tv 2020 ABC November 23, 2018 10:01pm-11:00pm PST
i begged her for an ounce of her strength so that i could put one foot in front of the other. >> tonight on "20/20," an unbreakable bond between mother and daughter, but someone came between them. >> he's like, mom's dead and he just kept repeating mom's dead, mom's dead. >> i ran downstairs and started vomiting. >> she was laying right here. >> i said, well, you can go right over there, because that's the person that killed my mom. >> but just who was she pointing at? >> this is a delicate question, whether somebody that she was having an affair with could have had her killed. >> sure. >> he started thinking about ways to engame his exit strategy. >> to get rid of her? >> to get rid of her. >> he's coming out. >> tonight, a daughter's discovery of family secrets and scandals leading to a dramatic showdown. >> drop the gun!
drop the gun. >> behind the scenes, kim was nonstop digging, digging for answers. getting proof. >> now, a new courtroom development, as we take you inside her obsessed six-year crusade to catch the killer. >> what kind of crimes? >> you're talking murder. >> "20/20" tonight going into a dangerous underworld no one could have imagined. >> drugs and a lot oaf monf mon. >> before this hour is over, there will be another shocking death, but is that the end of the story? >> this is my life, and i feel like this is the worst made for tv movie on the planet. >> good evening, i'm amy robach. >> and i'm david muir, and this is "20/20" and here tonight, deborah roberts. >> wibg. it's the talk of south jersey. >> driving the corridor between atlantic city and philadelphia, weekdays between the hours of 2:00 and 4:00, you may have heard this voice on wibg-fm.
>> if you don't vote, i'm going to your house and dragging you outside. >> that's april kaufman. a peppery, provocative radio host. >> i love being here to bring you the truth, as unvarnished, as unpretty as it is. >> tackling topics from politics to caring for u.s. vets. >> homelessness is a big issue if our country. >> listeners couldn't get enough of the jersey girl with the platinum hair, big smile and high wattage personality. >> she was like a whirlwind. she would come in and she would make a lasting i ining impressi everyone. >> in her upscale town of lin wood, new jersey, not far from the boardwalk, april and her husband have the community's con sue mat power couple. >> the two were well known individually, as well as together. they wanted to be involved in the community.
and they liked to have fun. >> every day, the doctor and mrs. kaufman had a familiar routine. jim, heading to his medical practice before sunrise and then a standing phone call with april at 8:30 a.m. but on thursday, may 10th, 2012, that call to april goes unanswered. and after several failed attempts, dr. kaufman sends over his handyman to their home on woodstock drive. where he discovers a horror. >> 911, where is your emergency? >> yes, i have my boss is down, she's lying on the floor in her bedroom and she's not answering me. >> where are you, sir? >> 2 woodstock drive, linwood. >> okay, hold on. i'm transferring you. >> 47-year-old april kaufman found dead on the floor of her
bedroom. with the family handyman on with 911, jim calls linwood police. >> this is dr. kaufman. i just called by my houseperson that my wife is face down on the floor. >> my partner is going out now. >> i'm getting there as fast as i can. >> reporter: dete >> detectives took me inside the home where april was discovered dead, shot multiple times. >> she was found laying right mere. >> face down? >> face down. >> as the media got there and they started to realize who it was, that's when they knew, okay, this is -- this is really a story. it was -- it was chaos. >> as the steady whir of helicopter blades hit the sky, jim kaufman makings another phone call. this time, to step-daughter kim. >> he said, mom's dead, he kept
repeating mom's dead, over and over. as i got to the front door, there was a police officer that put his hands out and i pushed his hands away, and i go, where's my mom? what is happening here? i need to see my mother. he said, we think this is a potential homicide. >> no one could imagine who would have shot april. beautiful, blond, glamorous. and she was fun. no one had any idea what was going on behind those closed doors. >> she made everybody feel like they were her best friend. didn't matter who they were, the checkout, the parking lot cart guy, you know, hey, beautiful, hey, handsome, how you doing today? >> friends peg and lee knew april since she was a teenager and knew her well enough to know
that her outward glow masked an inner pain. >> she had a rough childhood. when april was 11, her mother gave her brothers and sister up for adoption and april was raised by her grandmother and her brothers and sister were put into foster care. >> you know, i think she had a thirst for being -- feeling loved. she just wanted to be loved. >> she would discover unconditional love at 17, when she gave birth to kim with her first husband. >> she was an incredible mom. she seemed to just instinctively know what to do. >> she also spoke to kimberly like a little adult. and we used to call her agnes. shst her swax. and gave her the best that she possibly could. she worked hard. >> april dropped out of school when she became pregnant, but she got her g.e.d., she clawed
