Killer In Question Limited Series Will Look Beyond Closed Cases

New limited series Killer In Question asks what happens when a case isn’t closed after sentencing.

Killer in Question Investigation Discovery
Photo: Investigation Discovery

Conviction does not always mean conclusion. Homicide investigators, by necessity, move on to their next case after the one they worked is closed. Investigation Discovery’s Killer In Question explores what happens when a killer is convicted, but the true culprit is still on the loose? The new four-episode limited series premieres on Sunday, Nov. 1, at 9 p.m.

“When a murder is committed, it sends shockwaves through a community,” reads the press statement. “But what happens when a case is closed, yet lingering questions remain? When doubt circulates throughout a city, and investigations are put under a microscope, people begin to ask: is the convicted truly the killer, or is someone evading the law while an innocent person sits taxed with their crimes?”

Killer in Question will examine four stories of adjudicated cases, where the verdict remains under dispute. “We chose to take a risk and look at four highly contested cases under intense scrutiny within their communities,” Investigation Discovery’s Henry Schleiff said in a statement. “We did this with the hope of shedding light on these cases – creating national attention, presenting the facts, yet leaving the ultimate determination up to the people watching at home.”

Each installment will take viewers through critical crime scenes step by step. It will include key questioning and newfound evidence and leave the conclusion to the viewer to decide. The first episode, “The Hunted,” is set in 1990. It follows the case of two hunters, Doug Estes and Jim Bennett, who are found shot to death in a state gaming area. “Police suspect Jeff Titus, the man who owned the property just next door, but he is cleared by alibi witnesses,” the official synopsis reads. “A reinvestigation by a cold case team nearly a decade later leads detectives back to Titus, and he is convicted of the murders. Titus maintains his innocence to this day, and with both the original investigators and the cold case team criticizing each other, the community does not know what to think. Upon further investigation, it is discovered that a serial killer was on the loose around the time of the murders. But is that one connection enough to prove that Titus is an innocent man?”

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“The Girl in the Lake,” which premieres Nov. 8, begins on the night of May 1, 1987. Teresa McAbee, an 11-year-old girl, “heads off down the road to a convenience store near her home in Mascotte, Florida,” the synopsis reads. “The next morning, a fisherman finds her body face down in the lake across the street. Before he even leaves the scene, the lead Sheriff’s investigator is convinced he has a suspect, a local rookie cop named James Duckett. The Mascotte Police Chief maintains Duckett’s innocence, but over the next couple months the investigator’s clues fall in place and Duckett is sentenced to death.”

After contacting Duckette on death row fifteen years later, a retired homicide detective finds some of the evidence in the case is questionable, and the facts don’t add up.

“In 1997, three bodies are found in the walk-in refrigerator of a gas station in Lake Charles, Louisiana,” the synopsis for “The Man with the Rabbit’s Foot” explains. “Two years later, Thomas Cisco, an acquaintance of one of the victims, confesses to the murders. But family members of the victims are not at peace with Cisco’s confession, as mistrust of their Parish’s law enforcement runs deep – especially when it comes to the longtime Sheriff, whose son resembles a composite sketch released to the public. Cisco also proves to be unreliable in his accounts and over several years, he gives investigators approximately 20 different statements about what happened the night of the murders.”

Cisco was sentenced to 90 years for the murders, but the families of the victims believe an accomplice is still at large. “They are convinced there’s more to the story of contested events that they feel, until today, has not been told.” “The Man with the Rabbit’s Foot” premieres Nov. 15.

“In an early morning in March 1997, Angie Nihoff stops by to check on her grandma, Olga Parlante, known to all her friends as The Bingo Queen,” reads the synopsis of “The Bingo Queen,” which premieres Nov. 22. “Angie is horrified to find that Olga has been brutally beaten and isn’t moving. On a call to 911, a frantic Angie can’t stop screaming, but some closest to Angie wonder if it is all an act. By the time detectives arrive on the scene, Olga has been pronounced dead. As detectives untangle a web of clues, they never find any concrete evidence tying Angie to the murder.”

The detectives had access to a new, advanced computer database 15 years later. When the investigators fed unidentified palm prints from the crime scene, they matched Bennie Hall, an imprisoned burglar. “Using this new evidence, Hall is convicted of Olga Parlante’s murder and is sentenced to life in prison two decades after Olga’s death,” the synopsis reads. “But to this day some detectives still believe there may be a second murderer, who has never been caught.”

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Killer In Question premieres on Sunday, November 1, at 9 p.m. ET on Investigation Discovery.