CBS 48 Hour Mystery to Feature “The Curious Case of Col. Shue”
BOERNE, TEXAS On Saturday, April 18, 2009, 10:00 pm EST, CBS will broadcast a 48 Hours Mystery detailing the case of Colonel Philip Michael Shue of Boerne, Texas who was killed in a car crash almost exactly six years ago.
Col. Philip Shue died of massive head injuries in a car crash on April 16, 2003. Examination of his body revealed duct tape wrapped around his wrists and his pants where they met the top of his boots; his nipples and areolas had been excised; the first knuckle of his left pinkie finger was missing; and a deep gash was carved from his sternum to his navel. His wallet, dog tags, and medical records were also missing and have never been found.
The Bexar County Medical Examiner, the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, and Kendall County Justice of the Peace Nancy White all ruled that Shue’s death was a suicide. In Texas a suicide is defined as “a series of events put into motion by an individual, regardless of intent, that lead to that person’s death.” Even if Shue did not intend to kill himself, Texas law forces the classification of his death to be suicide.
Prior to his death, Shue had allegedly received threatening letters warning him that his ex-wife and her new husband were planning to murder him for life insurance. Despite the threats, the life insurance company asserted that they had no duty to cancel the policy.
On June 18, a Kendall County Judge, Bill Palmer, ruled that the cause of Air Force Colonel Philip Shue’s death was murder and that USAA, the insurance company that issued the $500,000.00 policy, had no duty to cancel it in spite of the alleged threats against Shue’s life.
Palmer issued an order instructing the Texas Department of Vital Statistics to change the manner of death on Shue’s death certificate from suicide to homicide. TDVS refused to comply with the Judge’s order and the legality of the Judge’s ruling is now being decided by the Texas Attorney General’s Office.
Lieutenant Louis Martinez, a spokesman for the Kendall County Sheriff’s Department, earlier stated that unless new evidence was provided, the Sheriff’s Department had no plans to re-open the case. Martinez also said that “This was a civil case, not a criminal one. The medical examiner and the Grand Jury decided a long time ago that this was a suicide. The ruling in a civil case is different than a criminal one.”
Anita and John Porterfield are writing a book about the case. If anyone has any relevant information, please contact Anita Porterfield through NowPublic.
The trailer for the CBS 48 Hours Mystery can be found at http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/03/26/48hours/main4894504.shtml?source=search_story.