A murder case has many layers: the victim, the crime, and the investigation. To truly understand it, you need to dissect each piece of a tragic puzzle. Join Anna-Sigga Nicolazzi and Scott Weinberger every Wednesday for an insider’s perspective, as they reveal to you the Anatomy of Murder.
Tue, 14 Mar 2023 07:00
Brace yourself for a twist halfway through the episode.
Previously on Anatomy of Murder. Sergeant Dennis Hardeman with the West Palm Beach Police Department. West Palm Beach detectives are working two violent shooting cases. Let me just stop somebody. One homicide, the other, an attempted murder case. For a five gunshot, came around the corner and you guys laid out with bicycle and stolen and everything. They now believe both of those cases are tied to the same shooter. The cab driver's name is Lupert Hardy. A cab driver who has now become their prime suspect. Mr. Hardy comes out of the interview room. But they've just let him go. And I got that punch in the gut like that's the guy and we're letting him walk out the door. I've got Weinberger, investigative journalist and former deputy sheriff. I'm Anna Sige Nikolasi, former New York City homicide prosecutor and host of investigation discoveries to conviction. And this is Anatomy of Murder. So we just want to tell you up top. This is part two of our case out of West Palm Beach. If you've not listened to part one, you should stop right here and go back because then this will all make sense. Okay, Scott, where do we take it from here? We know the various pieces of evidence that have and have not been gained up to now. So let's just play prosecutor and defense. Sure. So both victims were on bicycles when they were shot in the attempt at homicide case. The victim could only ID that the shots were fired from a moving cab. Wait a second. Are you playing prosecutor? A lot of defense. You got to call your role. That's a great question. So let me take the either one you want. I'll take the defense role for a second because it's, you know, not an obvious position I normally take. So it's pretty obvious that with any definitive markings on the cab, it could be any cab that's involved. So that's not really any format of Sige of a solid ID. So I would say prove it. Lots of cabs are driving in the city of West Palm Beach. If I'm just looking at Jonathan over streets case, I'm looking a bit differently because there while they don't have the shooter identified. We obviously know there are circumstantial evidence cases that are sometimes much stronger than when someone is actually ID'd. We're here. You don't just have a cab. They have the cab company identified the actual car identified and the listed driver of that car, Rupert Hardy. And not only that once they now have that car in their possession, there is this bullet hole, except it isn't from the outside going in like he claims he was fired at rather from the inside, again, indicating that is someone inside that car that is doing the shooting. So I'm thinking we're really starting to put together the pieces when it comes to Jonathan over streets case. But at this point, at least I don't see anything yet that would be evidence enough to bring him in certainly for Amaria Grants case. A note to self that I don't think Anisega is really making a great case here and on maybe a little bit of an advantage is the defense council potentially here. I would go to court on Jonathan over streets. Well, you'd go to court, but essentially what you have here. I'm going to court. It's because I think I have the evidence. Okay. Well, clearly it's going to be a battle because you do not have any direct evidence yet that ties that projectile in the cab to the defendant. A great. You don't know that he was actually behind the wheel of the car on that day. Absolutely. With Amaria Grants, let's talk about absolutely no direct evidence tying him to the homicide. Yep, we've got a sketch. It looks similar, but no witness ID. And yes, we have ballistic evidence that's left at the scene, but we have nothing to compare it to. We don't even have a murder weapon. I mean, you have somebody. How do you hold them? And I'm going to switch my position because I think you're completely right, Scott. And here's why because again, it's hard sometimes from thinking what we know, what we don't know, what we've talked about yet on this recording. But I really think the key right here, at least to Jonathan over street is if they can get more forensically or something to like you said to actually tie him to it with ballistics or something else to make it him. As far as Mr. Overstreet shooting, we were still in the beginning stages. You know, at that point, we had absolutely zero evidence in this Grant's case against Mr. Hardy. I think as a prosecutor, I'm pretty comfortable that I know where this is going to go, but that doesn't mean that I am ready to go in to take our one and only shot in court. Yeah, so it's understandable why they let Rupert Hardy just walk away. But make no mistake. They're still working behind the scenes to build a potential case. He knows the police are on to him. Would he try to flee? It does turn out that Mr. Hardy was born in Jamaica. This guy is going to flee the country or he is going to go somewhere we're never going to find him for another 10 years. We knew from his records he'd only worked there a couple months. So it wasn't like he'd been an employee there for, you know, 10 years. He could easily pick everything up and move away. That was our worst fear. There's a public safety factor to consider too, right? If it's him, is he going to strike again? There is definitely this clock ticking very quickly for investigators to try to put the pieces together and keep tabs on Rupert Hardy while they do. So we decided right there, let's start rushing everything we can. And