NBC's 'Dateline: Deadly Affair' chronicles Tami Reay's death in February 2006 in Pierre, South Dakota, where she meets her daughter Haylee Reay, who has become a victims' rights advocate on her own.
Haylee Reay, who is she?
Tamera "Tami" Dawnell Burns of Wyoming met Brad Reay through one of her sisters. They lived in Billings, Montana, before moving to Pierre, South Dakota, in 2004. The 41-year-old mother worked part-time at a local Kmart when she was reported missing on February 8, 2006. She called her workplace to discover she wasn't there.
Tami's naked body was discovered two days later, on February 10, in a grove of trees about 10 miles away from Pierre. According to her autopsy report, her killer had stabbed Tami 37 times, including five times in the back and slit her throat. The perpetrator was someone the victim knew, according to the evident overkilling.
Brian confessed to the dispatcher that he suspected there was a "foul play" in the disappearance of Tami. When asked to explain the reason, he admitted they were having an affair behind their spouses' backs. However, the officers were unsure whether the confession was genuine or a plot to derail the investigation.
Brad was charged with his wife's brutal murder almost immediately after she was discovered, but the case took a wild turn when they received a letter incriminating Brian in the homicide. Tami had been raped the night she disappeared, and a condom was still lodged inside her body, although it was old enough for DNA analysis.
What Has Happened to Haylee Reay?
Bret Reay, Brad's twin brother, wrote the letter while Brad was in jail to slain his father. During his trial, Brad blamed their teenage daughter for killing their mother in the middle of the night.
Brad claims Haylee had no memory of what she did or that his sole crime was attempting to conceal it. During his March 2007 sentencing, he claimed, "I gave up my life because I love her." However, the jury refused to believe his outrageous story and found him guilty of first-degree murder.
Brad was also barred from contacting or writing to the family of Tami's deceased wife. Holly Givens, Holly's sister, was surprised Brad blamed Haylee and asked, "What kind of father lies and blames so viciously his flesh and blood?" Haylee testified at her father's trial that she saw her father sitting in her bedroom with a bunch of clothes under her arm the next morning.
Haylee was chastised by Brad for blaming his daughter, adding, "I'm surprised you didn't blame the cat." She is a TEDx speaker and supports noble causes on her Facebook page.