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tv   Dateline Extra  MSNBC  October 1, 2017 5:00pm-6:00pm PDT

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fisher investments fees are structured so we do better when you do better. maybe that's why most of our clients come from other money managers. fisher investments. clearly better money management. i get my strength from my mother. she was my very best friend. i called my mom and she didn't answer. i pretty much knew in my heart that something was wrong. >> a mother vanished. >> i cried myself to sleep. it was just awful realizing that your worst nightmare had come true. >> a family anguished. >> she's gone. do you have any idea how hard that was? >> now the question begins in a
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southern gothic mystery. >> the case is puzzling. >> we didn't really know what had happened. >> whoever imagined you'd have a murder in your family? >> soon there would be secrets. >> we're dealing with a person that was leading a double life. >> and one of them would prove deadly. >> have you ever said, i know that you did this? >> it hurts t much for me to say it out loud. >> keith morrison with "secrets in a small town." >> hello and welcome to "dateline extra." i'm craig melvin. it's a case that centers on a mother who had gone missing and a small town secret that led to a stunning revelation. here's keith morrison. >> reporter: suppose for a minute you were sitting in your car smack dab in the middle of tus ka loose sa, alabama, and pointed down 69 and kept a sharp
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eye out after a half an hour or so. you roll into a sweet little place called moundville. one main street and one stoplight and one general store. it's a sad truth, as the sheriff says, even here, where everybody used to know everybody, it's not that way anymore. so many people are moving in from around the world and -- >> trying to escape the crowd? >> trying to escape the crowd or running from something. >> reporter: oh, yes, and where have you gone? sheriff ken ellis fights real crime nowadays. >> the crime that you see here is the same crime that you see in any city, just a smaller version. >> reporter: still, moundville is moundville and neighbors tend to know more of each other's business than in tuscaloosa
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which could be a nuisance if your secret is about murder. to begin with, this thoughtful ung woman was just a girl of 17 back in '07 when things started coming apart and the way things do when parents don't talk about it. kelsey mayfield saw that troubled look in her mom's eyes mostly, her mom teresa. >> i could just tell she was very stressed. >> ever clear what she was stressed about? >> money would be the main thing. she just wanted to be sure that she had enough money to take care of her family. >> reporter: a lot of that going around, of course. moundville no exception. kelsey's job scott had to work two jobs, neither of which paid very well to keep his head above water. >> very hardworking man. it took jobs to take care of our family. >> reporter: but money trouble
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aside, theresa seemed to be a happy life. >> all theresa wanted was a family and a husband that cared for her. >> reporter: and it was sweet and kind of corny. even after kelsey's little brothers arrived, she could see the sign of her parents' affection for each other. >> every night before he got ready to go to work, he would give her a kiss on the cheek and say good night, i love you. >> reporter: to the town, they are they are reece sa was the softball mom shuttling kids back and forth. >> i remember there was a time where i had a softball game and my brothers had a softball game at the same time and she stayed 30 minutes at colby's game and 30 minutes at ylor's game and 30 minutes at my game. she was just an amazing mother. there was not that she would not do for myself or for my two brothers. >> reporter: and then there was that sweltering morning, june
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2007. there theresa drove off to run errands and never came back. hours ticked by. she called her mom, where are you? >> and she didn't answer. and then i called her back around lunch and she didn't answer. i called her pretty much all day long. >> reporter: her dad was at work, her mom was -- who knew where? just wasn't like her to do this. now, is she the sort of person that would take her cell phone with her everywhere? >> it was attached to her. >> reporter: easily get ahold of her? >> uh-huh. >> reporter: and you couldn't? >> no. >> reporter: by nightfall, still no word. kelsey was in a panic. she called her dad who had gone from his day job to a night shift at the local factory. >> i'm sure you told your dad you were worried? >> yes. we kept in touch to see if one of us had talked to her. >> reporter: did he seem to be worried? >> he did. and we could never get in touch with her. >> reporter: at midnight, it was
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clear something was terribly wrong. scott left work to file a missing person's report with the moundville police and then they all waited. what was it like for you that night? >> it was awful. i was very scared when she didn't come home. and i pretty much knew in my heart that something was wrong. >> reporter: the next morning, said kelsey, she woke up in a house that no longer felt like home. she called her grandmother reba in prattville, a town two hours away. >> and she said, is mama down there at your house? i said, no, she's not here. and she said, mama didn't come home last night. >> reporter: so what was going on in here? >> oh, i'm just turning upside down. i'm just tied in a knot. >> reporter: reeb ba called theresa's younger sister at her work, the local court.