her way back, she opened a salon, a catering business, a cafe, a charity worker. >> but while april worked hard, she played hard, too. she liked motorcycles and fast cars? >> she did. when she got her first motorcycle, she said, i'll give you $300 to get on the back, and i was like, no way. my feet are on the ground. she was like, all right, $500. i'm like, no, i'm not getting on. just the need for speed and wasn't afraid. >> after two failed marriages, she meets dr. jim kaufman. friends and family say the wild child finally had found her match. >> he drives a harley, he's smoking cigars, he's a green beret in the military. a doctor. >> in fact, this caricature sketched for jim's 60th birthday seems to sum up the couple's life. there's april, the jersey girl, overshadowed by her larger than
life new husband who is prominently depicted with a gun, big cigar and something else. military tattoos. >> he had purple hearts, he had medals. sharpshooter medals that he had gotten from being in the war. ♪ war ♪ what is it good for ♪ absolutely nothing ♪ uh-huh >> the vietnam war. back when protests songs permeated the u.s. airwaves. jim kaufman makes it clear he distinguished himself on the battlefield. kim was so impressed, she asked her step-dad to be the subject of a college project. he agreed to be interviewed with some conditions. >> there were two rules to this interview. one, you can never ask my mother about this, anything pertaining to this interview, and two, you have to destroy the tape when you're finished. >> that's a little mysterious. >> yeah, but you know, i just thought, out of respect, this is what he's asking, he talked
about how the viet cong had ambushed his camp, stabbed him but also stabbed and left all of his comrades and left them for dead and his soul mission, he said, was to grab these dog tags and bring these dog tags to these people's families so they know what happened to their boys. >> that's an amazing story. >> yes. >> it's no wonder april was motivated to mount a campaign. using her radio voice to demand quality health care for veterans. >> this was such a big issue that affected our veterans and our state, our country. so, i will thank my husband for a lot of the things i've learned over the years. >> april felt that veterans should be treated like rock stars. >> so, how did this fierce and loved advocate for casualties of war become a casualty herself? kim has an idea, and approaching investigators with a shocking
declaration. >> as i made my way out into the cul-de-sac, i look up in the air and there's all these news choppers flying up above. and i said, well, you can go right over there, because that's the person that killed my mom. the person that killed my mom. >> stay with us. needles. ntial for pirees, but maybe not for people with rheumatoid arthritis. because there are options. like an "unjection™". xeljanz xr. a once-daily pill for adults with moderate to severe ra for whom methotrexate did not work well enough. xeljanz xr can reduce pain, swelling and further joint damage, even without methotrexate. xeljanz xr can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections, lymphoma and other cancers have happened. don't start xeljanz xr if you have an infection. tears in the stomach or intestines, low blood cell counts and higher liver tests and cholesterol levels have happened. your doctor should perform blood tests before you start and while taking xeljanz xr, and monitor certain liver tests. tell your doctor if you were in a region where fungal infections are common
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home last thursday -- >> it was like a state procession for april. no one could believe what had happened. >> she was just so caring, so compassionate. she was an inspiration to everybody. >> the loss heaviest for april's daughter, kim. >> i miss her calling me nonstop, all the time. i miss her laugh. i miss her smile. i miss her infinite wisdom, because she really was my rock. >> after the mourning came the murmuring. sometimes talk is cheap, even in wealthy towns. this is a delicate question, but there were questions about whether your mom was having affairs. >> you know, they had a very unhealthy relationship, the both of them, and i will just say that there were indiscretions on both sides of the fence, and i'll leave it at that. >> did you concern you that maybe somebody she had been involved with could have killed her? >> no, but i certainly provided those people's names to the
police. and i allowed them to do their due diligence. >> while the community's in shock and awash in rumor and innuendo, listen to this. april's final radio broadcast, where she sounds like a woman who thinks her days are numbered. >> and my bottom line is if nothing else of my legacy of leaving, you know, a really beautiful daughter and two grandchildren on this planet, i really hope to god that people, you know, hey, i could get a flyover at my funeral now. >> you listen back to that and you think, did she have a premonition? it's kind of like she was trying to tell us something, i believe. >> in those early days after her mom's death, there's one thing gnawing at kim. one person she's curiously not getting consolation from? her step-dad, dr. jim kaufman. >> dr. james kaufman was a very well-respected and well-regarded member of this community. but to kim, step-father jim was
