ABC NEWS PRESENTS TWO-HOUR DOCUMENTARY ON THE DEATH OF 19-YEAR-OLD SARAH STERN, JUST DAYS AFTER CHILDHOOD FRIEND IS FOUND GUILTY OF HER MURDER
20/20' Airs Friday, March 1 (9:00 - 11:00 p.m. EST), on ABC
Just days after Liam McAtasney was found guilty of killing his childhood friend, 19-year-old Sarah Stern, a spirited young woman whose car was mysteriously found atop a bridge that connects Neptune City and Belmar, New Jersey, in December 2016, "20/20" presents a two-hour documentary on her tragic death. In the documentary, co-anchor Amy Robach along with Michael Stern, Sarah's father, visits the bridge where Sarah's abandoned car was found. The "20/20" documentary event airs Friday, March 1 (9:00 - 11:00 p.m. EST), on ABC.
"20/20" features interviews with Carlos Diaz-Cobo, Liam's defense attorney; TJ Pingitore and David Kayal, rideshare drivers who came across Sarah's abandoned car the night of her disappearance and called police; Christopher Gramiccioni, Monmouth County Prosecutor; Chris Decker and Meghan Doyle, prosecutors on the case; Brian Weisbrot and Nicholas Cattelona, detectives on the case; and Belinda Souza, Sarah's childhood friend. The documentary includes hidden camera video of Liam's confession, 911 calls, police dashboard camera video, interrogation tapes and video of Preston Taylor, a close friend of Sarah's, when he pleaded guilty to his role in Sarah's disappearance.
After Sarah's abandoned car was discovered, the community, including two of her closest friends Liam and Preston, searched wide and far for Sarah. Did she jump to her death? That was a burning question haunting police until a shocking development cracked open the case to reveal a sinister murder plot. Sarah's classmate, Anthony Curry, an amateur horror filmmaker, recalled Liam's pitching him a movie idea about two guys who rob and kill their friend by throwing her body over a bridge. The similarities between the pitch and Sarah's disappearance days later raised red flags to Anthony, and he went to the police with the information. Law enforcement then secretly bugged Anthony's car, recording Liam making a confession for the crimes.
Preston accepted a plea deal and pled guilty to six counts including first-degree robbery and second-degree disturbing or desecrating human remains, and faces 10-20 years in prison when he is sentenced later this year. Preston admitted to helping Liam dispose of Sarah's body after he claims Liam offered him $3,000 from the $10,000 he stole from Sarah, an inheritance from her late mother. On Tuesday, Liam was found guilty of first-degree murder and other charges, facing a possibility of life in prison without parole. Authorities have still not recovered Sarah's body, but the search continues.
The documentary on the tragic death of Sarah Stern is part of "20/20"'s two-hour documentary programming featuring brand-new interviews with key players in some of the biggest newsmaker stories in recent American history. The original eight-week two-hour programming lineup has been extended to 15 weeks and will run through April 12. Since the two-hour documentaries premiered on Jan. 4, "20/20" has been Friday's No. 1 newsmagazine each week in all key demos: Total Viewers, Adults 18-49 and Adults 25-54.
"20/20" is anchored by David Muir and Amy Robach. David Sloan is senior executive producer.