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Crime Writers On... True Crime Review

Crime Writers On... True Crime Review

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The original true crime review podcast that looks at other podcasts, TV, and pop culture. True crime authors and real-life couple Rebecca Lavoie and Kevin Flynn hold a pop-culture round table with noir novelist Toby Ball and journalist-turn

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Episodes


Baby Reindeer

Donnie Dunn, an aspiring stand-up comedian, extends a courtesy to a distraught pub customer. Martha Scott becomes a friend and a regular at the bar, but her fixation on Donnie starts crossing boundaries. He tries to push away, but a spurned Martha begins an unrelenting stalking campaign which upends his life. The stress of the stalking triggers repressed feelings of Donnie’s own sexual assault at the hands of an influential television writer. As things continue to spin out of control, Donnie struggles to understand himself and decipher the woman who’s obsessed with him.Netflix’s buzzworthy dark comedy-slash-searing drama “Baby Reindeer” stars Richard Gadd and is based on his autofictional one man show. The series mines deep emotional territory, with performances that are fiercely raw and often unsettling.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BABY REINDEER" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Baby Reindeer

Donnie Dunn, an aspiring stand-up comedian, extends a courtesy to a distraught pub customer. Martha Scott becomes a friend and a regular at the bar, but her fixation on Donnie starts crossing boundaries. He tries to push away, but a spurned Martha begins an unrelenting stalking campaign which upends his life. The stress of the stalking triggers repressed feelings of Donnie’s own sexual assault at the hands of an influential television writer. As things continue to spin out of control, Donnie struggles to understand himself and decipher the woman who’s obsessed with him.Netflix’s buzzworthy dark comedy-slash-searing drama “Baby Reindeer” stars Richard Gadd and is based on his autofictional one man show. The series mines deep emotional territory, with performances that are fiercely raw and often unsettling.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BABY REINDEER" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:35

16 May 24

Witnessed: 19 Days

Police in Austin, Texas had no clue as to who was behind a package bomb that killed a homeowner in March 2018. Ten days later, when two more devices exploded in the city, investigators knew they were dealing with a serial bomber. With each new attack, the devices were more sophisticated. But authorities caught a break when bombs found at a FedEx facility could be traced to a suspicious man who dropped them off.In the newest installment of the series from Campside Media, Pegalo Pictures and Sony Music Entertainment, “Witnessed: 19 Days” recounts the hunt for the Austin serial bomber. Host Sean Flynn describes the shoe leather efforts of law enforcement to stop the attacks and discern the motive behind the terror campaign.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WITNESSED: 19 DAYS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Don't stop bee-lieving. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Witnessed: 19 Days

Police in Austin, Texas had no clue as to who was behind a package bomb that killed a homeowner in March 2018. Ten days later, when two more devices exploded in the city, investigators knew they were dealing with a serial bomber. With each new attack, the devices were more sophisticated. But authorities caught a break when bombs found at a FedEx facility could be traced to a suspicious man who dropped them off.In the newest installment of the series from Campside Media, Pegalo Pictures and Sony Music Entertainment, “Witnessed: 19 Days” recounts the hunt for the Austin serial bomber. Host Sean Flynn describes the shoe leather efforts of law enforcement to stop the attacks and discern the motive behind the terror campaign.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WITNESSED: 19 DAYS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Don't stop bee-lieving. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

42:37

13 May 24

Ripley

Grifter Thomas Ripley is hired by a wealthy businessman to convince his prodigal son to return from his extended holiday in Italy. But instead he ingratiates himself with Dickie Greenleaf and shares in his host’s life of luxury. Once he overstays his welcome, Ripley hatches a plan to get rid of Dickie and assume his playboy identity.Instead of Easy Street, Ripley finds himself living one step ahead of Dickie’s suspicious girlfriend, Marge, and an Italian detective investigating the missing bon vivant. Can the talented con man keep up the ruse and avoid getting tangled in the web of lies he’s spun?Netflix’s series “Ripley” stars Andrew Scott and Dakota Fanning, and is based on the book and movie “The Talented Mr. Ripley.” The moody black & white thriller is punctuated with rich symbolism, awe-inspiring scenery, and heart-stopping suspense, wrapped around a tour de force performance by Scott.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "RIPLEY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Ripley

