Tonight’s episode of Reasonable Doubt on Investigation Discovery revolves around Erick Westervelt, who was convicted in 2004 of murdering his ex-girlfriend with a hatchet after she broke his heart.
The episode, titled Rivals in Love, tracks Reasonable Doubt’s stars — retired homicide detective Chris Anderson and high-profile defense attorney Melissa Lewkowicz — as they try to find out if there’s enough evidence to prove Westervelt’s innocence beyond a reasonable doubt.
Westervelt is in prison on a charge of murdering 28-year-old Timothy Gray in Bethlehem, New York. Someone reportedly went to Gray’s house, beat him in the head and face with a hatchet and repeatedly kicked him.
A half-day after Gray was attacked, a neighbor found him still alive on his own porch. He was taken to hospital but succumbed to his injured five days later.
Westervelt, who was arrested when he was 23 years old, had lived in New York and attended the University of Albany. He reportedly wanted to become a police officer.
Westervelt was arrested in 2004, after which he he confessed to the murder on video and signed a confession. However, no DNA evidence was found at the crime scene.
A jury later found Westervelt guilty of second-degree murder. In 2005, Westervelt — who has continued to say he didn’t commit the crime — was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.
“Your acts were cold, calculated, and inhuman and violent,” a New York state judge reportedly said to Westervelt as he sentenced him to the maximum allowed for the murder charge.
Reasonable Doubt airs Wednesdays at 10/9c on Investigation Discovery.