This is a tragedy that destroyed a family. All four of them had remarkable strengths as well as terrible weaknesses and it did not have to be. If at any time over the course of the lives of the four Menendez family members some effective person could have intervened, everyone would still be alive and well and healing. All four of them needed help. And there never was any help for this family.
— Defense Attorney Leslie Abramson, the day before sentencing
It has been two months since the release of The Menendez Murders.
I am grateful for all the TV shows, podcasts, radio interviews, newspapers, and websites that have helped me share a new version of this story – the truth.
In the 2018 era of #MeToo, #MenToo, and the revelations about the Catholic Church, people are more willing to accept that Erik and Lyle Menendez’s emotional testimony of being abused was the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
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.
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?”
From a craft standpoint, one of the things I have to applaud Robert for is brilliantly weaving the multiple and complex storylines together to show the many aspects of this strange story, including the brothers’ own account of the days leading to the murders as well as when witness statements conflicted on certain points.
He was still writing the final chapter as the book went into production because new facts kept coming up.
Normally that would be an editor’s nightmare, but in this case it was a welcome challenge to have an author able to capture the latest scoops.
Three decades after the infamous Menendez brothers killed their parents and were sentenced to life, who gives a damn about what happened to them?
One former Philadelphian does, disturbed by a perceived miscarriage of justice.
Robert Rand is a latter-day Don Quixote, a journalistic knight errant carrying a pen rather than a broken lance. He has no Sancho Panza as a sidekick, just an unquenchable pursuit for justice. — Stu Bykofsky, Philly.com