Grifter Thomas Ripley is hired by a wealthy businessman to convince his prodigal son to return from his extended holiday in Italy. But instead he ingratiates himself with Dickie Greenleaf and shares in his host’s life of luxury. Once he overstays his welcome, Ripley hatches a plan to get rid of Dickie and assume his playboy identity.Instead of Easy Street, Ripley finds himself living one step ahead of Dickie’s suspicious girlfriend, Marge, and an Italian detective investigating the missing bon vivant. Can the talented con man keep up the ruse and avoid getting tangled in the web of lies he’s spun?Netflix’s series “Ripley” stars Andrew Scott and Dakota Fanning, and is based on the book and movie “The Talented Mr. Ripley.” The moody black & white thriller is punctuated with rich symbolism, awe-inspiring scenery, and heart-stopping suspense, wrapped around a tour de force performance by Scott.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "RIPLEY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

39:10

9 May 24

Shane and Sally

In 1988, three months after going missing from a lake in San Angelo, Texas, the bodies of teenagers Shane Stewart and Sally McNelly were discovered - the pair had been shot. Among those in their friend group were a collection of self-styled occultists, and evidence of satanic rituals was found near the park where they vanished. Evidence suggested there was more than one killer and rumors of a falling out between the victims and members of the cult interested investigators. Other possibilities included a drug debt, a random robbery, or police perpetrators and a cover-up. Decades after the murders, new clues keep emerging, but detectives seem no closer to solving this cold case.From Texas Monthly True Crime comes “Shane and Sally.” Hosts Rob D’Amico and Karen Jacobs take a fresh look at the prominent unsolved mystery. They track down past suspects and seek a motive for the killing of the teens. Did they really double-cross a drug dealer, provoke a satanic cult, or were they the latest victims of a stick-up gang prowling the lake?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SHANE AND SALLY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: give us this play. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Shane and Sally

In 1988, three months after going missing from a lake in San Angelo, Texas, the bodies of teenagers Shane Stewart and Sally McNelly were discovered - the pair had been shot. Among those in their friend group were a collection of self-styled occultists, and evidence of satanic rituals was found near the park where they vanished. Evidence suggested there was more than one killer and rumors of a falling out between the victims and members of the cult interested investigators. Other possibilities included a drug debt, a random robbery, or police perpetrators and a cover-up. Decades after the murders, new clues keep emerging, but detectives seem no closer to solving this cold case.From Texas Monthly True Crime comes “Shane and Sally.” Hosts Rob D’Amico and Karen Jacobs take a fresh look at the prominent unsolved mystery. They track down past suspects and seek a motive for the killing of the teens. Did they really double-cross a drug dealer, provoke a satanic cult, or were they the latest victims of a stick-up gang prowling the lake?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SHANE AND SALLY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: give us this play. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

40:28

6 May 24

Hello, John Doe

Among the missing persons cases online sleuth Todd Matthews followed were that of two boys from the same family who vanished 25 years apart. He was shocked to receive a call from a man who thought he might be Phillip Steven Brandenburg, the baby who went missing in 1974.Todd determined Steve Patterson was indeed the John Doe they’d been searching for and helped him reconnect with the mother he never knew. Sandi Brandenburgh claimed the underground adoption was brokered by her husband. Soon after, Franklin Floyd disappeared with Sandi’s oldest daughter and lived on the run with her for years. Authorities would not tie all these threads together until three more people were dead or missing.From iHeartMedia, Revelations Entertainment, First and Last Productions, and Neon Hum Media, comes "Hello, John Doe." We hear Todd work with Steve to learn more about where he came from, though the answers are discouraging. It also guides listeners through the connections to the Sharon Marshall and Michael Hughes cases and Todd’s efforts to reunite a family torn apart by tragedy.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "HELLO, JOHN DOE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Hello, John Doe

