"Be awesome and aspire to inspire others to be awesome..."
-Laura Pettler, PhD, LPI, CSCSA
Forensic Criminologist, North Carolina Licensed Private Investigator, and IAI Certified Senior Crime Scene Analyst Dr. Laura Pettler is one of the world's foremost experts in crime scene staging and domestic violence homicide. She is well known for her dynamic presentation style: With a background in show business, Laura calls her presentation style "edutainment" and believes that human connection is one of the most fundamental principles of leadership and being able to earn the respect of an audience. Additionally, Laura is known for her sheer passion for using her life to make a difference and for being a pioneer in staging research and cutting-edge homicide investigation practice. As a former District Attorney's Investigator and head of the former District Attorney's Cold Case Task Force, she is also known for her work on the 1986 cold case homicide of Harold Gentry that led to the arrest of Betty Lafon Neumar in 2008, who some call The Black Widow Granny. Until Laura discovered that the then 76-year-old grandmother had five dead husbands and a dead son, Neumar had flown under the radar for more than 50 years. Although Neumar died before she stood trial, Laura uncovered convincing information during the 2007 investigation illustrious of Neumar's involvement in at two of her husbands' deaths.
Laura authored Crime Scene Staging Dynamics in Homicide Cases, published in August 2015 by CRC Press Taylor and Francis Group, which is the first book in the world to expose the connection between staging, intimate partner homicide, and some types of unsolved murder cases. Released August 6, 2015, the book includes the significant contributions made to the field by fellow staging researchers and law enforcement professionals. The book includes discussion about victimology, suspectology, and crime scene analysis, and unveils Dr. Pettler's suggested investigatory approach, Victim-Centered Death Investigation Methodology (V.C.D.I.M.). Built upon the framework of Bloom's Taxonomy, V.C.D.I.M. is an interdisciplinary, multi-modal, empirically derived method for investigating not only potentially staged cases, but for investigation cold cases and intimate partner homicides as well.
In February 2015, Laura kicked off the Book's Promo Tour in Rome, Italy and completed 44 tour stops in 2015 worldwide. As a precursor to the book in 2014, Laura founded The Crime Scene Staging Awareness Initiative on Facebook, which now has well over 10,000 followers towards building worldwide awareness about what crime scene staging is, its related concepts, how its connected to intimate partner homicide, and why it is so important to detect staging early in a death investigation when possible. Not all murders are staged, but when they are, the red flags of staging are important to detect early in the investigation or better yet at onset rather than later in the game or after the scene is cleared.
Laura is innovative and as an inventor, Laura built the world-renowned Kaleidoscope Crime Scene Reconstruction System carried by more than 10 distinguished forensic product distributors and sold in more than 30 countries worldwide. The Kaleidoscope System is Laura's "dream reconstruction system" for field-based practice on a budget because it allows users to reconstruct bullet trajectory and bloodstain trajectories at the same time.
"Laura Pettler, a 36-year-old expert in bloodstain evidence who holds a doctorate, took the stand and took what seemed like the length of a TV Episode just to explain her expertise and background. She appeared confident, well-schooled and had Hollywood looks to boot. And while this was was not disclosed to jurors, she even has a backstory; Pettler is a former country singer." - Robert Gavin, Staff Writer, Published 12:01 am
Laura is the former Vice President of the American Investigative Society of Cold Cases and her work was also instrumental in another cold case: New York v. Mosley. This cold case was thought to be a "botched robbery", but upon complete evaluation, Laura opined the deaths of the victims were resultant of an unplanned, frenzied attack by someone they knew. Two men were charged in the case that did not match up with the evidence, specifically the DNA evidence. Their trial started, but was abruptly halted when the DNA found at the scene matched a man the couple knew and did business with named Michael Mosley. The indictments against the two original defendants were dismissed and Laura testified for the Prosecution in the case against now convicted double-murderer, Michael Mosley.
