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Book details
  • Genre:TRUE CRIME
  • SubGenre:Murder / General
  • Language:English
  • Pages:500
  • eBook ISBN:9781543928686
  • Paperback ISBN:9781543928679

Reasonable Doubt

A Shocking Story of Lust and Murder in the American Heartland

by Steve Vogel

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A mother and her three young children are found hacked to death in their beds. The apparent weapons, an ax and butcher knife, are found nearby. A month later the husband and father, who was away on a business trip when the bodies were found, is accused of the killings. Police believe he methodically murdered his wife and children before he left. But why? A successful businessman and devoted member of a fundamentalist religious group, David Hendricks has the total support of his extended family. Police paint a darker picture, and prosecutors face the daunting task of convicting him on a case based on completely circumstantial evidence. A New York Times best-seller, this book has now been updated with additional content and photos. Readers often comment they must continually remind themselves that this story is real, that "Reasonable Doubt" is testament to the fact truth is stranger than fiction. The book has also been used in college-level criminal justice courses to explain and illustrate the legal concept of reasonable doubt.


This book became part of the St. Martin's Press "True Crimes Classics" library three years after it was first published.  The New York Times said Reasonable Doubt succeeded in making readers feel like they were members of the jury and called it a "gripping account of the murders and, especially, the investigation and trial that followed."  The Chicago Tribune called it "a dispassionate examination of the Hendricks family murders," and said it was a "well-reported" and "fast-paced account."  In the spring of 2018, an hour-long report on the case led off the Investigation Discovery Network's new season of "Homicide," and included an interview with Reasonable Doubt's author, Steve Vogel.  The program has repeated showings on the ID, TLC and Oprah Winfrey (OWN) networks. 

About the author

Steve Vogel is a veteran print and broadcast journalist, columnist and talk show host who covered every minute of the original trial described in Reasonable Doubt. With a B.A. from Illinois Wesleyan University and a master's degree from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, he appeared on the American Forces Radio Network in Europe and later did commentaries on the Voice of America. His career has spanned print and broadcast news, radio programming, corporate communications and newspaper column writing.  

Interesting audio relating to the Hendricks case is available at the author's website:  www.stevevogelauthor.com. 

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