Among the missing persons cases online sleuth Todd Matthews followed were that of two boys from the same family who vanished 25 years apart. He was shocked to receive a call from a man who thought he might be Phillip Steven Brandenburg, the baby who went missing in 1974.Todd determined Steve Patterson was indeed the John Doe they’d been searching for and helped him reconnect with the mother he never knew. Sandi Brandenburgh claimed the underground adoption was brokered by her husband. Soon after, Franklin Floyd disappeared with Sandi’s oldest daughter and lived on the run with her for years. Authorities would not tie all these threads together until three more people were dead or missing.From iHeartMedia, Revelations Entertainment, First and Last Productions, and Neon Hum Media, comes "Hello, John Doe." We hear Todd work with Steve to learn more about where he came from, though the answers are discouraging. It also guides listeners through the connections to the Sharon Marshall and Michael Hughes cases and Todd’s efforts to reunite a family torn apart by tragedy.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "HELLO, JOHN DOE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

43:31

2 May 24

Serial season 4

In 2014, Sarah Koenig and Dana Chivvis traveled to Guantánamo Bay hoping to find the untold stories about the infamous military prison. They found many friendly soldiers willing to repeat Army talking points, but no one willing to be candid about life at the detention center.A decade later, the pair reached out to those people, many who had left the military and were now willing to go on the record. Many remembered Gitmo as a plum wartime assignment in sunny Cuba, filled with strong drinks and sexy personnel. Others have slowly come to terms with what the mission was and the role they played in it. Koenig also spoke with former prisoners, some with little or no connection to the Taliban or Al Qaeda when they were detained. In season four of “Serial,” Koenig and Chivvis drift away from the podcast format it popularized ten years ago, telling a variety of stories week-to-week about Guantánamo Bay from the people who were there. Instead of a deep investigation into policies and procedures at Gitmo, the hosts seek personal, unexplored stories from more than 100 of those on the ground. The podcast promises an oral history of the military detention center long cloaked in mystery and infamy.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF SEASON 4 OF "SERIAL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODEIn Crime of the Week: distill my heart. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Serial season 4

In 2014, Sarah Koenig and Dana Chivvis traveled to Guantánamo Bay hoping to find the untold stories about the infamous military prison. They found many friendly soldiers willing to repeat Army talking points, but no one willing to be candid about life at the detention center.A decade later, the pair reached out to those people, many who had left the military and were now willing to go on the record. Many remembered Gitmo as a plum wartime assignment in sunny Cuba, filled with strong drinks and sexy personnel. Others have slowly come to terms with what the mission was and the role they played in it. Koenig also spoke with former prisoners, some with little or no connection to the Taliban or Al Qaeda when they were detained. In season four of “Serial,” Koenig and Chivvis drift away from the podcast format it popularized ten years ago, telling a variety of stories week-to-week about Guantánamo Bay from the people who were there. Instead of a deep investigation into policies and procedures at Gitmo, the hosts seek personal, unexplored stories from more than 100 of those on the ground. The podcast promises an oral history of the military detention center long cloaked in mystery and infamy.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF SEASON 4 OF "SERIAL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODEIn Crime of the Week: distill my heart. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:57

29 Apr 24

JUSTICE, USA

After being booked, defendants in Nashville’s justice system must navigate a labyrinth of challenges. They include people whose mental illness gets them in trouble, an abuse survivor who finds herself both victim and defendant, a couple using jail as an opportunity to get clean from heroin, and teenagers facing life sentences for murder. There are also judges and corrections officials who acknowledge the system’s default setting is for incarceration, not rehabilitation. And they recognize the inadequate resources available for those who need help once they’re released.The Max Original JUSTICE, USA is an insider’s view of Nashville's criminal justice system, going into the jails for men, women, and juveniles. The series features a variety of stories about inmates, lawyers, and judges who confront issues of incarceration, mental illness, and addiction.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

