SHERIDAN — After his retirement, Matt Redle, former Sheridan County prosecuting attorney, was featured in an episode of the television series “True Convictions.” Hosted by former Brooklyn homicide prosecutor Anna-Sigga Nicolazzi, “True Convictions” takes a look at some of the toughest cases from across the country. The case featured on the show involved the kidnapping and murder of a young Sheridan woman in the mid-1990s.
“From a prosecutor’s perspective the case had a lot of legal elements that were interesting to me,” Nicolazzi said about why she decided to feature the case. “I thought the work done by both law enforcement, specifically Kevin Hughs, and by Matt Redle as the prosecuting attorney, was exactly the kind of work I wanted to highlight.”
In March 1993, a 19-year-old woman Christa Sallani disappeared after working the closing shift at a gas station in Sheridan. Police investigated, but little evidence was found to help them find out what happened.
More than a year later, a skull fragment was found by three boys swimming in Big Goose Creek southwest of Sheridan. The skull fragment was identified with the help of Dr. George Gill, an anthropology professor at the University of Wyoming, as Christa Sallani.
Following this discovery, Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation agent Kevin Hughes found the man responsible for kidnapping and murdering the woman. The suspect later recounted his confession.
Redle was faced with the task of proving the man’s guilt with little evidence. During the show, Redle talks with Nicolazzi about the challenges of building that case. Redle talked through his plan for the court case and talked about how he acquired the conviction.
Redle’s dedication to finding justice for the woman’s family led to a guilty verdict. Nicolazzi said she remembered when interviewing Hughes for the show, he mentioned how he would often see the light on in Redle’s office late at night. Hughes knew Redle was working hard to make sure he found the right conviction.
Nicolazzi and Redle knew each other before filming the show. They met through the National District Attorney Association, Redle said.
As a member of the board for the organization, Niccolazzi said, Redle gave his time and expertise to help better the world of prosecution.
Redle said that a Sheridan Press article about his retirement went through the NDAA news clipping service, tipping Nicolazzi off.
Hearing about his retirement, Nicolazzi said this would be the perfect time to feature the work Redle did on the Salloni case. Nicolazzi and Redle had discussed parts of the case during previous interactions.
Redle said he was surprised when he received the call from Nicolazzi about wanting to feature the case. After receiving information, Nicolazzi brought the idea to her coproducer.
Agreeing that the case would be a good fit for the show, Nicolazzi reached out to the family for permission, Redle said. Nicolazzi then contacted those who played major roles in the investigation.
Niccolazi worked for the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office for 21 years, 16 of those as a homicide prosecutor. Niccolazi said she created “True Convictions” as a way to try something new while still being involved in the world with which she is familiar. Her goal for the show is to highlight the process law enforcement and prosecutors go through and the dedication it requires.
The episode featuring Redle aired June 11 and can be streamed on IDGO.com