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>> she said theresa is missing. >> reporter: ashley called the sheriff of her town and he called sheriff ellis. >> to see if they knew anything and his response to me was, it's bad. it's bad. >> reporter: it certainly was. they had found theresa's truck on a dirt road less than a mile from home. she was slumped behind the wheel and she was dead. and this much was perfectly clear, it wasn't an accident. . coming up, the investigation begins. >> we had to ask ourselves, who took her to this location and why was she murdered. >> when "secrets in a small town" continues. we may be one of the world's most familiar companies, but we make more than our name suggests. we're an organic tea company. a premium juice company.
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welcome back to ""dateline extra."" here again is keith morrison. >> it was a lover's lane, a quiet, dusty deadend road miles from moundville main ad. as commonly traversed, a car with engine running, lights blazing into the night could go unnoticed. it was here they found teresa mayfield's truck. body inside, gunshot wound to the head. teresa's younger sister broke the terrible news to their mother. >> when i went to the house, mama was sitting in the recliner. i nelt down on my knees and i grabbed her and i said, mama, she's gone. she's gone. do you have any idea how hard
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that was? >> reporter: teresa's daughter kelsey spent a sleepless night waiting for her mother to come home. how did you find out? >> my brother told my brothers and i. it was awful realizing your worst dream had come true. for a brief moment i thought she had committed suicide just because i knew how stressed out she was but then i also knew how much she loved her family. >> reporter: everybody who knew teresa knew that, even the sheriff who drove out to the crime scene, if that's what it was. the alabama bureau of investigation met him there. this case was kind of personal for you, sheriff. >> yes. my daughter and miss teresa and scott's daughter played softball together. >> reporter: you would see teresa out at the ballpark? >> every day. it felt like part of my family was gone, too. >> reporter: they had a look
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around the truck. no sign of a struggle. dusting revealed no viable fingerprints. there were no footprints. not even a loose hair. puzzling. was there any thought once you saw the scene that this was a suicide? >> there was things missing that prevented the suicide theory. >> reporter: like what? >> if you commit suicide with a gun, it's usually at the scene. >> reporter: it was clear teresa had been murdered, shot with a gun which was now missing. and what was more, her cell phone, the one that was always attached to her hip, was nowhere to be found. did it look like it could have been a robbery? >> well, the wallet wasn't taken. the purse was on the console but the contents of the purse had been dumped out in her lap. >> reporter: a clumsy attempt at staging, you might say? >> yes. >> reporter: but there was one
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important clue the killer left behind. >> we noticed that the only window down was the driver's window. so we figured that she had to have known the person because she had letdown her window. we had to ask ourselves, who could get her to this location and why was she murdered. >> reporter: someone in moundville had to know something. from there the iestigation went where? >> invesgating her inner circle, trying to find a motive. >> reporter: and usually, so i'm told in cases like this, the husband has got to be a person of interest? >> yes. >> reporter: so as the family gathered to mourn the loss of their beloved teresa, scott couldn't be with them. he was down at the sheriff's office answering questions. he came willingly? >> yes. >> reporter: did he ask for an attorney or anything like that? >> no, he did not. >> reporter: corporal boyd chatted with scott for three hours and during the whole time,
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he was cooperative and helpful. >> you know, the standard questions that we would ask is, is anyone having an affair, are you having an affair? no. was she having an affair? no. >> reporter: good marriage, happy marriage, christian marriage. >> right. i asked him if they argued. he said no. >> reporter: scott answered all of the questions about what teresa was supposed to be doing that morning. he phoned her a wake-up call and two hours later she called him. but the call faded out. he couldn't hear a thing. >> and scott said it sounded like she was on the road. >> reporter: he thought nothing of it then but now was it a distressed call? no way to know. but there was one thing that call certainly cleared up for investigators. scott could not have killed teresa. he was something like 30 miles away up near tuscaloosa. had a breakfast receipt to prove it. >> he had stopped at hardy's and had a receipt showing that he was there. >> reporter: so scott rejoined