JUSTICE, USA

After being booked, defendants in Nashville’s justice system must navigate a labyrinth of challenges. They include people whose mental illness gets them in trouble, an abuse survivor who finds herself both victim and defendant, a couple using jail as an opportunity to get clean from heroin, and teenagers facing life sentences for murder. There are also judges and corrections officials who acknowledge the system’s default setting is for incarceration, not rehabilitation. And they recognize the inadequate resources available for those who need help once they’re released.The Max Original JUSTICE, USA is an insider’s view of Nashville's criminal justice system, going into the jails for men, women, and juveniles. The series features a variety of stories about inmates, lawyers, and judges who confront issues of incarceration, mental illness, and addiction.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:08

25 Apr 24

Cover Up: The Anthrax Threat

With the nation already on edge after 9/11, envelopes containing deadly anthrax were mailed to journalists and politicians. It killed five postal workers and reporters, and sickened Congressional staffers. Government officials claimed these attacks originated overseas, and used the threat as justification for the invasion of Iraq. The FBI relied on leading experts to decipher the anthrax, and traced the weaponized strain to a particular beaker in a US biolab. Was one of the scientists working with investigators actually responsible for the attacks? In the latest installment of the series from Sony Music and Campside Media, “Cover Up: The Anthrax Threat” recounts the seven-year probe that shocked the nation, ruined lives and careers, and set the country on the path to war. Host Josh Dean details the sprawling investigation into who mailed the bio-weapon and why.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "COVER UP: THE ANTHRAX THREAT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Octomess! For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Cover Up: The Anthrax Threat

With the nation already on edge after 9/11, envelopes containing deadly anthrax were mailed to journalists and politicians. It killed five postal workers and reporters, and sickened Congressional staffers. Government officials claimed these attacks originated overseas, and used the threat as justification for the invasion of Iraq. The FBI relied on leading experts to decipher the anthrax, and traced the weaponized strain to a particular beaker in a US biolab. Was one of the scientists working with investigators actually responsible for the attacks? In the latest installment of the series from Sony Music and Campside Media, “Cover Up: The Anthrax Threat” recounts the seven-year probe that shocked the nation, ruined lives and careers, and set the country on the path to war. Host Josh Dean details the sprawling investigation into who mailed the bio-weapon and why.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "COVER UP: THE ANTHRAX THREAT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Octomess! For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:27

22 Apr 24

The Truth vs. Alex Jones

The 2012 murders of 20 school children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary shocked the nation and shattered their grieving families. But InfoWars host Alex Jones immediately unspooled a series of conspiracy theories accusing the parents of faking their kids’ deaths in an elaborate hoax. For years, the families were harassed by conspiracy theorists and routinely slandered by Jones. Fed up, a group of parents sued the host for libel and asked courts in Texas and Connecticut to hold him accountable in the biggest defamation case in US history.The HBO Original documentary “The Truth vs. Alex Jones” goes behind the scenes of the billion-dollar-plus lawsuit. It also digs into the origins of Jones’s unrepentant personna and his scandal-driven business model, as well as the worldview of the followers he inspired to torment the victims’ loved ones.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE TRUTH VS. ALEX JONES" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Truth vs. Alex Jones

The 2012 murders of 20 school children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary shocked the nation and shattered their grieving families. But InfoWars host Alex Jones immediately unspooled a series of conspiracy theories accusing the parents of faking their kids’ deaths in an elaborate hoax. For years, the families were harassed by conspiracy theorists and routinely slandered by Jones. Fed up, a group of parents sued the host for libel and asked courts in Texas and Connecticut to hold him accountable in the biggest defamation case in US history.The HBO Original documentary “The Truth vs. Alex Jones” goes behind the scenes of the billion-dollar-plus lawsuit. It also digs into the origins of Jones’s unrepentant personna and his scandal-driven business model, as well as the worldview of the followers he inspired to torment the victims’ loved ones.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE TRUTH VS. ALEX JONES" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:05

