In the 1st episode of HBO Max’s The Staircase, the Peterson family is seated about the table for dinner. Michael, Kathleen, and their small children toast to every other—seeming a joyful, loving blended family. Very little did any person know at that time that on December 9, 2001, it would all drop aside. Just after Kathleen Peterson’s unusual, untimely loss of life on the staircase in the couple’s home, Michael and Kathleen’s children would each and every get a stance on regardless of whether or not they believed that Michael was associated in Kathleen’s death, and play a position in his trial.
Here’s a breakdown of the spouse and children users, how they sided all through Michael Peterson’s demo, and where just about every man or woman is now.
Clayton and Todd Peterson
Clayton and Todd Peterson are Michael Peterson’s sons from his first marriage to Patricia Sue Peterson. Todd was the first person to see Michael after Kathleen died, as revealed in the very first episode of HBO Max’s new sequence. Peterson’s sons have often stood by their father, who has managed his innocence for the previous 20 many years. According to The Information & Observer, Clayton now lives in Maryland with his wife and kids, and Todd lives in Tennessee.
Margaret and Martha Ratliff
Michael and his very first wife Patricia experienced been excellent close friends with George and Elizabeth Ratliff in the course of the 1980s, and George Ratliff died in a army operation in 1983. In November of 1985, Michael’s household had supper with Elizabeth and her daughters, Margaret and Martha. The next morning, Elizabeth was identified useless at the base of her staircase by a nanny, in an eerily comparable way to how Kathleen Peterson would be discovered sixteen yrs afterwards. Margaret and Martha Ratliff ended up adopted by Michael Peterson after their mother’s loss of life, and essentially introduced him to his up coming spouse Kathleen, who was their pal Caitlin’s mom. The deaths of Elizabeth Ratliff and Kathleen Peterson had been so identical that that prosecution had Ratliff’s overall body exhumed throughout Michael Peterson’s demo in the dying of Kathleen, and the nanny who discovered Ratliff’s human body testified against Peterson. Ultimately, he was not charged with the demise of Elizabeth Ratliff, and her daughters—Peterson’s adopted daughters—stood by him by way of his demo. Right now, Margaret lives in California, and Martha life in Colorado.
Caitlin Atwater is Kathleen Peterson’s daughter from her initial relationship to Fred Atwater. While Caitlin to start with supported her stepfather in the quick days immediately after her mother’s loss of life, she afterwards turned suspicious of Peterson, and ended up starting to be a vital witness in the prosecution towards him. In 2002, she submitted a wrongful loss of life lawsuit versus him, which they settled for $25 million in 2007. “It’s just stopping for a moment to value the value of my mother’s everyday living and about the interactions she had is what is actually most significant,” Atwater stated at the time. Right after Peterson was freed in 2017, Caitlin’s lawyer submitted another criticism versus him. “I really do not assume he has any cash,” her lawyer Jay Trehy reported, explaining rather that the go well with was to “disincentive any hard work to earnings off this circumstance.” These days, Caitlin Atwater life in northern Virginia with her spouse and children.
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