Former social-worker S.R. Reynolds has never forgotten the mishandled case of fifteen-year-old Michelle Anderson, a vibrant beauty who went missing from Reynold's Knoxville, Tennessee, neighborhood years earlier. Aided by her old professor, famed forensic anthropologist Dr. Bill Bass-founder of the University of Tennessee's 'Body Farm'-Reynolds picks up the trail of this cold case.As she presses neglected pieces of the puzzle into place, Reynolds unearths a string of heinous kidnappings and rapes across the South, crimes that span decades. A picture begins to form. Patterns appear. And all that evidence points to one man: convicted sex offender Larry Lee Smith.As a result of Reynold's efforts, the Knoxville Police Department reopen the cold case of Michelle's disappearance, but Larry Lee is about to be released from a Georgia prison, where he served time for a related crime-a 'similar transaction'. SIMILAR TRANSACTIONS: A True Story-S.R. Reynolds
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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You are now listening to true murder, the most shocking killers in true crime, history and the authors that have written about them: Gacy Bundy, Dahmer, the night stalker Btk every week, another fascinating author talking about the most shocking and infamous killers in true crime, history, true murder, with your host journalist and author Dan Zupansky good evening Former social worker Sr Reynolds has never forgotten the mishandled case of fifteen year old, Michelle Anderson, a vibrant beauty who went, missing from Reynolds Knoxville TN neighborhood years earlier, aided by her old
professor famed forensic anthropologist doctor Bill Bass founder of the University of Tennessee's body Farm Reynolds, picks up the trail this cold case as she presses neglected pieces of the puzzle into Place Reynolds on earth a string of heinous kidnappings and rapes across the S crimes that spam decades a picture begins to form patterns appear and all that evidence points to one man convicted sex offender, Larry Lee Smith, Azar's, Cult of Reynolds Efforts in Knox. Ville police Department reopen the coal case of Michelle's. Disappearance but LE really is about to be released from a Georgia prison where he served time for related crime, a similar transaction, the book that were feet, this evening is similar transaction, a true story with my special guest,
journalist and author Sr Reynolds welcome to the program, and thank you very much for agreeing to this interview. Sr Red Thank you yes glad to be here. Thank you very much. Let's jump right into this, because this is a complicated story running, as I mentioned in the introduction decades, and your Extraordinar effort along with various victims and victims, families members to bring this LE really Smith to justice. So let's get right to that and we start starting to book with introduction of Catherine Mcwilliams. Now this is fourteen year old girl. She just moved from New York with her father to Florida. With her mother, our parents were separated Ann. And on July, 12th, one thousand nine hundred and eighty one she is out with friends. It gets late. She has a curfew, And her friend Tom, which was are uh
right or could be. A ride wasn't ready to leave at that point, so she was wanted to meet curfew, so she needed a ride and a young man. Man named Larry Lee Smith volunteers. Now, as you write the Tom writes down the man's license, plate number and his phone phone number and hands it to Catherine now What happens on that ride home with Katherine Ann Lee, really. Ok. Well, he travels into the city of Clearwater from the beach where they've been and heat poker that before he takes it home, which is about three minutes away, he needs to stop on his friends apartment and pick up something, and she says ok and they get there and he convinces her to come upstairs to the apartment with him.
Telling him or telling her, rather that he wants her to meet his friends and she's just anxious to get home, so she gives in and goes up with just to kind of keep things moving along. She isn't yet seeing him as any kind of dangerous person. She isn't afraid at this point but you kind of alert once they are in the apartment. However, she realizes that there's, no one else. In there there alone suddenly he grabbed her by the neck and shuts or into the bedroom. He chokes her, which is kind of one of his signature. Things heat Look for pudges or throws her down the bed and he rapes her. He threatens to kill her if she tells killer family if she tells she sort of astute for a young girl. So she decides that a good survival strategy would be to play along with
and she's utterly alone at night with him. So she gives in to his demands to degree. She begins to act like she's, ok, with what's happening, he even asks her ask Words if she enjoyed the ordeal, the rape and she says, yeah sure keeping him humor humoring him problem. We're leaving. He has a bayes in an effort to. Race in the evidence? I guess you thought he was pretty clever. He also gets the piece of paper from her the tag number on it when they get down to his truck. He tells your dislike down cover allies, determining She can't see where they are leading from so she won't be able to identify where they've been uh- and on the way home yeah. He he makes chatty flirty small talk with her. Feeling like. Maybe she actually likes him or she's kind of convinced him, and then she has him drop or once
Return Newport New Port Richey neighborhoods. She has to drop for about a half a block from the actual house So we won't know really where she lives he drives off, and then she races down the street burst through her front door, and you know the screens to her mother. I've been raped. Now your mother Jane calls the police they take her to the hospital. Some point she's, the rape kit is conducted. She cooperates with them shoes. I've got the presence of mind that she can work on a komposit drawing drawing so a composite drawing, and she thinks really looks good is is- is done completed And then she helps Katherine Hell the police find the address draws. It makes it crying. She was aware of her circumstances like where You had mentioned when she was after she was taken back to her home so which leads to the rest a few weeks later
He is arrested for kidnapping and rape and the trial December one thousand nine hundred and eighty one by by nineteen, by January, one thousand, nine hundred and eighty two. It was dealt down to invite Terry sexual battery, and he was given five years and at that point, there was a recommendation by the judge for Psych. Patrick Evaluation, now, once in prayer what was that diagnosis and what crucial information, did he tell a psychiatrist at that time about? six year old, niece, yes over the length of his prison stays, given a number of different diagnosis, ease, actually related mental health, mental and status at the time mental status, Including one called Psycho Genic Amnesia, which isn't even
anymore, but this was the eighties, but regarding your sexual behavior and charges he's diagnosed as a mentally disordered sex offender. She, she is also the number psychiatrists while he's in the prison, and he is the two one with some of his prior sexual offences, including an attempted rape of this teenage wife's friend, and he tells a psychiatrist that he attempted to rate his niece. He tells the psychiatrist's niece was eight when he was probably about fourteen or fifteen. She was actually just fixed and for my research that rape was consummated, so he didn't attempt to rape this nice. He actually did rape, her,
when she was actually six and he tells the psychiatrist that he would like to understand. Why he's attracted to young girls now while he's in the prison he well. It's recommended psychiatrist recommends that he enters a program for mentally disordered sex offenders at the State psychiatric Hospital he uses that plan. It is a program that requires one to be committed It's doing the treatment, it's called a self help program. You have to be willing, you can't be forced into it, he's there about a year, but they We determined that, for the most part, he's done compliance is defiant? He breaks rules. He won't do his therapeutic assignments consistently. He does in co op. Playing group. He
