About this item
Even in the bitterest divorce cases, angry ex-spouses usually agree on one thing--the welfare of their children. Mary Jean Pearle, a Dallas antiques dealer, never dreamed that her precious daughters, Faith and Liberty, would be anything but safe when she dropped them off with their father. John Battaglia, a successful accountant and ex-Marine, had at times been vicious to her--but always gentle with the girls.
Listening helplessly through the phone, Mary Jean heard Faith plead for her life. . .and then the heart-rending sound of gunshots.
Updating her classic account of this unthinkable crime with the latest stunning developments from Death Row, veteran crime writer Irene Pence recounts an unforgettable saga of violence, betrayal, and tears.
Case seen on 20/20
Includes Sixteen Pages Of Dramatic Photos
John Battaglia said hello and it grated on MaryJean to hear her ex-husband's voice.
"Hi, John," she said lightly. "I got a message thatthe girls wanted to ask me something."
"Yeah," he said, and Mary Jean could hear theecho-like sound that always accompanied his punchingof the speaker phone button.
"Ask her!" John's voice pounded. "Ask her," he repeatedin a louder, harsher voice.
"Mommy?" Faith stammered. She was noticeablycrying and her voice sputtered in short sobs. "Whydo you want Daddy to have to go to jail?"
Mary Jean could feel her body temperature climb."Oh come on, John, don't do this to them."
Then Mary Jean heard the screams that will foreverhaunt her. Faith cried out, "No, Daddy, don't!
Oh please no, Daddy. Don't do it. No, no, no!"
Over her daughter's piercing cries, Mary Jeanheard the blast of a gun. "Run, babies, run!" shescreamed. "As fast as you can, run for the door!"