Dateline   |  July 26, 2013

'Mystery at Ascot Estates,' Part 1

The gracious home of a well-liked South Carolina couple becomes the scene of a double homicide.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> life seems to move just a little slower in south carolina . afternoons in columbia can be spent on the meandering saluter river or nearby lake murray and tucked away inside this capital city is ascot estates where old southern charm mingles with new money. not much in the way of drama here. until april 2012 , friday the 13th when something sinister happen happened.

>> i immediately turned on the news and saw there was a double murder .

>> totally confused because there is no way of knowing for sure what's going on.

>> it was my husband who called me and said, something terrible had happened. and i said, what happened?

>> what happened would become the center of a mystery, a whodunit that began with a frantic 911 call.

>> who shot your wife?

>> a friend of mine , bryan.

>> is he still there?

>> the call came from a most unusual place, the gracious home of well-liked husband and wife brett and tammy parker. the parkers were a golden couple. each with their own special gifts. tammy was raised in a small town near columbia but left to go into sales where she was immediately successful. best friend angela leon.

>> i think it's hard not to have loved tammy . these vibrant and outgoing and full of life. full of energy. always positive.

>> did she turn head.

>> tammy was the kind of person she didn't notice she was turning heads.

>> during one of tammy 's sales calls 15 years ago she med columbia businessman ben staples. they became close friends .

>> could tammy sell anything.

>> she could sell anything. it's just her personality. everyone liked her.

>> and tammy had something else that set her apart. talent. i was petrified

>> i can't really exactly remember the first time i heard her sing but i was amazed at how great she was. so you're back

>> tammy sang with a local band. jump-start. woody woodward was lead guitarist and one of her biggest fans.

>> gifts, somebody gives you that from above. i will survive hey hey

>> friends thought she could take her talent big time but tammy seemed happy to remain in columbia . one of her gigs was at her friend ben staples' annual barbecue.

>> is this tammy 's stage.

>> yes, she enjoyed it. tammy was an entertainer. she just didn't stand up there and sing.

>> along the way in 1996 , tammy met and married a local boy, brett parker. a medical supply salesman. he had been a star athlete in high school . his aunt, sandra hunter says he was always throwing some kind of ball.

>> he played football and softball and baseball and he was an all-american kid.

>> an injury sidelined any thoughts of a career in professional sports so brett took up amateur softball. that's how he met one of his closest friends howdy bear.

>> no doubt brett was one of the best softball players i ever played with.

>> when tammy came into the picture bear knew his friend had found his match.

>> tammy , she was just precious and i never forget that but i knew they was going to get married. it was just a matter of time.

>> howdy and his wife tagged along to her singing gigs and saw a lucky man in love.

>> they were fun to be around. no doubt in my mind he loved her.

>> both tammy 's friends and brett a family agreed. the couple just clicked.

>> did they seem like a good fit.

>> they seemed to do well together. they seemed to have some of the same, you know, dreams an ambition sdmrgs did you like tammy .

>> oh, i loved her.

>> they had two children born eight years apart and in the spring of 2012 , the family in upstale ascot estates appeared to be living a charmed existence. then came the afternoon of april 13th and that call to 911. it was brett parker.

>> get somebody over here.

>> okay, i need you to stay on the phone with me, okay?

>> tammy was dead and there was more. someone else laid dead in that house. it was a double murder , a cold-blooded crime that would look more chilling with each new detail.