Real Name: Michael Emert
Nicknames: Mike Emert
Location: Seattle, Washington
Date: January 4, 2001
Details: Mike and Mary Beth Emert were prosperous partners in Seattle-area real estate and had been married for several years. They lived in Redmond, Washington, and seemed to have the perfect life, but all that changed on January 4, 2001 when he went to meet a man named Steven who was interested in buying a house that he had shown him the previous day. He met with him at a local mall at around 11:30am that day, and they then went to the home in Woodinville that he had shown him the day before. It was in its own private lot, far away from neighboring houses.
At 12:30pm, its owner returned from work to have lunch and when she entered the garage, she was alarmed to find the front door ajar, then the sound of running water upstairs. She found a trail of blood that led to the bathroom, where she found Mike brutally murdered, stabbed 19 times, and his body in the bathtub with the shower running. The police discovered the crime had been meticulously planned, as the house was far away from any other homes, and that Steven may have been hired to kill him, with his handicap merely as a ruse, which would explain how a "crippled" man would be able to take him down.
Investigators believe that the cane he had might have had a knife in one part of it which killed Mike. Investigators also believe that the shower and sinks were left running to get rid of evidence and for the killer to get rid of evidence on his hands. Robbery was ruled out as a motive, and police believed that he had been murdered by a professional hitman, but the one question they were never able to answer was who would hire a hitman to kill him, who was not a threat to anyone. Mary Beth and all of his co-workers were eliminated as suspects, and no motive for the crime has ever been identified. A $5,000 reward is being offered in the case.
Suspects: Police believe the home buyer that Mike met with named Steven was the killer. He was a man in his 50s, who carried a cane and spoke in an East coast accent, and claimed to have been relocating from Northern California. Some believe that the cane was a ruse and possibly the murder weapon. Police believe he picked the house because of its secluded location. He has never been identified.
Extra Notes: This case first aired on the September 12, 2001 episode.
Jack Brown of Ypsilanti, Michigan is another murdered real estate salesman.
Results: Unresolved. In May 2011, DNA found at and near the crime scene was linked to 62 year old former police officer Gary Krueger . However, he had died several months earlier, and his motive for the crime is still a mystery. Krueger is also the prime suspect in the three previously unsolved murders of Mario Vaccarino, Jim Barry and Cheryl Grose at least. These circumstances imply Krueger may have been hired as a hitman, but who hired him if anyone is unknown.
Another theory is that the murder was real estate related. After retiring as a police officer, Krueger worked a short time as a real estate agent. One of his other possible victims, Jim Barry, was a real estate attorney. Krueger's crime partner, John Alan Bradshaw, had previously been convicted of arson and money laundering.
- Mike's case on Unsolved.com
- Tips still sought in 2001 slaying
- Man reportedly linked to killing
- Recent murder rekindles unsolved Puget Sound case
- Mike Emert - True Crime Diary
- Mike Emert at Find a Grave,