Snapped - Beth Carpenter   View more episodes

Aired at 10:00 PM on Sunday, Feb 21, 2010 (2/21/2010)      View all transcripts from this day


00:00:00But buzz assured the carpenters his rough-and-tumble pastwas behind him.
00:00:04He and kim weremaking a fresh start.
00:00:07The couple had recently movedinto a converted toolshed that was locatedon his parents' property.
00:00:14Then buzz dropped a bombshell.
00:00:17They had come to takekim's daughter, rebecca, back home with them.
00:00:20Buzz decided that she should have rebecca.
00:00:23Now, cynthia and dick have had rebecca for two years, anyway, of her life, and buzz seems to think she'd be better off with her mother and him.
00:00:32I said, "no, I don't think so, not at this " and they said, "we'll have to take you to " I said, "you know, whatever.
00:00:39If that's what's necessary, that's what's " distraught over buzz clinton'splan to take rebecca, the carpenters immediatelyturned to beth for help.
00:00:50That week, beth carpenter filed paperworkin probate court with the hopes of making herparents' temporary custody of rebecca more permanent.
00:00:59They said, across the board, kim was, essentially, an unfit mother and that they should-- "they" the parents-- should have control of the baby.
00:01:08But while kim wasn't arguing, buzz was preparingfor a fight.
00:01:13Kim did whatever buzz told her to.
00:01:15And, consequently, her relationship with the family became strained and that's where the whole situation started.
00:01:22Buzz immediately fileda countersuit for custody on kim's behalf.
00:01:26And when it came time to battlebeth and the carpenters in probate court, buzz volunteered tohandle it himself.
00:01:33They ran out of money for attorneys, " buzz was a fighter.
00:01:41He would not lay down and take this in any way.
00:01:48To some, a bar-certifiedattorney versus a formermale stripper might have seemedlike an unfair fight.
00:01:55But as the custody proceedingsgot underway that november, buzz surprisinglyheld his own against beth.
00:02:02The hearing continued overthe next six weeks, and as the battle wore on, beth's desire to defeatbuzz clinton turned into an obsession.
00:02:11She's running around and acting as though it's her battle, it's her war, and she's gonna win it, no matter the price.
00:02:19I mean, nothing would stop this woman.
00:02:21It wasn't about getting custody of the child.
00:02:24It was about winning.
00:02:25It becomes about winning.
00:02:27But in the end, it wasbuzz clinton, not beth carpenter,who prevailed in court.
00:02:33ON DECEMBER 15th, The new london probate courtordered for rebecca to live with kim carpenterand her boyfriend, buzz.
00:02:41They, of course, gave custody to kim.
00:02:43She was the mother, and they felt that she had a safe place to live.
00:02:46Kim's sister, beth,was stunned and humiliated.
00:02:50And according to those atthe courthouse that day, as beth blastedpast buzz clinton on her way out of court, she hissed at himunder her breath.
00:02:59Beth carpenter and cynthia carpenter lose that day.
00:03:03Out in the hallway, beth carpenter is heard saying to buzz clinton, " with rebecca living with them, buzz clintonand kim carpenter decided to marry injanuary of 1993.
00:03:18And just a few weeks later, they announced they wereexpecting their first child.
00:03:24To provide for hisgrowing family, buzz found a way toearn some extra money.
00:03:29( Dee ) HE HAD A TOW TRUCK, So he was working with a junkyard and towing in cars and whatever.
00:03:36But after a few months ofworking in the towing business, buzz clinton decided it wastime for a career change.
00:03:44Wanting somequick cash to pay for school, he placed an advertisementto sell his tow truck in the local newspaper.
00:03:52ON THE EVENINGOF MARCH 10th, He received a phone callanswering the ad.
00:03:57A man called up and said, "i'm really interested in your tow truck.
00:04:03"I have 3,000 cash.
00:04:05" buzz jumped at the offer, and he made arrangementsto meet the caller to close the deal.
00:04:12Moments later,buzz kissed his family good-bye, hopped in hispontiac firebird, and drove offto meet the buyer.
00:04:22, two new london residentsturned off interstate 95 and onto rocky neckconnector highway in nearbyeast lyme, connecticut.
00:04:32A local couple are on their way to a bridal shop to pick up a wedding dress for a wedding, and they have their children with them, and they-- they're coming off the ramp.
00:04:43They drove up onan abandoned car parked onthe highway's shoulder.
00:04:47In their headlights, they couldsee that the car's engine was still running,and the driver's door was ajar.
00:04:54Lying on the ground ina pool of blood was a man's body.
00:04:58They found a dead bodywith bullet holes in it.
00:05:03It was very clearlya homicide.
00:05:06It was buzz clinton.
00:05:11suspicions lead investigators to the carpenter family.