a very different person. >> he was very cold to me. always kept me at an arm's length. >> literally. just look at the pained body language in this video taken on kim's wedding day. >> one, two and three. there you go. >> take a close look. he steps into the scene, he smiles one time for the camera to flash, then he goes back to a very tas turn demeanor and steps out. no hugging, no kiss, no warmth, nothing. >> i would be talking to my mom and he would come and turn the lights out. >> he controlled her cash flow. >> oh, yes. and sometimes even calling her, who are you with, where are you? >> and just two months before april's murder, it seems the bloom was officially off the rose of her nearly ten-year marriage. kim recalling a lunch where her mother confides, she's had
enough. >> she talked about that she really needed to start aligning herself and getting herself in a good spot to be able to leave. i think that he had made it clear to her that she wasn't going to divorce him and take half of his empire. that was his famous words. >> did you get any feeling that your mom might have been in any kind of danger? >> she had made it clear over the years that he had threatened to kill her several times, but would always follow up with, he doesn't have the guts to do it. >> though jim is not named a suspect, some might say he begins acting like one. >> within days of april's body being found, jim hires a lawyer. >> not only a lawyer, but the lawyer, a mob lawyer. >> ed jacobs, one of the biggest legal names in atlantic county. he's even defended bill cosby in one of his sex assault accusations. >> he loves defending high profile criminal cases. his walls in his office are
covered with news clips of himself. >> one possible reason he's not named a suspect, he's got an air-tight alibi. that's him entering a local convenience store around the same time his wife is being gunned down. >> authorities are not releasing details, but it appears that kaufmann's shooting death was not random. >> i meet him in a restaurant and he says, let me telling you something. i have a very good attorney and i have been advised not to speak to anybody about this. you might need to really start to realize that this is never going to be solved. and i said, well, i'm not going to realize that, i said, because i will never stop finding out. and i walked away and i never spoke to him ever again. >> as the months drag on, kim says the only cold shoulder icier than jim's is the one she's getting from then atlantic county prosecutor jim mcclain. >> i had several meetings with him and he would just say, active and open and not really say much more. >> did you get the impression that he was determined to get to the bottom of this?
>> no. no. >> then, on the one-year anniversary of april's murder, many turn out for a candlelight vigil, including so many vets she'd made her cause. noticeably absent? dr. jim kaufman. he marks the milestone another way. >> we discovered that he was getting ready to auction off all of april's belongings, and hadn't given anything to kim. >> how crushing was that for you? >> beyond, because the things that i asked for, that belonged to my mother, were family heirlooms or possibly -- a disney coffee mug. >> with her mother and all those mementos lost, kim tries to adjust to a n noal,hi raising her two young sons and holding down her job as a pharmaceutical sales rep. >> marching through every single day, waking up with another day of hopelessness while trying to keep that glimmer of hope alive is a very tricky thing to do. >> yet, while life for kim seems hopelessly on pause, for jim
kaufman, it's full speed ahead. just 15 months after his wife's murder, he ties the knot again. >> he remarries, carol winetraub. when did that start? now, the version we've gotten is that they started dating after april was found murdered. now, that's some romance. >> april's friends and family were devastated, and they felt like it was a slap in the face, but the people who support jim kaufman said, hey, he's a widow and he's moving on with his life. >> but dr. kaufmann's next move sets off a chain of events that pushes kim out of limbo. >> he went after my mom's life insurance policy. >> and your reaction? >> no way. because you know what, this is my only attempt to maybe be able to get some answers and the truth may be -- would start to come out. >> now, it's kim's turn to lawyer up. believing jim is the killer, she files a wrongful death suit against her step-dad to keep him from getting her mom's $600,000
life insurance policy. >> i have no choice but to respond and to begin to fight for what i know is right. >> the most significant kind of civil lawsuit you can have is a wrongful death case. coming up, a daughter undaunted, and the dynamic duo attorneys she hires begin digging into the case. and what they say they uncover is shocking. >> we were talking to people that were critical witnesses to us that had not spoken to the prosecutor's office. >> and their chance to grill the grieving good doctor. >> he was under oath in a civil deposition, they could ask him anything. >> next. >> next. graine hope to be there... for the good. and not so good. for the mundane. the awe-inspiring. the heart racing. the heart breaking.
