisa's body. So why is it that he made the beeline straight for her body rather than the police tape like Howard, sometimes it isn't what someone says, but rather what they do. That same night, the police actually from Long Island drove those garbage bags all the way down to the FBI lab in Washington. So now police actually had Lisa's body. So going to the autopsy they determined her cause of death. Lisa had been strangled. This is no longer a missing persons case. Now this is officially a homicide. Then, of course, the police took Steve and and Carl Heidenreich with them to the station house to do the questioning. The police took his shoes at night. They took his gloves, they took his jacket so they could get the various fabrics and fibers and so on. And being that Steve found the body, that is going to be an obvious place to start with taking shoes and clothing to see if footprints around Lisa's body are going to match back to Steve, or if just maybe it's going to give them a clue to our killer. You know, while the FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia, was processing those pieces of evidence, police went back and reviewed all of the witness interviews, including Matthew Solomon himself. When they went back to look at that initial interview that they did with him, now that he may be a person of interest, they wanted to see if any inconsistencies can be found. And while they were looking for any inconsistencies, they noticed something that was off. Way back in the early stages, he kind of had a a feeling about Matthew because the way Matthew was saying things, you know, like she was very pretty. She was beautiful. If she's missing, she is beautiful. She was a Good Wife. Well, she is a Good Wife, you know, and all that stuff. So now you have what he did, which is going right for the body that he shouldn't have known where it was to. Now, talking about her in the past tense with the word was, it isn't always the obvious things that police and prosecutors are looking for. It is these small things that might be innocuous and it might be innocent, but the more and more you have things piling on top of one another now that starts to become potential evidence of a crime and of who the culprit is. And that's exactly what they started to think here. Investigators had a fresh crime scene. Everything surrounded the body, including the garbage bags that contained the body would be tested for forensic evidence. Were there any footprints leading up to or from the body? How about tire tracks? All of those would have to be considered and investigated. As we said before, she was in a fetal position inside 5 layers of garbage bags. Those garbage bags were sent to the FBI labs and inside those bags they found something else. Red fibers. So now investigators are on a mission to match a piece of red fiber. So the 1st place they go after getting a warrant is they go to Matthew and Lisa's home. They go to her closets. Does she have a sweater? Is there any clothing? Or how about red carpeting? Anything within the house that could match that red piece of fiber? And as it turns out, nothing in the home matched, so if it's not inside his house, they next move on to his car. So when we go now to the search of Matthew's car, police do notice something peculiar, something they hadn't noticed before. Matthew Solomon gave investigators permission to search his home and searched his vehicle, and when they opened the trunk of his car, they noticed a small square section of red carpeting that immediately caught the attention. The reason? The FBI had already examined the fibers that were collected from the garbage bag that contained Lisa Solomon's body, the FBI confirming a short time later that it was a match. And now that they had the match to the fibers found in the garbage bag to Matthew's car, they continue their search and eventually more evidence does turn up, because when they look at surveillance footage they could obtain locally from a 711 Christmas Eve night, they see Matthew and he's buying garbage bags. Scott Reality check here when you see all the dots connecting and pointing at Matthew, the doting husband. Surprised? Not surprised. I mean, we've seen cases before where husbands go in front of the TV cameras and they're just diverting attention from them and they do such a good job. In the beginning you want to believe them, but, you know, this is just potentially another case of just that. And that was it is that every sign was pointing to all those cases that you have all seen before that the husband cries would end up being crocodile tears. But you don't want to be that cynical. I don't want my prosecutor hat to lead me to always think the worst of the most obvious. Because sometimes it just isn't true, but that isn't always the way that it goes. And ultimately that was unfortunately it here, and Matthew Solomon was arrested on the morning of January 11th, 1988. They picked them up first thing in the morning. He was going into New York City on the train. They pulled him over on Laurel Rd. And the first words out of Matthew's mouth is anymore of on Rob. That's the type of guy he was. Matthew Solomon pled not guilty, but also made a rather shocking admission to police. He detailed the confession to them. In it he explained that on Christmas Eve they fought and he claimed both he