Two Documentaries being filmed in Riverhead

The cover of the News-Review the week Kalila Taylor was arrested in 1997.

Two unrelated documentaries — one about a 1990s murder, the other about the Riverhead Raceway — are being filmed in Riverhead this month.

This week, a production crew is on location in Riverhead to film an episode for the 11th season of Oxygen’s true crime series “Snapped,” a show that chronicles women who commit violent crimes. The episode will focus on Kalila Taylor, the Riverhead woman who in 1996 stabbed and killed fellow Riverhead High School student Curtisha Morning.

Last week, a production crew from Gigantic Pictures was in town to film segments for “Blunderbust,” a documentary about the history of Riverhead Raceway.

NEWS-REVIEW FILE PHOTO | Riverhead raceway is the subject of a new documentary filming this month.
NEWS-REVIEW FILE PHOTO | Riverhead raceway is the subject of a new documentary filming this month.

Donna Dudek, the supervising producer of “Snapped,” said she first became familiar with the Riverhead case through a Google Alert that popped up on her phone during Ms. Taylor’s murder retrial last year.

Prosecutors argued that Ms. Taylor stabbed Ms. Morning more than 90 times in a jealous rage over the attention of Ms. Taylor’s boyfriend. Ms. Morning’s body was found a month later in the woods near the school.

Ms. Taylor had been convicted of second-degree murder in 1999 and sentenced to 25 years to life in prison, but the case was thrown out due to incorrect instructions given to the jury by the presiding judge. In August 2012, Ms. Taylor’s case was retried and she was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.

“We’re very interested in what makes people tick,” Ms. Dudek said of her television show. “We’re all amateur psychologists, I think. I think it’s always a little more surprising when women kill, and I think some of the motives women have are very different to the motives men have.”

The television crew, Ms. Dudek said, plans to film footage of Riverhead High School, the neighborhood Ms. Taylor lived in and the woods where Ms. Morning’s body was found during its eight-day shoot. She hopes to interview Ms. Taylor’s friends and family for the show.

“The episode is about her, so it’s important to us that we’re able to give her side of the story,” Ms. Dudek said.

“Blunderbust” producers were not available for comment this week.

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