we got the ballistic evidence. We got that sent to the lab. Oh my God, that's him. That's something you can't explain that feeling that you get where I'm going to solve this case now. So when Dennis determined that a cab driver was in fact responsible for the shooting of Jonathan Overstreet, he wanted to make sure that the sketch that was developed in the Amaria Grants case was distributed to other agencies in the area to see if there's any potential connections. While investigators were looking at these two separate cases, they found out something else that three weeks before Amaria Grant had been murdered, there was another shooting that had occurred, but it was handled by a different jurisdiction, which is why it hadn't yet been on their radar from the beginning. I was contacted by the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office saying that on December 4, 2012, they had a similar incident with the similar cab as depicted in my flyer. Who pulled up alongside a vehicle. The victim, Mr. Heinz and a friend were leaving a bar. And as they were driving down Hyperluxo Road, a cab pulls up alongside and fires three times into the passenger side striking Mr. Heinz. It was just a random act. They had no problems at the club. They had no problems as they were driving. They were on their way home and this happened to them. In that shooting, the victim had been shot once in the thigh and did survive. Could that victim be the missing link to connect all of these cases? And in that case, they had recovered 9mm casings and projectiles from that crime scene. That was the same type of casings recovered in Amaria Grants murders as well, right? 9mm. Now, could it be a coincidence? Sure. I mean, it is by far one of the most commonly used type of cartridges. In fact, the single most popular handgun around the world, including the US. You know, whether it is law enforcement, whether it's federal, state, local, many use the same gun. But then when you start to put the pieces together and combine it with the facts that the gunman was a cab driver, then it's definitely reasonable at least to think that this again is going to be another piece going in a Rupert Hardy's direction as their suspect. Three different shootings all within a 15 mile radius, all involving some type of confrontation. Two of them with a cab and the other a man who just walks up to a woman, sitting on a bike and simply shoots her in the head. And it's interesting, Scott, when we look at this on the map, it's pretty much an straight north south line. Like there's a little bit of a deviation, but it's pretty much going up and down the intercoastal, whether it's because of the actual highway. So it seems like again, it might just be someone cruising back and forth looking for their next victim. And just the fact that, you know, a cab was not seen in Amaria's case, doesn't mean a cab's not involved. It may not have just been in the area where that actual homicide occurred. It's probably the hardest case you could ever work as an investigator, where normally there's some type of motive, whether it's robbery, scorned lover, there's some type of motive, something happened between these two people for one person to kill another person, something somewhere in their life. They came in contact and something happened, where in this case, you have three total strangers who've never met all shot by the same person that's just random. It's kind of like your worst nightmare because you don't even know where to start with these types of investigations. But now Dennis has identified a potential suspect. Not only that, he has a picture combined that with a witness, a great reason for the next step to be a photo lineup. I bring in the 911 caller. We showed him photographs. The witness looks closely and thoughtfully at each photograph, but remember how frazzled this person was when they initially spotted the gunman. So if we think more about this witness, how would his state of mind potentially affect him trying to pick out the gunman? Seven weeks later, we're not talking about the next day. And I think for everyone, the passage of time can be a factor and his state of mind, which was obvious based on the way he sounded on the 911 call, is absolutely going to be something the defense would point out if there's even identification at all. And remember, just based on the angle that the witness saw the suspect, the only type of composite sketch that was able to be rendered was a side profile. He was unable to identify Mr. Hardy from the photographs that we had, the photograph array, because he said I could only see one side of his face. But when we did the actual photo lineup with him, it was a full on straight headshot. And that was one of those things that's always haunted me. Could I have done that differently? Which really goes towards the difference in photographic identification procedures and live lineups, because if you have a live lineup, you can look at someone everyone turns to the right. Sometimes everyone turns to the left. Sometimes people speak. There are different things that can be done to hopefully let the witness look at the individuals from the same perspective that they did at the time of the crime where with the photograph, you're kind of stuck with what you have. But investigators still have the opportunity to do a live lineup with Jonathan Overstreet. At which time the witnesses pick out Rupert Hardy as the shooter who shot Mr. Overstreet. So, I want to see if you have one person who did pick out Hardy and another person who didn't, if it goes to trial, how would these two different outcomes affect your case? It's not dispositive one way or the other. First of all, you can bring in a mishit. You certainly have to give notice of that to the other side if they picked out someone else that