and the wife were being physical and he tried to restrain her. And he realized that it had gone too far and she was no longer breathing, calling it an accident, but also telling officers that they had arguments in the past and they would always get rough with each other. And you also said that they had a lot of arguments and fights. I would just hold in a chokehold until she stopped resisting and would be calm. This was the way he stopped her from crying and carrying on. And it always worked before. So something he did time and time again. So this quote UN quote, you know, blaming the victim's defense had played out in a very high profile case just the year before. It was around the same time as the Chambers trial and it was so typical. They always try to blame the victim. It was a pretty hot topic at the time, and that is because just the year before there had been a big case. You may or may not know about it now, which is the Robert Chambers trial, which basically was this rough sex defense. Let's blame the victim that this was consensual sex. He claimed that got rough and then accidentally she died. So people were very eager to see how it was going to ultimately work out here. They tried to blame it on Lisa that she was drunk and she was violent and this had the next thing bunch of crap. But at trial, the prosecutor called a witness to dispute the claim that Lisa was the aggressor. That was the owner of the house. They had an upstairs apartment in a in a Cape Cod type house. He was down below and he heard the whole thing going on. The landlord could hear this struggle upstairs and could make out the sounds of Lisa trying to get away from Solomon as he pursued her. He heard the screaming and the yelling, and he heard Lisa make the run for it, and he heard the big thump as he slammed her head against the wall. You don't always need to see something to understand and think about in your own house. Sometimes you know that if if you live in an apartment, the way that someone knocks versus something falls. If you live in a house and there's something above you, we start to understand sounds. And this landlord knew his house in an accident. It was not. And the ear witness being the landlord was able to say that he heard Lisa crying and heard her husband screaming. So that kind of gives you a sense of who probably was the aggressor and the prosecution. Clearly had their own ideas about what it actually happened that night, and those ideas lined up with the landlord's testimony. Lisa wanted to go to midnight mass with my sister, I guess. Obviously he didn't want her to go to midnight mass. And the argument started. He threw her down on the couch. She was crying. He was screaming. She said I'm leaving and she made a burst for the door. He caught her, slammed her head against the wall, stunned her, and then put her into a military chokehold and murdered her at that point. During Matthew Solomon's confession to police, he laid out the gruesome details on how he killed his wife. And while you know that anesthesia and I never really want to give a killer a voice in this podcast, I do want to read you a quote from his confession that struck me, and it comes directly from his transcript. I put Lisa in the first bag and twist, tied it close, and then I put the first bag in the second bag and then tied that close. I did the same thing with the next three bags while she was in the bathtub. I also decided to leave the Gold Wedding band on her finger. After dumping the body of his wife in a field full of garbage bags, Solomon told investigators he drove around for about 45 minutes and then headed back into town. And then he saw a police officer and he asked him a question. Had he seen his wife? A true Jekyll and Hyde. To a courtroom packed with family members of the victim, the defendant and a lot of media, the jury spent 12 hours deliberating this tragic case, and the verdict was guilty of depraved indifference. Depraved indifference. In its basic form, it means that someone recklessly engages in conduct that creates a grave risk of death to another person. And the example we use all the time, from law school to the prosecutor's office, when someone fires a loaded gun into a crowd and it hits somebody, while they may not be intending to hit the actual person or target, but it is so reckless, so depraved by firing that gun into a crowd of people that that result was more than foreseeable. So ultimately, you're held to the same culpability as if you intentionally. And to cause that death. The sentencing? That was horrible. In New York, the sentencing range was 15 to life, up to 25 to life. He got an 18 to life. You know, I often look at these cases on whether the verdict is fair, especially when involuntary manslaughter or depraved indifference charges are being considered opposed to murder. If guilty, did the defendant realize his action and attempt to do the right thing, or was it the opposite? Go out of their way to cover up the crime as it is in this case? Publicly plea for the safe return, asking hundreds of volunteers to search for her in freezing cold temperatures for more than a week and put the family through incredible amounts of pain. Pain that is never going to go away. Are those legal considerations? No. But they are moral considerations, humanity considerations? I believe so. Usually