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The Family Feud Murder


            In a 2020 episode of Family Feud, Steve Harvey asked contestant Tim Bliefnick, “We asked one-hundred married men, what is the biggest mistake you made on your wedding day?”. Tim, a thirtysomething clean-cut man appearing with his parents and brothers, responded, “Honey, I love you, but ‘Said I do’”. Steve Harvey gave him his signature “you so damn stupid” look while the crowd laughed. Three years later, Tim Bliefnick fell under suspicion when his estranged wife was found dead in her home.



            Rebecca Bernadette Postle was born November 19th, 1981, in Quincy, Illinois. She graduated as the Valedictorian of Quincy Notre Dame High School. Following high school, Becky attended Quincy University, earning her bachelor’s degree in biological science with a minor degree in Chemistry. While at Quincy University, Becky met Tim Bliefnick. Tim was born April 26th, 1983. When Tim and Becky met in college, they were originally friends. It wasn’t until years after college the two began to date.

            Becky, a pharmaceutical sales representative, married Tim Bliefnick, who worked in recycling, married in 2009. They soon welcomed three sons. According to Becky’s friends, however, Tim became possessive and controlling. He wanted control over Becky, but she had other plans. Becky returned to school to be a nurse, taking her finals just days after giving birth to their youngest child. Becky became a nurse, which she considered her true calling.



            After finishing nursing school, Becky had more independence from Tim and eventually their marriage fell apart. Interestingly enough, Tim was the one who actually filed for divorce on January 21st, 2021. He later stated that being a nurse was too stressful for Becky and their marriage.  Despite the couple being separated, Becky told her friends and family that Tim was continuing to try to control her. In May of 2021, Becky sent this text message to a friend: “He told me if I outed his dad that he would probably move then kill himself… I absolutely think he will try to take the kids sometime”.

            The divorce proceedings were contentious to say the least. Becky expressed concerns over her former father-in-law having access to the children, citing a history of sexually inappropriate behavior. According to her family and friends, Tim was furious at Becky for bringing this up about his father in court. Becky continued to send friends text messages throughout 2021, continually stating that she feared Tim would take off with their children.

            In November of 2021, the divorce proceedings continued with several issues and motions being raised in court. For one, Becky wanted a 9mm handgun back from Tim Bliefnick. According to Becky, the gun was registered in her name, and she didn’t want Tim to have possession of it. Tim was court ordered to return the gun but was not cooperative. Before the year was out, Becky filed an order or protection to keep Timothy’s father away from her children.

            The acrimonious divorce continued into 2022. Rebecca told a good friend that “If he doesn’t get his way, he may literally lose his mind” in reference to her estranged husband. By Tim and Becky both filed for restraining orders against each other, accusing the other of harassment. The orders were both denied. In August of 2022, a judge issued an order that Tim and Becky were to stay away from each other and must stay within three feet of their own vehicle when exchanging the children for visitations. During this time, a Facebook account named “John Smith” was created and started searching the marketplace for a bicycle.

            Finally, 2023 began and Becky hoped that this was the year her divorce proceedings would be completed. Becky had moved on with her life. The forty-one-year-old nurse was now dating. On the night of February 13th, her new boyfriend arrived at her home and stayed overnight. Becky’s children were staying with their father that night. Just after midnight, Becky’s neighbor received an alert of someone walking in the driveway. When she went outside, the person was gone. On February 15th, the final date for the divorce trial was set for March 3rd.

            On February 23rd, 2023, Tim called the school of his sons at 11:51 am, asking them not to allow the children to walk home today. Becky asked him to keep the boys for a few days on February 21st. Just after three that afternoon, Tim called Becky’s father. He told his former father-in-law that the school notified him that Becky failed to pick the kids up that day. Becky’s father went over to her house to check on Becky but found her dead body in her bedroom.

            Becky’s body was found in her bedroom. The mother and nurse had been shot fourteen times at relatively close range. Her cell phone was found behind the bedroom door. It appeared Becky attempted to call 911 at 1:11 am, but her killer must have knocked the phone from her hand. Shocked and devastated, the Postle family were already suspicious of Tim. Becky’s boyfriend was questioned that night and submitted a DNA sample for analysis. Becky’s boyfriend claimed to have last seen her on the 21st of February.

            The initial investigation revealed many pieces of valuable evidence including a footprint, pieces of plastic, and eight 9mm spent shell casings. Additionally, it appeared as if the perpetrator entered the house using a crowbar on a window of one of the boys’ rooms. Interestingly, the perpetrator would have had to go past two other windows, including Becky’s bedroom window, to enter the house through the kids’ window.

