’48 Hours’ Reports on the Murder of an Albuquerque Couple on Saturday, May 17
via press release:
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Erin Moriarty and 48 HOURS report on the mystery behind the murder of an Albuquerque, New Mexico, couple and the two surprising suspects in “A Daughter, a Mortgage and Two Murders” to be broadcast Saturday, May 17 (10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Bernadette and Greg Ohlemacher were shot dead in their home on Aug. 2, 2005. Their daughter, Renee, then 20, was home at the time, heard the gunshots and hid in a closet where she phoned for help.
“I heard my mom scream and my dad yelled, “What are you doing?!” Renee tells 48 HOURS. “Gun shots just went off. Boom, boom, boom, boom. Honestly, I didn’t know what to do.”
As the only survivor, police immediately suspected Renee was involved; she was not physically harmed in any way. Investigators questioned why she called the police department’s general number first rather than 911, delaying the response somewhat. Police investigated Renee, and found no evidence tying her ? or anyone else – to the murders.
Despite the lack of evidence, some family members are convinced Renee knows more than she is telling. “She may not have pulled the trigger,” says Renee’s aunt, Antoinette Curran. “But I have no doubt she had everything to do with this.”
Renee did have motive – she inherited more than half a million dollars from her parents’ estate.
Progress on the case stalled until 2006, when a mortgage loan processor – Ron Santiago who worked for Countrywide Home Loans – turned himself in to the Secret Service in relation to a crime that had nothing to do with the Ohlemacher murders. Santiago confessed to forging two checks totaling more than $240,000 to a family on a mortgage deal. The Secret Service learned that there was an unsolved murder regarding a couple that had worked with Santiago on a mortgage. Could Santiago have done something far worse than forging checks? Could he have killed the Ohlemachers?
Police searched Santiago’s home and found a single shell casing in his garage that matched casings found at the Ohlemacher crime scene. That single casing would change his life forever. But would it be enough to put him behind bars for life? Eight years of wrangling to bring Santiago to court followed.
Just before the trial began, Renee learned the prosecution wasn’t done with her, either. In 2012, the District Attorneys’ office had Renee take a polygraph, which was inconclusive (she didn’t pass and she didn’t fail). Those results would haunt prosecutors at trial.
Throughout the time he’s been in the spotlight for these murders, Santiago – like Renee – has insisted he had nothing to do with them. “I knew these people, I’d worked with them in the past and I was working with them then,” Santiago tells 48 HOURS. “But I had nothing to do with the murder.”
48 HOURS is there when the jury decides Santiago’s fate, nearly a decade after the Ohlemachers were killed.
Moriarty and 48 HOURS have been reporting on the case for eight years and tell the story through interviews with Renee, Santiago, members of the Ohlemacher family, defense attorneys, police and the prosecution. 48 HOURS: “A Daughter, a Mortgage and Two Murders” is produced by Paul LaRosa and Allen Alter. Leslie Neigher is the associate producer. Peter Schweitzer is the senior producer. Susan Zirinsky is the senior executive producer.