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At the Desk of: Jessica de Vera, Producer

by Juliet Muir /

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Jessica de Vera is a producer on this Monday's all-new episode with Dennis Murphy, The Figure in the Garage. We sat down with her to get the inside scoop. (Jessica's responses have been edited for time and clarity.)

Dateline: We know you’re one of the producers of this Monday’s Dateline. We have a few questions. How did you get to work on the case in this Monday’s report?

Jessica: I inherited this story about two months ago from another Dateline producer who was busy on another case.

Dateline: Without giving anything away, tell us a bit about the story.

Jessica: It’s a story about a beloved, single dad who wanted to create the best life for his youngest daughter. By all accounts he did, until one winter night in 2016 when that perfect father-daughter relationship was completely destroyed… forever.

Dateline: What was the most unusual location you filmed at for this episode?

Jessica: We shot a couple of our interviews at a space called Tortuga Gallery – a community art gallery – located in a residential area of Albuquerque, New Mexico. The owners told us that it was built around the 1880s as a general store for the neighborhood. Today local artists, musicians -- and now Dateline -- use it as an open space that can be tailored to meet individual needs.

Dateline: What is the one clue we should be on the lookout for?

Jessica: The biggest clue is in the title of the episode…

Dateline:What’s the best thing about working on a story with Dennis Murphy?

Jessica: This was my first time meeting and working with Dennis Murphy. And he’s an absolute gem. Everything that I had heard about him over the years is true: He’s a great journalist and storyteller. But I have to say that the best thing about working with Dennis is -- that he enjoys food like I do. The goal every night after a long day of filming, was to find the best meal in town. (Dennis, where is our next assignment!?)

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