tv CNN Newsroom CNN March 9, 2013 10:00pm-11:00pm PST
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sunrise. >> anythi>> anything in >p pocker pockets of areas. nobonobody foun nobody found a months. > i when p >> i when i . the stories didn't jive. when that happens, it bodes ill. stefa was a brilliant young girl, 22, just graduated from john jay college in new york. had travelled down to the miami, to be with her sister for her birthday. a celebration, it was a holiday. and she had monday off, she was going to use that to be with her
sister. she was excited. she had just gotten out of school. planning to go forward to law school. such a bright future ahead of her. >> getting up the first thing i do is think about her. >> a beautiful 22-year-old. graduating with honors. she wanted to go on to law school. she wanted to be an immigration lawyer, perhaps a criminal lawyer. really, a bright, young girl. had her entire life ahead of her. then, she disappears. >> she is very responsible, honest. she has everything in order. she has fun, she do her school work. at the president's entern office
in john jay college. >> it was her younger sister's birthday, they planned to go down to miami. which she did, every year, go down to spend memorial day weekend with friends and family who lived there. she took her sister. they were going to get manicures, go shopping, they went to concerts together. and spent a lot of time with her best friend, who lived down in the miami area. now, she had just graduated, majored in criminal justice, studying for the lsat for law school, and pursue a career as a criminal attorney or immigration lawyer. that is what was ahead of her when she went to miami for what she thought would be a fun weekend with her sister. >> on a homemade shrine.
>> my help will come from the lord. >> they are playing police will find her $alive. 22-year-old stepha. >> i think she is being held against her will. she would never go off alone. >> her sister turned 16, it was a celebration time. and stepha normally went there normally this time was extra special, she and her center went together, celebrating a birthday, involved in memorial day activities, barbecues and fun times with her family member that is lived down there. shortly before she disappeared. >> stepha went down there to see her best friend, who had been
her friend since high school. her friend moved to miami. all through clrnlgs she stayed in contact with ta mara, they got to know each other's families. one of those people she met was the friend's brother-in-law, kendrick williams, who later played a big role in the investigation in to her disappearance. she was down there to have fun with her sister, and visit family and friends in miami. >> the honors grad, who worked as an alum in the president's office, was in florida with her sister for memorial. police say she left her sister late at night. and got into car. >> it should have had joy and fun fer stepha, it was the last
full day people saw her alive. she started out the day going to a barbecue. this was a barbecue of a very close friend of hers. who had moved down to florida. this very close friend had a sister, who was hosting the barbecue. the sister happened to be a newlywed. married to a man by the name of kendrick williams. the day turned out simply, and joyously as a barbecue. >> she did go to a night club private party, the owners were shooting a promotional video. what about the friend who took her there? >> he said he left the club early, when he left the club, she was there with other people that he didn't know. >> to this day, she has never been found. alive, or dead. this is what we know.
about the night she goes missing. she was down in floe,d as i mentioned to see her sister, staying with an aunt. when the aunt got up that morning, realizes that stepha didn't come home. she immediately called police. she called police, and she called stepha's parents who immediately hopped on a plane, straight to florida to start looking for their daughter and publicizing her disappearance. it was in those hours, the night before, began to unravel. i used to tell juries, nothing good happens after mid night. i stick by those words. stepha had gone to a party. supposed to go to a party. get trkts with friends. she left the party.
according to several witnesses, with 37-year-old married man, kendrick williams. >> police say he told them he drove henry in a club in a late model integ rampt. >> he told his wife he went to the party, a party, but he didn't like the vibe. those were his words, not mine. the vibe at the party. he left and went to a strip cluchblt let's analyze that you don't like the bad vibe at a party, so you go to a sleazy strip cluchblt right there, i have a problem with his story. that is what he said happens. here is the kicker to williams' story. he is the photoed in a promotional shot, outside of a bar later that evening, with stepha henry.
