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Forensic Files TV Show
Forensic Files is the longest running forensic true crime series on television. The show ran 14 seasons and is in syndication around the world to this day. Each episode details the forensic evidence and techniques that brought the criminals to justice.
With over 406 episodes, it was a staple rerun on tv. It educated an entire generation about the magic that happens when science and law enforcement combine.
The show also highlighted careers in forensic science jobs such as forensic anthropology, forensic psychology and forensic odontology to name a few.
It provides a wealth of information for educators, with easy-to-understand explanations that avoid depicting any extreme violence.
Forensic Files Voice
The most recognizable voice on television is the Forensic Files narrator, Peter Thomas. His narration was the bedrock of the show.
His bio is a great source of info for fans of the show. Here is a small portion of it:
Peter has been in this business for more than 50 years – narrating Academy Award winning documentaries, television specials, concert performances and commercials.
It’s a thrill and honor having him as a part of the Forensic Files® series.
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We’ve gathered season 13 episodes above. The other seasons are available here.
The following transcript is from the video above entitled “Dirty Little Secret”:
NARRATOR: Up next, a
couple goes on vacation
and is never heard from again.
W. WILLIAM PHELPS: They’re not
looking for a missing person.
Adults don’t go missing.
Adults leave a trail.
And there’s no trail, OK?
NARRATOR: Police found evidence
the couple may have been shot.
Hydra Shok brand of
ammunition is specifically designed for use
against human beings. NARRATOR: The last
place they were seen was at a well known
nightclub in the resort town. JOEL TODD: That was taken
at Secrets Nightclub on the last night
that they were alive. NARRATOR: But there were
other secrets that night, like what really happened
to these two people.
NARRATOR: It was
at an office party where Josh Ford and Geney
Crutchley first met. Both had been
married previously, and the two were instantly
attracted to one another, despite a considerable
age difference. JOEL TODD: Josh
was 32 years old.
Geney was 51.
And my normal response is
she was on the other foot, you wouldn’t think
twice about it. -In Joshua Ford, Geney
Crutchley found a younger man who was exciting,
fun to be around, who also wanted to do
new things in life. NARRATOR: Josh was a very
successful mortgage broker. Geney was an accountant
for an insurance company. After dating for two years,
they moved in together, sharing a house in
Fairfax, Virginia. W. WILLIAM PHELPS:
They were two spirits who really had the
same personalities. So when those same two
personalities clicked, I don’t think the age made
that much difference to them.
They just fell in love.
NARRATOR: The couple rented
a condo for the Memorial Day weekend in Ocean City, Maryland,
a well known resort town
along the Atlantic shore.
But neither one
showed up for work when the holiday
weekend was over. W. WILLIAM PHELPS:
They worked hard.
They never missed work.
They were on time.
They did their jobs.
-When Geney didn’t
show up for work, her co-workers were
really concerned. And that’s when they notified
the Ocean City police. NARRATOR: Police went
to their rented condo and found Geney’s car
in the parking lot. JOEL TODD: It was
obvious to the police right away that the
car had been there
for an extended period of time.
In Ocean City, with the sand
blowing around constantly, sand begins to
accumulate very quickly. NARRATOR: And nothing was out
of place in the condominium. BRETT CASE: There was
absolutely no sign of foul play.
There wasn’t any break-in.
There wasn’t any broken glass.
The place was relatively clean.
NARRATOR: Geney’s car keys
were still in the condo. So were their clothes,
computer, and camera. It was as if they’d gone out
for a walk and never came back. CLINTON CHAMBERLAIN: It just
looked like they just decided, well, let’s go down
the street, maybe go to the bar or
something like that.
That’s exactly how it looked.
NARRATOR: Neighbors at the condo
didn’t see or hear anything unusual the entire
Memorial Day weekend. STACY SAKAI: Condos are more
for private vacationers. So you have the
It’s a much more private.
NARRATOR: A background check
revealed Josh and Geney used their credit card to
buy drinks at The Greene Turtle, a sports bar,
on Saturday night. Investigators found the waitress
who served Josh and Geney. She recalled they
were sitting alone. BRETT CASE: She
remembered the couple.
She did remember that he
was a fan of the Celtics
and was tuned into the game.
there, investigators learned that Josh and Geney
took a bus to a nearby club. SCOTT BERNAL: One of the hottest
nightclubs in Ocean City, where everybody just floods
to, is Secrets. And that’s where
they were heading. NARRATOR: The bus driver
identified Josh and Geney from a photo lineup and
said they were talking with another couple on the
bus, a Caucasian couple in their late ’20s
or early ’30s. SCOTT BERNAL: They
actually, when they got off the bus, all four of
them waited in line
for over an hour to get in.
