In 2001, a popular teenager named Micaela “Mickie” Costanzo disappeared from her high school in Wendover, Nevada. Her childhood friend Kody Patten and his girlfriend Toni Fratto, both 19, kidnapped her. They brought her to the desert, hit her over the head with a shovel, slit her throat and buried her in a shallow grave. Patten and Fratto both pleaded guilty to avoid the death penalty. Fratto was sentenced to life in prison with a chance of parole in ten years. Patten was sentenced to life in prison without a chance of parole.
At Patten’s sentencing, he apologized but didn’t ask for forgiveness because as he said, “I don’t feel I deserve it.” He went on to say Mickie “was always good to me” and then recited part of a poem Mickie had written. He referred to her as “the glimmer of beauty for people.” Before the murder of Costanzo, according to Patten’s family, Kody had been accepted to join the U.S .Marines and was given a deployment date. Dateline airs Fridays at 9pm on NBC.