Television show set to air detailing Aiken woman’s murder in 1969 riots in Pennsylvania
The cable network channel Investigation Discovery announced an upcoming unsolved crime episode that has an Aiken connection.
The show will air Monday as part of the series “People Magazine Investigates” on the ID channel at 10 p.m.
The episode will examine the circumstances that led to the untimely deaths of Lillie Belle Allen, of Aiken, and York City Police Officer Henry Schaad, a 22-year-old policeman who was fatally wounded while inside an armored vehicle on July 18, 1969, according to a press release.
The title of the episode is “Murder on Newberry St.,” the release states.
The network states the show will cover the story of Allen, a 27-year-old divorced mother-of-two who would drive her children and her parents from their home in Aiken to York, Pennsylvania, to visit family and friends before heading to New York. However, the annual visit turned into a tragedy in the summer of 1969 when they found themselves in the middle of citywide riots in York erupting from long-simmering racial tensions.
On the day of Allen’s killing, her children Debra, 11, and Michael, 9, waited at home, while she and her family drove to the store to pick up supplies for their upcoming road trip. The quick trip went sour, though as they took a wrong turn and found themselves surrounded by white men with loaded guns.
The show will feature interviews with people who knew Allen personally, including her son Michael, now 59.
Schaad was shot and killed a few days before Allen, and it took years before investigators determined the two deaths were connected.
For three decades, Allen’s and Schaad’s killings would remain unsolved, becoming a part of the bleakest moment in the city’s history, according to a release.
Then, in 1999, a York newspaper reporter working on a story about the 30th anniversary of the riots began looking into the cases, prompting investigators to reopen them, the release states.
After years of not knowing the truth, findings from the police investigations gave the families of Allen and Schaad answers at long last.