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his family caught up in the tear able business of grieving. >> i kept wondering why was it happening to our family. >> it was awful. who would ever imagine you'd have a murder in your family. >> reporter: investigators tried with the help of family to fill in teresa's last hours and spoke to dawn lavender. she had plans to go shopping with teresa the morning of the murder. i'm sure dawn was upset about what happened? >> she did cry during the interview. she was at her house waiting on teresa to come pick her up and she was going to ride with her and she finally got the chance to talk to teresa around 7:00. >> reporter: and after that call, nothing. dawn told the investigators she phoned teresa over and over and each time the phone went to a recording. just to be sure of all of this, they pulled teresa's cell phone records and plotted out a time line of her whereabouts. but the picture of what the phone records painted wasn't
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quite what they expected. that morning call to scott, teresa did not call from moundville. >> cell phone tower shows that it's pinging up in tuscaloosa. >> that's miles and miles away. >> right. there's no way she could have made it back to the location where she was murdered at. >> reporter: so the sell tower showed that teresa did not make that call. it had to be somebody using that phone and, what do you know, her phone is missing from the crime scene? >> correct. >> reporter: so the person who very likely killed teresa mayfield must have used her cell phone to call her husband scott. what did that mean? did t killer know scott? and did scott know something he wasn't sharing? coming up -- >> we're dealing with a person that was leading a double life.
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investigators wondered if there was something teresa mayfield's husband scott wasn't telling them. here again is keith morrison. >> reporter: it's a funny thing about secrets. they can only stay hidden for so
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long. especially in a little place like moundville. and it didn't take very long for sheriff ellis and corporal boyd to stumble on the secret scott had been keeping. >> while we was out at the crime scene, scott had had a young lady pick up the boys. >> reporter: it was only later when the fog of grief had lifted that one of teresa's relatives wondered to police, who was that woman hanging around the day teresa died. ellis and boyd tracked her down and what they discovered, well, that changed everything. or seemed to. the person they were talking to was scott's mistress. >> she was under the impression that scott was not married at that time. >> reporter: what did you make of that when you heard that? >> we knew that wasn't correct. >> reporter: a love triangle, jealous home wrecker kills wife, claims husband? no, not even close. scott's girlfriend thought his
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marriage was over, his divorce finalized. what was her reaction to getting the real story? she must have been upset? >> more hurt, probably, than upset because i think she had fallen in love with him. >> reporter: he had been lying? >> that's right. >> reporter: and you had no idea that woman was associated with him in that way, did you? >> huh-uh. i had met her oncer o twice. >> reporter: yeah. >> but iust thought they were friends. didn't think it was anything else. >> reporter: this was betrayal in all capital letters. >> that's a very good word. >> reporter: you were betrayed. >> lied to, taken advantage of in a way. >> reporter: kelsey may have been surprised but teresa's mom and sister, they knew better because this wasn't scott's first stance with infidelity. oh, no, there had been others. in fact, scott and teresa divorced during one of his
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affairs just after kelsey was born. and then three years later, teresa took him back. remarried him. >> she wanted to have her family back together. that was her whole thing, family. >> reporter: what was it like for you when scott came into your house? what was happening here as he walked in the door? >> i tried to be socialable with scott but i always had that thought in the back of my mind. he hurt my sister and i would not forget it. >> reporter: for a while, things were as teresa had always hoped but wishes don't always come true. soon scott was back to his old ways with that girl, cops were talking to in tuscaloosa, and you know how gossip can be. scott went from sympathetic widower to cad and maybe worse. you must have been aware that people were suspicious of him. >> it bothered me hearing the
