A Heartbroken Mother Launches a One-Woman Psychological Warfare Campaign to Taunt Her Daughter’s Killer on ’48 Hours’
via press release:
A HEARTBROKEN MOTHER LAUNCHES A ONE-WOMAN PSYCHOLOGICAL WARFARE CAMPAIGN TO TAUNT HER DAUGHTER’S ALLEGED KILLER – BUT CAN SHE GET HIM TO CRACK?
“48 HOURS: RELENTLESS”
SATURDAY, NOV. 2, 2013
CLICK HERE FOR A PREVIEW
Peter Van Sant and 48 HOURS investigate the murder of Nicole Pietz, and her mother’s one-woman campaign to wage psychological warfare on her daughter’s alleged killer in “Relentless,” to be broadcast Saturday, Nov. 2, 2013 (10:00 PM ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Nicole Pietz disappeared from her suburban Seattle home in January 2006. Her husband, David Pietz, reported her missing, and broke the news in a phone call to her mother and stepfather, Gael and Rod Schneider, who lived in Arizona.
David and Gael each went on local TV and pleaded for Nicole to return.
Nine days after Nicole went missing, her nude body was found in a wooded field near the Seattle airport. The investigation into the murder would reveal Nicole’s life was not as perfect as outsiders believed. David told police that his wife had years earlier suffered from painful medical issues and had become addicted to medication. After years of being drug-free, he suspected Nicole was possibly abusing drugs again after recently being treated for a back injury.
“She was my youngest daughter, and the absolute light of my life,” Gael Schneider tells Van Sant. “My beautiful daughter. My sweet girl. How anyone could hurt her is just – it’s not feasible to me.”
Gael believed David knew more than he was saying.
Police had few clues, and the case eventually went cold. But Gael Schneider never let go. From the beginning she suspected David had killed her daughter and started a six-year campaign to get justice for Nicole’s murder. She would confront David where he worked, and called him a murderer in front of his co-workers. She left messages at his home. She even left a blonde wig with fake blood on David’s doorstep.
Besides tracking David, she also urged investigators to take another look at the case. “I wasn’t going to let her become another case in their files,” she tells 48 HOURS. “I hate to think of myself as pit bull, but I was.”
Then, more than six years after Nicole was found dead, new detectives pieced together evidence to arrest David Pietz for her murder. But would they have enough information to get a jury to convict him?
Van Sant and 48 HOURS report on Nicole and David’s life together and her murder, through interviews with Nicole’s family, her friends, one of David’s girlfriends, and investigators. 48 HOURS: “Relentless” is produced by Susan Mallie, Paul LaRosa, Alec Sirken and Tom Seligson. Leslie Neigher is the associate producer. Anthony Batson is the senior broadcast producer. Susan Zirinsky is the senior executive producer.