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atlantic city. legendary for its slots, signature shows and, of course, this moment. ♪ miss america >> but the boom and the bust of the casino industry has made america's favorite playground a hot bed for crime, corruption and a startling number of unsolved cases. cases like april kauffman's. but kim pack and her dogged
attorneys, patrick and andrew darcy, drill down, determined to get answers. >> behind the scenes, kim, with us, was nonstop digging, digging for answers. getting proof. we were on an island, all on our own. >> but the tide may be turning. >> i grew up on the beaches and the boardwalk of atlantic city and i always say i have sand in my shoes. >> meet damon tiner. son of one of atlantic step's fabled firefighters and a long-time cop. your dad was a bit of a legend. >> yeah, he was very well-known throughout the community. >> but the younger tiner made a name for himself as a superior court judge. >> good to see you. how you making out? >> so, they named a pizza for me. >> i think right here? >> yeah. that would be me. >> and then, last year -- >> my, damon g.tyner -- >> became the first black prosecutor in the county's history. >> so help me god. >> congratulations. >> many seeing him as the city's much-needed savior.
>> doing a great job, man. >> thanks a lot. >> you all right? >> not judge anymore. >> that man's cleaning up a.c. >> there you go. >> you took a pledge when you took the office. tell me about the pledge. >> dating back to 1970, there are about 140 unsolved homicides. i urged my executive staff to tell me which cases were most solvable. unanimously, they all came back to me and said, the murder of april kauffman. >> but tyner is sworn in almost five years after april kauffman's murder. five lonyeot o people wondered five years passed and no recognizable work had been done. >> it wasn't that there were glaring mistakes, it was just an omission of effort, you might say. >> we wondered about that, and tried asking former prosecutor jim mcclain about the investigation. his spokesperson tells "20/20" mcclain has no comment. >> fortunately, damon tyner became prosecutor and his team
came to a conclusion that this case should be pros cuted. >> for the first time, someone is listening here. >> tyner agreed to meet kim pack and her lawyers within that first month. what did that mean to you? >> the fact that i was lucky enough for him to say, i'm going to take a second look at this. me, my case? thank you. like, this is all i've been asking for. this entire time. is for someone to care. >> it took three hours for kim's lawyers to unpack all they had uncovered. >> you should take a look at these records. >> but no evidence as compelling as this. >> today is july 11th, 2014. >> a four and a half-long video deposition of jim kauffman himself. finally talking for that wrongful death lawsuit kim has filed. >> i ask the questions, you give the answers. understood? >> yes. >> four and a half hours under oath is a lot of time. it's a lot of questions. >> i do. >> good. >> we may proceed. >> that was the first time he
could be compelled to talk. >> there he is, in the hot seat for the very first time. getting grilled on everything from his love of guns -- >> how many guns do you own? >> approximately 18. >> to the moment he first saw his wife lying lifeless on the floor. >> i ran upstairs, i looked and saw it and unfortunately saw april lying there. and she wasn't moving and she had a pallor that i've known for 30 years is obviously that someone has passed away. and i ran downstairs and went out on the lawn and was hysterical and started vomiting. >> okay, do you have tissues, by the way? >> i have them. >> do you need to -- >> no. >> when i look at a deposition, i sometimes turn the sound down. i don't want to hear what they're saying. i want to see what they look
like at their facial expressions. he struck me as a manipulative guy. >> but there's a barrel-sized bombshell about to drop. the doctor's casual and stunning admission about a secret he's been keeping for years. seems that time he spent in the special forces wasn't so special. >> have you ever served in any branch of the military? >> no. >> that's right. dr. kauffman forced to complete about his so-called stellar military record. those purple hearts? those sharpshooter medals? all lies. >> did you ever tell kim pack you were in the military? >> yes. >> did she do a project for college and part of the project was you being in the military? >> yes. >> and what you went through? >> yes. >> and that you carried bodies? >> yes. >> and the torture that you had gone through -- >> yes. >> did you ever tell anyone that you were a green beret? >> yes. >> who did you tell? >> i don't recall how many people i told. >> so, he created this