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bad things that they had to say about him. i knew my dad was never capable of doing something like that. you know, i was going to have his back regardless. >> reporter: but to investigators, scott's affair and the fact he lied about it to police certainly was suspicious. ellis and boyd asked the girlfriend to help them out by recording her conversations with scott. maybe he'd let something slip. >> hey. >> hey. >> are you oka >> yes, i'm okay. they just left. look, all i want to know, did you do it? >> of course not. they told me i would be number one prime suspect because i'm the husband. >> do you still love me? >> yes, i do. >> if you did have anything to do with her dying, was it because you love me. >> i didn't have nothing to do with it. no. no. i had nothing. my hands are as clean as they
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can be. >> so, infidelity, yes. murder, didn't sound like it. >> we could prove that he was an adu adulterer but we were trying to prove that he was a murderer. >> it's not against the law to have a mistress. >> reporter: so now the corporal and sheriff reverted to standard procedure. they tracked down every ten yous lead and knocked down rumors. somebody called scott from teresa's cell phone that morning, whether he heard it or not. the investigation dragged on. weeks and months went by and there was nothing? >> right. we had no idea how that anger will get the best of you not knowing who done this and you want the person that done this to be punished for it. >> kelsey took on the most
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difficult job of her life. at 17, she stepped into her mother's shoes, defended her father, tried to maintain something of a normal life for her little brothers. >> me trying to fill my mother's shoes, those are some big shoes to fill. i just felt like it was my responsibility to help my dad take care of my family. >> reporter: so you were able to continue to have a relationship of trust with your father? >> right. >> reporter: he was there for you guys? >> yes. he tried to be strong for us, so we wouldn't have a breakdown. >> reporter: by the first anniversary of teresa's death, there was still no arrest and the story was old news. so teresa's mother plastered this poster on doors and windows and telephone poles hoping it would dislodge some clue. and then, the weirdest thing happened. >> we found out that just about as quick as we were putting posters up, they were being
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taken down. >> reporter: taken down by someone who didn't want teresa's killer found, she presumed. and a dark thought crystallized in reba's mind. was it scott? >> you know, he never acted like a grieving husband. if he had, i wouldn't have had these thoughts. >> reporter: so your thoughts actually increased over the course of the time that you were with him? >> yes. >> reporter: but you know what they say about assumptions. it wasn't scott. >> reporter: me and my brothers took him down. at first, i was okay, but once they put the posters up, everywhere i went i saw my mother's face and it drove my crazy, broke my heart seeing her face all over these pictures. >> reporter: and so expectations faded again. a couple more months went by and then a girl who knew kelsey heard a strange little story, overheard it, actually, a guy saying he saw someone with a gun on a dirt road around the time teresa was killed.
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did she associate it with this crime? >> well, she knew that miss teresa was killed down that way so she just reported it. >> reporter: was this the break they were looking for? well, we can tell you this. the tip led to real flesh and blood. in fact, to a quite literal snake inhe grass. coming up -- a curious incident from teresa's past. could it shed light on the crime? >> i looked at her and i said, you need to stay away from that woman. -- when "secrets in a small town" continue. be ineffective. try mr. clean magic eraser. simply add water, and use in your kitchen for burnt on food, in your bathroom to remove soap scum, and on walls to remove scuffs and marks.
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hi, i'm richard lui. president trump says he's dedicating the president's golf trophy to hurricane victims. this came hours after he used
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the label politically motivated ingrates to describe those who questioned his help for the hurricane. and the vote for independence from spain reached 90%. that region of spain has more than 5,000 million voters. for now, back to "dateline." welcome back to "dateline extra." i'm craig melvin. years after teresa mayfield's murder, a casual conversation overheard in a bar gave authorities their first break, a break which would lead them to the chilling tale of teresa's murder. once again, keith morrison. >> reporter: under a setting sun, two years after her death, teresa mayfield's friends and family gathered to remember.