is not the subject matter. But again, it's not so uncommon that it happens. So you have to rely on other evidence. Can you think of some of the cases that you've had in your homicide career that a question may come back during the liberation that is related directly to a witness ID? That went to be a really long podcast because that happens all the time. I've had it that someone has picked out someone in the courtroom that was not the person sitting at the defense table. There have definitely been issues with identifications all the time. And it really comes back to common sense and what are the other pieces of evidence around it? Back to today's case while investigators don't have fingerprints or DNA, they do have shell casings from all three shootings. Once we had the photo lineups, we received a call from the Palm Beach County Fire Arms Lab. They rushed all three cases for us. The PBSO shooting from December 2nd, Miss Grant shooting from the 22nd of December, and Mr. Overstreet shooting from February 4th of 2013. They rushed all that and they said, yep, they all matched. They all come back to the same gun. So now they have the forensic match tying that ballistics evidence to the Overstreet shooting. But what about if they have enough to actually say that it was Rupert Hardy holding the gun? Now, Scott, I think it's really going to rely on putting the circumstantial pieces together at least for now. Dennis knew that there was one thing that could help answer that question. Remember, there was a projectile that was located inside Rupert Hardy's cab. So matching that would be huge. And when it was tested, Bingo connected. So we ended up getting an arrest warrant for Rupert Hardy for the attempted murder of Jonathan Overstreet. And we also obtained a search warrant for the Hardy residents. Once we get everything in place, Mr. Hardy is taken into custody at his house and then brought back to the West Palm Beach Police Department. So it was now February 7th, just three days after he had walked out of the precinct that Rupert Hardy was brought back in again. Addis D. Gennaya, looking at a video of Hardy sitting in the interview room, it's 4.22 pm and he's sitting there alone. Just him and his thoughts. 50 minutes later, both Detective Sergeant Dennis Hardeman and Detective Patterson enter the room. So Rupert, how are you doing, man? Don't forget that they had sat down and spoken with him when he had been there those days before. But now the detective's strategy is very different. Initially they wanted to know what if anything he had to say about the murder, the shooting. But now it's what he has to say about the case and the evidence they have built against him. He's got a couple more questions for you. But Hardy has something different to tell the detectives as well. He will eventually tell them his motive. And he said it was all a game. And that even though he was the person to pull the trigger, somebody else told him to do it. Detective Patterson, I went in, started to talk to him. Rupert, I got a couple things I want to read to you, okay? He was read his Miranda rights. Sergeant Hardeman would begin to try to tie Hardy to that vehicle, to that cab. Did they give you an attack together? What's going on with that? No, they didn't. And they were also smart where they started the interview. They started with what they thought might be his only comfort zone. Remember, he was a supposed victim in the shooting that truck apparently came up and shot into his cab. So they started there again establishing the rapport, hopefully, with something that they thought he'd be most likely willing to talk about. You would tell us that you would park the cab somewhere and that it was a black pickup truck that you saw come by. Blackwood and red, blackwood and blackwood and blackwood and blackwood. And then the line of questioning turned towards the Jonathan Overstreet shooting. We've kind of gotten a little bit of new information so people talk to us. And remember when we had talked to you before about a cab and almost get a guy on a bicycle? Yeah. And you said you were south of that. You were south of 45th Street. But you said that you had almost had an accident with a guy on a bicycle. Right. Okay. The guy that you almost had the accident with on a bicycle. Did you ever happen to see him with any type of gun or anything like that? No. I'm not gonna have that. And everything they asked him or told him that they knew about this case, his strategy being hardies was just this. Deny. Deny. Deny. You didn't shoot that guy? No. Okay. Okay. Do you know how that happened? It weren't long sentences. He didn't overly explain or overly share. It was just like, nope. Don't know what you're talking about. Nope. Not that I'm aware of. And it just kept going like that down the line. Ruben, if the guy on the bicycle did something to you and you acted in self-defense to shoot this guy, that's fine. Okay. That's explainable. But that's something that you need to explain to us. I didn't see that. I didn't see that. His answer isn't just no. Oh, I didn't see that. Did this guy try to flag down your taxi cab and try to rob you? Anybody do that? Now, again, it's like, well, if that happened, I didn't see it as opposed to these in fatic nose. And I just think it's potentially a building block that they can work with. This is sometimes known as a lifeline. Given the subject of your interview a sense that you're open to all sides of the story, maybe you were provoked. Perhaps you were defending yourself, showing your subject that you're open to hearing their side. Did the guy say something to you and you just snapped? And a self-defense angle is what you end up with very often even when the truth of the matter is not going to end up being self-defense at all. But again, it's that, you know, admit