00:05:15( William ) THEY LOSE THE FINAL BATTLE IN The courtroom.
00:05:18What do they do then ?
00:05:18Well, there's only one thing you can do then-- murder.
00:06:19Farm sandwich.
00:06:21How 'bout a pudding cup pudding cup whose...
00:06:23Pudding cup!
00:06:23Can I get a Halloween candy? Full stash of Halloween candy.
00:06:25Going one...twice...sold, to the lady up front with the pony!
00:06:29Hillshire Farm lunch meat.
00:06:30By products are out,taste is sealed in.
00:06:52ñ ... ms. davis, this is onstar.
00:07:17...onstar reporting a front ..
00:07:20.. chevy malibu...
00:07:21...air bags deployed... ...injuries ..
00:07:26And I'll stay on the line with you until they get there.
00:07:28 built into 15 chevy models.
00:09:34( narrator )THURSDAY NIGHT, MARCH 10, 1994.
00:09:37Responding to a report ofa homicide, vehicles lined connecticut'srocky neck connector highway.
00:09:45Lying in the middle of the road,next to his car, was 28-year-old buzz clinton-- his body coveredwith bullet wounds.
00:09:53The shooter hit him five timesand ran over the body.
00:09:59Cynthia carpenter was watchingthe news on tv when she learnedabout the murder.
00:10:03She immediately called kimand buzz's mother, dee.
00:10:08I was, y'know--couldn't believe it.
00:10:12It was a terrible,terrible thing.
00:10:14I said,"oh, my god, he's dead.
00:10:16"Oh, my god, he's dead.
00:10:18" three times.
00:10:21By the time kim gotthe call from her mom, police had alreadypaid her a visit.
00:10:27She appearedto be in shock.
00:10:29I remember the policesaying when they went and told herthat he had been found dead, she didn't evenshed a tear.
00:10:36As word of buzz'sdeath spread, police were still scouringthe crime scene for clues.
00:10:41But beyond a fewshell casings found next to buzz's body, the shooter left little elseto reveal his identity.
00:10:48( Christopher ) BUZZ HAD SO MANY DIFFERENT Relationships that any number of those people, or any number of those relationships could have led, potentially, to his death.
00:11:01In the weeks that followed, investigators questionedthose who knew buzz, including members ofthe carpenter family.
00:11:08( William )SOME OF THE INVESTIGATORS TOLD Me, "yes, we lookedat cynthia carpenter.
00:11:11" but buzz's family specificallyasked investigators to take a close look atbeth carpenter and her law firm.
00:11:22( man )I ASKED THEM, I SAID, "Have you gone tothe law firm ?
00:11:25"Have you gonethrough the client list ?
00:11:27"You're gonna find whoeverwas involved " still, as policetracked down leads, they were unable tofind evidence implicatinganyone in buzz's murder.
00:11:40Then, in september of 1995, detectives got a breakin the case.
00:11:45They received a tip that a15-year-old high-school student named chris despres had been heard braggingto friends that he'd helped his fathercommit and cover up a murder the previous spring.
00:11:58( William ) HE WANTS TO BE A BAD ASS And starts bragging to his friends, " ( Robert ) THE SON, APPARENTLY, BRAGGED ABOUT Having been at the murder to some kidsat his high school, and someone told the policeabout this.
00:12:14According to the informant, chris despres' fatherwas a notorious local drug dealernamed mark despres, and the murder supposedlytook place along the rocky neckconnector highway-- the same stretch of road where buzz clintonhad been killed.
00:12:34Following up on the tip, police paid a visit to15-year-old chris despres and brought him into the stationfor questioning.
00:12:41Seated inthe interrogation room, it wasn't long beforethe teen cracked and confessedeverything he knew about buzz clinton's murder.
00:12:52The police made a deal with christopher despres to give him complete amnesty to tell about the night of the murder.
00:13:03According to chris despres, it was his father,mark despres, who calledbuzz clinton about his tow truck on the evening ofmarch 10, 1994.
00:13:12( Christopher ) DESPRES BASICALLY CALLED Up buzz and there was, essentially, a ruse to buy his tow truck.
00:13:19They met at ahoward johnson's near interstate 95 in connecticut.
00:13:25( William ) MARK DESPRES HAS HIS 15-Year-old son, christopher, with him in the car.
00:13:29Buzz is driving a car.
00:13:30Mark despres is like, "where's the tow truck ?" buzz says, "follow me, I'll show you where " chris despres told detectives he and his fatherthen followed buzz onto the rocky neck connector.
00:13:41Midway down the highway,chris's dad, mark despres, flashed his lights atbuzz clinton, signaling him to pull over.
00:13:49( Christopher ) BUZZ GETS OUT, TURNS AROUND.