when they give him personality inventories he he fakes his answers in order to info to test one way or another he's just kind of conning. And after about a year, he tells them that he no longer wants to be in the program, but he wants to be discharged in return, do the general prison population that he thinks he can get out sooner, that way and then I guess he probably maybe do what he was talking about, because they did discharge him back to the general population, his discharge, diagnose from the sex offender treatment program with mentally disordered, sex offender unimproved, and they actually had a prognosis that he was probably more aggressive, more likely to violently act out. But then, eight months later, he is pulled from the Florida prison after having served just under
half of his five year sentence and he remained in Florida. About another year year and a half until sometime in nineteen, eighty six, and then he returns to his hometown of Knoxville TN. Now in Knoxville TN on January tenth, one thousand nine hundred and eighty seven Michelle Anderson doesn't come home one night, now she lives with her mother Anita, her brother, Doug, Junior Michelle's, father dog dogs. He lives in Florida and her boyfriend is eighteen year old, jazz now Anita calls so now Anita calls Michelle's best friend, Marcie and she doesn't know where her friend is then and the speaks with Chaz and soon Chaz tells a need of a story about meeting up with Leah.
Lee Smith, what happened according to Chas. That night, with Michelle. Well Anita has. He said. Michelle's mother had gone out for a little while that evening, and while she was out Michelle and some of her friends, including Chaz, they slipped off to a party, And the kids had been drinking Chad In a few of the other kids walked. In the party. They were at to a convenience store to get some more beer, but the clerk refuses to sell it to them because they are under age, each and they meet a stranger in this convene. Get store, who overhears this interaction and who offers to buy their beer for them, and this straight Larry Lee Smith He invites himself back to their party
then afterward he is by Chad, and Michelle and another girlfriend too I'm over here the party excuse me this apartment and continue to the party to party a little longer, not this morning, thing to do, but everybody's been drinking. I guess judgments were not too good. Things go on there, there's some questionable things and chat, as an Michelle get into an altercation, they begin to have an argument. Voices get loud. Michelle runs out of the apartment and literally tell them that he will take them home now. But he makes Chass sit in the back. It's below freezing this points of January. Ninety Mason sit in the back of his truck in the bed. And he and Michelle are up in the cab and he drops Chaz off near his house first
and the understanding that Chad has and I'm that Michelle had to but that literally was going to drop her off next. But that did not happen. He I'm sorry that was my trans out there. It's freezing outside, like I said so, he drives off with Michelle and so I think that you could take it home, hello. Michelle doesn't return home the next morning. Let you never turns on that night and the family contacts jazz and says you know of a show, as he tells them story that I've just shared about literally and him riding off with Michelle to take her home. So they
I'll go over to Mary Lee's house to try to get some answer, she's not there at initially, then he shows up. He sees him outside. He panics. He runs out of his apartment without saying anything to them. Jumps in his truck and speeds away. The police are called the police. Take. Statements from both parties they tell and either that they'll look for Michelle. That they'll begin a search but everybody's told to go home for the rest of the night and they never question literally again that night about Michelle's disappearance now say police don't question Larry really about this. They just break up this altercation and take just take reports regarding that. So how do police proceed
in this missing persons case. Well, it's assigned the case is assigned to detective Jerry Mcnair and he had once he received the complaint. He We only talked Ileri Lee prior to actually meeting with Anita that, following Monday and LE really made the claim to detective work there and then also to Anita that he didn't actually take her home, after he drove off from Chad, says he tells them that Michelle was upset because of her argument with jazz and he wants to talk to Larry Lee and that they just go? riding around and talking, and then it's like a couple of hours later. He claims- and Michelle says, instead of being taken home, she wants to be dropped off,
at the corner near Chazes House. You know in the wee wee hours of the morning, and so he claims that's what he did. He claimed that the last time he saw Michelle he had dropped her back to your chat, his house and Detector Mcnair determined that, based upon LE really story, she must have run which, really made sense to no one. I mean her friends didn't think she ran away, I needed I don't think she ran away, but he was the detect put in charge, he said, look at Larry, Lee's police record, the local one, and that it was that bad. Of course he didn't discover the record sexual assault in prison and created women in Florida just a few years earlier. He does it anything about that. Isn't gonna tell him that. Obviously
so you know there is no investigation into her disappearance until the potential kidnapping, because the detective treat it like a runaway. He tells it needed to go to family court file, a missing persons report, you know a pick up orders with it, which is the thing that issue for one away as well yeah, but there's nothing so there's no real investigation at all by the police. At that point in time now you have a really heartbreaking. Part of this is that I need a. I had just wanted to believe that her daughter would come home that should be found. Something would happen she had. Has it did to call Doug Senior and tell him the truth. But her daughter in her disappearance incredible now Finally, she does about a month later mean. Why
le really had called you writing a book. Every day of that first week to ask about her an you write that Larry leased car was vandalized and then the next day. Co. Incidentally, a note appeared on Anita's door shells MA what was written and contained. In that note,. Well, this again was the 1980s and and there was a cultural phenomenon happening across the country during that time. That in retrospect has been called the satanic panic. And it was in full force during these days and so uh. Adida, and family members and friends of Michelle's had really begun. A third state put it up posters in this. Just in his weeks time they were doing what the play, words when they were fervently searching for her, and I
No, no clearly thought somebody connect. Is there a party had vandalized or maybe you knew did it whatever, but he I know appears on which I'm not I need to store and it is written in satanic verses. It says the shout something like Michelle is with us use ours for ever come close again and she will suffer more or Dante FL blood of the virgin and other nonsense Google ramblings and there's a couple of drawings that look like their maiden's blood and there's a duplicate copy placed on the all right that the car of a friend that had also that it's a pending in the search. So you know it first, the index the nodes given to detective Mcnair, I don't know what he made of it. It doesn't take too long to come to in conclusion that it's probably a tactic.