what you had, dude, deny what you can when someone thinks that maybe the police know or it's just clear that they know it was you. Well, now let me put my best foot forward and give an explanation that hopefully excuses my conduct. And I think that's why often defendants go with, okay, if it was me, it was self-defense. We're trying to find out what happened and we need you to solve this truth, okay. We know there's more to it than that and we know that you were there, okay. And since investigators weren't getting any information by pressing him, this is the moment that they decided to reveal what they had uncovered so far. You understand what I'm telling you, right? This is your cap. This piece of paper right here is your cap, okay? This right here is the guy on the bicycle. He gets shot inside his body or bullets. You understand that so far? Okay. Remember we took your cap, right? Inside this door, there was a hole. Do you remember the bullet hole in the door? Yeah. Okay. What inside that door was a bullet? You with me? Yeah, that's just... Okay. So what we did was we took the bullets from this guy's body when he had surgery, we took his bullets and we took the bullet from your car. The bullet from your car and the bullets from this guy's body all matched. That means they were all fired from the same gun. Are you with me? Yeah, I'm so with you. Okay. So we're trying to understand what happened between you who's driving the taxi and this guy that was on the bicycle. And his response again? I don't know. We know that you shot this guy. I don't know about him. I don't know. 20 minutes go by, the detective's decided to give Hardy some space and just leave the room. Detectives are probably talking on the outside. Like, okay, this doesn't work. We're not getting anywhere. But he's talking. Can we try a different tact? But it also leaves Hardy in the room alone with his own thoughts. Well, now when they came back in, it wasn't they. It was one and just Detective Patterson went in alone. I want you to be honest with me that I would have him. All right. I know there's more to it than I think. I think he's starting to shut down. I mean, his responses are not denials. They're just silence. And in fact, he doesn't even make eye contact anymore. We're looking. There's more to it. I don't want to see you get jammed up or shooting. If there's more to the story. You understand? A guy got shot. He can't just tell it. It's saying nothing happened. We know something happened. So now I'm starting to think in my mind, okay, this is really going to get to a point where it just stops. Ruben, do you understand what I'm saying? So after 15 minutes of getting nowhere, detectives again rethink their strategy. And they don't interview him again for more than three hours. They were checking in on Ruben during his three-hour break. You know, snacks, food, water, blankets, all of that. But during that time, he may have been resting, being rupert. But detectives were working hard behind the scenes. So the delay in talking to him was not only about giving him a break from questioning, it was in the hopes of developing a break in the case. And they go with the tactic of trying to get some emotion by showing him a photograph of the woman that they believe he shot so cold bloodedly and killed. What I'd like to do is show you a picture of a girl. See if you know who she is. I'm going to look at my calendar. This is going back a ways. December 22, it was a Saturday. I'm going to show you a picture. You tell me if you recognize this girl wrong. You know anything about that? Did you see anything on the TV? There's a big thing on the TV about it. Let me ask you a question. Did you kill her? No. In fact, Sergeant Hardiman asked him the direct questions. Did you kill her? Do you know who she is? And that's when Dennis starts to put his cards on the table that the reason that they're asking him about these multiple crimes is because they have the evidence that they're connected. The bullet that we took out of your car, the bullet from this guy and the bullet from this girl all came from the same gun. It all came from a Taurus 9mm. I wouldn't know anything about that. Then Dennis Hardiman opens up a Manila folder and slips a sheet of paper across the table to Rupert Hardy. This is a sketch about the guy who shot and killed her. Have you ever seen that guy before? No. You don't think that looks like you? Really? Not really? A little bit maybe? Maybe because he's polite. He looks like a relative. Looks like a relative to you? Yeah. And this was a little bit, I think you've used this term of verbal judo before Scott. Obviously on its face, whether it's him or not, there are similarities between that composite sketch and Rupert Hardy. He admitted that it not necessarily looks like him, but it looks like it could be his relative. He never became loud. He kept the same monotone voice throughout the entire interview. As we were talking about sports, I would just hit him with the question why'd you kill this lady? And he says I didn't kill her. Have you ever had a gun before? Yeah. What? Did you have any other guns at your house? No, not really at the time. I used to have some other guns. What about right now? I was to drive to your house right now. If me and you went there, and we went in your house, would I find a gun inside your house? No. Now what Hardy didn't know when Dennis asked him the question about what he might find inside his home is that the police had already been to his home and had done a thorough search of his bedroom. They did it during that three hour break in the interview. When they returned about nine o'clock, they were armed with information about a discovery made at his home. When I left here earlier, I went to your house, and I met your mom, and I went in and I looked in