NARRATOR: Witnesses saw the
two couples drinking together and also saw them
leave together. But there was no trace of
Josh and Geney after that. W. WILLIAM PHELPS: No
cell phone activity, no credit card
activity, no nothing. These people were
just plucked off
the face of the earth that day.
NARRATOR: Less than a week after
Josh Ford and Geney Crutchley went missing, police were
called to a Hooters restaurant
in Ocean City, Maryland.
A silent alarm went
off after midnight, telling police there was
a robbery in progress. STACY SAKAI: Upon
the officer arriving, he finds a jeep backed up
to the door and two people walking out with armloads
of stolen merchandise. NARRATOR: The robbers,
a man and a woman,
were arrested on the spot.
SCOTT BERNAL: They
were so intoxicated that the male, the husband,
says to one of the officers, thinking it would
be OK, can’t we just put it all back
and we’ll be cool? NARRATOR: Benjamin
and Erika Sifrit weren’t your typical
married couple. They weren’t your
typical burglars, either. STACY SAKAI: Erika Sifrit comes
from an upper middle class family, great student,
excellent basketball player. BRETT CASE: Statistically,
her three-point shooting was top five in the country
her freshman or sophomore year. NARRATOR: Benjamin Siffrit,
or BJ, as he was known, was a former Navy SEAL who had
finished first in his class. W. WILLIAM PHELPS: He
was an expert shot.
He was the cream of the crop.
I was told by some
of his SEAL buddies that this was a type of guy
who could go, all right, drink all night long, OK,
stay out til 5 o’clock in the morning, go back to the
dorm, sleep for an hour or two, and do a 20-mile run the
next day and beat everybody.
Because it was up here.
He’s motivated up here.
NARRATOR: Neither one had
ever been arrested before. But inside their
car, police were
surprised by what they found.
BRETT CASE: These people
are armed to the teeth.
She has a gun in her waistband.
It’s a .357 five-shot revolver.
I mean, he’s got a six-hour nine
millimeter that’s fully loaded,
ready to go.
And then in the vehicle
there’s a .45 caliber
HMK combat weapon.
So, you know, you look– looking
at that, they mean business. NARRATOR: And the
discovered something else.
Inside Erika’s purse were the
Virginia driver’s licenses of Joshua Ford and
Geney Crutchley. BRETT CASE: And
automatically, the hair on the back of their
neck stands up. And they realize
this is a lot bigger than just a burglary at
Hooters with handguns. NARRATOR: When asked where
she got the licenses, Erika said she and BJ
found them and denied ever meeting or even
seeing Josh and Geney. W. WILLIAM PHELPS: It’s
very, very possible that they found these
licenses on the beach. Or maybe they’re
planning a future crime of maybe stealing
someone’s identity. NARRATOR: In the back
of the Sifrits’ vehicle, police found ski
masks and flex cuffs. BRETT CASE: It makes you think
maybe they’ve held these people hostage or taken them
hostage and they’re holding them somewhere
against their will. NARRATOR: Investigators
now had probable cause to search the
Sifrits’ nearby condo. STACY SAKAI: They found a lot
more than they bargained for. W. WILLIAM PHELPS: On the
table outside the dining room,
they find two spent bullets.
also found evidence
that BJ and Erika lied to them.
W. WILLIAM PHELPS: They
find a stack of photographs,
really a cache of photographs.
And on the top is a
picture of Geney and Joshua at Secrets that was taken
at Secrets nightclub the last night that
they were alive. NARRATOR: One of the pictures
in the Sifrits’ condo showed a ring on
Josh Ford’s hand. In another picture, taken two
days after Josh and Geney went missing, Erika Sifrit
is wearing Josh’s
ring on a chain around her neck.
And when she was
arrested for the robbery, police found that
ring in her purse. Even more damning, police found
in the Sifrits’ possession a key to the
Atlantis condominiums where Josh and Geney
had been staying.
JOEL TODD: They turned the key.
It unlocked the door.
It was the key to
Josh and Geney’s unit. NARRATOR: Police
were now certain that the Sifrits
had something to do with Josh and Geney’s
The last known photograph of
Josh Ford and Geney Crutchley was taken at the
Secrets nightclub. From a photo lineup,
the bus driver identified BJ and Erika
Sifrit as the couple he saw with Josh Ford
and Geney Crutchley when he dropped
them off at Secrets. And witnesses saw the two
couples leave Secrets together.
But what happened after that?
Investigators took a
much closer forensic look in the bathroom of
the Sifrits’ condo. And there, they
noticed something. CLINTON CHAMBERLAIN: I
saw some orange colored
substance on the tile.
