For years, former prosecutor Curtis Lovelace lived under a cloud of suspicion as the sole killer in the Valentine’s Day death of his former wife, Cory Didriksen Lovelace. But now, a jury has found Lovelace not guilty of killing his wife. The former football star will give a first-time interview talking about the case on 48 Hours tonight. In addition to Curtis Lovelace, CBS 48 Hours correspondent, Maureen Maher, will interview a pathologist who believes that Cory Didriksen Lovelace was murdered. Police detectives who investigated the case will also give their thoughts.
On CBS 48 Hours episode “Death On Valentine’s Day”: Was It Murder?
On February 14, 2006, detectives arrived at the home of Cory Lovelace, a 39-year-old housewife who was found dead in her bed in Quincy, Illinois. According to detectives, when police were summoned to the scene, Curtis Lovelace told them that he had returned home to find his wife dead. He also claimed that he had no idea how it happened but insisted that his wife was very much alive when he left the house.
A preview of CBS 48 Hours shows that the position of Cory Lovelace’s body was particularly peculiar. She was lying in an upright position with her hands in front of her. At least one arm was partially suspended in mid-air.
Drawing of Cory Lovelace by Bill Beard...shown on 48 Hours pic.twitter.com/OHA9hsl7En— Lori Beard (@Monkeyheadmaker) February 21, 2016
Cory Didriksen Lovelace’s death was ruled undetermined and the case was closed shut.
Curtis Lovelace moved on with his life, marrying two other women, before another investigator took a crack at the case almost a decade later. Law enforcement investigators discovered that the Lovelaces were college sweethearts, and that Curtis Lovelace was once a popular football player who played on the offensive line. But instead of playing offense, Curtis Lovelace found himself on the defense after a detective decided Cory Lovelace had been murdered, and that she had most likely been killed by her husband. With those new allegations, Curtis Lovelace was later arrested and charged with his wife’s death.
But was it a murder? On CBS 48 Hours, one pathologist believes that it was. In the interview with Maureen Maher, the pathologist explains that the body was discovered in an unnatural position, indicating that something was between Cory Lovelace’s chest and her arms. According to her, that something could have been a pillow that was used to smother her to death.
There was also speculation that this was not a Valentine’s Day murder at all–but a natural death allegedly caused by years of alcohol abuse, which resulted in a fatty liver. Curtis Lovelace will tell 48 Hours that Cory Lovelace was an alcoholic, which caused problems in the marriage and kept the household upset.
A former neighbor reported hearing Cory Lovelace scream all the time, according to a report by Quincy Herald Whig. But Curtis Lovelace insisted that his wife loved her children and tried to be a good mother to them.
His former mother-in-law, Marty Didriksen, said that on the day her daughter died, Curtis Lovelace brought the children to her home and then casually told her that Cory was no longer alive. Below is the following statement Lovelace made to Marty Didriksen, Herald Whig reports.
“Oh, by the way, Cory is dead.”
A trial in 2016 ended in a mistrial for Curtis Lovelace. But just last week, a jury found him not guilty in the death of Cory Didriksen Lovelace, the Chicago Tribune reported.
The formerly accused husband tells 48 Hours that it was difficult knowing that he was innocent while spending time in jail for something he didn’t do. Curtis Lovelace also makes it clear that he could never kill the mother of his children, and that no crime ever happened.
You can view Cory Didriksen Lovelace’s obituary here.
Tune into 48 Hours tonight to follow the details in the case. Then you decide. Was Cory’s death a murder?
[Featured Image by Jim Suhr/AP Images]