your room. You collect knives and stuff? Yeah. You got a lot of knives in there. You got a lot of pictures on your walls of different type of guns. M4s, AKs, Smith and Wesson. That's right. Why do you collect those? I'm a gun person, I guess it's in the blood. So how incredibly bizarre is it that someone would have photos of guns on their wall? People normally keep like movie posters, ban photos, photos of the family on the wall. Things that we all want to look at, things that we adore. But so why does Hardy just have guns? So I was looking around the new room, and I found a black suitcase in there. And I opened that black suitcase and there was a passport. I guess your passport in there? And so a bunch of money. And there was a gun in there. We told him, look, we found the gun that's in your house. Is that gun going to match Mr. Overstreet being shot? Miss Grant being shot? And Mr. Hines being shot? So now Hardy's caught in a flat out lie. Then the question only comes about, what else is he not telling the truth about? We ended up finding in a locked suitcase in his closet. We found a 9mm handgun inside the suitcase for his passports and money. We also found two stocking caps. And we found a shiny black mid-thyred leather jacket, along with 9mm ammunition. Do you know what I'm talking about? Yeah. Who's gun is that? Is it yours or your dad's? I got a gun from somebody else supposed to meet. And basically, I was supposed to pretty much just head it for protection. You got it for protection? Yeah. So all of a sudden now, Hardy is telling Sergeant Hardiman that he actually bought a gun for $300 from a friend who brought it down from Georgia. It's putting a gun in Hardy's hand. Even more surprising is what Hardy says next. The motive. Why'd you shoot these people? I'm a rock. I kind of told them they were two. I don't know if it sounds strange or not. Nothing's going to sound strange. You're telling me. So I was told, I guess it was some kind of game going on in our cell. You know, what is he talking about? He's trying to come up with another story. And I said, well, what do you mean by it's a game? A rock and a seagrass service or something to say. And that's what I was told to do. And then he started saying, well, voices tell me I have to do these things. And then we started to go down that path. Okay. So when you say Barack, are you talking about Barack Obama? Yeah. Okay. Barack Obama and the seagrass service told you to do what? Obviously, we're not mental health experts, nor are we qualified to make any legal judgments about the mental health of Rupert Hardy. But having said that, after listening to Hardy's exchanges with Sarge Hardeman and Detective Patterson, he seemed to have his wit about himself. He seemed to be able to answer questions and defend himself. So my first question would be, do we think at this very moment he's pretending about these voices? It sounded all too real, because he says it so matter-a-factly that, you know, when people are malingering, which means they are faking something, sometimes it's so obvious that you almost don't even need to give it much thought. And you will let the experts get in and come up with their findings. You almost know what it's going to be. But this, you know, it does fit with what sometimes someone who is paranoid gets a friend or other mental health disorders that have this psychotic component to it like this, that you hear secret service, conspiracy theories, and yes, I actually know people that have suffered with these sort of disorders and these delusions of grandeur that just might mean that there is a major mental health component going on with all of this right here. Maybe, or else he's really good at the lie. We don't know if Hardy is spending a false narrative. Remember, this is his second review with police over the past few days, and there have been five hours now, and not once had he admitted the shooting about any of the victims let alone, because it was ordered by the president of the United States, or does he have a mental health condition where he believes this false reality? Now, we wanted to highlight this as we get into this part of the interview. We're not approaching it through a psychological lens, but in an investigative lens, and because of that, we are questioning every aspect of his statements. In my mind, I thought he was working towards a defense because we had talked to him days prior, he was able to carry on a conversation until I actually confronted him with about the gun being found in his house and stuff like that. I mean, he was able to talk to me about sports. We talked about basketball, about the Miami Heat. He was able to carry on a conversation, so I figured this might be an angle where he's going to say, you know, these voices made me do it. And that was my thought at the time during this interview. I don't know exactly who it was, but I guess it just seemed like a game they told me. I just had to take care of it, like take care of it, and then I had to take care of the type of people to get out of it. I don't know exactly what it was, but it was all radio. That's all I'm just hearing. On the radio, on the... in the taxi? No, not on the radio, but that's just like the sound here in my ears and everything. So let's talk about these statements. Hard is telling investigators that a voice in his head is telling him how to work or navigate through this game. He's been told to kill and not just any target, but specific targets. And that is important territory here. And Dennis Hardeman knows that, and he's walking hardy slowly through the details. Okay, so I'm going to try and see if I understand it. Okay, and you tell me if I'm wrong. Barack Obama and Secret Service agents, they talk to you through my ears. Through your ears. Okay, I don't know what kind of system