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Watch Hardcover Mysteries online: Episode 3 Sandra Brown

The body of a young man is found brutally murdered in East Texas. Investigators believe a local gang with a hateful agenda is behind the crime. Sandra Brown offers insight into this landmark hate-crime case, which inspired her book, The Witness. In a remote area outside of Tyler, TX, two teen dirt-bikers stumble upon a partially clothed man's body covered in blood lying face down in a shallow clay pit. Deputies from the Smith County Sheriff's Office rush to the scene. The victim has been beaten severely and shot several times in his torso, abdomen, hands, legs, and in the back of the head. It's clear that the young man's death was slow and extremely painful. The victim is identified as 23-year-old Nicholas West. Sheriff's Deputies contact his family. They tell police that he was a model citizen with no criminal record who was training as a medical assistant. His family and friends cannot understand who would want to harm the likeable and popular young man. Investigators believe a local gang may be responsible for the crime. Over a period of months, the gang committed a string of drive-by shootings, assaults, and robberies. They communicate only by C.B. radio, and use cryptic nicknames like "Sundance," "Sure Shot," and "Million-Dollar Man." In recent weeks, the gang has become more violent, and unveiled a hateful new agenda. Investigators believe Nicholas West was targeted because he was gay. Now, the hunt is on to catch his killers before they strike again.

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