background that didn't even really exist. >> that is correct. once you start examining someone who is bold enough to engage in stolen valor, you start realizing that there are other aspects to this man's life that would require us to investigate. >> but in that deposition, dr. kauffman has his own theories about who may have killed his wife. >> who do you think did it? >> i thought it could be someone who was one of the veterans. the last choice was that it was someone in a motorcycle gang. >> what motorcycle gang? >> the pagans. >> the pagan motorcycle gang? remember, april had a penchant for motorcycles. could that mean she was in deep f with those people? >> they are the equivalent of the hell's angels. they are felons of the most dangerous sort. coming up, a stunning turn in the kauffman case.
>> no, i'm going to kill myself. >> leading to a standoff in the garden state. >> drop the gun! >> no, i'm not going to jail for this. >> put the weapon down. >> no. >> stay with us. tay with us. hey wiz, what you uhhh, me. man? ♪ say i'm khalifa, the best, but i got... ♪ you watching you? uh huh. these seats are ridiculous. oh my god. the players are so big and sweaty. it's actually kind of gross. you kidding me, you're the sweatiest person i know. you sweat buckets. dude, it was my glands, and it's totally under control now. oh okay, here we go. go. go. go. go. go. you can't, can't keep looking back ah man, she's never going to get out. i feel like i could be in the nba yea, i'm about as tall as these guys, give or take one inch. oh yea, go ahead wiz! you ain't no handmade, you a queen offred.
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lawyers keep their eye on what they believe is the prize, jim kauffman. using his pictures on social media as incentive. >> i would get a picture of kim offman and carol at the final four and, you know, smiling and i would put it on my brother's screen so they when he came in in the morning, that would be the first thing he'd see is a picture of jim kauffman saying, yeah, so what, i killed her, what are you going to do about it? >> but there's an unexpected canary in kauffman's coal mine. it's coming in the form of a tip from the fbi. the feds believe kauffman may be involved in another unrelated crime. >> lo and behold, another investigation related to insurance fraud, his role as a doctor comes up. >> investigators get a warrant to search his office. >> so, they show up at kauffman's clinic, just to look at his records. >> on june 13th, 2017, we attempted to serve a search
warrant at the office here. >> within minutes, it's clear this will not be a routine visit. >> detective with the prosecutor's office. i met you last week. just stay right here. keep your hands off -- >> no, no. >> what does he do instead of ushering them in, as most of us would do with the feds, no, he grabs a .9 millimeter ruger. >> you can see him and hear him refusing to let authorities inside. >> dr. james kauffman, he has a weapon. drop the gun, drop the gun! >> for 45 minutes, there's a heart-pounding standoff. >> drop the gun. >> at one point, dr. kauffman threatening to take his life. >> i'm going to kill myself. >> it sure seems like jim thinks they're there in connection with april's murder. >> listen, let's talk. >> i'm not going to jail for this. >> we got movement. >> finally, a hostage negotiator gets the disgraced doctor to
surrender. >> dr. kauffman, please step out to the curb. now slowly, reach down and pull your shirt up. keep walking backwards. >> watch the building. >> this video changes everything. >> the husband of a murdered south jersey radio host and advocate is behind bars following an early morning standoff. >> investigators say that same day, they seized more weapons from kauffman and at least $100,000 in cash. >> that was a game changer. >> after the standoff with jim kauffm kauffman, he goes to jail, not for murder, but for weapons charges. he fights to try to get out, the judge would not let him out, based on his conduct, and that gives the new prosecutor, tyner, a chance to really dig into the murder case. >> starting with the crime scene. >> so, this is the house here. the bedroom that april was found is upstairs. >> but the biggest break in the case doesn't come from inside this house at all.
