A "48 HOURS" INVESTIGATION INTO THE MYSTERIOUS DEATH OF A YOUNG SOUTH CAROLINA MOM AND HER INFANT DAUGHTER HELPS REOPEN THE CASE - WAS IT SUICIDE... AN ACCIDENT... OR MURDER?
"48 HOURS: Fatal Crossing"
Saturday, March 2, 10:00 PM
A 48 HOURS investigation into the mysterious circumstances surrounding a young mother and her daughter found dead along railroad tracks in South Carolina has helped lead police to reopen the case. Peter Van Sant and 48 HOURS investigate the 2008 death of Kadie Major and her 10-month-old daughter River Lynn and the search for what happened, in "Fatal Crossing," to be broadcast Saturday, March 2 (10:00 PM) on the CBS Television Network.
It is a case about unusual deaths, an unusual reaction by a husband who lost a wife, a daughter and an unborn child, and a mother unwilling to give up the search for answers. It is also a case that got new life when 48 HOURS producers began asking questions of a new sheriff who was willing to have his team take a second look.
Major, who was married, was found dead alongside a section of railroad tracks in Moncks Corner, S.C. Her little daughter was found drowned in a pond 100 feet away. Back in 2008, Rick Ollic, then with the Berkeley County Sheriff's Office, was in charge of the investigation. Ollic believed it was a murder-suicide and says a note found in Major's pocket was a piece of compelling evidence showing that she was delusional at the time.
Major's family never believed she was delusional or that she would take her own life. She was happy, they say, and also five months pregnant with a son she hoped to name Aadon. She had married the love of her life, Aaron Major, in 2003. She had no reason to take her life.
Kadie Major's mother, Vicky Hall, vowed to get to the bottom of what happened and pressured investigators to the point where she says they "absolutely avoided me."
"I remember, I was just walking outside by myself, and I just looked up and I said, 'Kadie and River, I promise you I will do whatever it takes to find the truth,'" Hall tells Van Sant.
Hall started her own investigation. But then her work on the case slowed down. In 2015, seven years after her daughter's death, a 48 HOURS producer reached out about her investigation.
"I realized it was time to get started back on the case," Hall says.
"We worked this case for months," Ollic says. "We believed we unturned everything there was to unturn at the time."
Ollic says at one point in his investigation Kadie's husband, Aaron, was a suspect. "We were never able to connect the dots," Ollic says.
Hall hired private investigator Jessica Sanders to help prove the case was not a murder-suicide. She believes there were plenty of clues missed in the case.
"What they said back then is absolutely not the truth. It can't be," says Sanders. "She did not step in front of that train."
In 2015 48 HOURS approached the new Berkeley County Sheriff Duane Lewis. He asked his newly formed cold case squad to look into the Major case.
A decade after her daughter's death, Hall finally got her chance to talk with detectives about her case and 48 HOURS was there. In September of 2018, Lewis announced at a press conference that the case had been reopened.
"I believe Kadie and River and Aadon were murdered by Kadie's husband - Aaron Robert Major. And that's what I believe," Hall said at that press conference.
"I really would like to add my thank you to this sheriff's department. I want to thank Charleston County and 48 HOURS, because we would not be standing here today if it wasn't for them," Hall told the media.
"Fatal Crossing" features interviews with Major's family, Sheriff Lewis and his cold case unit. Van Sant approaches Aaron Major, who the sheriff says is the prime suspect in the case.
Was it a murder-suicide as investigators initially reported? Or were Kadie Major and her baby daughter murdered?
48 HOURS: "Fatal Crossing" is produced by Liza Finley and Ryan N. Smith. Lauren A. White is the field producer. David Dow is the associate producer. Anthony Batson is the senior broadcast producer. Nancy Kramer is the executive story editor. Judy Tygard is the executive producer.
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