            Becky’s sister pointed the finger directly back at Tim. Detectives decided to take a closer look at Tim, despite him having an alibi: He was at home with his sons all night. Police began by collecting security footage from Becky’s neighbor and a local business. On the neighbor’s footage, you can see someone walking in the driveway towards the back of Becky’s house early in the morning the day before the murder. Another incident was caught on camera on February 14th. In this video, you see someone look closely at the vehicle parked in front of Becky’s house, which belonged to her boyfriend.  The footage from a local business showed a man on a bicycle riding towards Becky’s house just before the neighbor’s security footage picked up the person walking around Becky’s home. The timing of the footage lines up on multiple nights: first someone riding a bike without reflectors passes the business between midnight and two o’clock in the morning on several occasions and then the neighbors see someone walking in Becky’s driveway.

            Police soon found that that bike, parked nearby Tim’s home. Tim denied owning the bike, but his electronic devices proved otherwise. The John Smith Facebook account was found on Tim’s electronics- with messages to someone on marketplace inquiring about the very bike (or one extremely similar) that was found nearby Tim’s house. The bike did not have reflectors, consistent with the video.  The police then looked at Tim’s WHOOP smart watch band data. His device disconnected just before the bike is seen on video footage on multiple nights, only to reconnect after the bike is seen going back the other direction. This happened in the early morning hours of Valentine’s Day.

            On February 14th, 2023, at 12:00 am, Tim’s WHOOP band disconnected from his phone and his phone is locked. Between 12 and 1, video footage shows the bike riding towards Becky’s house. Becky’s neighbor caught footage of someone walking in Becky’s driveway between 12 and 1 as well. The footage shows that the person walking in her driveway stopped to take a close look at the vehicle parked at the house, which belonged to Becky’s boyfriend. Tim’s watch reconnected just after one o’clock that morning. At 1:10 am, Tim’s laptop shows a search was done for “license plate lookup”, “title/registration look up”, “VIN check lookup”, “vehicle records”, and a search for Becky’s boyfriend’s exact VIN and license plate numbers. At 1:32 am, a phone call was made to the Missouri Department of Revenue.             On February 21st, Tim’s WHOOP band disconnected at 12:45 am, reconnecting at 2:11 am. During the time it was disconnected, the footage shows the bicycle without reflectors riding towards Becky’s house and back. The same things happened a few days later on February 23rd, the morning of the murder. Around 12:30 am, Tim’s band disconnected from his phone and his phone is locked. The bicycle is seen riding towards Becky’s home at 12:57 am. Becky attempted to call 911 less than fifteen minutes later. Tim’s phone unlocked and his band reconnected at 2:07 am.

            On March 13th, 2023, Timothy Bliefnick was arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the case of his estranged wife Rebecca. He plead not guilty. The case quickly went to trial in May of 2023. The evidence presented was pretty damning to Timothy Bliefnick. In addition to showing that his phone disconnected from his WHOOP band consistently just before the bike, which was found near his house and linked to his fake Facebook account, is seen headed towards Becky’s home on nights when security footage shows someone in Becky’s driveway.

            The events on Valentine’s Day left very little doubt that Tim, who had his children that night, was the person lurking in Becky’s yard and taking down her boyfriend’s license plate and VIN number. He searched for that those vehicle records just a half hour later on the internet. Further searches of Tim’s laptop revealed he had searched for “how to clean gun powder residue”, “how to make a homemade silencer”, and “how to use a crowbar to get inside a house”. A crowbar found at Tim’s home could not be conclusively linked to the marks on the exterior of Becky’s window, but they were consistent.

            The gun used to kill Becky was likely her very own 9mm that she was trying to get back from her estranged husband. The 9mm casings matched to some other spent casings found in Tim’s home. Investigators determined that the small pieces of plastic found at the scene were remnants of an ALDI bag, likely used to try to silence the shots. Similar ALDI bags were found in Tim’s home. DNA evidence found on the bag was “consistent with belonging to Tim” and DNA under Becky’s fingernails belonged to either Tim or one of his sons.

            A witness stated that Tim brought a basketball hoop off at his father’s home hours before Becky’s father found her body. The prosecution theorized that Tim brought that hoop there knowing that Becky would no longer be an obstacle to his father seeing the kids. Several text messages were also presented that Becky sent to friends and family members. One said, “If anything ever happens to me, you should suspect Tim”.

            The defense opted not to call any witnesses. Their primary defense was that no physical evidence linked Tim conclusively to the crime and the video footage did not specifically identify him as the man lurking. The defense proposed that perhaps a random person was stalking and lurking around Becky’s house. The jury didn’t buy it though, and Timothy Bliefnick was found guilty of his wife’s murder. In August of 2023, he was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. He is currently incarcerated at the Illinois Department of Corrections at Menard Correctional Center.





References

48 Hours (2023) “the Game Show and the Murder”

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