And I noticed a
little bit running down the side of
the shower stall. And when I saw that, I
thought, well, you know,
maybe this could be blood.
W. WILLIAM PHELPS: They
pull out the sink stopper for the washing sink,
and they find all kinds of hair attached to it
with blood and flesh. NARRATOR: Underneath that
sink, investigators discovered a bullet hole that went
clear through the wall
into to the adjacent bedroom.
This matched two bullets found
on the Sifrits’ coffee table. CLINTON CHAMBERLAIN:
One of them looked like it had some
drywall dust in it. One of them looked like it
had blood in the grooves
and joints and stuff like that.
NARRATOR: On the large glass
window inside the bathroom, crime scene
a partial palm print.
Tests on the blood
in the bathroom and on the mangled .357 slug
found on the coffee table
yielded a DNA profile.
Investigators took samples from
Josh and Geney’s toothbrushes and hair brushes and
generated their DNA profiles. SCOTT BERNAL: Most of the DNA
that we tested came back mixed its DNA, both of Joshua
Ford and Geney Crutchley. NARRATOR: The DNA on the
mangled .357 slug found
on the coffee table was Josh’s.
JOEL TODD: So that bullet had
been in Joshua Ford’s body at some point and then
dug out or pulled out and kept as a trophy
by the Sifrits.
We didn’t have the bodies.
But we knew that
somebody had met a very brutal and
gruesome end in that room.
NARRATOR: Bullets test fired
from Erika Sifrit’s .357 revolver were compared
to the damaged bullets. RON FAZIO: When the hollow
point expands soft tissue,
it’ll mushroom out.
Many people might think that
this expansion is damage to a bullet and
might prevent or even
hinder firearms examination.
However, this just
simply not true. The two bullets recovered
from the dining room table positively associate, or
in other words matched, back to the .357
Magnum revolver. NARRATOR: When faced
with this evidence, Erika Sifrit made a
deal with prosecutors. She agreed to lead them
to Josh and Geney’s bodies and testify against BJ in
exchange for a reduced charge. She told investigators they
dismembered Josh and Geney’s bodies and put them in dumpsters
in the neighboring state
of Delaware, 10 miles away.
this was a lucky break. SCOTT BERNAL: Delaware has
a unique system of dumping. They know where
everything they dump– they know what plot it
is at their dump site. NARRATOR: Eight days after
Josh and Geney went missing, parts of their dismembered
bodies were found. Bullets recovered
from Josh’s body
matched Erika Sifrit’s gun.
Josh’s palm print matched the
print on the bathroom window
in the Sifrits’ condo.
Incredibly, Josh Ford
and Geney Crutchley were random victims of a couple
for whom breaking the law had become a strange
romantic obsession. But just when investigators
thought the case had been solved, Erika came
forward with a story
they could hardly believe.
BRETT CASE: I think she
has her own evil side, and I think he
has his evil side.
Together, they were explosive.
Like I said before,
one’s a match.
One’s a fuse.
NARRATOR: Prosecutors made
a deal with Erika Sifrit. If she told them the
truth about what happened to Josh Ford and
she would face a reduced charge.
One of the requirements
of the deal was that she had to
pass a polygraph test. Originally, she told
prosecutors that she had nothing to do with the murders,
that all she did
was help dispose of the bodies.
Later, however, she
changed her story. JOEL TODD: She admitted
during the pre-test interview that she was more
involved in the homicides
than she had told us up to then.
She admitted taking the
knife and stabbing Geney. NARRATOR: Erika also admitted
the tattoo on her abdomen
had a special significance.
JOEL TODD: Following the
stabbing of Geney Crutchley, she got a tattoo on her
side in the same place where she stabbed
Geney Crutchley. And that was so
she could forever
be reminded of that night.
BRETT CASE: She was
involved from the get go. She essentially admitted
she ordered the killings. So based on that, you
know, we couldn’t, uh, couldn’t continue
with this deal. NARRATOR: First
degree murder charges were filed against both
BJ and Erika Sifrit. Each ended up
turning on the other. As the trials
approached, investigators struggled to find a
motive for the crime. JOEL TODD: We believe that these
murders were committed simply for the fun or the
thrill of killing. Um, we’ve come up with no other
possible motive in this case. NARRATOR: The couple
owned a scrapbooking store near a mall in
Altoona, Pennsylvania. But two months
before the murders, they began turning
to a life of crime. SCOTT BERNAL:
According to Erika, there was very
little sexual contact
between her and her husband BJ.
She told me that BJ
thrived on the burglaries
and doing things of risk.
And that’s what got him off.