By Larry Lee or someone in his circle to throw them off. You know he he's, probably getting a little scared, if he's responsible for her death so or her disappearance. Rather so anyway, that's what that's! What happened was that the satanic verses written on her daughter. Now you write that LE really had said that told the need that you thought Michelle ran away because she was pregnant with a man named LEN. Now needed. Didn't really believe it. You say, but but she still followed everything she followed it up. When she happened to meet former attorney for the Smith family layer, Release Smith, family and he told her what Larry release What did he tell her about LE really and the family, the Smith family right
He did that was sort of an amazing thing. A lot of amazing things happened in this journey that the fam it was sort of on on their own, but she followed up on any in every league? She possibly could and she heard about this and she's try. Trying to contact literally to follow up on his back he's aged about LEN, but she can't get into talk and she's making Contact and she stumbles into this contact with a family attorney. Somebody price had called him and she did and he amazingly open with her. He had worked up before the family previously He told her that they were pretty rough folks, and he tells her. This is the very first time she learned that Larry Lee has in fact is, in fact, a convicted felon that he did was charged with kidnapping and rape.
Of a teenage girl in Florida just a few years earlier and has served time in a Florida prison. So this is freezing and shocking new information. She immediately related to Detective Mcnair. He told her that we will get on it that he will send for those for the record, but to the best of everyone's knowledge, been up to the present day that didn't occur at that time. But you know I needed certainly learned that she's dealing, you know her fears, keep growing she's reeling, realizes she's, really dealing with a pretty dangerous character here. You write of another extraordinary event again beyond coincidence. Certainly in December, eighty seven about almost a year later and Anita, receives a phone call and it was a woman, apparently that on number on back of something- and it happened to
one of the flyers missing flyers, but she thought originally that maybe her man, was fooling around, and so she wanted to know if there was some connection in that way and they began to talk and I again amazingly beyond coincidence she stated that she knew Larry Lee's to the four year old, Ex wife, Sarah yeah led to Anita meeting Sarah. Now. What did Sarah tell Anita about living Ruby and her son Larry Lee yeah. The it was an amazing serendipitous call that need his brother actually took her house, and he goes out and her mother stop by your house to pick up something and the phone rang and she answers it, and it just done you your caller, who ends up now, sheriff
and uh. So this woman sets up a meeting with Anita and her boyfriend's head and Sarah. Sarah was a lovely young woman really striking. Who had indoor horrible early childhood, she experienced neglect. She was molested by there get the various family members and then when she was fifteen, She met Larry Lee. They began a relationship. She doesn't see his dark side yet before long she's pregnant, and she moved in with him. He has the basement. Apart are bad. The bedroom and his mother's house, and they move in at first thing, seem. Ok,
but then, which is bad in her seventh month of pregnancy. She begins to see episodes of his other behaviors and She went through extensive abuse, so she tells Anita after she listens to Anita story, about Michelle being missing and last being seamlessly really. You know it weighs very heavily upon Sarah, is a very caring, empathetic person and she begins describe to Anita how she had literally a skate. From literally after being subjected to ranking greetings by him. Torture sheet actually been held prisoner for a while by him other. He had working as a dancer heat stripper outside
you finally managed to plan an escape when she was allowed to keep the baby. She wouldn't leave without the baby, Joey, and his mother, Ruby and Larry Lee managed to keep control of the baby all the time. But there was one particular night when they had come to trust her and they both had to work, and they agreed that she could keep Joey, and that was her opportunity She called her mother who would actually been abusive as well, but now she was a rescuer in ironically and her mother allowed to return back to her house, so she actually escaped from him at that point and, She tells Ruby
along the way about lilies, horribly, abusive behaviors and she she she'll she'll, say she had said he nearly killed her multiple times, but Ruby will never believe it. She she enabled him she. She will never believe any negative thing about him. You do youngest son is a baby. Here also confirms to Anita that what she'd heard about Mary having been in prison for his acura and it was for raping a teenage girl, and then she left me- I know that when he returned to knock so we've got a girlfriend from Florida with him, but by the time of the meeting Sarah and Anita that girlfriend had actually escaped as well with her young son and she had fled back to Florida and, ironically, she fled back to Florida just weeks before Michelle disappears. So it was kind of a new
trysting, possible connection in literally slight between those events. After hearing tears, accountable, airily nature- in its history of abusive behavior, as well as the kidnapping and rape I need. You know she becomes even more huh was she had held on to some fiber of hope that maybe detective near new something she couldn't understand. Baby was show, really did run away and she was going to be here again but after she lives in this era story. She she pretty much gave up hope that she would ever see her again. Yeah now again beyond coincidence again with Anita now and eat. His cozen meets f by special agent, Joe Devono and told him about Michelle, and he promised because he was dutifully moved. He promised to
look into the Knoxville Police Department. Investigation, BOT loan be old was nothing to find. Tell us how you knew about Forensic Anthropology, professor Doctor Bass and the body farm how he was involved with the case. Tell us how you were involved with doctor bass and how he was involved with this case. Ok. Well short, let's go Devono! First, that yes, that he was a pretty fresh new agent in the FBI Field Office in Knoxville and by Divino, as you said, which is really a compassionate great guy and he he does need Anita's cousin in in the bank, and she knows you which will the FBI and she sees he's pretty warm convertible and she tells him about haircut
and her young cousin Michelle who's at that point then missing for nearly two years and she told him how the cases handled or not handled or some concern. He called some concern. He calls detective a little bit and then he convinces Devono convinces to soup. Guys are barely to allow him to open a kidnapping case. Normally the yeah. I would not be involved, but since they don't know where she is or if she's taken then taking across state lines his supervisor says: ok, I'm going to let you do this, but you have thirty days to find something and so he he contacts. Mcnair Mcnair gives him the proposal. All is still alive and.