00:13:51He's probably thinking, "does he got a flat tire ?
00:13:54" when buzz clintonapproached mark despres' window, chris said his fatherpulled out a pistol and fired fiveshots into buzz's chest point-blank range.
00:14:09Buzz clinton falls on the ground and begins struggling to live, struggling for his life.
00:14:14( Thomas ) THE SON REMEMBERED, AFTER THE Shooting, driving over two thumpsas the wheels of the car of the truck went overthe body.
00:14:28With 15-year-oldchris despres' confession, connecticut state investigatorsfinally believed they knew whokilled buzz clinton.
00:14:36But they still didn'tunderstand why.
00:14:39Determined to find out, they secured a search warrantfor mark despres' home and went to pay him a visit.
00:14:46That afternoon,police raided his apartment, but the drug dealer wasnowhere to be found.
00:14:53For weeks, authoritieswere unable to locate despres.
00:14:57THEN, ON OCTOBER 29th, Connecticut state trooperstracked him down to his ex-girlfriend's house.
00:15:03With a warrant forhis arrest in hand, and shotguns raised, they surrounded a car thatwas sitting in the driveway.
00:15:10( William ) THEY POP THE TRUNK OPEN, And there's mark despres sitting there-- camouflage fatigues, face painted up like this military person who's gone mad, and he's got a shotgun in his hand too.
00:15:23Apprehended onfirst-degree murder charges, despres was brought back to police headquartersfor interrogation.
00:15:30When questioned by detectives, despres confessed tobuzz clinton's murder.
00:15:36As news of the arrest spread, many, includingthe carpenters, believed that buzz's murderhad been solved.
00:15:43I thought that-- "well, that's good.
00:15:44"They caught him, and it was a drug thing, and it's over with, y'know, and everybody " that was my first thought, you know ?
00:15:53But withmark despres in custody, police would learn that therewas a lot more to the story.
00:15:59During questioning,despres insisted that the murder had nothing to dowith buzz's drug use.
00:16:05He claimed buzz's killingwas a murder-for-hire ordered by one of hisbiggest cocaine clients-- new london attorneyhaiman clein.
00:16:15( William ) "HAIMAN CLEIN, HE'S THE GUY " " "i've been dealing him cocaine for the past " haiman clein has been having wife-swapping parties and swing parties and all kinds of sex parties with cocaine and booze.
00:16:30But according to despres,buzz clinton's murder had less to dowith haiman clein's sex parties and drug use and much more to dowith clein's secret mistress-- beth carpenter.
00:16:43( Robert ) SHE AND HAIMAN BEGAN A romantic, sexual relationship.
00:16:47" when beth came into his life, he fell very hard for her.
00:16:55He was writing, in love letters, that he would do anything for her.
00:17:00According to despres,it was beth carpenter, not haiman clein, who was the mastermindbehind the murder.
00:17:08He claimed she convincedclein to order the hit on buzz clinton to protecther niece, rebecca.
00:17:14They lose the final battle in the courtroom.
00:17:17What do they do then ?
00:17:19Well, there's only one thing you can do then-- murder.
00:17:24Beth carpenter went to haiman clein and said, "look, I want you to get that thug mark despres " she wanted custody of that child, and the only way that this was all gonna work out-- this perfect little picture of beth carpenter and rebecca being together-- was that if buzz clinton was dead.
00:17:46Based on informationprovided by despres, police searched haiman clein'sbank records.
00:17:52They found withdrawalsthat matched the dates and amounts of paymentsdespres claimed he'd received for the killing.
00:17:59It was enough evidenceto directly link clein tobuzz clinton's murder.
00:18:05On december 13, 1995, police secureda warrant for his arrest.
00:18:10But when they arrived atclein's palatial estate, the millionaireattorney wasn't there.
00:18:16On the front page of the newspaper-- what does he see ?
00:18:19"Oh, my god, my hired killer has been arrested.
00:18:22"That guy is gonna probably bark my name " so haiman clein grabs some money, grabs the car keys, and off he goes.
00:18:33Two days aftermissing haiman clein, investigators went to speakwith beth carpenter about her possibleinvolvement in the crime.
00:18:41But just like her boss,she was gone.
00:18:44Cynthia carpenter told police her daughter had leftthe country just weeks before.
00:18:50She said she was gonna work with a friend of hers in london.
00:18:53And being as I didn't know at that time anything about haiman, I just thought she wanted a change in her life.
00:19:00The stress of what wasgoing on with her family, the suspicions that werebeing cast about-- I think sheneeded, literally, to just take a break,to go abroad.
00:19:11the search for beth carpenter stretches all the way tothe emerald isle.
00:19:17She ran, because she knowsthat she's the next domino to fall in thisconvoluted murder scheme.
