True Crime: How Scott Peterson’s affair killed his marriage, his wife.


Staff Writer Grace Campbell dives into the horrific crimes of Scott Peterson, exploring the affairs and murder that tainted his seemingly perfect marriage.

Grace Campbell, Staff Writer

The Petersons seemed to live a picture perfect life, until one day, something changed. The truth was finally revealed. 

Laci Peterson was born in Modesto, California. She was described as a happy, go lucky, upbeat and fun girl. She went to college at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in California, and this is where she met Scott Peterson, her future husband. They started dating after meeting at a restaurant where Scott worked, and everyone said it was love at first sight. They got married on Aug. 9, 1997, and moved back to Modesto so they could start a family. They seemed to have a picture perfect life. 

However, that all changed on Dec. 24, 2002, when 27-year-old Laci went missing. Scott claimed that morning Laci had planned on walking the dog, and then going to the grocery store like an ordinary day. And Scott said he went fishing instead of going with his wife. 

When he got home from the lake, he realized Laci was missing, yet their dog was at home even though she said earlier she would take him with her. He assumed maybe she was just out of the house, but hours later with no word from her, he decided to call her parents to see if they knew where she was. He started the call by saying “Laci is missing,” instantly throwing her family into a frenzy. After hanging up with Scott, Laci’s mom immediately called the police. 

The police started their investigation but had no leads. Her keys were in the house and her car was clean, which led them to take Scott in for questioning. At that point, however, he wasn’t brought in as a suspect, but just to help their investigation. Throughout his interview he had no emotion and didn’t seem in distress about his missing wife, who, might I add, was eight months pregnant. This made the police extremely suspicious, and with no other suspects, he became their lead suspect.

Because of their “picture perfect” status, Laci’s friends and family stood behind Scott, confident he could never do something like this despite his odd behavior. Needless to say, that changed when they got a call from a woman named Amber Frey who claimed to be dating Scott. The police rushed to her house for an interview, where they found numerous pictures of the two as a couple and confirmed her story. 

Scott had lied to Frey about his marital status, and Frey didn’t even know who Laci was until the investigation went public. Now, here comes the most chilling part: Frey claims that two weeks prior to Laci’s disappearance, Scott came to her crying, saying he lied and he was once married, but this was going to be his first Christmas without her. EWWW. 

After hearing this, the police set up a plan with Frey to start recording her conversations with Scott. They talked on the phone every day and after hearing Scott lie to Frey multiple times about his whereabouts and what he was doing, the police knew he was their guy. 

On Jan. 24, 2003, the police held a press conference where Frey came forward about their relationship, and it was now clear to everyone that Scott was guilty. When they heard, Laci’s parents cried.“Why did he have to kill her?” they cried out while still at the police station. At this point the story had spread nationwide and Scott was one of the most hated men in America.

At this point, the police changed their investigation from a kidnapping to a homicide. And on April 13, 2003, the body of a male fetus washed up on the shore of San Francisco Bay. A day later, the remains of an adult female washed up. Shortly, after the bodies were confirmed to be Laci and her unborn son. Their bodies were completely abused and upon seeing this, the police went on a search for Scott. 

The police found him from a tracking device in his car, and with him found $15,000, camping materials, snorkeling gear, his brother’s license and a knife; all the things someone would need to just disappear. He was arrested on the spot and charged with two accounts of first degree murder with the special circumstance of a double homicide. 

On June 4, 2004, Scott’s trial started and he pleaded not guilty. It was said that during the trial, there was not a dry eye in the room. Everyone was crying due to the horrific facts of the case, except for Scott himself. On Nov. 12, 2004, he was convicted, and on March 16, 2005, Scott was officially sentenced to death by lethal injection. Scott Peterson was on death row for many years, but just recently on Aug. 24, 2020, his death sentence was overturned, and he will serve the rest of his life in prison.