He begins a search now when Michelle Forcement Miss as you said, I was living in Knoxville. I didn't know Michelle. And he told me about her disappearance. I first learned of her disappearance in my teenage son. And I was concerned about some of the things like was continuing to hear about the handling of the taste Ann
and I actually knew detective Mcnair professionally, because I had done some abuse and neglect investigations. When I worked as a social worker for the Department of Human Services- and I was assigned, he was even being officer assigned to some of the cases I had, we had a rotating officer schedule and in this case, is like shared within the two cases. I've been very concerned about his, initiative. He was a pretty passive guy or passive officer, and that wasn't my experience with the others, but it was Mcnair. So I had to. Turns early on when all of this just began. But then Michelle was not my case I had no say no right to be. In that case, I did call him and talk to him briefly, but I had no-
no role in this case and then soon after really crude. I was offered a job in Alabama, so I moved away. And I really didn't know what had unfolded after my moves. The case kind of stayed with me, but move to the back of my mind. In the mid 1990s and their living in Tuscaloosa, AL and my husband, and I will watching an episode of forensic files on television that was a pretty new show them. And, to my surprise, they began profiling. A case of a teenage girl His remains had been found in the Hum Dil EAST Tennessee about an hour outside Knoxville, definitely got my attention had lived in Knoxville for a little more than a decade and it turned out the case was Michelle. They showed her picture
and suddenly, I'm hearing about Michelle CASE and the story said they'd found her remains two years to the month and he disappeared. It remained unsolved, they said and then there was doctor bass on the screen. Being interviewed for the case. He was the Tennessee state. Forensic anthropologist who had been called in to excavate Michelle's remains when they were found. Two years after she went missing a jam One thousand nine hundred and eighty nine. I might be jumping a bit ahead here, but I suddenly was watching him on the show and I actually had some history with him I had minored in anthropology at the University of Tennessee when DR passes over the program there. He was the director of the entire program she and he actually didn't each to their graduate program where I had studied for about a year under his late wife, Doctor Mary Ann Bass. So I
That again I had that personal history with them. When I lived in Knoxville and this story, this forensic files episode was the first. I knew for certain what had happened to Michelle that she had in fact been murdered when she disappeared. No meanwhile Larry Lee Smith is being watched by police and apparently he knows it. You write this brake lines have been cut in So he took off and now, instead of knock still he's residing near Atlanta, GA on October 13th right, one thousand nine hundred and eighty nine in Stone Mountain GA. In eighteen year, old beauty was out front of Billiards joint where her boyfriend worked. And her car was not working. So she was and he was stuck inside and so she was frustrated. She had her hood up and she was frustrated and she started crying and
long behold,. A man named Larry Lee offered to help her jumped in soon had her car running, and so he said, hey, listen once you just jump in and will test it further make sure it's not the clutch she had said. Maybe it would have been the clutch. What happened after she got into her own car after this good American had God car running? What happened next? Well, yes, and he said afterward shelter made found in January of eighty nine Larry Lee Smith, actually came under significant scrutiny by the Knox Ville Police Department, unlike when she first disappeared and he was kind of ignored. Now he was being looked at, there was a new investigator assigned. Mcnair was removed from the cage. And and uh are we in the York took over and he
York is pretty good. He's got a good reputation, he's retired now, but he has a great great reputation and he's very diligent, and he he was really pudding. Some pressure on literally Lee, and so so and then there was this event regarding the brake line which, as you said, somebody that is brake line and he the if he got nervous with all of that happening and he pleased to Georgia investigators, your cat likes to say he bug read over to Georgia and sometime in the here are some of that year. He actually has another lesser assault. It occured in July, but in October, on that year he encounters Amanda
Those pretty eighteen year old, Amanda Standard she's got her hood up, he's coming out of the shop next door to the Billiards parlor, where teenage billiards follower her boyfriend worked. He sees her with the hood up Ann, and dumb he codes. Look at her and ask any help. He may, which is to get the car running and, as you said, once he's actually, Is it driver seed he's, got it in first gear she's, looking at it, she's in her car. She, you know, he said come on get in. Let's take a test right and she she doesn't know how to say. No, because she can let him take her car off and she jumped in, and that is perfect pattern. Which is perfect scenario, a pretty young girl, teenage petite needs help leave their offer, help. He gets there in a car. That says that's his pattern, that's what he his trigger
and so once you had her alone in the vehicle he kicked, his impulses kicked in, he pulled behind business. He begins choking her at one point. He actually told her unconscious he's attempting to sexually assault. Her she's really fighting she's really is daylight. She says you have a chance here: I'm going to fight, even if he's going to kill me on the fight, so she fights back hard at some point. She regains consciousness. With before he realizes she has. She stayed very still. She begins kicking screaming when they reach a red light and or people around and in she doesn't escape the car at that point, but she does alert for action. Alert driver in front of them. He was actually a professor from the local art
all ages, and he has will daughter with him. You secure here in the heat of where the freaks out he actually pulled off to the side goes with Crossy yard starts flying down for a new, expecting road, and this witness begins pursuing him. He gives chase and literally panics he he manages to get back to the billiards where his car actually is at the borrowed car, but his borrowed AMC pacer. He gets back jumps out of Amanda's car, get into his car and tears off, but the one witnesses. Actually her boy for inside sees the car leaving management, right down the license plate number and the next morning Larry.
