Crime 'The Watcher' : Where Is the Broaddus Family Now? While Derek and Maria Broaddus had "little involvement" with the Netflix series, they did have two requests for the adaptation of their story By Kelsie Gibson Kelsie Gibson Twitter Kelsie Gibson is the SEO Editor of PEOPLE Digital. Since joining the brand in 2021, she has contributed to a number of different verticals, writing and editing SEO content ranging from relationship timelines to TV and movie explainers. Prior to joining PEOPLE, Kelsie worked at POPSUGAR as the Celebrity and Entertainment editor, where she wrote and edited content and conducted various interviews for online and video at press junkets, red carpets, and events such as Tribeca Film Festival. She was also formerly at Bustle, Tiger Beat, and Her Campus and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. People Editorial Guidelines Published on October 19, 2022 02:06 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Netflix's The Watcher chronicles the true story of a couple who thought they bought their dream home in New Jersey, only to be stalked and threatened by a mysterious author. In 2014, Derek and Maria Broaddus bought a six-bedroom Dutch colonial home at 657 Boulevard in Westfield, New Jersey for $1.3 million with plans to renovate t for their family. However, before they could actually move in, they began to receive a series of letters from an anonymous stalker who called themselves "The Watcher." While the Ryan Murphy series starring Bobby Cannavale and Naomi Watts certainly takes a few creative licenses with the storyline, the mysterious case is certainly real (and still open today). From what the Broaddus family did with their New Jersey home to their involvement with the Netflix series, here's what to know about where the Broaddus family is now. The True Story Behind Netflix's 'The Watcher' Naomi Watts as Nora Brannock and Bobby Cannavale as Dean Brannock in "The Watcher". Eric Liebowitz/Netflix Did the Broaddus family ever move into the New Jersey home? After receiving a series of increasingly threatening letters from The Watcher, the family felt uneasy about moving into the home with their children by the time renovations on the home were completed. Having already sold their previous home, they moved in with Maria's parents as they continued to pay the mortgage and property taxes on 657 Boulevard. When it became clear they would not move in, the Broadduses took several steps to recoup their investment, including filing a legal complaint against the previous homeowners for not disclosing similar letters they had received, and trying to sell the home to a developer. N early three years after their initial purchase, the Broadduses found a family to rent the home, and two years after that, they finally sold the home for approximately $959,000 (a $400,000 loss), according to Zillow. Eric Liebowitz/Netflix Was the Broaddus family's stalker ever found? To this day, The Watcher has never been identified despite investigations by both authorities and the Broaddus family. According to Today, the Union County Prosecutor's Office says the investigation is no longer active, but the case is still open. The Cut reports that the new owners of 657 Boulevard have not received any letters from the infamous Watcher. Where is the Broaddus family now? Following their headline-making encounter with The Watcher, the Broaddus family has since kept a low profile, though Derek is active on Twitter, reposting updates on the 657 Boulevard case. According to The Cut, the Broaddus family did decide to stay in Westfield, as they later bought a second home in the area using an LLC to keep the location private. Did the Broaddus family approve of the Netflix series? In 2016, Lifetime released a movie based on their experience called The Watcher, which the Broadduses did not approve but also could not halt because of how much artistic license was taken with the plot. Though The Cut reports that the "Broadduses had little interest in giving someone the right to make a piece of entertainment out of the worst years of their life," they later came to an agreement with Netflix in 2018. According to Deadline, the streamer won the rights to the Broaddus family's story in a "seven figures" deal. While there have been rumors among neighbors that the Broaddus family was paid $10 million by Netflix, The Cut reported that the money they received from Netflix "didn't even cover their losses on the house." According to the publication, the Broaddus family "wanted little involvement" in the series, but they did have two requests: "that the show not use their name" (Cannavale and Watts' characters are called Dean and Nora Brannock) and "that the onscreen family look as little like theirs as possible." They also added that "they wouldn't mind it if the fictional house burned to the ground." The Cut adds that the Broadduses have not seen the show and "don't plan to watch it," adding that "seeing the trailer was stressful enough."