Broadway star Kristin Chenoweth revealed that she was a part of the Girl Scout troop that became victims of a rapist and murder.
Chenoweth, 53, appeared in the trailer for Hulu’s four-part docuseries, “Keeper of the Ashes: The Oklahoma Girl Scout Murders,” which explores the unsolved murders of three elementry school girls on a camping trip with the organization.
“This is a story I wish I never had to tell. It haunts me every day. But this story, it needs to be told,” the former “Wicked” star recalled. “I remember I should have been on that trip, but I had gotten sick, and mom said, ‘You can’t go.’ It stuck with me my whole life. I could have been one of them.”
Chenoweth’s Girl Scout troop went on a trip to Camp Scott on June 12, 1977, when 8-year-old Lori Lee Farmer, 9-year-old Michelle Guse and 10-year-old Denise Milner were discovered raped, and murdered by bludgeoning and strangulation.
“When I think of those three girls, I wonder what’s the best way to honor them,” Chenoweth said in the trailer. “That’s why I’d come back home, to find answers once and for all.”
An escaped convict, Gene Leroy Hart, who was described by authorities as a serial rapist, was arrested in connection with the murders. He was acquitted in March 1979 when a jury unanimously found him not guilty.
Hart died in jail of a heart attack two months later, while he was serving a separate 308 year sentence for a different rape and escaping prison.
In 2017, the Mayes County sheriff raised $30,000 in donations to perform DNA testing, which was not available at the time of the murders. The results strongly suggested that Hart was the perpetrator.
“Unless something new comes up, something brought to light we are not aware of, I am convinced where I’m sitting of Hart’s guilt and involvement in this case,” said Sheriff Mike Reed.