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COLD CASE: TV Show Help ‘Worth The Risk’

Teresa Supino will be back in court in May after she was charged with a double murder that took place in 1983.

Despite decades of investigation by both the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office and the Division of Criminal Investigation, it took a TV show to finally close the case.

New details show the working relationship between producers for Cold Justice and law enforcement.

Emails between the producers of the TNT show “Cold Justice” and Jasper County Sheriff, John Halferty show they had, what you might call, a chummy relationship.  In one email, a “Cold Justice” producer writes, “The media and the immediate public don’t ‘get it.’  We love you.”

Halferty first contacted “Cold Justice” in 2012 to ask for help in solving the murders of Melisa Gregory and Steven Fisher on the Copper Dollar Ranch on March 3, 1983.  “Cold Justice” accepted the invitation late last year, and a few months later authorities arrested 53-year-old Terri Supino.

It was no coincidence they made the arrest on the 31st anniversary of the murders.  We now know the Sheriff postponed the arrest to coincide with the anniversary.

“I felt the families had had over 30-years of March thirds with no good news, that it was time to give them some good news,” Halferty told us.

He denies the timing had anything to do with “Cold Justice,” even though he told its crews where and when the arrest would take place.  In another email, a “Cold Justice” producer writes, “Thank you again for letting us come out and film – that means the world to us.”

Halferty said he allowed them to “participate from a distance, from public property, to video-tape the arrest.”

Producers also wanted video of an interview with Supino after her arrest.  In an email they tell Halferty, “All we need is five to ten seconds of anything – her walking in the room, her saying I can’t believe it… We’ve come this far, I am confident we can make this work too! :)”

The Jasper County Attorney denied the request.

“Once she was in custody they were like any other media source,” said Halferty.  “They were not allowed any exclusive information.”

“Cold Justice” did get access to evidence and the show’s investigators were allowed to questions witnesses.  Some defense attorneys say that raises ethical questions about who actually managed the investigation.

“We had those things in consideration,” said Halferty.  “But in this case the value of the expertise and the technology and the ability for them to take this case… to me, I felt it was the right thing to do.”

Halferty says he would do it all over again.  In yet another email, he tells a producer, “I almost wish I had another good cold case to bring you back.”

During our interview, Halferty clarified, “What I meant is, we certainly don’t want any more victims.  But if we had another cold case, I’d certainly welcome their assistance.”

The Cold Justice episode featuring the Copper Dollar Ranch murders air Friday, March 28th at 7:00 PM on TNT.

The email correspondence between the executive producer of “Cold Justice” and the Jasper County sheriff investigating the 1983 Copper Dollar Ranch murders are below.



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