On Friday’s “Dateline,” a hunting safari in Zambia ends in a nightmare when a shot rings out from the cabin of dentist Dr. Larry Rudolph and his wife Bianca.
The two-hour broadcast features new details, including never-before-heard jail phone recordings between key players in the story.
Here is a preview of Andrea Canning’s report:
It was September; prime season for hunting. The Rudolphs got a hunting permit, which is only legal in some sections of Kafue National Park. The rest of the park is set aside for wildlife conservation. They hoped to bring home a leopard.
But on this safari, only Bianca would be hunting. Larry was just there to assist and observe. Over the course of two weeks, Bianca and Larry scoured the massive Park in search of that elusive leopard.
Godfrey Necube was the camp manager who maintained the Rudolph’s cabin and got to know them.
GODFREY NECUBE: They were a good couple, very humble, especially with Bianca.
ANDREA CANNING: Did she seem happy to be out here in the wilderness?
GODFREY NECUBE: She looked happy, cheerful.
But the hunting wasn’t so good. As the safari stretched into October, Bianca’s dream of bagging her prized leopard faded.
Just before dawn on a cool clear October morning, the Rudolphs were up early packing for the long flight home Godfrey was waiting near the cabin to say goodbye when suddenly he heard an unmistakable sound echo across the camp.
GODFREY NECUBE: We heard the gun bang and a yelling voice, “Yaaah.”
The six-year murder investigation that spanned multiple continents on “Dateline,” Friday at 9 p.m. on NBC4.
“Dateline NBC” is the longest-running series in NBC primetime history and is in its 31st season. Dateline is anchored by Lester Holt and features correspondents Andrea Canning, Josh Mankiewicz, Natalie Morales, Keith Morrison and Dennis Murphy.
Dateline is the #1 Friday newsmagazine and reaches more than 17 million people every week through its broadcast, and millions more through its social media platforms and podcasts.
The stories range from compelling mysteries to powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations. When major news breaks, they go to the scene, putting the pieces together to bring the viewer the full picture. And in every story they tell, they help the real people who lived the events share their journeys with the viewer.