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>> i talked to her almost every day and i miss those talks. >> reporter: they took turns talking about the loving daughter, the softball mom, gunned down on that country ad, a murder that was still a mystery. >> my family will not stop searching or doing whatever it takes to find out who took teresa's life. >> reporter: when scott got up to speak, you can bet people were paying close, special attention. >> yes, she was a loving wife, mother and friend to the community. she would do anything for anybody at any time. >> reporter: having discovered he was not exactly husband of the year, some people still nursed a lingering suspicion and yet here he was devoted in the care of his children and full of praise for his dead wife. >> she did a wonderful job raising these kids.
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she was the one who had got them to practice on time, ball games on time. >> reporter: when sheriff ellis walked up to the podium, he looked at teresa's mother reba and vowed he'd get justice yet. >> miss reba, i won't quit until we find out what happened to miss teresa. >> reporter: and, in fact, even as he spoke, the sheriff along with the corporal were chasing down their first honest to god lead in over a year. didn't seem like much, really, not at first, just an overheard story from a guy in the bar, he had a friend run into someone with a gun. not too terribly uncommon around here, except it happened around the same time and not very far away from where the murder occurred. so ellis and boyd tracked him down. >> they were up on the road and came upon rattleake and they was trying to kill it, find something to kill it with. >> reporter: the trouble was, they were plumb out of
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rattlesnake killing tools and that's when an suv just happened to pull up on the dirt road behind them. the driver was a woman in her 40s, or thereabouts, who said the young man offered him a sure fire way to dispatch that rattlesnake. >> reporter: lady in the car had a gun? >> right. >> reporter: it was a handgun inside a ziploc plastic bag. >> i think she handed the plastic bag for him to take it out. >> reporter: that's weird. why would it be in the bag? >> right. >> reporter: a peculiar story for sure. kid couldn't remember the exact day, for example, but he did recall with excellent clarity who the driver was because he knew her. knew her name. and here was the most curious thing of all. it was a name you've heard before. dawn lavender. small town moundville suddenly got even smaller. now, lavender, you'll recall,
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was teresa's friend, the one who said she waited in vain for teresa to pick her up the morning of the murder. great buddies, according to dawn. but maybe not so much, said kelsey. >> if they saw each other, they would speak but they weren't best friends or anything. >> reporter: they went out a couple of times? >> my mother did it just because she was bored and wanted to get out of the house. >> reporter: but when they did get together, at lst on o occasion, saidkelsey, it was certainly memorable and not in a good way. they went out to a local casino and her mother came home stumbling. >> i thought she was drunk and i knew that couldn't be right because she didn't drink. she didn't even know where she was at. you couldn't hardly understand a word she was saying. she came in and my dad and i got her and put her in the bed. >> reporter: how long did she sleep? >> she slept for two straight days. >> reporter: what did you think about that? >> i thought it was very strange. she didn't really remember what
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happened. she just knew that she had taken some pills, i believe. >> how did she get them? >> i believe dawn gave them to her. >> reporter: remember how teresa was stressed out the last few weeks of her life, the night of the casino trip dawn gave her z xanax just to calm her down and it certainly did that. out like a light calm for two whole days. >> i looked at her and i said, teresa, you need to stay away from that woman. she is no friend of yours. >> reporter: and how did teresa respond to that? >> she said, i've learned my lesson. >> reporter: or maybe she didn't. because the morning of the murder, teresa had arranged to run errands with dawn, or at least that's what dawn said. and then it alldawn on the dt r a plastic bag, teresa's car window down as though she knew her killer. sheriff ellis and corporal boyd
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picked apart the interview with a suspicious high and pulled her phone records and there it was, dawn's lies caught by cell phone technology. >> it painted a clear picture that dawn was in the location of teresa the morning she was murdered. >> reporter: but why in heaven's name would a woman who claimed to be teresa's friend want to kill her? good question, which perhaps they'd get answered once they accused dawn lavender of murder, which they did. she, however, had one thing to say to police. >> she just kept saying that it was wrong, that we made a mistake. coming up -- >> as far as physical evidence, we really didn't have any. >> but they did have a plan. an undercover sting to get the evidence they'd need. >> in the back of my pants.