He is arrested in an adjoining county early in the morning. Everybody tell you just probably getting ready to leave to flee back to Knox Ville, but they So I had been put out a detective, a Deputy AIR sheriff's deputy recognized his car and he was arrested without major events, and he was tried in April one thousand nine hundred and ninety and was given a twenty years sentence in a Georgia prison for that assault, an an interesting development there was Kathleen Mcwilliams. The Florida victim who had, I actually testified. Because they had done a plea deal was now a young woman in her twenties and only through Devono. This is Delano's blessing. He gave he
when he learns of Larry Lee's arrest in Georgia. He at the last minute. Truly he let he makes that prosecuting attorney da. He informed her about the Florida charge and there is something in the federal rules of evidence called a similar transaction either a rule that that loud evidence to be admitted in a criminal trial if for a prior crime, if it reflects a pattern for the Diff and if it reflects scheming and planning and streams that reflective pattern we know like like a serial key. Or Syria rate with somebody who is it serial robber showed or whatever so she's able
George, is a little bit more liberal with that. As I understand it, on their legal scholar, but George is a little bit more liberal with sexual is a similar transactions evidence in sexual sense crying so Luckily, this da is allowed to Cynthia is allowed to fly Catherine up to talk to testify at Amanda's trial, so she is kind of the final surprise. Witness she's brought in to talk about her assault and a symbol. There is, of course the DA makes a big point of the similarities between the cases and that sense, so he is, he is 'cause. It didn't he and he began serving his prison sentence back in Knoxville Devono, another The agent named grade speed
investigating York. They continue to try to solve the shells murder, but they they aren't successful added. Eventually, the FBI closes its case and at the Knoxville Police Department in the Knoxville Police Department. The case just grows cold Larry Lee's in prison for twenty years in Georgia, and it's all but forgotten at that point,. Now you take the reader back to Knoxville and your first contact with Anita an now your new contact with you need again and why LE really is forty six inch Two thousand and seven will get out as you write soon enough. What did you tell Anita and what does Anita tell you.
Well after I had there really blessed to make contact with doctor Bass and he sent me sort of just against Aaron differently, but he sent me his old forensic report twenty year. Report and some newspaper clippings and things that were related to the well The time when her remains were found two years after her disappearance, so I jump right back into the cage, so I've never forgotten it. It's always haunt beach and um. So with doctor basses, distance. I learned much. I determine away, the contact Anita. After all these years, I had actually called her right after the shelves parents, just a stranger in the neighborhood when I learned the catch is Mcneir had the case when was saying she was a runaway. I just called asked you
I think your daughter ran away. She told me she didn't, but again, I had no role in the case and then I'm moved away shortly afterwards, so now it's two thousand and seven, it's twenty nearly twenty years later and uh, I contact her again she's apprehensive but thrilled. I guess maybe Oregon pleased to hear that somebody wants to talk about this case. It's been twenty. There are just never good resolution, but you know the families just been tortured. Will buy it. So she sent me some things that she'd written about the case she over the end over the phone. She gives me the information about how to look up literally in his Georgia prison inmate page, which I do. That gives me additional information about court numbers in court cases and I just begin compiling information.
I actually purchase the entire court transcript from the door to trial. I found the and records I begin interviewing people. I interviewed all the former officers, everyone that had worked on the case twenty years earlier was retired, so they could all talk to me. I uh reviewed the victims. The Florida victim Catherine I interviewed Amanda the Georgia victim I interviewed Anita family members, friends and I begin to sort of put the pieces together and it's clear that there's a pattern here just said, the similar transaction evidence indicated is the clear path pattern to his crime, even though he spent so much of his adult life incarcerated for them, and I tell Anita that I begin
yeah. So a lot of the information I get through the police and things she's never seen because often you know the family isn't uh What about the investigation into the investigation was never completed? The crime is never solved much more information than it needed that really about the police side of the equation. Uh so I filled her in. I talk about its pattern. And eventually, when I have enough information compiled that I feel I can. Present an argument? I contacted a local police department, Knoxville Police Department. And again, as I said, everyone who had worked on it previously previously is now retired and no one. Currently there that's typically lieutenant Doug styles over the violent unit. They don't know anything about this case. They've, never heard of Michelle Anderson, her disappearance, Jeff, none of it till I meet with them and I
give them what I have, and I tell them what I know and it's reopened Charles kidnapping and murder is reopened as a cold case by the Knoxville Police Department and in October of two thousand and nine two years after I walked back into the case. She is, he has completed his Georgia, prison term and he's released and he return get home to Knoxville to his hometown of Knoxville, and he is then a registered sex offender in Knoxville. Now you take us too A young woman named Asia, MAC a black young woman and you take this apartment. Building and she just learned of her boyfriend's arrest. She was fragile in this relationship. She was distraught and again, as you say, a pattern