00:20:15What is it about slow baking that makes cinnamon so enticing?
00:20:23Why are soft-baked oatmeal raisin cookies so comforting?
00:20:28Does luscious dark chocolate feed you or your soul?
00:20:33And why do cookies taste so good when nestled in fluted cups?
00:20:40Pepperidge farm. good is in the details.
00:23:52( narrator )BY JANUARY OF 1996, Connecticut state policewere still following the movements of beth carpenter and her former boss and lover,haiman clein.
00:24:01Although a warrantwas out for his arrest, clein was nowhere to be found.
00:24:06Beth, who was also underinvestigation but not charged, had been living in london forthe past three months.
00:24:14She registeredas a foreigner, she used her own name, she was beingpaid with checks.
00:24:20She was findable any-- anytimeanyone wanted to find her, you can goand find beth carpenter.
00:24:26Authorities deviseda plan to capture clein, but they needed beth'sassistance to do it.
00:24:32With the help ofscotland yard in london, investigators contactedbeth carpenter, hoping she mightstill be in touch with clein.
00:24:41Her lawyer suggestedto beth, "you need to helpthe connecticut state police "find haiman clein.
00:24:46"It's only gonna look good for you later on "if they come after you, " beth agreed to offer herassistance, and admitted that shespoke to clein, regularly.
00:24:58He was in contact withbeth carpenter, and they werecalling on pay phones.
00:25:02( Robert )THEY WERE IN THE HABIT OF HAVING Long-distance phone sex.
00:25:07On february 4, 1996, beth told authorities that sheexpected to receive a phone call from clein the next evening.
00:25:14He would be calling froma number he had given her, days before.
00:25:18He complained to her, repeatedly, about how much money it was costing him to call her, 'cause he would stand at a pay phone and feed quarters into it and spend hundreds of dollars with every call.
00:25:30She said to him at one point, "well, y'know, sweetheart, "you don't have to call me every time.
00:25:37"Just give me the phone number where you're gonna be " authorities traced the numberback to a7-elevenstore in long beach, california.
00:25:47JUST BEFORE NOONON FEBRUARY 5th, Haiman clein arrived atthe pay phone to call beth.
00:25:53Much to his surprise, the feds werelaying in wait.
00:25:57He was speaking tobeth carpenter from a pay phone.
00:26:00 agentstackled him, and his last wordsto beth carpenter, before theytook him down, was, " booked on felony murder and conspiracyto commit murder, haiman clein was extradited backto connecticut and questioned.
00:26:22He refused to cooperate.
00:26:24Haiman was taken into custody and said absolutely nothing to any investigators, didn't speak to them at-- in any way, except to pass the time of day or the weather.
00:26:33On april 3, 1996, clein pleaded not guilty tothe murder of buzz clinton and was orderedto stand trial.
00:26:43In june 1997, facing a possibledeath sentence, haiman clein hada change of heart.
00:26:49His lawyer approachednew london's state attorney'soffice with a plea offer.
00:26:54It became very clear to haiman and to me that the state's case against him was too strong, and we decided that we would do our best to make him a deal that would keep him from being executed.
00:27:10In exchange fora lighter sentence, haiman clein's attorney said his client was willingto turn state's evidence and testify againstbeth carpenter.
00:27:20The stateattorney's office agreed.
00:27:23Haiman clein sat downwith officials to provide detailsabout buzz clinton's murder.
00:27:28The prosecutors called him the best cooperating witness that they had ever seen in any case, and he gave them an incredibly detailed amount of information about what happened.
00:27:44With haiman clein'ssworn statements and the confessionof hit man mark despres, the connecticut state attorney'soffice had more than enough evidence tocharge beth carpenter with capital felony murder.
00:27:57In october 1997, scotland yardset out to arrest beth.
00:28:03The only problem was now she wasnowhere to be found.
00:28:08According to friends in london, beth hadn't beenseen since august.
00:28:12She ran because she knowsthat she's the next domino to fall inthis convoluted murder scheme.
00:28:19In november of 1997, investigators gotanother break in the case.
00:28:23Beth carpenter had reportedlybeen seen in ireland.
00:28:28Back on the radar, authoritieslocated beth in dublin.
00:28:31It turned out she was washing dishes at a pub in ireland even though she had a law degree.
00:28:36She was offered a job up front as a maîître d', as a waitress, and she specifically told her boss, " why ?
00:28:46Well, she doesn't wanna be noticed.
00:28:48She doesn't wanna be recognized.
00:28:50ON NOVEMBER 11th, IRISH POLICELOCATED AND Arrested beth carpenter outsidea fitness club in dublin.
00:28:57Her family was stunned when they receivednews of the arrest.
00:29:01( Linda )TOTAL SHOCK.
00:29:02I mean, absolutelytotally shocked that she couldpossibly be arrested.
