The Trail Went Cold – Episode 179 – The Diggs Family Murders

December 6, 1975. Teaneck, New Jersey. After spending the night in New York City, 40-year old bar owner Wesley Diggs returns to his suburban home and discovers that his entire family has been murdered. Wesley’s 39-year old wife, Jean, and their four children – 17-year old Audrey, 16-year old Allison, 12-year old Wesley Jr. and 5-year old Roger – have each been shot multiple times and there are no signs of any forced entry. While Wesley is not considered to be a suspect, police express their belief that he might know more about the crime than he’s letting on, a claim which he denies. Over the years, a number of different theories are explored, including a botched robbery and a murder-suicide, but the investigation fails to turn any conclusive answers. On this week’s episode of “The Trail Went Cold”, we explore the unsolved murders of an African-American family, a crime which has stumped investigators for nearly 45 years.

Additional Reading:

https://web.archive.org/web/20151207224334/http://www.northjersey.com/news/who-killed-the-diggs-family-40-year-old-mass-murder-in-teaneck-remains-a-mystery-1.1468498

https://www.nytimes.com/1975/12/07/archives/mother-4-children-are-shot-to-death-in-home-in-teaneck-a-mother-and.html

https://www.nytimes.com/1975/12/14/archives/fathers-tribute-is-read-at-diggs-familys-rites-classmates-are.html

https://www.newspapers.com/image/493146333/

https://www.newspapers.com/image/494150568/

https://www.newspapers.com/image/494156883/

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The Trail Went Cold is produced and edited by Magill Foote.

All music is composed by Vince Nitro.

One thought on “The Trail Went Cold – Episode 179 – The Diggs Family Murders

  • I don’t think the murder/suicide theory holds any weight, and while Wesley might have had an idea of what happened, his involvement with the investigation and brutal honesty about himself I think shows he had nothing to do with it. If anything, Occam’s Razor could prevail with this case. Given Teaneck’s proximity to NYC, the date of the killings, and the fact that the Diggs were the first black family to move into the neighborhood, it’s entirely possible your theory about it being a hate crime is correct. Possibly by someone with mob ties. .22 pistols were apparently a favored Mafia weapon at the time.

    It also works given the clientele of some of his bars. It could be as simple as an opportunistic person found out where the family lived, or he owed the wrong person money, or one of his mistresses had some connections…and someone showed up at the house one night either to find him, or to send him a message.

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