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Hollywood picks up on local murder case

Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
 

Southwest Greensburg's police chief and two Westmoreland County detectives will watch one television show with particular interest tonight.

“Slave to Love,” based on the Richard McAnulty murder case, will air for the first time at 10 p.m. Saturday on the Investigation Discovery channel.

Last summer, a producer and film crew for the “Scorned: Love Kills” series interviewed police Chief Chris Kent and county detectives Terry Kuhns and Robert Weaver. The three investigated the 2010 murder of Harry Mears III, 39, by McAnulty in Southwest Greensburg.

In 2011, a jury convicted McAnulty, 57, of Center Township in Indiana County, of first-degree murder. He was sentenced to life in prison.

“I'm very excited,” Kent said. “I can't wait to watch it. I'm interested to see because I've never watched the show before, so I'm interested in how they're going to portray the whole incident ... and Southwest Greensburg.”

Kuhns joked he wants to see if the adage about television making people look older and heavier is true.

“I can't help but watch it,” he said. “You have to see how you look on TV.”

The investigators received emails this week about the initial show airing.

The show looks at the roles extramarital affairs played in the murder, according to a promotional video on the channel's website. Actors portray the real-life people.

“Richard McAnulty begins an ongoing adulterous affair with an older widow named Doris, while his wife of decades, Diane, becomes involved in a much more scandalous relationship with another man (Mears). When the affairs are exposed, the consequence is deadly,” according to a summary on the website.

In July 2010, McAnulty became enraged after discovering an email between his wife and Mears, according to trial testimony.

McAnulty drove more than 30 miles to Mears' home, broke through a locked door and pursued Mears up a flight of steps. McAnulty followed Mears as he climbed out a window to a roof and then fell to the ground.

McAnulty shot Mears three times with a .44-caliber Magnum as he pleaded for his life. McAnulty's last shot passed through Mears' heart as he lay on the ground.

En route to Westmoreland County, McAnulty picked up a hitchhiker and methodically searched for Mears' home, according to testimony.

The infidelity, the role of the Internet and “things that happen behind closed doors” were among the elements of the case that sparked interest for the TV show, said Stephen McLaughlin, executive producer for Optomen Television, which filmed the interviews with police.

Kuhns, who spent four hours in front of the camera, said he is curious about what portions of the interview air on the show.

“It was interesting to go through,” he said.

Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or bstiles@tribweb.com.

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