00:29:05We knew that she hada lawyer so-- and that theremust be something going on, but I never ever, ever,ever thought she would ever be arrested.
00:29:15But arrestingbeth carpenter was one thing.
00:29:18Bringing her back to connecticutto stand trial was a wholedifferent matter.
00:29:23With ireland's airtightextradition laws, it looked to investigators like beth carpenterhad finally put her international law expertiseto good use.
00:29:34Ireland doesn't believe in the death penalty.
00:29:36That country will not extradite anyone facing capital felony charges that could result in the death penalty.
00:29:44Beth, who stillproclaimed her innocence, spent the next 18 months in an ireland prison,safe from extradition.
00:29:53But in june of 1999, the new londonstate attorney's office and the irish governmentfinally reached a deal.
00:29:59There was an agreement by the prosecutors in connecticut to extradite her back to connecticut on the proviso that she would not be subject to the death penalty.
00:30:12On june 19, 1999, five years and three monthsafter buzz clinton's death, beth carpenter was finallybrought back to new londonto stand trial for his murder.
00:30:25When she touched downat the airport, she was welcomedhome by a mob of media.
00:30:30It was like a lynch mobback here just waiting for her.
00:30:33( William ) BETH COMES BACK, AND IT'S THE Media frenzy, the high profile, the gorgeous redhead irish girl coming back from ireland, and it's all the makings for a "movie of the week" here.
00:30:45On november 17, 2000, beth carpenter's familygathered enough money to pay her $150,000 bond.
00:30:53Released on bail,a judge ordered beth to be fitted with an ankle bracelet and relegatedher to house arrest at her parents' residenceuntil her trial began-- the same home that currentlyhoused beth's niece, rebecca.
00:31:07Also living therewas beth's sister and buzz's widow,kim carpenter.
00:31:13( Tara ) BETH'S SISTER, KIM, WAS COOPERATING With his prosecutors against beth, so it was somewhat bizarre that beth had to basically suck it up and go live in her parents' house.
00:31:26They got along fine.
00:31:26There didn't seem to bea lot of strain between them.
00:31:29They seemed to get along.
00:31:30But the peace and serenityat the carpenter house wouldn't last forever.
00:31:35Because in justa few months, beth carpenterwould be due in court, and the once-promisingyoung attorney would take center stagein her own murder trial.
00:31:47 beth carpenterfinally reveals her side of the story.
00:31:51She believes that, "all I got to get up there to do "is just sway one juror.
00:31:56Get one juror on my side, and I walk out " ( narrator )ON FEBRUARY 6, 2002, Nearly eight years after herbrother-in-law, buzz clinton, had been found gunned downand run over on a connecticut highway, beth carpenter walked intothe superior court building in new london, connecticut, to stand trialfor his murder.
00:36:23The 39-year-old attorney facedlife in prison if convicted.
00:36:28With all the publicity garnered by beth'srun from the law, the tiny courtroom was packed.
00:36:34( Christopher )IT'S ONE OF THE BIGGEST CASES In connecticut history.
00:36:38And it's got allthe elements: A lot of sex,a lot of money, a lot of cocaine, a lot of lies,and a hit man.
00:36:47It's got basically everysingle element you could possibly imagine.
00:36:51Members of the carpenter family were sitting in the courtroomto show their support for beth.
00:36:57I don't think,for one second, anyone in our familydidn't have hope that beth wasgoing to be found innocent.
00:37:04We did not believe, for one second, that she was guilty of anything except for poor judgment.
00:37:12In their opening statement,prosecutors painted beth carpenter asa jealous and vindictive woman who despised her brother-in-law,buzz clinton, for attempting to take custodyof her niece, rebecca carpenter.
00:37:25( Robert )BETH WAS OBSESSED WITH BUZZ CLINTON And wanted himto allow her to see her niece and to be a part ofher niece's life and that she resentedhim for withholding the niece and she hated him.
00:37:39But prosecutors saidbeth's hatred took a murderous turnwhen buzz, a legal novice, bested the experienced attorney in the custody caseover the little girl.
00:37:50The state claimed she convincedher boss and lover, haiman clein,to hire a hit man to kill buzz as a means of revenge.
00:37:58( Tara )THE STATE CAME UP WITH THIS THEORY That beth solicitedhaiman clein and basically made himgo out and hire a killer.
00:38:06And they basically tried tosuggest that beth carpenter was the mastermindbehind this.
00:38:13But in their opening statement, beth's defense attorneysinsisted she never convincedhaiman clein to do anything.
00:38:20Beth's defense was essentially that haiman clein had killed buzz clinton on his own, in order to impress her.