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>> now, police wisely tried to attain the surveillance. our reports are that they didn't get video surveillance at the bar. we do have that promotional shot for the bar, taken outside of the bar. at the bar, that night, after they have been at the party earlier, and here they are at the bar. we know that this married man was with her. and that he lied to his wife about it. what else do we know? we know that he had a business of sorts where he would buy vehicles, cars, in the new york area, then bring them to florida to fix them up, soup them up, re-sell them at a profit. we know that at some point, the car he was driving when it was
processed, stepha's blood in it. according to our report, it was such an amount, that police are convinced that 22-year-old stepha is dead. he has never cracked or changed his story. we have her blood in his car. we have got a promo shot of him with her in front of the miami area the night she goes missing. where is stepha? >> police suspect henry checked her phone to check her voice mail whether the club closed. h >> we love you.
>> now and forever, amen. >> law enforcement was centered on the car. this dark colored accura that stepha was seen getting into with a man that night, going to the night club. >> god bless you. >> they prayed for stepha henry and comforted her family and tried, even as her trail grows cold, they tried to keep hope in their hearts. >> i love you very much. i want you to come home. your father and your sister, the family are very worried. please come home to us. >> stepha henry's mother wouldn't stop. she said she would stay in florida until her daughter was found. she went to a car dealership there was a radio remote to spread the word to anybody that would listen her daughter just
graduated from clrnlgs had her life before her, and gone from the face of the earth. the person who was a person of interest in this case couldn't be found. police wanted to question kendrick williams to ask him when he knew because he was the husband of a very good girlfriend of stepha henry. >> nobody who knows her thinks she would walk away from a life fill wide program. >> she was trustworthy and dependable. >> she helps me with my homework, social life, academic life. cooks for me when i am hungry, everything. >> there was an extens iive search.
five straight months in florida, looking. she had to take leave from her job so she could do media interviews, radio interviews, handing out flyers, the family, not just the mom. waterways were searched, wooded areas were searched. volunteers searched. it went on and on. it was really about a year, maybe over a year, before his car, an accura was found. interesting, when kendrick williams' accura was found, a woman had just bought it. not from him i don't know how many hands the car had gone through, over a year after stepha goes missing, police track down the car. probably one of the reasons they didn't find t it wasn't
abandoned in the airport parking lot. begging someone to steal it. it wasn't burned up, left on the side of the road, in a wooded area, down a gulch. if had gone through several hands. and a woman thought she had rightfully bought the car. here it is, parked in someone's driveway. police wouldn't think to look there. they did find the car, and mirracaculo mirracaculously, that it still had stepha's blood in it. it would be a nightmare at trial to show the custody of the car. the reality was, stepha's blood was still in the accura, over a year later.
>> any time she is ready to come home, call me when she is in new york. she would call me. i am leaving now. >> if there was a time she was knocked down. she got up. she keeps in touch with us, always calls, she picks up her cell phone, and call me and let me know. >> the police find the car. you can find it by the vin number. every car has one. to the naked eye, you couldn't see the blood. the car, looked like it had been through a professional clean-up job. but, police didn't stop there. they ripped up underneath the floor board. they pulled off the seat covers,
and there was such a profuse amount of blood that was invisible to the naked eye. when you pulled up the floor board, you don't see what is under the carpet, what has drenched and trickled and dripped through the carpet. the floor board carpet of that accura. you don't see the blood that has soaked back behind the seat cover. sure, you can sanitize the seat cover, and wash the carpet, you can't see the blood that has dripped in pooled under the carpet and behind the seat cover. this investigation now involves dozens of officers from miami dade and detectives from the homicide units canvassing several hundred square slice of south florida. >> this is every parents'
nightmare. >> stepha's family as soon as they got word she was missing speaking to anyone to keep the story alive. to keep the search alive for their daughter stepha. her mom was there for five months, took a leave of absence from her job at a bank to search n some hopes of trying to find her. >> we have a tremendous amount of water in southern florida. we are checking the canals, the lakes. >> if she is shopping, she would call us. mom, i will be coming home now. she knows i am very worried. >> the fact that the police were so meticulous, they have reason to believe that stepha henry was stabbed in the upper torso, because of the blood trail starts in the upper third of the
passenger car seat. in that accura, and kendrick williams' accura. she was stabbed by the front, the back, to the top of her head. and sitting back, and the blood starts flowing behind the car seat, and down. so, they believe with good reason the girl was stabbed in the upper torso. there was a massive amount of blood, stepha's blood that pooled soaking through the carpet on the floor board, and pooling beneath the carpet.