18 Apr 24

Stolen: Trouble in Sweetwater

In June 2021, Ella Mae Begay vanished from her Sweetwater, Arizona home in the middle of the night. Preston Henry Tolth admitted to tribal police he stole the 62-year-old’s truck and beat her, but Ella Mae’s family pressured him to say where on the Navajo reservation he left her. A year later, 38-year-old Kristina Carrillo went missing from the Navajo Nation in New Mexico. But as host Connie Walker investigates her disappearance, she uncovers an unlikely connection between the two cases.In the final season of “Stolen: Trouble in Sweetwater,” Walker looks at two missing persons cases from the largest Indian reservation in the US and their potential link. In addition to her journalism on the issue of missing and murdered indigenous people, the Peabody Award-winning host also focuses on the systemic issues that make solving these cases so difficult.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "STOLEN: TROUBLE IN SWEETWATER" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: the beat slows down.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Stolen: Trouble in Sweetwater

In June 2021, Ella Mae Begay vanished from her Sweetwater, Arizona home in the middle of the night. Preston Henry Tolth admitted to tribal police he stole the 62-year-old’s truck and beat her, but Ella Mae’s family pressured him to say where on the Navajo reservation he left her. A year later, 38-year-old Kristina Carrillo went missing from the Navajo Nation in New Mexico. But as host Connie Walker investigates her disappearance, she uncovers an unlikely connection between the two cases.In the final season of “Stolen: Trouble in Sweetwater,” Walker looks at two missing persons cases from the largest Indian reservation in the US and their potential link. In addition to her journalism on the issue of missing and murdered indigenous people, the Peabody Award-winning host also focuses on the systemic issues that make solving these cases so difficult.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "STOLEN: TROUBLE IN SWEETWATER" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: the beat slows down.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

41:44

15 Apr 24

Murder 101

To engage his sociology students, Elizabethton High School teacher Alex Campbell created a unique lesson plan. The class would research a 1970s cold case known as the Redhead Murders. By semester's end, the students had created a profile of the possible serial killer. Six months after the class released their findings, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation identified someone who fit their profile. They said DNA linked a now-deceased truck driver to one of the half-dozen murders. But with links to the other victims still missing, a new group of Mr. Campbell’s students pick up the trail to solve the case once and for all.From iHeart True Crime and KT Studios, “Murder 101” traces how a group project turned into a potential break in a 40-year-old mystery. The podcast brings us into the classroom discussions on possible clues and an interview with the one person who might tie the crimes of Jerry Leon Johns together: his one surviving victim.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER 101" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE PODCAST. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Murder 101

To engage his sociology students, Elizabethton High School teacher Alex Campbell created a unique lesson plan. The class would research a 1970s cold case known as the Redhead Murders. By semester's end, the students had created a profile of the possible serial killer. Six months after the class released their findings, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation identified someone who fit their profile. They said DNA linked a now-deceased truck driver to one of the half-dozen murders. But with links to the other victims still missing, a new group of Mr. Campbell’s students pick up the trail to solve the case once and for all.From iHeart True Crime and KT Studios, “Murder 101” traces how a group project turned into a potential break in a 40-year-old mystery. The podcast brings us into the classroom discussions on possible clues and an interview with the one person who might tie the crimes of Jerry Leon Johns together: his one surviving victim.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER 101" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE PODCAST. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:57

11 Apr 24

Death and Other Details

Imogene Scott finds herself aboard a luxury cruise ship chartered by the Collier family. The guest list includes powerful friends, as well as Chinese investors interested in acquiring their clothing factory. But after setting sail, an obnoxious passenger is killed with a harpoon through his chest.Also on board is a figure from Imogene’s childhood: world famous detective Rufus Cotesworth, who tried to solve her mother’s car bombing but abruptly dropped the case. The murdered passenger was actually Rufus’s undercover partner, looking for connections between the Colliers and the enigmatic Viktor Sams. Though she despises him, Imogene agrees to help Rufus investigate when she learns Sams was somehow tied to her mother’s death.Hulu’s high seas whodunnit “Death and Other Details” stars Violett Beane and Mandy Patinkin. The stylized drama takes the locked room murder format and sets it afloat. Can the pair learn what Danny uncovered that got him killed? Why is Viktor Sams targeting the passengers ? And will Imogene discover who was responsible for her mother’s death all those years ago.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DEATH AND OTHER DETAILS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Up shit's creek.This episode was recorded live at The Word Barn in Exeter, NH.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Death and Other Details

