Natalie Morales Reveals How Social Media Helped Solve Case

Thank technology for the answers in 48 Hours‘ chilling tale of Kassanndra Cantrell (airing March 4), a Tacoma, Washington, woman who disappeared in 2020, leaving hardly a clue behind — or so it seemed. “Your digital footprint [lets police] trace you to your last moment on earth,” says Natalie Morales, a contributor to the venerable true crime show who juggles her work as a CBS News correspondent with her hosting gig on The Talk.

As Morales’ story “Kassanndra’s Secret” tells it, Cantrell, outspoken on social media and in person, lived with her mother, who filed a missing-persons report with local law enforcement as soon as she realized her 33-year-old daughter was not staying with a friend, as she had thought.

One of the first avenues of investigation was an online conflict, Morales reveals: “The man she was talking to did say [on social media], ‘I’m gonna come and kill you.’” Then, via house security-cam footage and other digital documents, Kassanndra’s phone records, and GPS data, the episode follows the trail to a stunning secret she’d withheld and, finally, resolution.

The takeaway should deter potential perps: “We’re all being watched,” comments news veteran Morales, and “pings” of evidence are vital in every case. Ubiquitous cameras as well as smartphones and other tracker-embedded devices mean nearly every interaction is on the radar. “Anybody who would think of a perfect crime,” she adds, “there’s no such thing.”

Reporting by Carole Braden

48 Hours, Saturday, March 4, 10/9c, CBS

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