I'm going to use, but... Okay, so they talk to you, the government talks to you. I'm going to. Okay, and they told you that you were in a game. That's what it seemed like to me. But the only way for you to get out of the game was to go around and shoot people. No, it wasn't just any people. It was certain targets. How would they give you the name? Like, how would you know where to find those people? Like, make signals or so or lights. And Harde gets pretty detailed again. And it doesn't sound to me like his mind is racing. Like he's trying to make it up. But he talks about that this comes to him by way of signals. Again, that is something that if you talk about, for example, Paranoids gets a frenia that we hear all the time. But again, people see that, talked about on television as well. And they might know what to say to push the mental health button too. And Rupert Hardy claims that the only way to get these voices to stop is to carry out their orders, messages to murder. And the signals weren't just coming from Obama. He also talks about them coming from the king, the king of Africa. I mean, this is everybody now. It's from like the king and stuff from Africa and everybody. Okay, the king of Africa was all involved in it. But the king of Africa is that just they're telling you through that's what you're hearing. Or did you actually meet that person? No, what did they do? We started covering each case separately. And he went through in pretty amazing detail what happened, at least according to him when it came to the Jonathan Overstreet shooting. He said he was just sitting there in the parking lot. Mr. Overstreet drove by on his bicycle. And when Mr. Overstreet drove by, he got a signal in his head that he needed to take that person out. What I was told was basically killing. I have to kill him. After you showed him and you drive off, does the signal go away? Yeah, that was pretty unshuddered. So the signal went away. I'm sitting there and I'm kind of thinking, okay, well, what am I supposed to even ask next? I don't even know. This isn't the first case of a presumed killer hearing voices. Back in July of 1976, a woman was shot dead for no apparent reason in New York City. It was the beginning of a string of shootings that struck fear in the city. When the perpetrator, David Perkowitz, also known as Sonosam, was eventually caught, he too claimed that a demon who took the shape of a dog and had the name of Harvey instructed him to commit the murders. I read this article that was fascinating and will post the site up on the AOM website. The crux of it was talking about are these voices attributed to mental health disorder? Are they really a twisted self-rationalization by the killer? And it's really interesting to think about it this way that yes, you know, could it be paranoid schizophrenia that there are these visions or voices that are causing them to commit these crimes? Or is that something that they are doing it for some other type of impulse but they need to make some reason for it? And that's where the voices come in. But there's something to keep in mind when it came to the Sonosam case. In 2006, I had the opportunity to sit down with David Perkowitz in his prison in upstate New York, interviewing the serial killer on the 30th anniversary of his attacks for the CBS station in New York. Among the many things we talked about were those voices in his head. He admitted that the double dog story was all hoax. So is this quote, unquote mission from the president? Another fake double dog story. And at that point, I kind of just changed into the grand homicide in this grand. This lady right here, how did you get the signal for her? Um, that was basically from Michelle Obama. Michelle Obama told you to do that. That was basically from Michelle Obama. Michelle Obama told you to kill her? Take her out. Okay. And now besides that it is a different voice, not Barack Obama, rather it's Michelle Obama, it's that the voice is telling him to kill and now we have an admission to the homicide of Amaria Grant. And that is pretty stunning. And you tell me and I'll relay it to them and I'll ask them questions too. Tell me about this girl. I don't know about her. At one point in the interview, he says I don't want to talk to you anymore. I'd rather talk to somebody else or an official from Africa or something. He says I want to talk to the king of Africa. Okay. All right, just give me a second, okay? I end up leaving the interview room. So it is at this point in the interview that Sergeant Dennis Hardeman decides to kind of shake it up. He's going to bring in another investigator, somebody completely new to talk with Hardy. I go get Detective Sam and Detective Banks. Today you guys want to go in and try talking to him. See if he relates to you guys and not to me. And this strategy was pretty awesome. And I say that because it's pretty different and it's risky too. Okay, I'm Jeremy. Oh yeah. Jeremy does a little stuff on his side too. Okay. You know, he's kind of like our Hush Hush guy. You know what I'm saying? And when we're talking about dealing with, you know, the Hush Hush Slug, like Secret Service dealing with him. That's my name and I talk to the other detective. And he told me a little bit about what was going on there as far as the signals. Do you? Jeremy sends it to him. Investigators ask Hardy if he knows what a debriefing is. You know what a debriefing is? And that Jeremy is the perfect person that after a mission is complete, Jeremy would be the one that Hardy should debrief about that mission. So since January 2011, they've been sending you Michelle Balanessages, Barack Obamaessages, that you've been picking up. I was trying to determine where they were going to go with this. And so the question is why they already have him making a mission. So he's