"A country-singing forensic expert is set to testify in a murder trial. Hmm...I smell a TV pilot. I wonder if CMT is ready to try a crime drama yet?"- C.M. Cox, May 22, 2011
Laura has loved music since she was a child. After performing locally for many years, Laura signed with Lamon Records and released her first all original album in 2007 Trucks R4 Girls. From performing for 15,000 at Brooklandwoods Steeplechase Race Track in Mineral Springs, North Carolina to performing at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte for sporting events along with numerous city-level functions, she also served as the emcee along her 56-stop "Trucks Tour." Laura played NASCAR's Speed Street on the Budweiser Stage and Stocks for Tots Benefit twice where on the second time she met retired bassist Mark Ledger, who used to open for ALABAMA, owner of Race City Music Group, whom she worked with until her retirement from professional music in 2009. Currently, Laura has plans for recording a handful of domestic violence themed songs to donate to charity toward raising awareness and which all proceeds will benefit domestic violence victims.
Today Laura is actively involved in the media building awareness of the importance of never giving up on cold cases, building awareness about staging and domestic violence, and is trying to use her life to make a difference.
Visit LauraPettler.com for reels, extended bio, books, and more...
Laura Pettler's Course List:
- Crime Scene Staging Courses
- Intimicide: Investigating Intimate Partner Homicides
- Cold Case: Strengthening Circumstantial Evidence
- Victim-Centered Death Investigation Methodology and Victimology Courses
- The Murder Room
- Psychology and Personality Disorder Courses
List is not current. See www.LauraPettler.com for more information
- February 28: Rome, Italy: Tour Kick Off!
- March 21: Newberry Pathology, Columbia, SC
- April 13: Stanly Sheriffs Office & Albemarle PD, Albemarle, NC
- April 16: Waxhaw-Weddington Rotary, NC
- April 23: WIS TV, Columbia, SC
- May 13: Lancaster Rotary Club, Lancaster, SC
- May 18: WPXI TV, Pittsburgh Now, Pittsburgh
- May 19: KDKA TV, Pittsburgh Today Live
- May 20: KDKA News Radio, Pittsburgh, PA
- May 20: Interview with the Beaver County Times
- May 20: Cold Case Beaver County TV Interview
- May 20: KDKA Radio 1020, Green Tree, PA
- May 27: Beaver Police Department, Beaver, PA
- June 2: The Briar Lee Mitchell Radio Show
- June 29: AISOCC Conference, St. Louis, MO
- July 21: Cold Case Beaver County
- July 22: Evidence Technology Magazine
- July: Stanly News & Press, Stanly County
- August 2: IAI, Sacramento, CA: Book Release!
- August 19-21: Beaver County DA's Office, Ambridge, PA
- August 24: Chesterfield Sheriff's Office, Chesterfield, SC
- August 25: York County Coroners, York, SC
- August 26-28: Fayetteville Police Department, Fayetteville, NC
- August 31: Statesville Police Department, Statesville, NC
- September 1: Statesville Police Department, Statesville, NC
- September 2-4: Frederick Police Department, Frederick, MD
- September 8: Wilmington Police Department, Wilmington, NC
- September 9-11: Pulaski County Sheriffs Office, Little Rock AR
- September 15-17: Hosted by CF, Monroe, NC, World-Premier Course!