>> we knew dr. kauffman, that there was a point in time that he was inquiring about having her killed. >> how did you find that out? >> we were able to get a witness to cooperate with us this past november, that broke the case. >> and who was that witness? a former member of the pagans motorcycle club. remember them? they're the ones dr. kauffman pointed the finger at in his deposition. >> the last choice was someone in a motorcycle gang. >> what motorcycle gang? >> the pagans. >> but now, the tables have turned. one of those pagans ratting out kauffman, and not just for murder. prosecutor tyner on january 9th, 2018. >> hey, sergeant. >> hello, sir. >> good afternoon, everyone. my name is damon g. tyner. >> at a press conference, tyner lays out the case of an elaborate and secret double life
that dr. jim kauffman was leading. treating patients by day, writing fraudulent opioid prescriptions for those pagans by night. >> they would come in and be patients, and all of a sudden, you had a prominent end criterion noll gist that was prescribing opioids and all kinds of other painkillers. when that wasn't quite his practice. >> he's got the power of the prescription, and they've got the gang activity. >> essentially, they were flooding the market with opioids and selling them at a marked up price. >> what a bombshell. this straight-laced doctor that everyone had respected was part of a pill mill, a drug ring? not only that, with the pagan outlaw motorcycle gang? and april kauffman found out. >> found out and, according to
tyner, threatened to expose his secret, seedy double life. >> he started thinking about ways to engage his exit strategy. >> to get rid of her? >> to get rid of her. >> for the past five and a half years, since april kauffman was found shot to death, there's been little movement on this case, and no arrests have been kne made in connection with the murder, that is, until today. >> an explosive bareakthrough i the murder of april kauffman. >> murder charges against james kauffman in a plot that police say involve members of a motorcycle gang. >> but wait a minute, didn't haveremehat e morning at a convenience store? tyner says kauffman wasn't the shooter, that he paid one of those pagans roughly $20,000 to do his dirty work and kill his wife. >> he went inside and he shot april kauffman twice. >> and ironically, that alleged
hitman died a year and a half after april's murder of an opiate overdose. his pills prescribed by -- you guessed it, dr. jim kauffman. >> when i heard the details of everything, it really -- really was unbelievable. i feel like this is the worst made for tv movie on the planet. >> the prosecutor worries dr. kauffman could be targeted by pagan members in jail, so, they move him upstate to the hudson county cession alpha silty, as they begin gearing up for their first major trial. finally, a chance to close one of those atlantic county cold cases. but then, another shocking turn. >> dr. james kauffman, dead. officials with the hudson county cession alpha silty confirm that he died at 9:20 this morning. >> what was your reaction when you heard this?
>> i was stunned. >> the story started off terrible and is ending terrible. >> dr. jim kauffman, dead. but how? were you worried that he could be hurt in prison? >> that's always a concern. >> will justice ever be served? stay with us. even when nothing else is. gopi's found a way to keep her receipts tidy, (brand vo) snap and sort your expenses with quickbooks and find, on average, $4,628 in tax savings.
