‘Dateline: Mystery in Big Sky Country’ investigates the death of a young veterinarian


(NBC)— Tonight on a two-hour episode of “Dateline,” when Bryan Rein, a young Montana veterinarian, is found dead at his home with a gun nearby, police quickly discover there is more to this case than meets the eye. As the investigation spans more than two decades, police sort through conflicting evidence to find out what really happened.

Keith Morrison goes to Geraldine, Montana, to interview Bryan’s sisters Teresa Noll and Charlene Rein-Murphy, investigators and more.

Here’s a preview from Morrison’s report:

On July 10th, 1996, Dr. Bryan Rien drove to Bozeman, three hours away, to attend a conference. He returned home Friday evening, the 12th. No one saw him on Saturday. And then, on Sunday, the 14th, Marlene’s husband drove over to Bryan’s bunkhouse.

MARLENE: It was about I dunno, five, 10 minutes later he came back and walked in the door and was very distraught, crying.

Such a shock — which is maybe why her husband got the mistaken idea that Dr. Rein had committed suicide.

But, later that same day, when Marlene heard an undersheriff repeat the mistake to Bryan’s grandparents, here’s what happened…

MARLENE: Verna Mae jumped up and she said, ‘No way in hell would my grandson commit suicide!’

The next day, when state investigators led by agent Ken Thompson of Montana’s Department of Criminal Investigation arrived and looked at the ruined crime scene.

THOMPSON:  My partner and I would look at each other and think ‘Oh my lord,’ y’know!

KEITH: Yeah!

THOMPSON: It certainly makes things very difficult!

Difficult?  Oh yes. Difficult was not the half of it.

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