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after years of investigation, police had a suspect in the murder of teresa mayfield. it was her friend, dawn lavender. but what was dawn's motive for murder and had she acted alone? once again, here's keith morrison. >> reporter: on june 11, 2010, almost three years to the day teresa mayfield was killed, sheriff ellis and corporal boyd drove to the factory where dawn lavender worked. she was halfway through her day shift. and they told her she was under arrest for the murder of her friend teresa mayfield. >> she first wanted to know why
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we was arresting her and when we got to the jail she said this was wrong, that we'd made a mistake. >> reporter: the corporal and f were happy to explain how one clue had led to another and eventually an inescapable conclusion. but prosecutor evans had questions, pointed ones. >> you could tell it was going to be difficult. >> reporter: where was the smoking gun, where was the murder weapon, where was even one single fingerprint tieing dawn to the crime. >> as far as physical evidence, we really didn't have any. it was truly circumstantial because we didn't really know anything about what had happened. >> reporter: as far as evans could see, the case was a maybe at best. she had no reason to kill teresa. >> so to bring a case against her would be pretty tough, i think. >> the indicaticase with dawn i puzzling.
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every piece of evidence is definitely important. >> reporter: not that corporal and ellis thought for a second that they were wrong, they believed dawn was the killer. they told the prosecutor not only that dawn murdered teresa but that they were convinced that she tried and failed to kill her with a xanax overdose at the casino. >> and the sheriff department believed that was an attempt on their life, that we had nothing really to support that. >> reporter: if tim evans was to get a conviction, he needed more evidence, some concrete proof that dawn had pulled that trigger. now, you can bet dawn wasn't about to tell them anything. but that doesn't mean she wasn't talking. >> we had another young lady that was getting out of jail and she came to us and said that dawn had been talking about the murder. >> reporter: but that could have been just gossip, mind you, from a jailhouse snitch who couldn't back it up. but dawn did have a clmate.
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>> she was kind of in a jam herseland she wanted us to try to help her. you know, we can put a word in to the d.a. and to the jury. >> reporter: that was enough to get cooperation from her? >> right. >> reporter: the objective was simple, get dawn talking, wran gel from her something that at least sounded like a confession. ellis and boyd fitted the cell mate with a digital recorder no bigger than a matchbox. and on a friday afternoon, as an unsuspecting dawn was looking over her case file, her cellmate walked in looking for an incriminating tid bit. what she got instead was the whole sickening story. here's what dawn told her cellmate about the morning teresa was killed. around 7:00 a.m., dawn called teresa with a lie to set the plan in motion. >> no more vacation days. i told her my car was dead. >> reporter: she claimed her car
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had broken down nearby, could teresa pick her up. of course, she said yes. got into the car, made the short drive to the dirt road and there, standing alongside the road, was dawn. >> and i shot her. >> [ bleep ]. >> on the other side of the truck and it went down. >> reporter: with calculated, cold precision, dawn lavender lurederesa mayfield to the dirt roa and shot her in the back of the head and steerer car into the brush hoping it would stay hidden for a while. >> you're going to have to lie. >> like por little innocent dawnie. not the cold-blooded killer that
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i am. >> cold-blooded killer. >> if you think about it, that's exactly right. >> it's terrible looking at it that way, though. >> i know. >> reporter: it was all there, a prosecutor's dream confession. she even referred to herself as a cold-blooded killer. but there was one question anyone with a beating heart wanted to ask. why? there just had to be an answer, of that they were sure. but will they ever get it out of her? >> why in the hell did do it? coming up -- >> at some point she was calling herself a hit man. >> a hit man but for whom? another painful revelation was in store for teresa's family. >> it hurts too much for me to say it out loud. when "secrets in a small town" continues. baa baa black sheep, have you any wool?
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now with the conclusion to "secrets in a small town," here is keith morrison.
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>> down lavender sounded like she was boasting as she confessed she murdered teresa mayfield in cold blood. in recorded conversations with her cellmate, she not only admitted to shooting teresa but said she had tried once before. that strange night at the casino when teresa came home stumbling, that was her first attemptt murder. >> i mashed it up and gave it to her. she wouldn't die. she woke up the next day. >> why? why would she want to kill her friend? because, listen to this, the answer to the whole puzzle really comes down to one little word. down uses it when telling her cellmate what she did. >> we tried. >> we? dawn was not acting alone.