Onemo Le Larry Lee was there to console her. He grabbed her by the neck and choked her and quickly from under a bed. He had a a chain, a necktie. This is secure and now he's a two hundred and fifty pound man on top of her about to rape, her what happens next well yes, Larry Lee. As I said, has moved back to Knoxville and he's now I just heard sex offender living in Knox. County and he moved into a Pollentier studios. Is the former holiday Inn, care. Ironically, he wants work. As a young man. It's been converted into studio apartments in downtown Knoxville and it's a place where transit and others who might have difficulty renting elsewhere, can get it place in Laree among them. He met just a couple of weeks prior to this assault, boyfriend Cameron,
Who has dealt drugs to literally and others in the building when Tammy gets arrested, that day and Aisha is alone and just heartbroken panicked and, He stops filer you lease apartment needing to use of song, she's feeling desperate and she needs to make a call, doesn't have a home phone she's waiting in his apartment, she's told to wait there for a few minutes that a friend is going to get a loan, so she's sitting there waiting and she's crying and and she's trying to get herself together, and he asked Sir to help him move something on the side of the room. She thinks what a weird request, but you know how do you say? No, it's the benign, so she turns to do it and he
Texas move his signature move, which is to begin choking her. He nearly choked her unconscious. She begins to lose. And he begins to rape her. There is. This odd opportune, knock on his apartment door he says: go away, I'm not busy He said he left up on her throat for those few seconds. It takes for him to say that an Aisha scream, I'm here you know I'll, be right, and so she never did know who knocked on the door, but that panic, literally he backed off she begins to put her clothes on backing away, determined that,
he's going to get out of there one way or another. There's a balcony. The second floor, she's backing toward the balcony I'll show jump if she asked to, but there's an opportunity to actually flew out the door a few moments later and that's what she does. She flee doubt Anne. She goes down to the apartment managers desk and she reports the assault and police are called and he's arrested once again, so he's been out two years. He made it two years after serving twenty before his demons provoked him once more. Now he makes these statements soon as police arrived. He acts like keys. Why is not going to escape so he says well, she asked for it. She want, me too. Now they in view him now he's as you write, he tries to account for things.
You have mentioned and also things he thinks might come up. He saw anticipating things like explain what he talks about in terms of The vaginal secretions in the dna, so they're talking Some so explain what he says in response to their questions and assertions. Well, he wants his actually at the police station and their question him. Now you pass when he was younger man and he got arrested and his mother, Ruby was in his life, and ruby by the way has passed away within the two years he's been out So we no longer has Ruby's money to hire attorneys with so now it's sort of on his own, and they would always tell him to shut up, but he he he doesn't shut up this time so easily. So he knows they're going
They're going to go back with Jenn, he knows they're going to find some of the evidence. Aisha has already told him about it. He knows that dope. Probably find Is dna on her from the assault, so he tells them that he he says you know. I register. You know it's going to be there because I touched her and they think he's implying consent, but it's too evolves and changes. Overtime. He then later says he just meant. I hugged her. You know I comforted her, so he changes this story, but they do in fact. Have the opportunity to find vaginal dna. Are you there? in her vagina. Rather so he begins trying to make any excuses. He actually.
He actually has a telephone that he only uses for pictures. It is an operational for calling, but he tells the investigating officer on this. Latest sort of Aisha to bring his phone and he wants to show or something, and he pulls up a picture. Of a woman on his bed bound by some something around the Wrist Anne Hill Logic seems to be that he's gonna convince this officer that this is something he does with consensual women, Aisha, probably being consensual too, and he doesn't come out and say it directly- implies it um. Then they go to the apartment. They collect some of it. It's they come back and.
The officer says I'd like to see your phone again. I'd like you show me those pictures again she brings it in, but he he says you're going to use these against me right and we can't think straight he's just all stressed out and panicking and she says. Well, you know it's your call, you you don't have to show me the pictures, 'cause he's yet to be arrested and she's being very non forceful and very respectful to him, it's all being recorded and and he sits there really right in front of the camera without his realizing that he's being recorded and he proceeds to erase the pictures. He just showed her yeah. Now we jump ahead to the grey You say that the takes it to the grand jury to preliminaries waved, but you have created, because of the information that you have that's no one else Has exclusive information and
majority of information, you are working with the Knox County assistant DA at least Providing them Timeline. So tell us again about, You tell us about this timeline that you provide for them, but also of this eventual the hooking up of Anita and Sarah Ann what you call a band of sisters at one point but tell us about this relationship that you have developed at least a working Relationship with Leslie Nassios, the DA before you tell us about how you connect or how the women in this story are connected. Yes, it was all really amazing, I mean you know just working on. Historian, feeling, like I, was being able to put together answers, answers to prayer Either that she never had after all these years and then, as
The trial and legal proceedings for the late It's also one that happened to. I use you, after he got out of prison and after I'd walk. But I can do the case. The ability to help move something belong was really gratified. But I was very much an outsider. I mean, whereas when I walked into the Knoxville Police Department saying I know, I've got this evidence collected our practice old crime. There were just so all you all gun ho like I was the person with the end so but on the new case that was currently active, you know I was just some writing a story. You know that yeah. I wasn't necessarily given credibility, the step by the victim, and I need to add so I had to kind of learn that in the current current case, so I make contact via email.
