Jay Leno stages ‘comic’ fundraiser for the Menendez Brothers (video)

Jay Leno stages ‘comic’ fundraiser for the Menendez Brothers (video)

The public was outraged that the two 1994 juries – one for each brother – could not reach verdicts in the first Menendez trial. All the jurors agreed that a homicide had been committed. Most of the women voted for manslaughter, but almost all of the men wanted to convict Erik and Lyle of murder.

When I interviewed most of the jurors after the trial, men mostly told me some variation of “a father would never do that to his sons.”

The Menendez family money was gone after the first trial. Most of the family estate – estimated at $6-8,000,000 – went to the attorneys, defense investigators and taxes.

Defense attorney Leslie Abramson was appointed by the court at $125 an hour.

Jay Leno thought The Menendez Murders were just a big joke (video)

Jay Leno thought The Menendez Murders were just a big joke (video)

The mainstream media signed on to the District Attorney’s 1993 theory that Erik and Lyle Menendez were a pair of greedy rich kids, and that included NBC’s Jay Leno.

Leno’s monologues on The Tonight Show often featured at least one joke based on the Menendez testimony of the day.

When Erik admitted that he had a hard time getting dates, this was Jay’s gag:

Yesterday, Erik said his parents made fun of him because he never had a girlfriend. You know, I don’t know how to break it to him, but shooting your Mom and Dad isn’t really going to help your chances.

More than a book blurb: Praise from Evan Wright is praise indeed

More than a book blurb: Praise from Evan Wright is praise indeed

Through his unparalleled access – and his relentlessly detailed reporting – Robert Rand became America’s unofficial “Menendez-whisperer” when this story dominated the news.

Now, Rand is back, with stunning, never-before seen revelations in The Menendez Murders – a landmark work that upends everything we thought we knew about these crimes, and may rock the criminal justice system. Deeply compelling and meticulously sourced, it’s the essential read of the year. — Evan Wright, author, Generation Kill.

I clearly remember the early days of the investigation in September 1989

I clearly remember the early days of the investigation in September 1989

All of the early media speculation was focused on a connection between the Jose’s home video business and the Mafia.

It was years before the internet, social media, and the 24-hour news cycle. I spent two days with Lyle and Erik Menendez in October while reporting a biography of Jose Menendez’s rags to riches story that ended in tragedy.

The brothers told me loving stories about their parents and were emotionally appropriate. They were not suspects publicly and I had no reason to be suspicious of them.

Chapter 44 | A Compelling Witness: “25 Years Ago Today . . .”

Chapter 44 | A Compelling Witness: “25 Years Ago Today . . .”

On Friday, September 10: “The defense calls Joseph Lyle Menendez,” announced attorney Jill Lansing at five minutes before two o’clock. Lyle, dressed in a navy crew-neck sweater, walked directly to Lansing.

Lansing was blunt:

“Did you love your parents?”

“Yes,” he choked out hoarsely.

And on August 20, 1989, did you and your brother kill your mom and dad?”

“Yes.”

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