It’s been eight years since the March 2013 unsolved murder of Beachwood nurse Aliza Sherman. As friends and family continue to seek justice, an Investigative Discovery TV show has taken on the case for an episode.
Solly Granatstein of Efran Films, a New York-based production company, and his team are producing an episode detailing the events of her case for “Still A Mystery,” a show focusing on cold cases.
The episode “Murdered In Broad Daylight,” which is available on the streaming service Discovery+ and is scheduled to air on Investigation Discovery at 10 p.m. April 6, details Sherman’s stabbing March 24, 2013, outside of her divorce lawyer’s office at 75 Erieview Plaza in downtown Cleveland. The Cleveland Clinic in-vitro fertilization nurse, mother and Beachwood resident died at MetroHealth Medical Center as a result of the stabbing.
“‘Still A Mystery’ is about unsolved and un-adjudicated murders and this story fits that basic description,” Granatstein, showrunner and executive producer, told the CJN on Feb. 24. “Personally, because I am Jewish, and the fact that her parents and her husband’s parents were both Holocaust survivors, there is that trauma in the family that makes it much more poignant. The murder and crime is horrific, to think it is happening to a family that has already gone through so much is hard to get around. So, it personally touched me.”
The episode featured interviews with Sherman’s close friends, Jan Lash, Caron Chait and Maria Zoul, as well as a remote interview with her brother, Dr. Ed Czinn. Conversations with former Cleveland Deputy Police Chief Edward Tomba, now police chief of Middleburg Heights, and Tiffani Tucker, a WOIO news anchor who covered the story locally, are also included. These accounts from those closest to the story helped drive the narrative, Granatstein said.
“A lot of people feel that Aliza’s husband was responsible for it, but in a way, I wasn’t surprised to hear those things,” he said. “But I was surprised to hear how far (Tomba) was willing to go on that. He didn’t mince words. And that happens with our show as well, though it is a bit rare for someone in law enforcement to say that clearly. He was willing to go on camera and say it appeared to him that way.”
Lash, who lives in Moreland Hills, said the interview was difficult, as she struggles whenever she speaks of her longtime friend.
“It takes everything out of you and you start thinking about and reliving everything, thinking about how things could’ve been different,” Lash told the CJN March 2. “It brings up a lot of ugly stuff. As a friend, you wonder if you could’ve diverted something or changed the situation. I don’t know if I could have, but I wonder to myself for the last eight years what has stopped this case from going forward. So, if you ask me how I feel during the periods where I speak about this, it is extremely painful, but I know we mustn’t let this go.”
With the episode completed, the lack of a resolution feels “demoralizing,” Granatstein said, hoping the coverage continues the conversation surrounding Sherman’s death.
“We’re always hoping that justice can be done, that something about our coverage can lead police to charge the actual murderer,” he said. “We feel that by casting a light on a story in a national TV program that more people will see, and then there is a level of pressure on authorities to solve the case.”
The other goal lies in creating a tribute to the life of a mother, sister, friend and nurse gone too soon.
“This is a tribute to Aliza Sherman, her life and the people who knew her, and so those who didn’t could see that and understand what a special person she was and what a loss this was,” Granatstein said.
For Lash, “It is the only way to keep her out there because talking about it is the only thing we have. It takes a lot of recovery time to speak, but we have to do it for her. She was the most amazing human being and a bright light. I miss her every day.”