admitting it's him. But on the other side, is there ever such thing as enough, especially if they're going to have to deal with a potential mental health defense? They want to dig in as much as they can, one, to see if that is helpful later to see whether this is actually what's going on in his mind or not. And why not get more? There were so many specifics on so many cases here that I understood it. I just questioned it at the beginning. This is what we do know. We know we do a successful thing, don't you? So tell me about it. We're going to touch base on the signal. So we'll make sure we get all that taken care of. Tell me about it when you encounter it. And he lays out very specifically what happened on the day that he killed Amaria Grant. That he'd been home, he'd been driving his cab around, but then he gets this signal to drive to a specific location and kill someone. So he drives about, again, not just around the corner. It was about 20 minutes away. Pretty much kind of eroded, I was supposed to kill her. And then he sees her, doesn't say a word to her. If we just walk up to her and just get it, she has all the trigger. And then he talks about very specifically, very chillingly, how as she is falling off her bike, he shoots her a couple more times again. And he ran to his car and left in the cab. The investigator switches his line of questioning to try to get more information about the other car shooting, the first shooting we know about from December 4th. Did you get a mission to take out a guy in a BMW? He had else from the king. That was from the king? Yeah, it was from Africa. The two guys in the car, when you pulled up to him in your taxi and you pointed your gun at him and you started shooting, you were trying to kill him. Basically, I wasn't supposed to for some reason, stop the gun, the gun, the gun gel. According to Hardy, he knew what he was doing. He knew that the only way to make the signal stop was to kill these people, which is why he was firing his gun at each one of the three. He also said he knew what he was doing was wrong, but there was only one thing he didn't know, how he got wrapped into this. The only thing that bothered me really is how I got in there to begin with. And I wasn't told exactly what was going on. It was just like a fun game before. Remember, Hardy at this point is a 31-year-old man and we do know that certain forms of mental impairment, like schizophrenia, often enter later in life, not necessarily, not usually when you are a child. So here he is talking about that everything was fine and then this started to enter my brain and I didn't know what to do. He is physically trying to run from his mind. So again, potentially a really interesting and an-a-way sad look into this mental health impairment taking over his mind again if it's real. After hearing Hardy's side of what went on and why, we definitely want to know more about who he was before these shootings. Who is? Who was Rupert Hardy? He was 31 years old. He was born in Jamaica. He was employed by Metro Mobility Camp Service. According to his mother, you know, he kept to himself. He didn't really share details. He had no known friends, girlfriends, and he kind of alienated himself from everybody in his life. There are lots of people who keep to themselves, alienate their friends, and don't commit murder. So that in itself doesn't seem like any real insight to who Rupert Hardy really was. Although I looked at it as someone who sounds like they are living inside their head, and we know that in general anyway, that usually isn't that healthy. It certainly doesn't bring most people happiness. And it does go down the path very often when there is mental health impairment involved. It was able to hold a job. He kept to manifest the detailed list of every time he picked up somebody, dropped him off. And if it's your case, Anisega, we're looking at someone who has no documentation, no history of any mental health conditions, and not even a criminal record. So where does that take you? That there's going to be a lot of expert analysis needed. Was he mentally fit at the time that he committed the crimes? Is this real? Is he malingering? Is he mimicking what he has written books or seen on TV? Or if this is real, you can still be held criminally responsible if you have a mental health impairment, but you need to know the difference between right and wrong. And if you don't because your mind is so affected or impacted by this mental disease or defect, well, that's a true defense. So again, they don't only have a lot to go on on paper, which really makes it a true mystery until the experts get involved. The only thing we could find is he had a bunch of traffic violations, traffic tickets, stuff like that. I think he had one arrest for a fight. We had no knowledge of him in our records database. Obviously, it's also possible that it went undiagnosed or something he kept hidden out of embarrassment or a lack of understanding himself. Which is another good point because that happens more often than it should. And likely we all know at least someone who has suffered but has never known there was an issue or certainly never gone out to get help with it or even diagnosed it to know where it was coming from and if it could be helped. I thought it was an act. That's how I thought it was at that time during the interview. In the case of Rupert Hardy, how would his signals impact a conviction? Now, I could just imagine this is a very difficult type of case to prosecute, to try to explain to jurors what it means when a defendant is saying they hear voices or they've received signals. Have you had that in any of your cases? Yes, I haven't had actually signals. I don't think. I mean, I've had witnesses that, you know, see or one in particular thing, if she saw blue foggy people