Monday, February 11, 2013

The Morrison Murders True Story

Synopsis: When a family tragedy unfolds in a small town, a local cop suspects the son may know more about the crime.

The Morrison Murders: Based on a True Story is a 1996 made for tv movie that is based on the Culverhouse case of Ariton, Alabama. 

Brief Timeline in the Culverhouse Murders of Ariton, Alabama near Ozark
By Traciy Curry-Reyes

Between Monday Sept 5, 1988 and Tuesday Sept 6, 1988
The police receive a phone call of bodies found at a home at Mcgee Rd Dale County Rd19 Rt 2, Ariton, Alabama near Ozark, Alabama in Dale County. The house sits more than 300 feet from the road. Upon arrival the police find Tullie Robert Culverhouse, Nina JoCulverhouse, and Obie Lee Culverhouse lifeless in their home.

 The Scene

Tullie Robert Culverhouse is 47 years old. His body is found in the hallway with (gs) wounds to the thigh, lower back, and the side of the temple.

Nina Jo Culverhouse is 45 years old. Her body is found in her master bedroom. There is a (gs) blast to the door of her bedroom, as well as to the arm, leg, and neck.

Obie Lee Culverhouse is19 years old. He is found in his bed with a shot in the back of his neck.

Photos and videos are taken of the scene. In the basement the police find evidence of a total of 10 shots. The suspect had picked up as many shells as he could. There is no arrest made in the case due to lack of evidence. The case goes cold for the next 4 years.

Saturday, September 14, 1988
The Culverhouse family is laid to rest. The services takes place at the Center Ridge Baptist Church.

February 1993 The Arrest
Jason Culverhouse who has not been in contact with his brother since the crime, calls his brother Robin Culverhouse out of the blue. The two talk about the trucking business, and the financial difficulties that he is having. Robin has always suspected that his brother Jason had something to do with it. He calls the police to talk to police about the conversation that he had with Jason. The police have Robin set up 2 meetings with Jason to see if he will confess. The police school Robin on what to say to his brother to get him to open up. At the first meeting, Jason seems to sense something, and denies being involved in any way. But, at the second meeting he makes his brother prove that he isn't wired. The wire is in his hat. It is the only place that his brother doesn't check. When he does not find a recorder he speaks more freely, and he eventually confesses to harming his parents. The police have the confession recorded.

March 1993 the Confession
Jason Hunter Culverhouse is arrested in Oklahoma City, Ok at a truck stop. Then he is returned to Alabama. He is 23 years old.  He confesses to the police and puts it in writing. He is then indicted on 3 counts of capital murder. There is no motive given. In part, the confession indicates that after leaving his girlfriend Amy's home, he drove to the home of his parents. He entered through a sliding door made of glass, went to the basement to retrieve the (g-n), then headed up stairs where he took the phone off of the hook. His first stop was his brother's bedroom. He entered the bedroom and shoots the brother. He then entered his parents room and shoots both his mother and his father. His father gets up and runs after him into the hallway where Jason shot him 2 more times until he collapsed. While Jason is in the hallway, his mother stumbles to the door and locks it, then picks up the phone to call 911. When Jason finds the door locked, he shoots the door to the master bedroom open, he keeps shooting until his mother falls to the floor.

At Trial
The jurors and the family members have a hard time listening to the details of the scene and the details of the confession. Jason sits at the defense table motionless, not looking at anyone, not showing any emotion until the prosecution details how he blasted the door open to shoot his own mother. Jason then puts his head down on the defense table. He is sentenced to life without parole in May 1993.

Extra Tidbits
The Culverhouse name is well known in Ariton, Alabama. They are farmers. Some of the family members still own and run trucking businesses to this day.

There are photos of their resting place at Findagrave

Jason Hunter Culverhouse has a son. He also married several years back. Those who see him regularly say that he has changed his life while serving time. He is housed at St. Clair County Correctional Facility in Springville, Alabama.

Someone in the family sold the rights to the story to movie producers.

1 comment:

  1. I've heard of a rumor about Culverhouse during school...I just can't believe this happened so close to home.