Where is Enrico Forti now? Update
When Dale Pike was found murdered in Virginia Beach in February 1998, police suspected the murder was due to a deal gone awry. They even discovered that Dale had just landed in Miami the day before to negotiate the sale of the Pikes Hotel. “48 Hours: The Case Against Enrico Forti” details the gruesome murder and how a swift police investigation saw the perpetrator brought to justice. However, with the court judgment still under review, let’s take a look at the case and find out where the murderer is today, shall we?
How did Dale Pike die?
Anthony Dale Pike was the son of Tony Pike, owner of the famous Pikes Hotel in Ibiza, Spain. The hotel was known for its big parties and had served celebrities like Freddie Mercury and George Michael. Police later discovered that Dale was in Miami to meet with a potential buyer of the hotel and discuss the terms of the deal with him.
On February 15, 1998, Dale landed in Miami, according to airport records. The next day, February 16, Dale’s body was discovered by a walker in Virginia Beach. The murder was immediately reported and authorities arrived to find Dale shot and left naked on the beach. He was pronounced dead instantly and an autopsy later determined that Dale had been shot twice in the back of the neck with a .22 caliber firearm.
While searching the surrounding area, police were able to locate various clues, including the victim’s bloody clothes and shoes. The victim was identified by a charm from the Pikes Hotel and Dale’s visa form along with his boarding pass, which were found nearby. In addition, the police even discovered the victim’s business card, which was used to dial a single number.
Who killed Dale Pike?
When the police started investigating the murder, the very first thing they followed up on was the calling card. As a result, they discovered that Dale had only made one call during his entire stay in Miami. This appeal was addressed to the Italian filmmaker Enrico Forti. Through their investigation, police also discovered that Forti was interested in purchasing the Pikes Hotel and that Dale was in Miami to meet with him. According to the show, although the murder weapon was not discovered, police had suspicions about the Italian filmmaker.
Authorities checked with Miami Airport to ensure Dale arrived on February 15. They even found out that Forti was the one who picked up Dale from the airport. However, Forti’s wife told police he had not picked up Dale the day before. She even told police she couldn’t determine her husband’s whereabouts on the night of February 15. Forti also told police he did not pick up Dale from the airport even though they had evidence to suggest otherwise.
Meanwhile, police suspected another man, Thomas Knott, of pulling the trigger. Although he had many motives for killing Dale, as he knew Knott was using Tony Pike’s credit cards illegally, the police quickly ruled him out as a suspect. What sealed the deal for Enrico Forti was sand found in his vehicle. After further testing, it was determined that the sand was from Virginia Beach, which led authorities to arrest Forti and charge him with Dale’s murder.
Where is Enrico Forti now?
Once arrested and tried, Enrico Forti insisted on his innocence. When confronted for lying about taking care of Dale, he said he went to pick up Dale but almost left because the latter’s flight was late. The two then tried to contact each other through the airport’s intercom system before finally meeting. Forti further said he dropped Dale off at the Rusty Pelican restaurant, where he got into a white Lexus. However, since the filmmaker was late to pick up his stepfather from the Fort Lauderdale airport, he lied to his wife, telling her not to come and pick up Dale.
While there is no direct evidence linking Enrico Forti to the murder, prosecutors attempted to show the jury how the sand in Forti’s vehicle matched that in Virginia Beach. Ultimately, Forti was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison in 2000. Over the years, he has appealed his conviction several times, but his requests have always been rejected.
In 2020, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis considered the request from the Italian government and the US Department of Justice and approved Forti’s transfer to a prison in Italy, where he will serve the remainder of his sentence. Even though his transfer was approved in 2020, jail records show he is currently incarcerated at Dade Correctional Facility in unincorporated Miami-Dade County, Florida.
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