and again, it's not the same. She wasn't committing the crime but that's something you need to deal with. But certainly on the other side, I've had defendants who have claimed to hear voices and I say claim because I don't think I've ever had someone that was said they were hearing voices be proven to be unfit. That I can think of, but I've had them and it just means that there is a lot of back and forth with experts to try to get to the bottom of one if it's real and I've certainly had people that have serious mental health issues, but are still found to be fit because what they knew what they were doing is wrong. But never the signals, not that I can remember. We ended up arresting him for first degree murder of Miss Grant. He was arrested for Mr. Overskreet for attempted murder and ultimately he was arrested for the shooting from the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office. Dennis had already confirmed that the casings from the three separate shootings all matched, but he still needed to see if it was fired from the same gun the one found inside Rupert Hardy's home. We tested that weapon and the lab confirmed that that was the weapon used at all three scenes, that's the casings, ballistically and projectiles ballistically. So it's very clear that Hardy's mental health is going to play a factor in the case. So the first steps are going to see how is he mentally competent to even stand trial and then separately, is it going to negate the responsibility for his crime, which they are so impacted by this mental disease or defect that they shouldn't be held responsible. So this is going to be a very protracted long process. Ken Fuerino, a marine is employer feared that Hardy was setting the stage for an insanity defense. So before you even have to figure out how his mental health may have impacted his responsibility for the crime, you have to see is he able to assist in his own defense and that's where they started with the hearings. On March 1st 2013, Palm Beach County Circuit Judge found Hardy was incompetent to stand trial based on findings from two psychologists. Those evaluations are sealed so we don't know what they uncovered. There was a lot of, oh he's just knows what to say, he's playing it up. But I think he definitely has some type of mental health issues. And I'll never know because obviously for hip violations and stuff like that. If he was having these thoughts and everything before this happened, that I'll never know. Now that doesn't mean he can never be held accountable and there are different rules in different jurisdictions. So I'll talk about New York, which I know best is that that means that you cannot bring that person to trial or go forward with proceedings until they are found fit, which means that a psychologist says, okay, now they understand what's going on very often. And it is because of medication or various treatment that they receive in a mental health facility to now get them of a sound mind enough that they know what's going on. And then you kind of come back into the courtroom and say, now let's see if we can proceed. And we have case that sometimes take years and sometimes they never get back into the courtroom at all. A spokesperson for the Palm Beach County State Attorney's Office told the media that just because Hardy was declared incompetent, doesn't mean he won't ultimately be brought to trial. Every six months there are hearings as far as to get updates on his mental health issues and stuff like that. Now it's important to point out that Rupert Hardy has never at least not yet been found guilty of these crimes. So under the law he is still presumed innocent. And I think it really comes down to this got they certainly have answers based on what they know about his statements and the evidence that's been put together but they don't yet have the accountability by a final finding in a courtroom that so many families feel gives them something that they need. Yeah, it's a word often used is closure. There cannot be closure without justice and many believe justice has not been served because there's a person who admitted they're responsible for the shootings and a murder has not stood trial. The people that are often left behind in all this legal wrangling and even where it's appropriate to be taking all these dives and these breaks throughout these proceedings is that the families, those loved ones of those lost, they are really often just left behind in that way. So as it turns out that most difficult case to solve was something that detectives at the West Palm Beach Police Department were able to do never really losing sight of how these cases were connected and also navigating through some incredibly complicated waters during that interview with Hardy. And once he began to talk about the voices in his head, they knew that every bit of that interview with him would be crucial mindful of their approach and mindful of what concerns could come down the line. As always with people are profession keeping the victim and the families in mind. You know, the eerie thing about this is on February 1st when he shoots Mr. Overshreet at 215 within an hour later he's picking up his next appointment cab fare and dropping that person off. Like how many people did he encounter through his three months of driving a cab where any one of them could have been a victim? It's just something that you just always think about, but this case will stay with me forever just thinking about the potential victims that there could have been if it wasn't stopped. Tune in next week for another new episode of Anatomy of Murder. Anatomy of Murder is an audio chuck original. Produced and created by Weinberger Media and Frisetti Media. Ashley Flowers and Sue Met David are executive producers. So, what do you think Chuck, do you approve?