00:38:29( Tara ) HAIMAN CLEIN WAS SEXUALLY OBSESSED With beth, and it's certainly plausible that he decided on his own, without knowledge from anyone else, that he was going to take care of the carpenter family problem with buzz clinton, by killing buzz clinton.
00:38:45In fact, beth's attorneysclaimed that the legal dispute over her niece was hardlya big concern for beth.
00:38:52The defense, they were saying,there was no custody battle, ..much ado about nothing.
00:38:58But prosecutors fired back that rebecca's custody wasa big deal for beth carpenter.
00:39:04And as evidence, they calledseveral of beth's coworkers to the stand, who testified that bethconstantly bemoaned her problems with buzz clinton at the office.
00:39:14Beth was beside herself with anxiety and grief, and she cried several hours a day, crying about buzz clinton, complaining that he was keeping this child from her and from her parents.
00:39:32THEN, ON MARCH 7th, Prosecutors calledthe one coworker who understood beth's hatred for buzz clintonbetter than anyone-- the state'sstar witness, haiman clein.
00:39:45Seated at the witness stand, haiman clein admitted tothe courtroom his part inbuzz clinton's murder.
00:39:52But he testified it was beth who had begged him to set upthe hit for months, and that over time, she'd seduced himto do her bidding.
00:40:01Beth carpenter, for monthsleading up to this murder, has been working onhaiman clein and molding himlike a piece of clay, making him believe that buzz clinton is this monster and that he needs to die.
00:40:12( Robert ) SHE BEGGED HIM TO HAVE HER BROTHER-IN-LAW Killed, and at first, he dismissed that, but she persisted.
00:40:20All she had was her feminine whiles, and she used them on haiman clein with great success.
00:40:27It was compelling testimony.
00:40:29But clein stunnedthe courtroom when he revealedthat it was beth, not he, who had furnished the photosof buzz clinton so that hit man mark despres could recognize himwhen he carried out the murder.
00:40:43The photographs had to come from beth.
00:40:46Haiman clein didn't know buzz clinton, never met him, couldn't have known him if he'd seen him.
00:40:54But on cross-examination, the defense insistedhaiman clein's testimony could hardly be consideredcredible.
00:41:01Why should we believe haiman clein ?
00:41:03I mean, here you have a drug addict, alcoholic, womanizer, cheating on his wife, who now waltzes into court and says, " TO EMPHASIZE THEIR POINT,ON MARCH 26th, The defense calledclein's psychiatrist, dr. vittorio ferrero,to the stand.
00:41:23Haiman clein's own treating psychiatrist testified at trial about haiman clein's grandiosity, and how this psychiatrist wouldn't even believe anything that came out of haiman clein's mouth.
00:41:38With clein's credibilityin doubt, beth carpentermade a daring move.
00:41:44On april 2, 2002, beth took the standin her own defense.
00:41:48And her version of events wasmuch different than clein's.
00:41:54( William ) IT'S HER WORD AGAINST HIS.
00:41:55She believes that, "all I got to get up there to do "is just sway one juror.
00:41:59Get one juror on my side, and I walk out " under carefulquestioning from her attorney, beth explained that she wascompletely unaware of haiman cleinand mark despres' plot to kill buzz clinton.
00:42:14In fact,according to beth, the only thing shewas guilty of was falling in lovewith the wrong man.
00:42:21He basically, in an emotional way, overpowered her and sucked her into a relationship when she didn't have, at that time, the maturity to realize what she was dealing with.
00:42:33Beth also insistedthat her relationship with her brother-in-law, buzz,was anything but contentious.
00:42:40Beth said at the trial that she barely knew buzz clinton.
00:42:44And therefore, there would be no reason why she would wanna kill him.
00:42:47The problem is that the jury had heard literally two or three weeks of details about the custody battle.
00:42:53Who did what to who.
00:42:55But when she started denying details that had been seared in the jury's mind as part of the custody battle, either all the witnesses were lying or beth got it wrong.
00:43:07ON THE AFTERNOON OF APRIL 2nd, Prosecutors had their chance tocross-examine beth carpenter.
00:43:12( William ) WHEN THE STATE'S ATTORNEY GETS His crack at her-- "i don't recall, I don't recall, I don't " 77 times I counted, " how many times did she say "i don't recall" during her-- when her defense attorney questioned her ?
00:43:28Not once.
00:43:28( man ) AS SOON AS I SAW HER TESTIFY, THE Impression I had was that she's dead, because she justdidn't come across as someone who wasbelievable.
00:43:37She did notmake a good witness.
00:43:40Following beth carpenter'stestimony, prosecutors called triggermanmark despres to the stand.
00:43:47Although he had agreed to testify shortly afterhis arrest, now he wouldn't cooperate.
00:43:54( Robert ) DESPRES HAD INDICATED-- And now that he had a private attorney-- that he was never going to speak again and refused to say anything.
