Investigation Discovery tonight premieres new series The Real Story with Maria Elena Salinas — with an investigation into the case of Martin Tankleff, who spent 17 years in jail after being wrongfully convicted of his parents’ murders.
Long Island resident Tankleff was sentenced in 1990 to a double-life sentence over the deaths of his wealthy parents, Seymour and Arlene Tankleff, who died in 1988 when he was just 17 years old.
But after more than 17 years behind bars, new evidence from a witness came to light which led to his conviction being overturned and him being acquitted.
Tonight on The Real Story with Maria Elena Salinas, the witness, Karlene Kovacs, publicly reveals her identity for the first time and opens up to Salinas about what compelled her to give her testimony.
Meanwhile, Tankleff talks to Salinas about his side of the story, from the moment he found his parents dead to when he was released from prison.
Watch an exclusive clip from the episode below as Tankleff’s half sister, Shari Mistretta, recalls the events that occurred as Tankleff was arrested over his parents’ deaths.
Tankleff also talks to Salinas about how his relationship with Shari soured after she found out what was in his parents’ wills — which gave pretty much everything to him.
In 2014 Tankleff was awarded $3.375million from the state after settling his wrongful conviction lawsuit.
Today he works as a campaigner for other people who say they’ve been wrongfully convicted, and is an advocate for a change in the law which would force detectives to record confessions.
The Real Story with Maria Elena Salinas — produced by Lucky 8 TV and Scott Sternberg Productions — aims to get to the bottom of fascinating stories that made national headlines.
The Real Story with Maria Elena Salinas airs Mondays at 10/9c on Investigation Discovery.