With the prosecuting attorney a woman, as you said, Name Leslie, Macias and. I I ask her: I'm trying to think how can I get this information to Hershey But you know she's not going to meet with me. I'm I'm nobody but she's not going to discuss the case with me. So I think. Well, maybe I could Pilot timeline of an outline and just roughly run through So everything I know about this guy and the crimes ought up into the current event and she she she sent me an email. It's a sure send it on whatever, and so I do it takes a few days to complete, is a state or not. And I sent it to her and uh anita- becomes thrilled to know that adeaze actually interested in the show
this case as well. Even though she's only prosecuting the current event, the kernel sense, the sort of Aisha, so she actually meets with a needle which is truly a blood. Need a lot of comfort, even though we didn't really solve anything then is then really. I need a nice show up for just a here that was actually called off prior to his trial and since Anita Smith Nassios they have a first. It was face to face recognition. I don't live in stage, she doesn't know what I look like even have correspondent with her via email and we walk out as she 'cause you guys, wanna come over into our conference. Room will talk for a few minutes, so I'm like, I can't believe it, I'm going to be able to discuss this case. Finally, with the prosecuting attorney and we do, that we go into her office and really take, her main motives was too be kind to Anita. She was so she sells such compassion
for what I need. I had gone through and never had an answer, and I think she, probably got into the idea that Larry Lee was responsible for the canal. Being a death of Michelle, so she met with this. Since you talk put this then I was able to run ideas by her that I thought she shared some, and that was just your blessing and we had our attention and I was able to really make a point about the similar transactions evidence now the difference between Georgia,
apparently in Knoxville again I'm no legal scholar, but in Georgia it was pretty easy for that. Prosecuting attorney, prosecuting DA to bring the similar transaction evidence, Ie Catherine from Florida to doctor to testify, but Leslie had a snow pretty quickly that wouldn't happen in Tennessee. She said she'd be much more likely to get. Evidence admitted if it was a burglar who always wrote a certain kind of notes. You know or he's a certain kind of done, but in sexual offences they rarely ever allow similar transaction evidence, even though there was a clear pattern here, so she knew about it. The thing that the outline had done with it managed to make her aware it managed to get her. Alerted. There's, nobody was going to do a plea. Deal in this case. He's going to go to trial, and so I think that the answer your question I get ahead of myself here, but that was that was what happened
regarding Leslie Nauseous prior to going to trial. And also you asked me about the women and during this time of course, when I'm building my informational base, I go to Atlanta. When I interview Amanda I've grown woman with children. I go to North Carolina. Catherine has moved from Florida, she's living in I looked at that point. I go there. I interview her as I'm going to dart woman about her history. I've met with the family members of Michelle and everybody. Everybody of course was concerned about each other trauma, but ever all of the women who've been his victims, including his niece, and I also had contact too strange that event, which I won't go into here. I actually interview.
Zs phone and email the Nassib raped when she was six She was also now woman at forty very compassionate about the other victims, and even she, everyone felt tremendous empathy for Anita and what she gods. Losing Michelle and that he never been held accountable, so when I actually managed to have contact finally with Aisha and learn first hand per version of what it transpire here on the assault, her salt, by literally in Knoxville and when Are trials conducted ' century I used his life was pretty fractured at the point I'm In fact, she was learning system, so there's a problem and the subpoena they sent her mother, to come to the grand jury.
Get to return. It goes to the wrong address, but ironically, because I've been talking with everybody, not kind of become did subs in among the spokes, just not long before the trial, they'd lost contact with Aisha and she called me, and she he me about this odd visit. She had from Lily's attorney and and she's talking with me, and she tells me she's law contact, and I re facilitative contact, I immediately emailed the DA's office the next day I say: here's a new number, you know I get everything squared away and it all works. Out, they bring Aisha in for the trial we all come in for the trial, the Florida victim, the Georgevich and everybody comes in for the last.
Trial and it's really amazing and moving at least it was to me- and I think it was to everybody else for Anita. It was tremendously healing because she's. Looking at these other women it they were assaulted by the span too. She thought so responsible that somehow she'd fail your daughter, but she looked at these other women and she's like you know, it happened again, two and it just Is there a lot of healing and belief. And we all tend to trial together. And we all go out to dinner the night before the trial, one another and and then go to the we all. We all show up the band of sisters. We dug ourselves and we all show up for the trial. Now this trial, of course the police had done I Asia provided quite accurate information like they found the chain of neck ties and
and LE really might think, he's clever, but he was wasn't really too clever in his responses because they got the goods on him on this one And again, the last ditch effort for a guilty. Man is to think he's smart enough, and the lawyer has to allow him to take the stand. So tell us just. We are getting you capture it, but the Straordinarie LE really testifying on his own behalf cross examined. Yeah I mean none of this is funny, of course. It's it's a tremendous actually, but he provided a little bit of entertainment. I have to admit he could not be dissuaded, apparently from testifying in his own behalf, the judge in directly sort of tries to discourage him. It's like you know this can work. Against you and it might not be the wisest move and literally
As you know, on my only witness, I think it's I don't tend to fly any single against me. I don't know it's large. He must have thought that Aisha having sort of a fractured life at that point, was vulnerable and he would come off looking better. I don't know, but he does, he gets up and he testify And Leslie Nocuous is pretty competent, she's very good at this, and she yeah they're, really good sure across examination he, but when we arrived, we notice that he is dressed in time. Really in shades of Grey, don't think about it. Much just observe it, but as he begins to testify uh, he, as you said, they found
this chain of neck ties, one tide to the next and a loop four, we're going to each end and it all happened so fast. Aisha had actually not known for sure what it was. That would bound her, but she thought it was some next time she couldn't really quite make sense of it. They do go to department, they do find this chain of neck ties, so he's being questioned about her on the and by Nancy'S- and I I don't know I guess again, he thought he was being clever, but he turned to the jury and he said I'm sure by now. All of you read fifty shades of grey, and you know it's just I'm sure you like fifty shades of Grey's and he claims that he. The fan of of the book and the theories and that uh he plays games and he uses the neck ties to play game.
