True Crime Book Watch!
Nov. 24, 1997, at 6:42 AM, a call to 911, placed by a mother reported her 5 month old infant, Sabrina, was missing. Marlene Aisenberg claimed she and her husband, Steve put the infant in her crib at 11 o'clock the prior evening and awoke the next morning to find an empty crib.
A garage door was left open, but the family dog, Brownie, never barked. There was no evidence of an intruder.
A massive search was immediately launched surrounding the infant's home and neighborhood.
After the parents were interviewed by law enforcement they decided to hire an attorney and refused to cooperate further, instead they made a media tour appearing on a host of national television shows to gain Support for their allegedly missing baby. They were critical of law enforcement. People within their community were beginning to suspect the parents..
The family home was tapped by law enforcement as part of their investigation.
Indictments against the parents were announced Thursday afternoon in Tampa by US Attorney Charles Wilson. The indictment claims the parents admitting to obstructing justice and responsibility for the death and cover up of young Sabrina.
There are two other children remaining in the home, a girl 4 and a boy 8 at the time of Sabrina's disappearance.
In February 2001, all charges against the Aisenbergs were dropped. US District ending the 18-month prosecution of Steven and Marlene Aisenberg.
Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) appointed a special prosecutor to investigate the conduct of the two Hillsborough County, Fla., sheriff's detectives who first investigated the case and focused on the baby's parents. Stephen Kunz, was demoted and stripped of his supervisory responsibilities, shortly thereafter. His partner, Rachelle DesVaux Bedke, Federal Attorney, has been transferred to a different department. The two are being investigated by the Justice Department.
Sabrina has not been seen or heard from since Nov. 24, 1997. It's been seven years since the 5-month-old baby seemingly vanished.
Kidnapped, murdered -- what happened to Sabrina Aisenberg? Her parents say they don't know. Some people still don't believe them. Marlene and Steve Aisenberg speak out in a rare interview about their fight to find their daughter and free themselves from suspicion that won't go away.
5-month-old disappears from crib -- "This morning, someone came into our house and took our baby, Sabrina Paige, out of her crib, out of our home,'' Aisenberg said with a trembling voice and tears in her eyes. ""I'm begging that person to please bring our baby back to us. We miss her and love her very much,'' she said. "Please bring her home to her family.''
Friends and neighbors visited the home of Steve and Marlene Aisenberg, bringing with them cards, food and hope that the couple's 5-month-old daughter will be found unharmed.
Rachelle DesVaux Bedke, US Attorney's Office, Tampa, will move to the economic crimes division immediately. The transfer comes less than two weeks after Bedke's partner on the Sabrina Aisenberg case, Stephen Kunz, was demoted and stripped of his supervisory responsibilities. Kunz had been deputy chief of the office's criminal division for seven years. The two are being investigated by the Justice Department.
From the moment the Aisenbergs were charged until the moment US District Judge Steven Merryday unceremoniously tossed the case with about the same distaste as an exterminator removing a dead rat from the attic, the predicate for indicting the parents had been based entirely on a series of electronic bugs placed in the couple's home, purporting to contain incriminating statements about their role in the disappearance.
Sheriff's Col. Jose Docobo drew the short straw to try explaining the inexplicable: How the two lead detectives in the missing Sabrina Aisenberg case, who lied under oath, fabricated evidence, obstructed justice, misled judges and otherwise turned the investigation into an embarrassing chapter of law enforcement malfeasance, duplicity and
ineptitude, would not be disciplined. Oh sure, Detectives Linda Burton and William Blake, the bobblehead twins of befuddlement, will receive letters of reprimand.
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