Bone Deep: Untangling the Betsy Faria Murder Case
By Charles Bosworth Jr. and Joel J. Schwartz
Rating: 4.5/5 Stairs
Which starts like this:
Every Tuesday was game night. Six to nine o’clock. It had been that way for years for the dedicated group of friends who met at Michael “Mike” Corbin’s house in O’Fallon, Missouri, a growing suburb on the northwestern edge of the St. Louis metropolitan area. They were brought together by their love of role-playing board games, where each player assumed the identity of a specific character and rolled the dice to move along the board and carry out fantasy missions of good versus evil. It was an engaging, thought-provoking, and fun way to spend some time with friends without spending a lot of money.Bone Deep
I had not heard of Betsy Faria’s murder prior to picking up this book. Not just the case or trial itself, but the Dateline episodes and The Truth About Pam podcast. If you are like me, hang on to your hats – you are in for a wild ride with this case.
The basics – Betsy Faria is killed at her home. Her husband Russ has a rock-solid alibi – he spends several hours every Tuesday with a few friends for game night. Yet he still is not only the prime suspect, but is convicted of her murder. What in the world happened?
Bone Deep gives a unique look into the case from the defense perspective; co-author Joel J. Schwartz is also Russ Faria’s lawyer. As the book progresses, we see so many different pieces coming together to unjustly convict Russ – police ignoring evidence, making up their minds early on that Russ was guilty, Pam Hupp setting Russ up for the murder and all her contradictory statements, an inexperienced judge with inexplicable rulings, and the prosecutor’s outrageous closing argument.
Honestly, if you were reading this as a fiction novel, you would think all the forces that worked together to conspire against Russ and the lengths that Pam Hupp went to frame him were absolutely unbelievable. And yet, this nightmare is exactly what happened. When I got to the last chapters and saw Pam’s final, desperate act against Russ I just thought, “You have got to be kidding me.” She really is unbelievably evil.
True crime fans will enjoy this book, and it’s a great look into the justice system from the defense’s perspective.