00:44:04He was in his prison garb, and they brought him in the chair, sat him down in the witness chair within 5 feet of the judge, tried to start asking him questions.
00:44:15He refused to basically tell them anything about anything, but just flat out refused to cooperate in any way at all.
00:44:24Despres' refusal to testify was a small victoryfor the defense, but would it be enough ?
00:44:33And as the juryfiled out of the courtroom, everyone was left wonderingthe same thing-- whose testimony wouldthe jury find harder to believe: The disgraced attorney,haiman clein, or his formerlover, beth carpenter ?
00:44:50 the verdict inbeth carpenter's trial.
00:44:55We were in disbelief.
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00:49:30( narrator )ON APRIL 12, 2002, 39-Year-old beth carpentersat quietly in the hallway of new london, connecticut's,superior court building.
00:49:39She was awaiting the verdict in her trial forthe 1994 contract murder of her brother-in-law,buzz clinton.
00:49:46The jury was in its thirdfull day of deliberations.
00:49:50While they stood aroundanticipating the verdict, beth's friends and familywere openly optimistic.
00:49:56We were just decidingwhat we were going to do, where we were going togo out and celebrate.
00:50:01, jurors announced theyhad reached their decision.
00:50:06They found beth carpenterguilty on all counts.
00:50:11( Cynthia )I COULDN'T BELIEVE IT.
00:50:12It was devastating.
00:50:13It was devastatingto our whole family.
00:50:16The carpenter family, most ofthem were crying.
00:50:19The clinton familywas very, very relieved, extremely relieved.
00:50:24And caught in the middlewas kim carpenter, who showed littlereaction to the verdict.
00:50:29( William )DURING THE TRIAL, SHE REALLY JUST Wanted to sit to the sideof this.
00:50:33I feel sorry for her.
00:50:34I believe that beth carpenterreally manipulated that-- her sister, her blood, to the point where shehad her husband murdered and she took her childaway from her.
00:50:45AT A HEARING ON AUGUST 2nd,PRESIDING JUDGE Robert devlin sentenced beth to lifein prison-- the mandatorysentence under law.
00:50:57She was strong, in a sense,that she didn't collapse, .. I guess therereally are no words for it, that you are facing a mandatorylife without parole.
00:51:09Beth carpenter was immediatelyescorted out of court and taken to nearbyyork correctional institution.
00:51:16The prison is so nearby,in fact, that it sits justa few 100 yards from the exactstretch of highway where buzz clintonwas gunned down.
00:51:27And right where he was killed, you look over and you can see york prison for women.
00:51:31And now beth stares out that window and one of the things she can stare at is the spot where buzz clinton was killed.
00:51:38But the ghost ofbuzz clinton isn't the only thing that keeps beth carpentercompany in prison.
00:51:44She still receiveslots of visitors, none of whom she enjoys seeingmore than her niece, rebecca.
00:51:51Essentially, beth carpenter gets what she wants in the end.
00:51:55She wanted buzz out of the picture and she wanted that kid to herself, and she's got that right now.
00:52:00She's in prison, but she has it.
00:52:19Captioning made possible byOXYGEN MEDIA, L.l.c.
00:52:22Captioned bySoundwriters™™ Announcer:..
00:52:48Rich: So what's up, homie?
00:52:49Nothing, man.
00:52:50A frustrated amber reached out to her boyfriend back home.
00:52:53I just miss you.
00:52:54Kate's boyfriend paul visited and left lexie longing for a good man.
00:52:58Hey, you put your ball in the hole. yay!
00:53:01I'm funny.
00:53:02I want a nice, cute down-to-earth type of guy.
00:53:06But in la, I don't think that's gonna happen.
00:53:13After a racy hookup with kate's friend trish, paul broke it off.
00:53:16Paul: I feel embarrassed by what you did.
00:53:19That's embarrassing to me.
00:53:20Kate: Oh, my god. I'm not like them.
00:53:22I don't like girls.
00:53:23I don't think our relationship is gonna work out.
00:53:26I really don't.
00:53:29I'm in a house full of 7 bitches who don't give a [bleep] about nobody but themselves.
00:53:34Flo slowly burned bridges with each of the girls.
00:53:39And drove the final nail in her coffin when she called out her strongest ally.
00:53:43Natalie: Why are you mad?
00:53:44What do you mean why am I mad?
00:53:45I was the only one who cared.
00:53:47I would never in my life do what you did to me tonight.
00:53:51You're self-destructing you right now.
00:53:52No one is scared of florina anymore.
00:53:55She's broken.
00:53:56Flo: From now on, I'm dead to you bitches.
00:53:58I was florina's last friend in the house.
00:54:01Sweetie, it's over.
