It's been two months since the shocking crimes of March 14 when Lori Bresnahan was murdered and a 10-year-old girl was raped. Now, for the first time, the man who was first on the scene on that night is sharing his story.
Bill Cregg was driving on Verplank Road in Clay when he noticed a child off on the side of the dark road. He knew something wasn't right. He was first to offer comfort to the child, who prosecutors say was raped by suspect David Renz. He also tried to save Lori Bresnahan, who was dying of savage stab wounds.
"I told Lori the child was going to be okay, that I was not going to let anything happen to that little girl, and that is probably the last thing Lori ever heard," Cregg told CBS 5 Anchor Michael Benny. "I am an Army veteran; I've seen a lot - but March 14th is the worst night of my life," he added.
Cregg, a husband and father of a young daughter, lives with the events of that awful night, which he says "still leave me empty deep within my soul." However, he agreed to sit down for an extensive interview about his role in the story because he hopes it does some good. "I told that little girl that I was a friend, and that more friends were coming to help," he recounts.
Cregg has also taken on several causes in the aftermath of the crimes. He has written to politicians at every level of government because he sees the need for major changes when it comes to the Federal Probation pre-trial release program, and how juvenile records are sealed. Suspect David Renz, who was already facing child pornography charges, managed to remove his GPS monitor the night of the crimes, and there are indications probation ignored dozens of earlier reports indicating the device had been tampered with. "Lori deserves answers, that little girl deserves answers," Cregg said.
Michael Benny's series of exclusive reports begin airing Monday at 5:00 p.m. on CBS 5 and NBC 3. They will air Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. On Wednesday, Cregg will be honored by the Onondaga County District Attorney's office with a Distinguished Service Award for his actions on the night of March 14, 2013.
Monday: That Awful Night: Bill Cregg describes what he calls the worst night of his life and explains how his military training kicked in.
Tuesday: The First Responders: Professional, even as the situation escalates to a heinous level - Bill Cregg wants to thank them and calls them the real heroes.
Wednesday: Taking Action: Suspect David Renz has been described as "a perfect storm." He managed to slip through the cracks in the parole department, and his prior juvenile record seems to have remained secret as he was evaluated for pre-trial release. Bill Cregg wants laws changed, and he hopes you do, too.