AN UNIMAGINABLE CRIME. AN UNLIKELY PLACE. AN UNRELENTING KILLER.
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On December 16, 2004, a Nodaway County, Missouri, 9-1-1
operator received a frantic call from the mother of
23-year-old Bobbie Jo Stinnett. The eight-months-pregnant
mom-to-be, Bobbie Jo, had been found lying on her family
room floor bleeding profusely and barely breathing. Most
disturbing of all, her baby was gone.
Only 187 miles away in Melvern, Kansas, Bobbie Jo’s killer,
Lisa Montgomery, dressed the baby she’d brutally kidnapped
in a Winnie-the-Pooh outfit and called her husband to say
that she’d given birth to a baby girl she called Abigail.
While televisions blared the nation’s first Amber Alert for
an unborn child, Lisa proudly showed off "her" new baby at
church and a local diner, duping many while arousing the
suspicions of others. And that was only the beginning of one
of the most unthinkable events in American history, one that
shocked the nation and left two Midwestern communities
reeling in the crime’s aftermath.
Now, investigative journalist and acclaimed author M.
William Phelps delivers a definitive literary investigation
of this compelling story, one that is as suspenseful as it
is heartbreaking. Working with the exclusive cooperation of
Lisa Montgomery’s ex-husband, Carl Boman, Lisa’s children
and mother, law enforcement officials, friends, relatives,
and neighbors, Phelps reveals what really happened that
fateful day in December and traces the tortured history of
sexual abuse, abandonment, and desperation that planted the
seeds of a potential sociopath destined for "moral
insanity." Here is the true story of the frantic search for
a baby born under the most horrific conditions imaginable,
of the lucky break that led to the killer, of Lisa’s
family’s fears about her mental health, and of the shock
waves that still linger in two small American towns that
will never be the same again.
Like Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood, Murder in the Heartland
takes an unflinching look at an American tragedy, exploring
its terrible trajectory with unparalleled courage, insight,
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