- September 21: Charleston Coroner, Charleston, SC
- September 23-25: Bay County Sheriffs Office, Panama City, FL
- September 23: Channel 7 Interview, Panama City, FL
- September 24: Channel 13 Interview, Panama City, FL
- September 28: Shelby County Sheriff's Office, Memphis TN
- September 29: Lancaster Coroner, Lancaster, SC
- September 29: CN2 News, Rock Hill, SC
- September 29: The Herald, Rock Hill, SC
- September 29: The Lancaster News, Lancaster, SC
- September 30: Laurens Coroner, Laurens, SC
- October 19-22: FDIAI Presentation & Signing, St. Pete, FL
- November 4-6: Vine Grove Police Dept., Radcliff, KY
- November 16, 17, 18: Hollywood, CA, Bodega Pictures New TV Show "Murder Room" Sizzle Reel Shoot
- December 16: TV Pittsburgh Now with Chris Moore, PCNC 35 NBC Affiliate WXPI Channel 11
- December 17: The Mike Pintek Show, KDKA Radio 1020AM 2pm Slot
- January 20-22, 2016, Franklin County Sheriff's Office and One Place of the Shoals, Florence, AL
- January 20, 2016 Interview with Breken Terry Channel 9 WAAY 31 ABC Affiliate
- January 22, 2016 Interview with Tom Smith, Times Daily, Florence, AL
- February 13, 2016, Interview with Gaston Gazette, "Website Dedicated to Finding Asha Degree"
- February 29-March 2, 2016, Beaver, PA: 24-Hour Crime Scene Staging Dynamics in Homicide Cases Click for brochure
- March 2, 2016, Interview with Kate Malongowski and the Beaver County Times, "Crime Scene Staging Expert Leads Training in Beaver"
- March 15-17, 2016, Monroe, NC - Crime Scene Staging Awareness Initiative
- April 11-15, 2016, Myrtle Beach, SC: Victim-Centered Death Investigation Methodology Click for brochure
- May 3-5, 2016, Missouri City Police Department, Missouri City, TX, Crime Scene Staging Dynamics in Homicide Cases Click for brochure
- May 14, 2016: Reggio di Calabria, Italy: 4-Hour Crime Scene Staging Dynamics in Homicide Cases
- May 21, 2016: Cairo, Egypt - cancelled
- June 20-22, 2016, Missouri City Police Department, Missouri City, TX, Cold Case Investigation: Strengthening Circumstantial Evidence Click for brochure
- June 23, 2016, Myrtle Beach, SC, South Carolina Coroner's Association Conference
- July Crime Scene Staging Dynamics in Homicide Cases, Host Agency TBA coming soon!
- July 12-14, 2016, Research-Based Forensic Victimology
- August 23-25, 2016, Research-Based Forensic Victimology
- September 2016: Myrtle Beach, SC: Victim-Centered Death Investigation Methodology
- September 2016: Dom Vio Conference, Salvador, Brazil - cancelled
- October 2016: Location TBA, Statement Analysis
- October 2016: Miami, FL, FDIAI Conference
- November 2016: WAWAFE 2016 Conference, Bahamas
- December 5-7, 2016, Homicide Conference, West Palm Beach, FL
- December 12-14, 2016 Cape Coral Police Department, Cape Coral, FL
LAURA HAS APPEARED ON SEVERAL TELEVISION PROGRAMS, RADIO SHOWS, AND HAS BEEN INTERVIEWED many TIMES ABOUT FORENSICS, HOMICIDE CASES, MUSIC, AND OTHER TOPICS.
After working on a few television projects over the past two years that have not come to fruition, Laura has set her sights on True Crime TV. The ultimate goal is to work in her options open because producers are in-the-know about what show-formats might work. Laura's goal: to get out there and mesh all her skills into one in True Crime TV. She welcomes all ideas and always looks forward to screen tests of all kinds.
In early 2015, Laura screen tested for TNT's Cold Justice, but was not selected for any part of the show. In November 2015, Laura traveled to Hollywood, CA and shot a new sizzle real (mini-trailer) with Bodega Pictures and signed a six-year deal with NBC Universal for a show called "Murder Room" that was to air on USA Network. Unfortunately, as TV shows often go, the deal didn't go through and so Laura's moved on to two new projects: one for TV and one for a web series.
In 2014, Laura worked on a television project in partnership with AISOCC and Jupiter Entertainment and was cast as the potential female costar also to star AISOCC Founder and President Detective Kenneth L. Mains. The Jupiter Entertainment Team along with Ken, Laura, and the other players shot the Sizzle Reel for this show in late February 2014, but this show gained no traction in the true crime tv world.
In 2013, Laura shot a daytime TV sizzle reel with Darren Kavinoky and Star Jones with Debmar-Mercury in New York City. Laura played herself, "Dr. Laura" and assisted Star and Darren with a bloodstain pattern analysis experiment in front of a live studio audience. The show went all the way to top stake holders, but fizzled out before getting the green light.
