911 Operators in Tecumseh, Michigan, received a frantic phone call on September 14, 2018, from a man who claimed that his wife had taken her life. When first responders reached the crime scene, they found Amy Allan in the basement with an electrical cord around her neck. What was believed to be a death by suicide initially, got painted as a case of homicide as detectives came across startling evidence. Dateline’s ‘The Last Day: The Case of Amy Allan’ chronicles the tragic incident and shows how the ensuing investigation revealed a sinister murder plot. Let’s delve into the details and find out more, shall we?
How Did Amy Allan Die?
Although Amy Allan appeared quite shy, she was a down-to-earth individual with good standing in society. Those who knew Amy talked about her generosity and mentioned how she would extend a helping hand to anyone who needed it. Although Amy did not go out of her way to make friends, she maintained an amicable relationship with most of her acquaintances and always greeted people with a smile.
Moreover, to the outside world, Amy’s marriage to James Allan was a happy one, and people were left shocked when news about her sudden demise reached their ears. On September 14, 2018, Amy’s husband, James, called 911 and claimed that he had returned home to find his wife hanging from the ceiling in the basement. Once first responders reached the scene, they discovered that James had already pulled Amy down and was trying to resuscitate her by administering CPR.
The authorities discovered that the woman had an electrical cord around her neck and did not appear to be breathing. Yet, medical examiners noticed a faint pulse and immediately shifted Amy to a local hospital. Although emergency responders were quite prompt in their response, the injuries proved to be too grave, and Amy passed away in the hospital, turning the case into a homicide. Later, an autopsy determined that asphyxiation led to Amy’s death.
Who Killed Amy Allan?
As per the show, considering the scene of the incident and the agitated 911 call, authorities initially believed that Amy had died by suicide. Although James’ casual behavior raised some eyebrows, there was no indication of anything fishy. Yet, once detectives began digging into James and Amy’s everyday lives, the case appeared to turn on its head. For starters, as stated on the show, James seemed to hint that Amy had a history of bipolar behavior and alcohol abuse which could have driven her towards suicide. However, this claim was strongly refuted by most of the victim’s family.
On the other hand, according to the episode, detectives found evidence that exhibited James as a controlling husband who allegedly dictated how Amy should live her life and even limited her access to social media. Besides, reports mention that authorities also discovered Amy’s alleged affair, which naturally had an adverse effect on her marriage. Although these discoveries gave James Allan a motive for murder, there was nothing to tie him to the crime until authorities examined the scene minutely.
When the electrical cord was sent in for testing, experts noted that it was not as tense as it should have been if Amy had hung on it for a long time. Besides, the victim’s injuries and the knot around her neck were not consistent with death by hanging. Such a discovery, coupled with James’ motive, made him the primary suspect in the investigation, and authorities ultimately charged the husband with murder.
Once produced in court, James insisted on his innocence and pled not guilty. However, the prosecution alleged that James and Amy were involved in an altercation, which led to him holding her in a chokehold till she passed out. Subsequently, in his efforts to hide the crime, James purportedly hung Amy’s body from the basement ceiling before calling the police. Eventually, the jury sided with the prosecution and convicted James Allan of second-degree murder. As a result, he was sentenced to 45 years in prison with a minimum term of 20 years in 2021.
Read More: Where is James Allan Now?