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it's been a long, strange trip for dr. jim kauffman. from a plush suburban cul-de-sac to the hudson county jail. his new home, a six by nine-foot cell like this. >> this is charlie 500 east. >> the guys here are -- >> max number -- maximum security. >> the inmates were considered violent and dangerous, as dr. james kauffman awaited his
trial. what kind of crimes? >> you're talking murder. >> it's rare to get a look inside these tight quarters, unless you're an inmate. but corrections officers agreed to take us in, recalling that fateful morning. just after serving dr. kauffman breakfast, they made a grim discovery. the doctor was dead, hanging himself with a laundry cord. >> i was stunned. but that, in retrospect, that's what convinces me now more than ever that he understood that the end was near. >> he realized it had all caught up with him? >> yes, i think so. >> bottom line, he had his wife murdered and the only way out for him was suicide. >> kauffman did leave something behind in that jail cell. this note obtained by "20/20." >> even in that jail cell, when he killed himself, he had to write this very lengthy suicide note, to be in control at the very end, to get the last word.
>> kauffman adamant that he didn't kill april. >> i cannot live like this. i -- no matter what anybody says -- did not do anything to my life. >> the six-page suicide note is bizarre. >> throughout the note, he quotes latin, including phrases that roman gladiators would say to the emperor before they fought in the coliseum. really? >> his final words do add a surprisingly new angle to the sordid saga. >> april came to me and said, would i like to go to a motorcycle rally to meet some of her friends? i was slightly shocked to say the least, that they had the colors of pagans. >> the most important thing that jim kauffman wants people to take away from this note is, i didn't kill april, she introduced me to this outlaw gang. i was prescribing pills. they then got aggressive with me, they then started
threatening me and they're the ones who killed april. >> were you able to determine whether april had any involvement with either the gang or the pill mill? >> our investigation at the time did not lead us to believe that she had any involvement. i believe that at some point, she became aware of it. i think ultimately, that's the reason why she was killed. >> but dead men tell no tales, at least not in court. and with both that alleged hitman and jim kauffman deceased, tyner's last call for justice would rest with the case against the accused pagan ringleader, who he believes conspired with kauffman to kill april. just weeks ago, that case unfolded in a new jersey courtroom. it took a jury less than two hours to find him guilty of all counts in connection with the murder of april kauffman. a painful conclusion for a
grieving daughter, yet a measure of solace. kim pack made finally find the justice she's been seeking for years. why do think this case wasn't solved six years ago? >> i don't know. that's the million dollar question. but what i do know is that i was blessed and granted the ability to have peace in my life for the first time in six years by a man with determination and that believed in my story, and that is damon tyner. >> though in a tale as twisted and tragic as this, there's hardly any true closure. >> and that's the saddest part of this entire story. her mom's still not coming back. when everything is quiet and it's just kim and she's alone and she's thinking, her best friend's gone. >> we were robbed. and for what? i still don't have the answer to that. for what? when we come back, one of those precious family heirlooms sold at auction has been recovered. the secret message from beyond
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made april kauffman so beloved. >> she's like a pit bull. >> she is. >> she latches on and she's not letting go until she get what she's looking for. >> she's a mini april. >> there's been dark days. very dark days, where i just didn't know how i was going to do this. but i knew that i needed to stand up. this story needed to be told. >> but in that darkness, something special. remember when jim sold off all of april's belongings? turns out, lee and peg, dubbing themselves april's angels, swooped in. >> these women got together and they were on the phone calling people, raising money, to be able to buy back things that belonged to my mother. >> so, that's how you got the last remnants of your mom's things? >> yes. and my mom collected these little things, and this was the
first item that i touched from the auction, and inside, this note that says, "to kimberly, from mom. whenever you look at this, you know you're always loved. you're so special. best wishes for the rest of your life." >> and you had no idea that note was there? >> no. and i feel like this was meant to be. i feel like i was meant to have this. i keep this by my bed. it reminds me that my mom is with me all the time. >> out in the community, other reminders. >> my husband and my boys got this bench dedicated for her. it's special, because it's a spot that we stop and my kids will bring up a memory or they will talk about her. >> and if mom could say just one more thing to her daughter -- >> i think she would say to me now, you can breathe. you can go on and live. you don't have to be sad anymore. and -- thank you for fighting.
>> a fighter to the finish. remember, kim pack's civil case to get her mother's life insurance? >> we can report tonight that her attorney now says that's been amicably settled with kauffman's widow. that is "20/20" for tonight. i'm david muir. >> and i'm amy robach. from all of us here at abc news and "20/20," good night. a shocking