This Saturday the made-for-TV movie Romeo Killer: The Chris Porco Story, based on a true story, will debut on Lifetime (even though an injunction was laid down by the courts, which was quickly overturned allowing the network to air the bio pic).
The film tells the story of Christopher Porco, a then student at the University of Rochester who was accused of the brutal murder of his father Peter and the attempted murder of his mother Joan.
As the movie plays out, the story moves back and forth between flashbacks of the assault on Porco’s parents, the investigation by long-time police officer and friend of the Porco family Detective Sullivan and the recounting of incidents surrounding the investigation by friends, classmates and associates of Porco.
From the very beginning it is made obvious that Porco is a ladies man. He is close with his mother Joan and it is made understood that girls have always been his best friends. However, throughout much of the movie, Porco was in a (what seemed to be) long-distance yet committed relationship with a girl named Rachel; but that didn’t seem to keep from hitting on long-time neighborhood girl friends Melanie Sullivan (yes, daughter of Detective Sullivan) and Lauren Phillps.
As facts collected during the murder investigation are revealed over the course of the film, it becomes somewhat clear that Chris has to be the murderer, but yet not everything pieces together without a shadow of a doubt. You see, Joan and Peter Porco were killed in the early morning hours one fall night in their own bedroom by someone wielding an axe. But Chris was presumably three hours away at a frat party at the university. His parents’ house wasn’t broken into; rather the security system was shut down using the security code that was only known by Porco, his parents and his brother John, who was on a submarine out to sea. The security system was then smashed to make it look like a break in.
Another fact that was damning for Porco was the fact that he had racked up hefty credit debt, lied to his fraternity brothers about his financial situation and reportedly even falsified his grades to trick his parents, for whom he had countless arguments about money and how he was doing at college.
Also from the very beginning it is abundantly clear that Detective Sullivan does not like Chris and seemed intent to prove that Porco was to blame for the murders; but he just could never prove it for sure. Except for a fateful trip to the University of Rochester where he finds security footage of Porco’s distinctive yellow jeep being driven off the campus, toll booth workers identifying the jeep as passing through the booths in the direction of Porco’s parents’ house and returning to the university parking lot just in time for him to have an alibi. The drawback was that there was absolutely no evidence inside his jeep – not even one tiny drop of blood – and considering his parents’ room was covered in blood; there should have been some kind of evidence inside the jeep if Chris was guilty.
You will have to watch Romeo Killer: The Chris Porco Story on Lifetime tomorrow night (March 23) at 8/7c to see the story play out and the end result of the case to learn what happened.
The cast of the movie includes Matt Barr (Hatfields & McCoys) as Chris Porco; Lochlyn Munro (White Chick) as Peter Porco; Lolita Davidovich (Gods and Monsters) as Joan Porco; Eric McCormack (Perception and Will & Grace) as Detective Sullivan; Emily Bett Rickards (Arrow) as Lauren Phillps and Michael Hogan (Battlestar Galactica) as Attorney Terry Kindlon.