Peter Van Sant and 48 HOURS go inside the twisted tale of a man whose murder was ordered – and who lived to talk about it – in “Dead Ringer” to be broadcast Saturday, Oct. 13 (10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
Ramon Sosa, a former professional boxer, was a family man and the popular owner of Woodlands Boxing and Fitness in Montgomery County, Texas, when his world began to unravel. He seemed to have it all: a beautiful wife, Lulu; a healthy family; and a booming business. And then, suddenly, someone wanted him dead.
“I would have never thought that anyone would want to kill me,” Sosa tells Van Sant.
Van Sant and 48 HOURS take viewers inside the twists and turns of a complex sting operation to catch the person who wanted Sosa dead. The sting is unique because, to make it work, Sosa had to become an undercover operative.
At the time, Sosa was seemingly living a good life. Still, nothing would prepare him for the way his life changed next. Sosa learned through a friend who goes by the alias Mundo that someone was trying to hire a hit man to kill him. Sosa thought his friend, a former gang member, was joking.
“He said, ‘No, man, I’ve seen that look in people’s eyes before they want to kill somebody,’” Sosa recalls Mundo saying.
What Sosa and Mundo did next is unbelievable, stunning, and all true. Together, they set up the groundwork for a sting to uncover the plot.
“It’s like a screenplay, something straight out of Hollywood,” says Lt. Mike Atkins, of the Montgomery County Constable’s Office. “It would fit in with every other horror flick that we’ve seen in the past.”
That was just one part of this crazy tale. Sosa and Mundo took their information to Atkins, who then urged Mundo to keep pushing his source. Reluctantly, he did. And to make it look like Sosa’s hit actually happened, Atkins and his team staged Sosa’s death – complete with makeup to make it look like he took a bullet to the head. They photographed Sosa in a grave.
“I saw myself in the grave, dead,” Sosa says. “Literally, I was supposed to be dead. I’m the only person alive that has ever walked out of his own grave.”
But would the images be enough to catch the person who wanted Sosa dead?
Van Sant and 48 HOURS report the story through interviews with Sosa, his daughter, Atkins, Mundo and more. 48 HOURS: “Dead Ringer” is produced by Susan Mallie, Jennifer Terker and Claire St. Amant. Jason Schmidt, Marcus Balsam and Mike Baluzy are the editors. Anthony Batson is the senior broadcast producer. Nancy Kramer is the executive story editor. Susan Zirinsky is the senior executive producer.