In 2012, Laura worked with Beyond Productions to film her first interview where she finally discussed publicly the famous Betty Neumar Black Widow Granny Case for the episode Matriarchs of Murder on Discovery ID's Deadly Women.
In 2010, Laura signed a shopping agreement with Storyboard Products to pitch a potential show with the working title called "Final Analysis" about her work in the DA's Office in North Carolina, but the show gained no attention at the time.
Additionally, Laura has appeared on numerous television shows, radio shows, and has been featured in newspapers and magazines articles throughout her career. In fact, Laura was voted one of the Top 35 Newsmakers in December 2006 by The Enquirer Journal, Union County's Newspaper, Monroe, North Carolina.
Television and Radio:
- December 2015: The Mike Pintek Show, KDKA Radio 1020AM 2pm Slot
- December 2015: TV Pittsburgh Now with Chris Moore, PCNC 35 NBC Affiliate WXPI Channel 11
- November 16, 17, 18, 2015: Hollywood, CA, TV Sizzle Reel Shoot
- September 2015: CN2 News, Rock Hill, SC
- September 2015: The Herald, Rock Hill, SC
- September 2015: Channel 7 Interview, Panama City, FL
- September 2015: Channel 13 Interview, Panama City, FL
- July 2015 - Cold Case Beaver County Extra!
- June 2015 - The Briar Lee Mitchell Radio Show
- May 2015 - KDKA New Radio, Pittsburgh, PA
- May 2015 - Pittsburgh Now TV Show, WPXI, Pittsburgh, PA
- May 2015 - Pittsburgh Today Live TV Show, KDKA, Pittsburgh, PA
- April 2015 - Cold Case Special, WIS TV, Columbia, SC
- April 2015 - Interview about New Staging Book
- August 2014 - Pittsburgh Now, WPXI/PCNC Pittsburgh, PA with Chris Moore
- February 2014 - Night Talk, WPXI/PCNC Pittsburgh, PA with Ellis Cannon
- February 2014 - Sizzle Reel with Jupiter Entertainment for Cold Case Squad
- September 2013 - Sizzle for potential new daytime TV Show
- March 2012 - Deadly Women on ID with Beyond Production's and Discovery ID's
- May 2010 - News 14 Carolina, Hollywood Changes Juror's Expectations
- May 2010 - Stanly County Community College TV Show Interview
- September 2009 - Capella's Mock Crime Scene shoot
- September 2009 - Capella's Public Service Leadership shoot
- 2009 - Shopping Agreement with Storyboard Productions for Final Analysis
- July 2006 - Face to Face with Andrea Sebastyan, Comporium, Inc., Channel 14, Rock Hill, SC
- April 2006 - The Queenscup Steeplechase Singing the National Anthem
- Time-Warner Cable Channel 6, Charlotte, NC
- April 2006 - The John Schilling Show Time-Warner Cable Channel 9, Indian Trail, NC
- October 2006 - The Kool Kat Ken Show, Time-Warner Cable Channel 19, Charlotte, NC
- July 2005 - The Kool Kat Ken Show Time-Warner Cable Channel 19, Charlotte, NC
- March 2005 - The Kool Kat Ken Show, Time-Warner Cable Channel 19, Charlotte, NC
- December 2007 - The Britt Pope Show, WIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Waxhaw’s Christmas Events and Stocks for Tots
- October 2007 - The Britt Pope Show, WIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Pageland Farm Festival and Waxhaw’s Autumn Treasures
- September 2007 - The Britt Pope Show, WIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Cherry Jam Fall Festival and Italian Show 5pm
- June 2007 - The Britt Pope Show, WIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Trucks Radio Release Interview 5pm
- May 2007 - The Britt Pope Show, WIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Speed Street, Trucks CD Interview 5pm
- December 2006 - The Britt Pope Show, WIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Live in Waxhaw, National Anthem
- August 2005 - The Brit Pope ShowWIXI 1190 AM, Monroe, NC—Interview
- Security and Justice Magazine, Rome Italy, December 2016