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>> a male friend picks her up from her aunt's house and drove her here to this club in fort lauderdale. once here, the friend said they went their separate ways. >> on today's day, 8:00, the suspect was found sleeping in a vehicle in the jamaican bay section of brooklyn. >> stepha's picture is hung. the feel for the man, he is out, putting up flyers everywhere.
>> please, if you ask someone to call their mother, and call someone, we come get you. >> very often, a person of interest or suspect will lie. now, often, these lies are not directly associated with the crime itself. however, someone lying to police about seemingly innocuous issues like the car you drive or the cell phone number, if you are lying about that, a, it is not innocent. or b, you will lie about anything. he started off denying he drove an accura, when his wife said, yes that is his car. yes, i was with him when he bought the accura. busted. he denied even knowing or being acquaint wide 22-year-old stepha
henry. he denied he knew her. his cell phone records showed multiple cell phone records. >> he denied any involvement in stepha disappearance, as well as owning or driving an integra. since that time, the accura involved in this case has been recovered. determined it was purchased by mr. williams, prior to arriving in south florida. forensic analysis revealed substantial evidence linked to stepha henry, we are charging mr. williams with second degree murder. >> please, if you see anything, please call the police.
>> we feel this is a peace of t the -- piece of the puzzle we would like to take a look at. we don't know what time she left or who she left with. >> we have spoken to friends, this was a promotional party, there were people who did attend it give us a call. >> he denied spending time with her at all. then there was the promotional video taken at the bar the night
she goes missing, they are standing there together. he said, yes, i did meet her. i never spent any time with her. i really didn't get to know her. everything that he said to police, he lied about. his lies were easily detected. >> a warrant was issued for the arrest for the charge of second degree murder and tampering with evidence. the bond amount established and issued by the judge is no bond. you will be held no bond on these charges, do you understand? >> we all know, in many jurisdictions, trial judges do not give jury instructions on flight. when a person of interest takes off, when police are pursuing them or after a crime. in this case, williams was in
the miami area when he met stepha and everything went wrong. he was ultimately found in new york, living in his car, surrounded by blankets, clothing and body lotion. i don't know what that means that is how he was found. prosecutors, if this ever goes to trial, would argue that this was flight. why would you leave your wife at home in florida and go live in your car in the new york area, surrounded by blankets clothing and body lotion? i would argue that that was flight. maybe the defense is going argue, he wanted to live in his car. i don't think a jury is going believe that. ed to america. ed to america. we support nearly two-hundred-fifty thousand jobs and invest more here than anywhere else.
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>> i just want to speak to the public. if anyone was at the club on that night, peppers club on may 29, 2007, and saw stepha henry and saw anything, any clue that would help the detective to close this case, please call crime stoppers. >> at this hour, as we go to hour, kendrick williams is sitting behind bars, waiting for trial.
