UNRAVELING THE BRUTAL MURDER OF A HUSBAND AND WIFE IN THEIR
OWN HOME, ON "PRIMETIME: CRIME," WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 13 ON ABC
Alan and Diane Johnson had a picture-perfect life, or so it seemed. They'd been together for 20 years and lived in a beautiful home on the outskirts of Sun Valley, Idaho. They treasured their close-knit family, which included two children, 21-year-old Matt and 16-year-old Sarah. But just after Labor Day weekend in 2003, that happy family life came to an abrupt end when Alan and Diane were brutally murdered in the bedroom of their home. Deborah Roberts reports on the horrific crime, how it could have happened and who might have done it, on "Primetime: Crime," WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 13 (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network. This report originally aired in August 2007.
Investigators' first clues in the case came when they discovered that 16-year-old Sarah had fallen in love with Bruno Santos, an illegal Mexican immigrant. Alan and Diane did not approve of their daughter's relationship with Santos, a 19-year-old high school dropout. He became the source of heated family arguments. Syringa Stark, one of Sarah's friends, tells "Primetime": "I felt she could do a lot better. He was a high school dropout and was selling drugs, and she was from a nice family. It just didn't seem like it was right." On the Saturday of the fateful Labor Day weekend, Diane and Alan discovered Sarah was sleeping over at Santos' apartment and tensions mounted. When Alan picked Sarah up, he told Santos that he was to stay away from his daughter. He even threatened to report him to the police for having sex with an under-aged girl.
But that would never happen. On Tuesday morning, Alan and Diane Johnson were brutally killed. Blaine County Sheriff Walt Femling tells Roberts that it was the most disturbing crime scene he had ever seen. "There was blood and hair on the carpet. It was on the ceiling. It was on all the walls. There was part of a skull cap in the hallway." He immediately closed down the street and, in doing so, stopped a garbage truck that had just made its rounds. The garbage truck turned out to contain the key evidence in that case: a bloody bathrobe, a left-handed leather glove and a right-handed latex glove� all containing someone's DNA. "Primetime: Crime" unravels the investigation, following the evidence and suspects, and speaks candidly with family members about the impact of these murders.
David Sloan is the executive producer of "Primetime: Crime."