W. WILLIAM PHELPS: They
start our burglarizing places close to where Erika
and BJ own the business.
That’s not fun anymore.
So they upped the ante.
They needed more thrill,
more thrill, more thrill. BRETT CASE: They were a strange,
strange couple together.
That’s for sure.
NARRATOR: Prosecutors say
the Sifrits were hunting for thrills when they met Josh
and Geney at Secrets nightclub. After some
conversation, they all decided to go back
to the Sifrits’ condo for more drinking, conversation,
and a dip in the hot tub. But the Sifrits decided to
toy with Josh and Geney. Erika claimed her
purse was missing with her expensive
jewelry inside. REENACTMENT OF ERIKA:
If you guys see just like a little black
now this is the only place–
NARRATOR: And she wanted Josh
and Geney to help look for it. But only Erika and BJ
were in on the game. REENACTMENT OF ERIKA: Please
just help me find this.
I’ve checked everywhere.
NARRATOR: If Josh and
Geney found the purse, they could live.
If not– REENACTMENT OF JOSH: Are
you sure it’s in here? NARRATOR: –they’d
have to pay the price. REENACTMENT OF ERIKA:
There’s no other place.
I took it out.
It didn’t just get
up and walk away. NARRATOR: When Josh and
Geney didn’t find the purse,
BJ accused them of stealing it.
REENACTMENT OF BJ:
They must have took it.
REENACTMENT OF JOSH: What?
ERIKA: You took it. REENACTMENT OF BJ: Why’d
you steal her purse? REENACTMENT OF JOSH: Calm down.
It’s all right. It’s all right.
REENACTMENT OF BJ: Where is it? REENACTMENT OF JOSH:
We don’t have it. REENACTMENT OF BJ: Prove it.
Take your clothes off. REENACTMENT OF JOSH:
Are you serious? REENACTMENT OF BJ: Right now!
Take your clothes off!
REENACTMENT OF JOSH: Look,
we don’t have it, OK? NARRATOR: Josh and Geney
made a run for the bathroom
and locked the door.
They tried to escape,
with Josh leaving
his palm print on the window.
REENACTMENT OF BJ:
Open the door, Josh. NARRATOR: The evidence
shows four shots were fired.
The first two went through the
door and hit Josh in the torso. Erika said BJ fired the
third shot into Josh’s head. [gunshot][scream] Prosecutors believe Erika fired
the fourth shot towards Geney and missed, either accidentally
or deliberately as part
of their cruel game.
The bullet went through the
wall into the adjoining bedroom. Erika told prosecutors she
stabbed Geney in the abdomen
with a knife.
Later, when Erika brought some
rags and detergent to clean up the blood, she said
BJ was in the hot tub with the heads of
their two victims. She said BJ removed
the slug from Josh’s
head to keep it as a trophy.
Over the next 24 hours, the
couple dismembered the bodies, placed them in garbage bags, and
put them in various dumpsters
They also went to
a hardware store to buy a new bathroom door
and more cleaning supplies to repair the bathroom
as best they could. Afterwards, the couple acted
as if nothing had happened. W. WILLIAM PHELPS: Drinking
beer, having a great time,
going to miniature golf.
Nobody would have suspected them
of being the animals they are. NARRATOR: Erika wore
Josh’s ring as a trophy and carried around
their driver’s licenses and kept the slugs
from the shootings. -I’ve never seen a crime like
this where a couple just kills another couple for
the thrill of it. -They had nothing
against these people.
They did nothing to them.
They were chosen.
NARRATOR: The story
was so incredible that without forensic
evidence, no one
was likely to believe it.
Even the best cleaning doesn’t
always get it up. Like in this case, I
mean, there was still
blood there that was visible.
You just had to know what
you were looking for. NARRATOR: Erika and BJ
were tried separately. JOEL TODD: Her defense was,
I didn’t do it– he did. His defense was, I
didn’t do it– she did. NARRATOR: In the absence of any
physical evidence against him and the fact that Erika’s gun
was used in Josh’s murder, BJ was convicted of only one
count of second degree murder. He was sentenced to
38 years in prison. Erika was convicted
of both murders and sentenced to life
in prison plus 20 years. BRETT CASE: She had the
gun in her possession. She has, you know, the victim’s
identification in her purse. She has all of the
souvenirs, if you will, with her in her possession
or in her purse.
Still bothers me.
Why this case stands out?
I’ll probably never see another
case like this in my career
and hopefully my lifetime.
forensic evidence, it would have been difficult
to get, um, a, um, a conviction of
homicide in any degree
as to these two defendants.
It was possible.
But it would have been
much, much more difficult.