Unsolved murder of DC lawyer Robert Wone ‘stranger than fiction,’ doc reveals: ‘Deeply troubling’
It was 2006 when a prominent Washington, D.C., lawyer was found stabbed to death at a friend’s home – but there was barely any blood.
Robert Wone had three clean slits on his chest, including one that had pierced his heart. According to one paramedic, it appeared that the 32-year-old’s body had been showered and “redressed” before being placed in a bed. Yet to this day, authorities have yet to determine what happened on the night Wone died.
The unsolved murder is the subject of a new true-crime documentary currently available for streaming on Peacock titled “Who Killed Robert Wone?,” which includes new interviews with investigators and others closely connected to the case. It also features unseen footage of the interrogation involving the three key figures living at the three-story townhouse where the slaying occurred.
“It’s one of those stories that’s stranger than fiction,” director Jared P. Scott told Fox News Digital. “It’s a murder mystery where you have all these people who are trying to unravel the truth… And we’ve never seen anything like this before. This promising young man spends the night with three friends. And about 79 minutes after arriving at their house, one of those friends called 911 saying ‘Robert has been stabbed.’ It was all a very odd scene.”
It was a summer evening when Wone, who was working long hours in Washington, was unsure of hitting the road late at night to head home to his wife, Kathy Wone, in Virginia. Instead, he decided to stay overnight with his college friend, fellow lawyer Joseph Price, who offered him a guest room.
However, Wone did not make it to the morning. That night, housemate Victor Zaborsky called the police, requesting an ambulance. An EMS worker at the scene immediately felt things were “very wrong.” While Wone had a large hole in his chest big enough to “fit your finger into,” there was no blood on the victim or even the floor. No blood was coming from any of the three wounds. There were also no signs of disarray in the house or room. The property appeared tidy. Nothing valuable was taken.
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According to court documents, it appeared as if Wone, who was lying flat on his back on a pull-out couch that had been made up as a bed, had been dead for some time. His head was on the pillow and his arms were down at his sides. A light film of blood with striation marks implied that someone may have taken a towel and wiped down his chest.
While Wone was wearing a t-shirt and gym shorts, his other clothes were folded neatly nearby. To stunned investigators, it seemed as if no violent struggle had occurred. While a knife was found, authorities later determined that the blade was too large to have been used as the murder weapon.
“What surprised me the most while exploring this case was the almost never-ending details of it, which led to wild speculation,” Scott explained. “I’m shocked at how many things you can speculate in the course of 79 minutes.”
“There was a lot we unraveled in trying to put the pieces of the puzzle together, in trying to make sense of what happened,” Scott shared. “It’s a wild story, but you don’t want to lose sight of the victim, which is Robert. It was important to advocate on his behalf.”
Zaborsky, Price and Dylan Ward, who appeared to have recently showered, told authorities it was an intruder who killed Wone. They described hearing a person heading down the stairs of their home. When they went to investigate, they overheard a series of grunts coming from the guest room.
According to the men, an intruder must have entered the property from the back door. It had been left open, and it could be reached if you jumped over the garden fence. However, their claims were dismissed due to a lack of evidence.
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The trio was charged with obstruction of justice in 2008. Defense attorney Bernie Grimm, who also spoke out in the documentary, argued that the police did not thoroughly investigate the possibility of an intruder. According to reports, Wone’s widow filed a wrongful death lawsuit against them that year. They pleaded the Fifth Amendment.
According to reports, the three men were in a polyamorous relationship. The theories intensified when police uncovered an assortment of sex toys that, to them, appeared like torture instruments. Consequently, they wondered if Wone could have been sexually assaulted and restrained before being murdered.
Puncture marks found on Wone’s body led investigators to also believe that he could have been injected with a drug, which would have caused Wone to be paralyzed before being killed. However, an investigation concluded that none of the items in question were linked to Wone’s death. An autopsy report concluded that no drugs were found in Wone’s system.
The trio adamantly denied their involvement in Wone’s death. They maintain that their friend was killed by an intruder. In 2010, they were found not guilty of obstruction and tampering charges. In 2011, the trio and Wone’s widow settled for an undisclosed sum.
Scott said that he reached out to the men in hopes that they would speak out on camera. He noted that while they have never spoken to the media, the offer to share their accounts was always there. The attorney that represented the men during their trial did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
“The idea that they would speak out now was never something that we expected,” Scott admitted. “… [But] there’s no incentive for them to speak out either… We reached out, but ultimately, we never heard anything back. I can’t speculate why. But we did our due diligence as storytellers. And this was no exception.”
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The case remains unsolved. Scott is hopeful that the film will encourage anyone with information to come forward.
“I wish there was more footage of Robert,” Scott reflected. “You see him smile in these photos and by all accounts, he was a witty, warm and kind young man, an almost too-good-to-be-true kind of guy. He just seemed to be this perfect guy. He had so much going for him. He was well-respected. He was destined to do great things. It’s just deeply troubling and sad what happened to him.”
“You don’t want to get lost in the bizarre circumstances of his death – this baffling, bizarre stranger-than-fiction story,” he shared. “But his life was taken at such a young age. I want people to remember who Robert was. I want people to know that justice has not been served for Robert, for his family, for his friends. And there’s still the opportunity for that to take place.”