00:54:02Everyone's gonna be on my team, and we're all against you.
00:54:05We're gonna see who laughs last, bitches.
00:54:07It ain't gonna be you.
00:54:10Ha ha ha!
00:54:12♪ Bad girls ♪
00:54:14♪ b-b-b ♪
00:54:15♪ don't like me, take a hike, take a hint ♪
00:54:16♪ does it look like I care what you think?
00:54:20♪ step to my face, and you're gonna get touched ♪
00:54:22[horn honks] ♪ can't get enough ♪
00:54:24♪ welcome to the bad girls club ♪
00:54:26♪ bad girls ♪
00:54:27captioning made possible bybunim-murray productions ♪ let me explain ♪
00:54:46♪let me explain myself now ♪
00:54:49♪ seriously, I'm aware ♪
00:54:52♪ I'm aware of what you think of me ♪
00:54:57♪ ooh ♪
00:54:59♪ooh ♪
00:55:01♪ooh ♪
00:55:03♪ yeah ♪
00:55:06♪ooh ♪
00:55:07[car door closes] [crutches clanging] Amber: Somebody's here.
00:55:17Everybody sleep.
00:55:20[Snoring] [laughs] I can walk again.
00:55:27No more crutches, bitches.
00:55:29Watch out. flo's mobile again.
00:55:33I can walk again.
00:55:37Not right now, but in, like, 24 hours.
00:55:40Now I can chase you people.
00:55:42I'm off the crutches, bitches.
00:55:44You better watch out,'cause flo walk again.
00:55:44I'm mobile.
00:55:47I'll be healed in no time, people.
00:55:50Say something now, bitch.
00:55:53Hey, who am i?
00:55:54I hate asking. cigarette? cigarette? cigarette?
00:55:57[Laughs] I had a dream that flo tried to borrow my underwear.
00:56:01She borrows everything.
00:56:02Can I have a cigarette and can I borrow your underwear?
00:56:06Ha ha ha!
00:56:08Flo, a lot of the things she does gets on my last nerve.
00:56:12And now the whole housereally doesn't like her.
00:56:16Point for me.
00:56:31The--i think everybody in the house is getting sick.
00:56:35Woman: Really?
00:56:36Yeah, and that's bad because I get sick really easy.
00:56:40[Coughing] [groans] I've never felt like this in my life.
00:56:47I'm thinking maybei'm just really hungover, but I've beenhungover before and I've neverfelt this ill.
00:56:53My head's spinning. I can't even move.
00:56:58[Thud] [laughs] [squeals] ahh! my boyfriend comes tomorrow!
00:57:04Annie: I'm excited to meet him.
00:57:06.. hump.
00:57:12[Laughs] I have a boyfriend.he lives in new jersey.
00:57:17We've been through a hell of a lot of stuff.
00:57:19I really do care genuinely about him.
00:57:21And I'm attempting to stay loyal to that.
00:57:24I put on my little board,"my boyfriend is coming," " but I spelled it correctly.
00:57:31I didn't spell it like the perverted way.
00:57:33 [laughs] [indistinct] I know. I get to see you.
00:57:41You got to [indistinct].
00:57:43I don't want to do it there, either.
00:57:44I don't--i don't want other girls in the house watching.
00:57:47They watch people.
00:57:49And it's really disturbing.
00:57:56[Birds chirping] I still haven't seen any cute boys for lexie.
00:58:01I don't even know what kind of boys lexie likes.
00:58:03I don't have a type.
00:58:05What kind have you dated?
00:58:06I like guys to be, like, polished, but not too, like, into themselves.
00:58:10And I don't like [bleep] up teeth.
00:58:12[Laughs] you're so stupid.
00:58:15Like, I'm not gonna find a cute little, tall country boy.
00:58:20That's what I want.
00:58:22Who knows?
00:58:24I might just get desperate.
00:58:26I cannot find a hot guy.
00:58:31This sucks.
00:58:34[Grunts] [doorbell rings] hello.
00:58:40Hi. I'm nicolefrom allure dance studio.
00:58:44Let's go upstairs and play.
00:58:45We have a stripper pole in our house and some of these girls really don't know how to work it.
00:58:49So I'm invitingmy girlfriend nicole over to teach us some new tricks.
00:58:53Look, kendra.
00:58:53Oh, my god, they light up!
00:58:55Walk around, lean your back against the pole, walk your feet out, and now we go all the way down.
00:59:01Ohh! ooh!
00:59:02Go, lexie. I want to see lexie go.
00:59:05Oh, gee. oh, gee.
00:59:07All right, now, walk out.
00:59:10Spread the legs out.
00:59:12Flat, flat, flat, flat.
00:59:15[Laughing] whoo!
00:59:18Yes. nice.
00:59:26Florina just doesn't get it.