THE MYSTERY OF THE GAINESVILLE MURDERS PT. 1

During a terrifying three-day period in late August 1990, five college students were found brutally murdered in Gainesville, Florida. Panic filled the usually sunny city as investigators searched to find the serial killer before he struck again. Finally, a named suspect comes into focus… but was he the murderer? For months, only a psychologist and the actual killer himself knew the truth.

THE MYSTERY OF THE GAINESVILLE STUDENT MURDERS PT. 2

Five college students were found brutally murdered in Gainesville, Florida. But, it would take investigators months – and the discovery of a campsite, a screwdriver and an audio tape – before they identified who the serial killer was. And the suspected killer would not make the road to justice easy for anyone.

THE KIDNAPPING OF ELIZABETH SMART PT. 1

June 5th, 2002, Elizabeth Smart was kidnapped from her Salt Lake City home—snatched from her bed at knifepoint by a mysterious man in the middle of the night. To the public, it seemed as if she had vanished into thin air – but she was actually taken by Brian David Mitchell- a 48-year-old pedophile. In this special “How It Really Happened,” we take a look at the unbelievable nine-month saga with its unforeseeable twists and turns…a police investigation that went sideways, and a family fighting to keep hope alive.

THE KIDNAPPING OF ELIZABETH SMART: HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT PT. 2

For nine months, in 2002, 14-year-old, Elizabeth Smart was the most famous missing child in America. Kidnapped by Brian David Mitchell, she was forced up into a hiding spot in the mountains behind her home—assaulted and forced to be his second “wife.” This episode follows her harrowing 9-month ordeal – including the multiple trips they took to Salt Lake City where she was hidden in plain sight. And the unbelievable end – one of the most incredible kidnapping recoveries in U.S. history.

SUSAN SMITH: SOMEONE STOLE MY BABIES PT. 1

On the night of October 25, 1994, Susan Smith, reported that she had been carjacked. Her two young sons, three-year-old Michael and 14-month-old Alexander, who were in the backseat of the car, had been abducted. That report set off a nine-day, nationwide search for the boys, who, along with the car and the kidnapper, seemed to have vanished.  While the world awaited word that Michael and Alex were found safe, investigators delivered news that shocked everyone. 

SUSAN SMITH: THE SHOCKING TRUTH PT. 2

For nine days, the nation awaited any news as to the whereabouts of missing boys, 3-year-Michael and 14-month-old Alex Smith.  Then a break in the case – one that would shock everyone. In a rare interview, David Smith, the father of the boys, shares his heartbreaking story of their deaths and the ultimate deception at the hands of his then-wife. And, investigators take us behind-the-scenes as they followed clues that led them to the horrifying truth. 

DREW PETERSON: KILLER CHARM

On October 28th, 2007, 23-year-old Stacy Peterson, the wife of veteran police sergeant, Drew Peterson, goes missing. As Bolingbrook, Illinois police launch an intensive search to find her, the case of the missing mother raises shocking new questions about the death of Drew Peterson’s third wife, Kathleen Savio, who died three years earlier in her bathtub and whose death was ruled an accidental drowning. In interviews with friends and family of both victims, as well as those intimately involved in the investigation, the episode reveals how in the final days before Stacy’s disappearance, she left clues that would ultimately seal her husband’s fate.

DAVID CASSIDY: FATAL SECRET

1970’s Teen Idol David Cassidy became an overnight sensation. He made it big on the hit show The Partridge Family, and with it came pop concert tours that sold out stadiums all over the world. But instant fame and shocking tragedy were too much to handle. Cassidy suddenly walked away from it all at the height of his career and turned to a dark and lonely place to numb his emotional pain. Then, after years out of the spotlight Cassidy makes a comeback. He starred on Broadway, hit the Las Vegas strip and even returned to touring. He was happiest on stage. But happiness off stage was hard to find and Cassidy was keeping gloomy secrets from everyone he loved. In the end, even his death was surrounded by mystery, leaving his family, friends and fans with more questions than answers.

THE BOMBING OF OKLAHOMA CITY: THE EXPLOSION PT. 1

On April 19, 1995, Timothy McVeigh, a 26-year-old U.S. army veteran, detonated a 7,000-pound truck bomb outside the Alfred Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, claiming the lives of 168 innocent people. We take a look back at the events that led up to the largest domestic terrorist attack in the history of the United States. Told through exclusive interviews with survivors of the bombing, first responders, FBI investigators, and Timothy McVeigh himself in extensive never-before heard audio recordings taped before his execution, this program takes you inside the mind of a terrorist to try to understand “How It Really Happened.”

THE BOMBING OF OKLAHOMA CITY: McVEIGH’S SHOCKING CONFESSION PT. 2

After Timothy McVeigh’s truck bomb claimed the lives of 168 innocent people, including 19 small children, the world was asking why. Why would a young army veteran – a man who once fought for the lives of all Americans – want to cause such unspeakable devastation? In an exclusive prison interview, Timothy McVeigh himself describes how events in his personal life – and in the ever-changing world around him – inspired him to take action against his fellow Americans? We also hear from survivors of the bombing, as well as family members of victims, who describe the full impact of that fateful day. 

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ABOUT THE SHOW

HLN’s original primetime series, “How It Really Happened with Hill Harper,” hosted by critically-acclaimed actor Hill Harper, delves deeply into some of the most notorious crimes, mysteries, trials, and celebrity tragedies of our time.

SCHEDULE

8/11 8p The Gainesville Ripper Part 1 |  9p Ripper Part 2

8/18 8p Elizabeth Smart Part 1 | 9p Smart Part 2

8/25 8p Susan Smith Part 1 | 9p Smith Part 2

9/1 8p Drew Peterson: Killer Charm

9/8 8p David Cassidy: Fatal Secret

9/15 8p Oklahoma City Bombing Part 1 | 9p Part 2