Imogene Scott finds herself aboard a luxury cruise ship chartered by the Collier family. The guest list includes powerful friends, as well as Chinese investors interested in acquiring their clothing factory. But after setting sail, an obnoxious passenger is killed with a harpoon through his chest.Also on board is a figure from Imogene’s childhood: world famous detective Rufus Cotesworth, who tried to solve her mother’s car bombing but abruptly dropped the case. The murdered passenger was actually Rufus’s undercover partner, looking for connections between the Colliers and the enigmatic Viktor Sams. Though she despises him, Imogene agrees to help Rufus investigate when she learns Sams was somehow tied to her mother’s death.Hulu’s high seas whodunnit “Death and Other Details” stars Violett Beane and Mandy Patinkin. The stylized drama takes the locked room murder format and sets it afloat. Can the pair learn what Danny uncovered that got him killed? Why is Viktor Sams targeting the passengers ? And will Imogene discover who was responsible for her mother’s death all those years ago.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DEATH AND OTHER DETAILS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Up shit's creek.This episode was recorded live at The Word Barn in Exeter, NH.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

54:11

8 Apr 24

CWO Classic: Slow Burn

It was the scandal that took down a President…but it didn’t happen all at once. The road to Watergate was paved over time with small turns and little-known stories that need to be heard.In this CWO Classic: we’ll revisit our December 8, 2017 review of the classic podcast “Slow Burn.” For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Slow Burn

It was the scandal that took down a President…but it didn’t happen all at once. The road to Watergate was paved over time with small turns and little-known stories that need to be heard.In this CWO Classic: we’ll revisit our December 8, 2017 review of the classic podcast “Slow Burn.” For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

31:32

4 Apr 24

Beyond All Repair

After profiling lawyer Shane Correia years ago for her podcast, part of his story stuck with host Amory Sivertson. He grew up under the cloud that his sister Sophia had been arrested for murdering her mother-in-law. And it was his brother Sean who said he witnessed Sophia commit the crime. But something about the story bothered Sivertson. Did the six-month pregnant 23-year-old really beat Marlyne Johnson with fireplace tongs just to steal some money? Why does the blood evidence only point to Sean, who was given a deal to testify against his sister? But her own investigation takes several turns, and Sivertson wonders if she’ll ever know who’s telling the truth.In “Beyond All Repair” from WBUR and ZSP Media, Sivertson offers up a classic murder mystery with an enthralling cast of characters. She brings a vibrant narrative style and leaves no stone unturned in her quest to find out who killed Marlyne . OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BEYOND ALL REPAIR" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: sinking feeling. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Beyond All Repair

After profiling lawyer Shane Correia years ago for her podcast, part of his story stuck with host Amory Sivertson. He grew up under the cloud that his sister Sophia had been arrested for murdering her mother-in-law. And it was his brother Sean who said he witnessed Sophia commit the crime. But something about the story bothered Sivertson. Did the six-month pregnant 23-year-old really beat Marlyne Johnson with fireplace tongs just to steal some money? Why does the blood evidence only point to Sean, who was given a deal to testify against his sister? But her own investigation takes several turns, and Sivertson wonders if she’ll ever know who’s telling the truth.In “Beyond All Repair” from WBUR and ZSP Media, Sivertson offers up a classic murder mystery with an enthralling cast of characters. She brings a vibrant narrative style and leaves no stone unturned in her quest to find out who killed Marlyne . OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BEYOND ALL REPAIR" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: sinking feeling. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:40