- Forensic Magazine, December 2016
- The Beaver County Times, "Crime Scene Staging Expert Leads Training in Beaver"
- The Lancaster News, Lancaster, SC "Uncovering Truth"
- Evidence Technology Magazine New Book Feature "Crime Scene Staging Dynamics in Homicide Cases"
- Beaver County Times Feature Article: "A path of her own: from young mom to forensic criminologist"
- The Stanly News and Press, "Monroe resident to heighten awareness of cold cases with new book, and music"
- Criminologist: Killer of sisters was an "organized planner, "Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
- Cue the Music, She Solved the Crime. Fort Mill Times, Fort Mill, SC
- Hollywood changes juror's expectations, News Channel 14 Carolina
- Investigator Pettler achieves IAI Certification
- South Students Learn About Crime Scene Investigations
- District Attorney's Office Receives New Crime Scene Equipment
- Prosecutors hope 'CSI Effect' helps them
- Star witness takes the stand in Mosley murder trial
- Expert: Killings appeared 'sloppy'
- Defense attorney Terence Kindlon tries to poke holes in Laura Pettler's crime scene theories
- Dispelling the Myths of TV Crime Scenes
- Forensic Profile: Private Forensic Consulting, Featured in Forensic Magazine
- Acknowledgement in Career Opportunities in Forensic Science
- YSU Career Day: Female Role Models: You Can Do It!
- Forensics Class Gets Hands-On Demonstration from Bloodstain Pattern Expert
- Learning about real-life crime scenes, TV and article Channel 14 News
- Gemma Turns CSI
- The ABC's of Online Education, Featured in Officer Magazine
- Fascination with Unsolved Mysteries prompts PA Detective to start national group
- Oakboro Officer Receives CSI AwardInvestigator to step down with new D.A., Richmond Daily Journal
- College approves forensic program, Richmond Daily Journal
- CSI: Not just for television, Richmond Daily Journal
- DA's Investigator wins two educational awards, Richmond Daily Journal
- RCC Forensics Course Earns Applause from Participants, Richmond Daily Journal
- Forensic Group formed to Represent the Carolinas, Richmond Daily Journal
- Area Lawmen Get Some Tips of Crime Scene Investigations, Richmond Daily JournalGroups Team Up to Bolster Crime Investigations, Richmond Daily Journal
- Crime Analyst Earns Top Certification, Richmond Daily Journal
- TV Programs Distort Reality, Richmond Daily Journal
- Intern Sets High Goals, Richmond Daily Journal
- DA Has Full Staff, Little Space, Richmond Daily Journal
- Kriminal Teknik
- July 2008 - The Charlotte Observer
- July 2008 - The Waxhaw Gazette
- Jan 2008 - The Charlotte Observer "Keep an eye—And an ear out—for Laura Pettler"
- Dec 2007 - The Waxhaw Gazette "After Waxhaw, Laura moves on to perform a charity appearance at Stocks for Tots"
- Dec 2007 - The Enquirer Journal
- May 2007 - The County Edge "Pettler to Sing at Speed Street"
- May 2007 - The Charlotte Observer "A Festival of Speed and Song"
- December 2006 - The Enquirer Journal "Top 35 Newsmakers of 2006—The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
- October 2006 - The Enquirer Journal “Country Music Video to be filmed in Waxhaw”
- October 2006 - The County Edge “Local Musician to film music video in Waxhaw”
- October 2006 - The Village News “Resident Laura Pettler Earns Record Deal”
- September 2006 - The Enquirer Journal “Waxhaw’s Pettler signs record deal”
- February 2006 - The Union Observer “Local Band getting notice on website”
- February 2006 - The Enquirer Journal “Waxhaw Singer, Band watch song climb country charts”
- January 2006 - The Fort Mill Times “Cue the Music, She solved the Crime”
- November 2001 - The Enquirer Journal “A will to succeed.”