Dateline: Unforgettable is featuring the murder of Margaret “Meg” Purk by her husband, Scott Purk.
On March 19, 1985, Scott called 911 to report that his wife had committed suicide. After he took a bath, Scott said he found Margaret hanging from the ceiling at their Timber Trail apartment in Akron, Ohio.
Scott told the dispatcher that he had to use a steak knife to cut her down from the tightly tied rope. He added that he immediately began performing life-saving measures.
When officers arrived on the scene, they discovered Margaret at the bottom of the stairs with the rope around her neck.
She was nine months pregnant, and she did not have a pulse.
The paramedics revived the 24-year-old before transporting her to a nearby hospital, where she and her unborn baby died several hours later.
A medical examiner ruled her death a suicide by hanging.
Scott Purk’s strange remarks after the house fire prompted investigators to re-examine the case
In March 2009, emergency first responders were dispatched to a home on Uniondale Road in Stow, Ohio, where Scott lived with his second wife and two children.
By the time they arrived, the house was already engulfed, but everybody had made it out safely.
When the evidence at the scene indicated that the fire was intentionally set, it was investigated as arson.
When investigators questioned Scott about the fire, he gave them his account of what happened but changed the subject. He started talking about his previous wife.
He told the investigator that Margaret had committed suicide, and he happened to be home when she did it.
His remarks about his wife’s death prompted the investigator to re-examine the case.
A medical examiner looked at the original photos of Margaret’s body and noticed that her injuries weren’t consistent with someone hanging themselves.
On September 21, 2011, Margaret’s body was exhumed and re-examined.
The medical examiner stated that the injuries to her neck were from a belt, not a rope. And the injuries to her chest were from being dragged by the rope.
The medical examiner changed Margaret Purk’s suicide to homicide
Scott was charged with the first-degree murder of his first wife and tampering with evidence.
On November 17, 2015, a judge sentenced Scott to life in prison with the possibility of parole after serving 18 years.
At sentencing, Scott was already serving a 28-year sentence for intentionally setting his house on fire with his family inside.
An investigation revealed that he was in debt and wanted to collect over $150,000 in insurance money.
Dateline: Unforgettable airs Mondays at 8/7c on Oxygen.More: Dateline: Unforgettable