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she had a co-conspirator. >> i don't know if she was trying to be a showoff. she was calling herself a hit man. >> 20. >> dawn has a hired gun for -- you guessed it, scott mayfield. >> she was a loving wife, loving mother. >> the man was according to dawn the architect who designed her death. a revelation that finally made sense of a trail of disturing sto -- disturing story. >> one guy worked around there. scott offered him $500 to kill his wife. a little while later, we got a call from another guy's son saying his dad wanted to talk to me. scott approached him about killing his wife. >> his response was get a divorce. that's what divorces are for.
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>> then a third man told them a story. >> he had told us that scott mayfield had hired him, had given him $15,000 to kill his wife. he did not have any intentions on killing her. he just wanted the man's money. >> what's the old saying, two is a coincidence, three is a pattern pattern? on the same day dawn was arrested, a warrant was issued for scott. kelsey saw a cop car and another and another. >> i asked h where he was at. he said the cops have me pled over. >> your dad was being arrested. had to be a shock. >> i was very confused. i thought the arresting officer, i asked, why are you arresting my dad? he said it was solicitation and conspiracy. >> to commit murder? >> to commit murder, yes.
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>> he said your father was responsible for the death of your mother? >> mm-hmm. >> still, as he sat behind bars, awaiting his day in court, he assured his children that it was all a mistake. he was innocent. what did you expect would happen? >> i thought he would be found not guilty and he would be able to come home. >> at that point, the case against scott was almost entirely circumstantial. that was until dawn got to talking to that cellmate, the one with the little recording device. sure enough, as the story spilled out, there was scott's name on tape. proof at last. >> scott give you the gun? >> he stole it from his daddy. >> did he -- >> he didn't get the gun back. >> i've have threw that to the river. >> once the job was done, the car hidden by the brush, she drove to tuscaloosa and dialed a
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familiar number to let her boss know his wife was dead. >> i let him know it was done. i hung up. >> the only thing left was to collect the $20,000 scott promised her and go. except -- >> didn't give me no money. >> keep your mouth shut and i will keep mine shut. >> but dawn didn't keep her mouth shut about what she and scott had done. >> from what i could tell, he was a coward. he wanted a divorce but he didn't want to live with the responsibilities that accompany a divorce. >> he didn't want to pay her alony? >> or child support. evil is the only thing you can use to describe that man. evil.
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>> on may 19, 2011, almost four years after teresa mayfield was gunned down on that lonely dirt road, her mother, sister and daughter sat in a courtroom and listened as dawn and scott having pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder were each sentenced to two consecutive life sentences. >> he looked straight at me like he was looking at a tree or something. there was no emotion. neither was there anything from dawn. it was like they were empty inside. >> for kelsey it was overwhe overwhelming. she saw her dad not as the loving father who took her shopping for her senior prom dress but as a man who orchestrated the death of her mother. have you ever brought up the issue with him? said, i know that you did this. >> one day i will. i don't have it in me to
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confront him and tell him what i know. it hurts too much for me to say it out loud, for me to tell my dad i know what he did and that i hate what he did. but he's still my father. i will always love him. >> her mother loved him, too. loved him through infidelity and trouble. loved him always. even as she loved her children, her family. as she tried her best to make life good while he plotted to kill her. a couple of years earlier, you had a great, full, lovely family life. >> there's not a word you can use to describe what our family has been through in the last four years. it's been -- it's been a very difficult four years. >> you have such a nice sunny disposition. how do you do that? >> i get my strength from my mother.
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>> that's all for this edition of "dateline." thanks for watching. just pulled that out of there. >> a jail shakedown recovers a huge stash of contraband. >> i've been here almost 25 years. this might be a first for me. >> me and my boyfriend were out one night and whatever he did is what landed us in here. >> a young couple is charged with robbery and murder. >> i know what i did and did not do. and i kid not kill anybody. >> as judgment day approaches,


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