The death of Kathleen Peterson startled a nation in 2001 when her body was discovered covered in blood at the foot of a staircase in the Durham, North Carolina, home she shared with husband Michael Peterson.
Now, nearly 17 years later, the Investigation Discovery network is revisiting the details of the suspicious acts that led to Kathleen’s death in a new special titled An American Murder Mystery: The Staircase, which will air on Sunday, April 8.
In the second exclusive Us Weekly sneak peek of the three-night event, Brent Wolgamott, a former male escort, talks to ID about the email exchange he had with Michael just four months before Kathleen’s death.
Wolgamott opens up about his correspondence with Michael, who pleaded not guilty but was eventually charged with the murder of Kathleen in October 2003 and found guilty. He was sentenced to life in prison but he was released in February 2017 after accepting a plea deal.
“I was contacted by a man who I would later come to know as Michael Peterson,” Wolgamott said. “I would later figure out that our emails would become a lot more important to my life story than I would have realized.”
Crime journalist Diane Dimond analyzed the correspondence and explained, “You take one look at those emails between Michael Peterson and the male prostitute and you see the constant communication.”
The clip ends with Wolgamott saying, “We had tried to arrange a time where I was going to be in Durham at the same time he was going to be available to do a call,” noting that the date they agreed on was September 5, 2001, just two months before Kathleen was found dead.
“The death of Kathleen Peterson is one of the most confounding cases in history,” Henry Schleiff, group president of Investigation Discovery, American Heroes Channel and Destination America said in a statement. “There are so many pieces to this puzzle – from Michael’s salacious secrets to investigator misconduct to the odd owl theory.”
Watch the exclusive preview above and catch American Murder Mystery: The Staircase on ID Sunday, April 8, at 10 p.m. ET.