“48 Hours” host, family of Fannin Co. murder victim discuss episode revelations

Published: May. 18, 2018 at 6:49 PM CDT
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The highly anticipated 48 hours episode featuring Jennifer Harris’ unsolved murder airs Saturday night on KXII.

Jennifer was found dead in the Red River in 2002 but her family and her community have never given up on finding her killer.

"It was emotional to go back and relive but I think that it gave us a lot of hope,” Jennifer’s sister Alyssa Wernick said.

Wernick told us they had tried getting the case national attention with another TV series, but she said the previous Sheriff Donnie Foster wasn't very interested in getting publicity.

"I'm looking for justice, not entertainment for people,” Foster told News12 back in 2015.

Shortly after that, he was voted out of office.

"At that point I said to Barry if they can't shoot this why don't we do it,” Wernick said. “And that's kind of what happened."

Her husband and another filmmaker then began working on the docuseries tentatively named "Justice For Jennifer", and brought another TV series, 48 Hours, to newly elected Fannin County Sheriff Mark Johnson. Johnson fulfilled the promise he made to Jennifer's family and allowed the show full access to the investigation.

"Here you are 15, 16 years later and still no arrests,” 48 Hours host Jim Axelrod told News12 on Friday. “This is the kind of story certainly if it happened anywhere, and it happened in your backyard, but if it happened anywhere certainly a riveting story."

Saturday night's episode will feature footage from the docuseries but that's not all.

Viewers will also be introduced to the woman who found Jennifer's abandoned vehicle.

"She was the woman who first found Jennifer's Jeep on the side of the road and she had been a lot of folks thought the key to the case,” Axelrod said. “The bright light that we hope to shine on this story of course we hope it will create perhaps some motivation for some folks who have been sitting on some information all these years to come forward and share what they know once and for all. And help bring justice for Jennifer."

As for identifying potential suspects as Jennifer's killer….

"99 percent of people with a brain will have a pretty good idea of who did it,” Barry Wernick said.

“Murder on Red River” airs at 9 PM on CBS.

The docuseries is expected to wrap up some time this fall.

Jennifer’s family and the Fannin County Sheriff’s Office have raised $50,000 to reward anyone who brings forth information that leads to an arrest and conviction of Jennifer’s killer.

They are currently working to up that reward to $250,000.

You can find more information at https://redrabbitjustice.com/