On Friday, April 15 at 9 p.m. ET, "Dateline" will release a new episode looking into the Betsy Faria murder case, which is depicted in “The Thing About Pam.” Fittingly, the episode will be called "The Real Thing About Pam."
“The Thing About Pam,” the true crime limited series that finished airing on NBC Tuesday night, follows the story of Pam Hupp and three suspicious deaths that took place after she was the last person known to have seen them alive.
The first death was the 2011 murder of Hupp's friend Betsy Faria. Betsy's husband, Russ Faria, found her stabbed to death. Hupp had been with Betsy just before the murder and became the beneficiary of Betsy’s $150,000 life insurance policy. This change of beneficiary took place just four days before Betsy was killed. Hupp then painted Russ to police as an angry man and a bad husband. Russ was convicted in Nov. 2013 in part due to Hupp's testimony at trial. Russ’s conviction was then overturned and he was acquitted at a second trial in 2015.
Hupp went on to murder Louis Gumpenberger in 2016, a man she apparently enticed into her car by posing as a "Dateline" producer looking to pay someone to re-enact 911 calls, which "Dateline" would never do. Gumpenberger apparently fell for her scheme and she shot him to death.
Her true goal was allegedly to make Russ look bad again. She claimed to police that Gumpenberger was an intruder and that she killed him in self-defense. In doing so, she implied that Russ had sent Gumpenberger to recoup the insurance money and ultimately kill her.
Hupp was convicted in 2019 for Gumpenberger’s murder and is now serving a life sentence in a Missouri state prison. She was charged with Betsy Faria’s murder and has pleaded not guilty. An investigation into the death of Hupp's mother, Shirley Neumann, has been reopened.
This saga was made into a chart-topping podcast, “The Thing About Pam,” which had been downloaded more than 20 million times.
The "Dateline" episodes and the podcast led to the development of the TV miniseries starring Renee Zellweger, who was drawn to the part of Pam Hupp after listening to the podcast. The two-time Oscar-winner spent up to four hours in the makeup chair to transform into Hupp.
Airing this Friday, the same week as “The Thing About Pam’s” finale, the "Dateline" episode will feature new developments, details and interviews with people who have never spoken with "Dateline" before — including one of Betsy’s daughters, Mariah.
The episode will also include an interview that "Dateline" has been pursuing for more than eight years. Leah Askey Chaney, the now-former prosecutor who tried Russ Faria twice for Betsy’s murder, spoke with “Dateline” correspondent Keith Morrison for this episode. Morrison also narrated the podcast and provided voice-overs in the TV series.
This Friday’s episode marks “Dateline's” sixth report on the sprawling case. The first one, “The House on Sumac Drive,” aired in March 2014 and is now available to stream on Peacock, as are all episodes of the mini-series “The Thing About Pam.”