March 27, 2020
ABC NEWS PRESENTS TWO-HOUR ’20/20’ ON THE DEATH OF 19-YEAR-OLD SARAH STERN, WHOSE CHILDHOOD FRIEND WAS FOUND GUILTY OF HER MURDER
‘20/20’ Airs Friday, March 27 (9:00 – 11:00 p.m. EDT), on ABC
Liam McAtasney was found guilty of killing his childhood friend, 19-year-old Sarah Stern, a spirited young woman whose car was mysteriously found atop a bridge that connects Neptune City and Belmar, New Jersey, in December 2016. “20/20” presents a two-hour program on her tragic death and co-anchor Amy Robach visits the bridge where Sarah’s abandoned car was found with Michael Stern, Sarah’s father. “20/20” airs Friday, March 27 (9:00 – 11:00 p.m. EDT), on ABC.
“20/20” features interviews with Carlos Diaz-Cobo, Liam’s defense attorney; TJ Pingitore and David Kayal, rideshare drivers who came across Sarah’s abandoned car the night of her disappearance and called police; Christopher Gramiccioni, Monmouth County Prosecutor; Chris Decker and Meghan Doyle, prosecutors on the case; Brian Weisbrot and Nicholas Cattelona, detectives on the case; and Belinda Souza, Sarah’s childhood friend. The program includes hidden camera video of Liam’s confession, 9-1-1 calls, police dashboard camera video, interrogation tapes and video of Preston Taylor, close friend of Sarah, when he pleaded guilty to his role in Sarah’s disappearance.
After Sarah’s abandoned car was discovered, the community – including two of her closest friends, Liam and Preston – searched far and wide for Sarah. Did she jump to her death? That was a burning question haunting police until a shocking development cracked open the case to reveal a sinister murder plot. Sarah’s classmate, Anthony Curry, an amateur horror filmmaker, recalled Liam’s pitching him a movie idea about two guys who rob and kill their friend by throwing her body over a bridge. The similarities between the pitch and Sarah’s disappearance days later raised red flags to Anthony and he went to the police with the information. Law enforcement then secretly bugged Anthony’s car, recording Liam’s confessing to the crimes.
Preston accepted a plea deal and pleaded guilty to six counts including first-degree robbery and second-degree disturbing or desecrating human remains, and received 18 years in prison. Preston admitted to helping Liam dispose of Sarah’s body after he claims Liam offered him $3,000 from the $10,000 he stole from Sarah, an inheritance from her late mother. Liam was found guilty of first-degree murder and other charges, and received life in prison without parole. Authorities have still not recovered Sarah’s body, but the search continues. (Rebroadcast. ABC OAD: 3/1/19)
“20/20” is anchored by David Muir and Amy Robach. David Sloan is senior executive producer.
ABC News Media Relations
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