believe it or not, he has never been tried. before you point the finger at the prosecution, they are still hoping to find stepha's body. he is currently charged with second debris murder and tampering with evidence. cleaning up the car. why not first degree? we don't know how stepha died. if we could find her body, maybe there could be a prosecution for murder one. now, he absolutely has a right to a speedy trial. under our constitution. stepha's family does hope she will be found alive. they know about the blood in the car. they know authorities have said they don't think that stepha could have survived whatever
injuries cause thad blood loss in the car. they said, it is our daughter, they are good nighting to give up hope. they would love for her to be found alive somewhere. they haven't given up. >> this began with a trip to the miami area, with a concert to celebrate her younger sister's birthday. they are from brooklyn. stepha decides she will go to a nightclub, leaves the sister with the relatives this is the acquaintance, the black accura in question. she goes to the club, photographed inside the club which is closer to fort lauderdale, the person who drove her there went home early, never saw her again. nobody else heard from her either. >> prosecutors tend to go forward in this case, even though they didn't find the body. they found the car and massive
amounts of the blood. they can prosecute approximate without a bmptd they have the link, not only picked up stepha the last time she was known to be alive. this is the car owned by kendrick williams. >> the photo taken of her at the club, peppers that night, why was it taken? >> that photo is a photo from a promotional shoot the club was doing, we were able to find her there at the club. >> that was good police work, detective. do we have any idea what time. was it time stamped? >> no, the time is not stamped on the photo. contrary to popular belief, people are saying it was a surveillance video, it was not. it was a promotional video. no time stamp. >> did she meet friends at pep snerz. >> the person in the dark colored accurya said he left her there at a certain time, with
other people that she knew, that he didn't know. >> if she was meeting friends there, did they see her leave? >> well, like i said, he has given us that account. we are interviewing. we are still interviewing patrons and employees at that club. >> kendrick williams' trial has been delayed several times, almost four years, almost four years from his arrest until he goes to trial in january of 2013. there has been a number of delays, both requested by the state and state and defense. kendrick williams should face charges in the early part of 2013. >> you have gone out on the street, yourself, trying to get leads and find your daughter. what have you been doing? >> going around, giving out flyers to people, and talking to people who might have seen her
on the night. some say, they saw her, some say, they don't think so. i am searching and looking around, trying to find out any information i get the at all on my daughter. >> where all have you been? >> i have been to different malls, the miami malls, i went to the hotels and motels on biscayne boulevard, peppers, more than one. they had a party on saturday night, giving out flyers in the parking lot. i went to the parties that they have all of them in miami here. give out flyers to people who are going to the party. especially, the young folks. different walgreens, and publix, different areas i go to. >> here is a mother, out beating the streets, handing out flyers, trying to find her girl.
this is a good girl, honor student, wanting to go to law school. her whole life ahead of her. one night, one night, she goes to a concert at a local bar in miami and is never seen again. the last clue that we have, around 4:13 to be exact, someone, maybe her, checked her own voice mail on her cell phone. >> stepha henry's body has never been recovered. prosecutors are going forward on second degree murder charges here. they are going rely on the forensic evidence. the blood found inside that accura. trial for kendrick williams is set for january 7th, 2013. kendrick williams was arrested in 2008 and charged with the second degree murder of stepha henry, he is incarcerated on no
bond waiting for his trial. >> there is so much we know that a jury will never know. under our consitution, a jury can't know about a criminal history. what we know, kendrick williams had a long history of domestic violence. even when his wife had a restraining order. she said he would break into the home, she believes that he slashed the tires of her sister's vehicle. we know that there are many allegations of violence on the mother of his children. now, does this prove that he is a murderer? no. when you don't know a horse, look the at his track record. >> something she may have said. several things she used to do on
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>> the new york native was visiting relatives in south florida with her little sister. she was last seen leaving peppers cafe at sunrise. >> anything it may not be important to them, it is important to the investigation. >> what happened to stepha. >> there are pockets are wild areas, those are areas that if someone were to get in the middle of, nobody might find anything in there for months. >> not what henry's frant ic
parents want to hear. they call her cellphone. all they hear is this. >> the mailbox is full. >> she is not the one that would be tricked easily. >> until the body is found, they will hold out hope she is alive. she is trying to find heridarity, and anybody who knows where her daughter may be. law enforcement tells them that stepha was murdered at the hands of someone they say, it was kendrick williams. >> on june 5th, he was arrested on an unrelated traffic charge. during an interview, he denied any involvement in her
disappearance as well as owns or driving an accura integra. since that time, the car in this case has been recovered. >> it happened on a monday night, and tuesday morning, i heard she didn't return home around 10:00 a&m i was very concerned, and started calling her phone, kept getting voice mail. she didn't return my call. usually, she would return my call, especially when she is not in the house. then, i realized. my sister called me, said she didn't come home. my younger daughter called, said her sister didn't come home. something was wrong.
>> forensic analysis of the vehicle revealed substantial evidence that has been linked to stepha henry. mr. williams has been charged with second degree murder and tampering with evidence. at approximately 8:008, he was found in the car in brooklyn. >> unbelievable. very, very hard for me to even think that something like this is happening to my daughter. we prayed a lot. we are a religious family. we have a lot of brothers and sisters in faith who joined us in prayer every night. on the phone, or in different chufrps, a lot of support. >> he is content to wait for