And uh he tells them about it, and everybody sort of shocked I think it. I think some people in the audience actually wanted to suppress a laugh. They were so stunned, um and while she can't bring in similar transaction evidence, she is able to extract one piece of really valuable information from his testimony. He a noun God was that Aisha had tried to get him to enter a drug dealing scam with her erase some money and that in his defense and his refusal, he said to her I'm not
to do that. That would get me a felony that first felony would put me in jail, so that was a boom for her. She caught that immediately, and that allowed her to bring in testimony about prior felony. So during a recess she asked the judge. He has two prior felonies, your honor there for sex offenses like this one. He is just said that he that would be his first felony I'd like to and teach his testimony and the judge. Again using that Tennessee caution. He says: ok, you may bring in you may question him about prior.
Felonies, but you may not indicate that they were related to sexual offenses. So it was really difficult for her to make this case, but she does that. He does admit that he has two prior felonies. They don't discuss the nature of them. He is found guilty of all the charges in this last trial, then, at sentencing is when she can do it at sentencing. She is a. Able to bring in the prior similar transactions of prior sexual assault and it determines the sentence he gets then, and what is that sentence? He gets life in prison with no chance of parole, so he can never get out again to do this You know and the point out making number two is you know he he's he's own victim as well. He cannot control these them off as he has you cannot, even after twenty years in prison, I
I thought it would be amazing if he didn't fall again. Of course you did so. He is certainly time in a Tennessee state prison and is not eligible for flow he's in his 50s down. And regardless of the situation, he is still adamant about his position. Regarding Michelle Anderson is he there is some of the cold case investigator did finally interview him once he was arrested for the last time, I'm not sure about why that timeline was what it was, but he continued to deny he's up he's continued to deny it. You know at the end of the book As my editor said, you really are talking directly to him. I've. Never! I never have talked directly to him, but I guess I do in the book. You know he's got enough,
unless to lose this family truly needs closure they need to hear what happened that night to their daughter. Well, she was found when Michelle's remains were found. She her body had just been to pop. Visited in this remote. Would she didn't have shoes or underwear on they are now there with her closing, remains her pelvic girdle, the jeans was still somewhat intact, so they could tell that she actually didn't have them on when her body was placed there. So somebody had remove those things from her prior to taking her body there that night
he could easily you've got nothing left to lose. You can't get out of prison, he could easily get the family the benefit of knowing what happened. Did he he choked all his victims? That was a big part of this pattern. Did he choke her and accidentally kill her? he and- and you know, I I can't let another victim of state the ones I've done. If I have to get rid of the victim has had he actually progress. You know the killing his victims now we'll never know for sure. Unless he chooses to come clean and tell her. That would be the last goal in all of this all the goals of sort of than that, but the last goal would be for him to tell the truth. Finally, If he's capable yes and it's remarkable the the end of the book and The trial and seemed to be cathartic for everyone involved. Unfortunately, Sarah Lily's Ex wife-
have to wait for this, My time for this, but again you talked about. Sarah son Joey, you had interviewed him as well, so it's so it was amazing. I guess info Getting I mean to bring this man to justice for the and you did get some success and a lot of success, basically in in having the story hit. The pages of the newspaper properly. Explain the story properly so that there was. Again attention from the media. Attention from prosecutors Are you involved with that? So there was there's there, closure. I mean that's just a cliche that inappropriate, but there was a cathartic. It seems like a cathartic occurrence that was a cathartic for these women and yourself at this
trial that you all attended. It was. It was very cathartic and he and ironically, to some degree even for members of literally family, certain ones whose son primarilly and his niece and now, as you said, I feel to mention that, but so Sarah who had been told. I had interviewed Sarah number of times she was so helpful and but she was still pretty you sister her own body. She had some issues with addiction of her own and in middle of all this. After his last assault, she had died. Suddenly. She died, and so when we all met the women all came together as a band of sisters, feral, it's not with us. That was a sad note. We all honored her flights will be very sad, but
One of the things that did happen. I did manage to interview. Joey Meri, Lee's son, ballots Amazing that I was able to do that and, of course, Ruby his grandmother, Lori's mother it actually she became his adoptive mother. She raised their son. She had not said much in at all about the event, so my coming in to the c most painful for him, but also in the dating and He had not ever really known what to make of Serra addiction there's behaviors, but once he read the book and once well before the book was even written. Actually before Sarah cast away, he was able to understand much more about her life and they may teach before her death. He met with her
and then he had a family cookout outs. He brought in her daughter that she also given up at age six months, his sister, he found her she's been adopted that they all got together so first, there are this way an amazing healing is it felt like there was sort of through this tragedy of this story and these horrible events. There was this: sort of a magic thread of healing and closure and not, even though I was the catalyst I didn't feel like. I was necessarily guiding, and I always felt I don't know if it works like this, I'm not claiming it does, but I used to feel like tuition. Kept opening like I was being guided. I I feel like that. Your shell, you know, are you doing this? I don't know, but it was very magical In its tragedy, it chilly was at least that was the perspective of some of those, so
and Joey is actually told me is glad I wrote the book is very difficult for him to read this book. He couldn't read it all in one sitting is a good guy, not really fun and uh, it's been hard for him to digest this history that he's largely protected from fire, yeah Even for him. He says, I'm glad you wrote this, I'm glad. I understand yeah extraordinary extraordinary story. I want to thank you for coming on and talking about similar transactions, a thank story. Those people that might want to contact to you, Facebook page website tell us how they might do that there is a website, similar transaction dot com. There is a hey folks. Today's did similar. I know it is SAM Tran officer them Tran it's available right.
Primarily on Amazon it, it is available as a four hundred page paperback it's available as an ebook, it's available to audible and also participates in the candle on the program. It has a lot of leaders through that program. So those are the ways one can obtain the book now. Well, that's great, thank you very much stash if we're coming on and talking about similar transaction incredible, true story, thank you very much. You have a great day. Thank you. Thank you. Dan thanks, bye, bye, bye, bye
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Transcript generated on 2019-10-31.