Murder of MN teen Sarah Rairdon chronicled on Investigation Discovery show

The 13-year-old's disappearance in 1985 led to horrific revelations.

Update: You can now stream the Deadliest Decade episode detailing the murder of Minnesota teen Sarah Rairdon. But only if you have a TV subscription log-in. 

Discovery Investigation made the full episode available online Tuesday. You need a cable TV username and password though, so through DirecTV, Xfinity, Frontier, Charter, or one of the dozens of other providers out there. 

It's 42 minutes, and a warning, it contains some things that may be difficult to watch.

You can find the episode here.

The original story from Monday morning is below.

The shocking disappearance and killing of a 13-year-old Minnesota girl will be featured on an Investigation Discovery show Monday evening.

Called The 1980s: The Deadliest Decade, the episode will chronicle the case of Sarah Ann Rairdon. The 13-year-old from Underwood, Minnesota, went missing on May 20, 1985.

The entire community banded together to try to find her, searching for weeks while her father, John Rairdon, pleaded for whomever took her to let her go.

The discovery of her body weeks later – and the revelations about what happened – still reverberated in the small town 30 years later, as you can read in this Forum News Service story.

The episode airs Monday at 8 p.m. central on Investigation Discovery. Here's the summary:

"When 13-year-old Sarah Rairdon vanishes from an isolated road in tiny Underwood, Minn., the whole town launches an exhaustive search for her. The discovery of her body leads to terrifying fears of child abductions—and reveals a tragic secret."

What happened to Sarah

A warning that the outcome of the case is disturbing.

Sarah's body was found seven weeks after she went missing. 

A month later her father, John Rairdon, went to police and admitted he killed his daughter after she started refusing to have sex with him. (He would later backtrack, saying he might have killed her but didn't remember.)

A New York Times story from 1985 chronicles the shock in Underwood after he was charged and as details came out. 

Rairdon "routinely and habitually" sexually abused Sarah for at least five years, usually once or twice a month, a 1996 Minnesota Supreme Court opinion explains. In the months before her death, she began refusing.

According to the New York Times, charges against Rairdon said he picked Sarah up on May 20 and drove her to a secluded area to try to have sex with her. When she resisted, he stabbed her in the stomach with an awl and watched her bleed.

John Rairdon was eventually convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Now 60 years old, he's being held in the Moose Lake correctional facility.

Next Up

first snow

Any sign of snow in the forecast for Minnesota?

The stars could align for some flurries in northern Minnesota this week, but that's about it.

Flickr - 14 year old vaccine shot - Navy Medicine

Walz announces $200 reward for kids 12-17 who get COVID shots

Those ages have the lowest vaccination rates among all eligible age groups.

Screen Shot 2021-10-15 at 10.01.55 PM

Police still searching for suspect who opened fire at Plymouth movie theater

It sparked a partial evacuation of the Emagine Willow Creek theater.

covid, vaccine

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Monday, October 18

Hospitalizations have surpassed 1,000 in the latest update.

Gully Boys van stolen Twitter pic 1

Mpls. band Gully Boys' van stolen, with all their gear inside

They're asking Twin Cities residents to be on the lookout for the silver van.

ATV, all-terrain vehicle

2 girls from St. Cloud injured in ATV crash

Neither girl was wearing a helmet, the sheriff's office said.

Kirk Cousins

Kirk Cousins has turned into a late-game killer for the Vikings

Cousins has given the Vikings a chance to tie or win the game 7 times in 6 games.

john oliver

Watch: The absurd ad 'Last Week Tonight' wrote for a MN car dealership

Host John Oliver described the commercial as a "tense domestic psychodrama."

Car driving

Minnesota is on track for the most road deaths since 2007

Minnesota has recorded 384 traffic deaths as of Oct. 14.


1 dead, 1 airlifted following Goodhue County crash

The crash happened around 6:15 a.m. Sunday.


Ice Cold Killers TV show revisits the Kira Steger murder case

Kira Steger disappeared after leaving her job at the Mall of America in February of 2013.

Biological mother of teen whose remains were found in burn pit charged with murder

16-year-old Savannah Leckie's remains were found in a burn pit.

Sarah Silverman says Al Franken was 'bullied' into resigning

The comedian is a long-time friend of Minnesota's former senator.

The new Zelda Fitzgerald show Z: The Beginning of Everything is out

The show tells the story of Zelda Fitzgerald, wife of Minnesota-born author F. Scott Fitzgerald.

christopher todd

Teen charged with murders in Minneapolis, St. Paul, shooting of corrections agent

The 19-year-old is accused of killing 61-year-old grandmother Teresa Bear Ribs.

Teen suicide leads to harassment investigation

Rachel Ehmke's parents believe bullying pushed the 7th grader to take her own life this past weekend. Dodge County investigators are now looking into whether those claims had a role in the death of the 13-year-old Kasson-Mantorville Middle School student.