the judge will read something to the perpetrator, you know, like you did wrong, you did this, and the next thing, blah, blah. He gave 18 the life you got up and he ran out of the courtroom. Never said a word. Now, let me tell you something else. When he was in the county lockup 26 days after he was arrested, he sent a letter to his sister. I'm not going to read the whole letter. I'm just going to read certain cards. All right, now I'm quoting him just like before. I'm on top of the world and I think I'm going to stay here for a while. My lift, as you know, is named. So he's been seeing his girlfriend, who's been visiting him in the county lockup. I can't wait until she gets here. I can't wait to hold her and her to hold me. She's my little girl. You keep saying that, my little girl. He used to call Lisa my little girl too. And then he murdered. And then down at the bottom here it says it's great. The most important people in my past of my present are still here with me. It's like Lisa never existed. And that's something else. You know, there is something about this when I think about it. You know, here he had taken his wife's life, this woman who all she wanted was to be a wife and a mother. And after dying literally at his hands, he is now in prison living that life that she so wanted, now with his own relationship. And he didn't just date. He was married twice in prison, and he has a daughter. Based on his sentence, Solomon would be eligible for parole in 18 years, which would include time served for good behavior each and every time that would come up. Lisa's family felt they were reliving a horror time after time. We had our entire family would go to the hearings. I was there, my wife, my sister, the whole bunch of us. We'd all be there and we'd all give our different opinions on things. We'd all talk and how we've been affected by Lisa's murder and so on. And we keep going on and on and on. And Howard and his family went to these parole hearings every couple of years for approximately 15 years. And just think about that anguish while it is never over in homicide. Having to literally be drawn back into the system to plea for your niece's daughter loved ones killer to not be released back into the streets. That must just dredge this all up over and over again. As time went on, OK, now you can only have a couple of people here and then finally it ended up. I was the only one that was allowed to be there. If somebody had letters, I couldn't read them unless they were mine or my sister's letters. I mean, they kept making it harder and harder for us. Then, after all that time and all of those parole hearings, something changed. And his last hearing, his daughter sent a letter stating that her son, who was Matthew's grandson, is going to be growing up without a grandfather. So guess what? They released the. And in 2019, Matthew Solomon was granted parole. So that the grandson could have a grandfather and we would just love to hang it. I mean, that was it. You know, while every anniversary of a murder victim is a solemn occasion, the most difficult ones appear to be the ones that people all around you are celebrating, gathering with family members in happier times. And for the Solomon family, the holiday season hasn't been the same, and likely never will be. Christmas is a horrible situation for us. It just brings back the horrible memories of all the things that happened. And despite his grief, Howard was still determined to help others going through similar circumstances. Well, I've been with the parents of murdered children. It's an organization that's for homicide survivors. It's the only organization of its type that is made for homicide survivors and run by homicide survivors. And I was with POMC for 32 years. I was the president for eight years. You know, Scott, when I think about programs like this, and coincidentally this is a program that I support and donate to each year because I'm always looking for programs like this that are for survivors by survivors that actually impact and help those that are left in the wake of homicide, because for them, the pain never ends. You know, on a OM the focus is always with the victims and the victims families and how to help them cope, how to help them through these situations is really the job of law enforcement, prosecutors and all of us to really lend a helping hand when we can. In thinking about Lisa Solomon, it really struck me as Howard spoke about all his niece ever wanted was to be a wife and a mom, and it was the man who was in her mind going to provide her with that is the one who ultimately ended her life so many years before her time. I just want people to remember who she was, just as all American girl. Like I said, the cheerleader. A person who just wanted to be an American housewife with a family and she would just murdered and thrown into a field like a pile of garbage. I'd rather think of her as this young girl doing gymnastics and backbends with her uncle and surrounded by so many people that loved her. And for Lisa Solomon, those memories, her memories will continue to shine bright through her family and now also through all of you. TuneIn next week for another new 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. This episode was researched and produced by Matt Hall. So what do you think, Chuck, do you approve?