1 Apr 24

CWO Classic: Gladiator

He went from NFL tight end to having three murder charges. Could his rags-to-riches-to-ruin story have been different?In this CWO Classic, we’ll revisit our October 29, 2018 review of "Gladiator: Aaron Hernandez and Football, Inc." from Wondery and the Boston Globe Spotlight team. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Gladiator

He went from NFL tight end to having three murder charges. Could his rags-to-riches-to-ruin story have been different?In this CWO Classic, we’ll revisit our October 29, 2018 review of "Gladiator: Aaron Hernandez and Football, Inc." from Wondery and the Boston Globe Spotlight team. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

27:12

28 Mar 24

Dissident at the Doorstep

Western news outlets became fascinated with Chen Guangcheng, a blind self-taught lawyer who advocated for human rights inside communist China. When Guangcheng escaped house arrest and fled to the US in 2012, he was held up as a symbol of freedom and democracy. But in the subsequent years, observers were puzzled when Guangcheng re-entered the public sphere as a Trump supporter, repeating right-wing talking points. And the humble dissident who stood up to China’s authoritarian government was spotted in Washington on January 6th.The podcast “Dissident at the Doorstep” from Crooked Media looks at Guangcheng’s story, tracing his early advocacy for reproductive freedoms and disability rights, to the diplomatic crisis caused by his flight from captivity, and his latter day emergence as a right wing darling. Hosts Alison Klayman, Colin Jones, and Yangyang Cheng ask if the man known as “the barefoot lawyer” changed his political stripes…or was he misunderstood from the beginning?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DISSIDENT AT THE DOORSTEP" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Every dog has his DNA. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Dissident at the Doorstep

Western news outlets became fascinated with Chen Guangcheng, a blind self-taught lawyer who advocated for human rights inside communist China. When Guangcheng escaped house arrest and fled to the US in 2012, he was held up as a symbol of freedom and democracy. But in the subsequent years, observers were puzzled when Guangcheng re-entered the public sphere as a Trump supporter, repeating right-wing talking points. And the humble dissident who stood up to China’s authoritarian government was spotted in Washington on January 6th.The podcast “Dissident at the Doorstep” from Crooked Media looks at Guangcheng’s story, tracing his early advocacy for reproductive freedoms and disability rights, to the diplomatic crisis caused by his flight from captivity, and his latter day emergence as a right wing darling. Hosts Alison Klayman, Colin Jones, and Yangyang Cheng ask if the man known as “the barefoot lawyer” changed his political stripes…or was he misunderstood from the beginning?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DISSIDENT AT THE DOORSTEP" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Every dog has his DNA. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:43

25 Mar 24

Varnamtown

“Twin Peaks” actor Kyle MacLachlan had a crazy story for his friend. In the 1980s, kingpin Pablo Escobar bribed an entire North Carolina town to let him land airplanes and smuggle cocaine into the US. The little-known story happened in Varnamtown, population 300. They found that residents, many with the last name of Varnam, got rich as a cog in the cartel's trafficking operation. But one fisherman who refused to be intimidated took on the town in a quixotic effort to stop the smuggling. It took a spate of bad luck and double crosses to bring the whole thing down.In the podcast “Varnamtown,” MacLachlan and war correspondent Joshua Davis revisit this drug war footnote in a tale that features REO Speedwagon, lawn mowing Playboy bunnies, and an attack turkey. We hear from residents, investigators and drug smugglers while the actor and the journalist banter with each other about the story’s quirky twists and turns. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "VARNAMTOWN" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Varnamtown

“Twin Peaks” actor Kyle MacLachlan had a crazy story for his friend. In the 1980s, kingpin Pablo Escobar bribed an entire North Carolina town to let him land airplanes and smuggle cocaine into the US. The little-known story happened in Varnamtown, population 300. They found that residents, many with the last name of Varnam, got rich as a cog in the cartel's trafficking operation. But one fisherman who refused to be intimidated took on the town in a quixotic effort to stop the smuggling. It took a spate of bad luck and double crosses to bring the whole thing down.In the podcast “Varnamtown,” MacLachlan and war correspondent Joshua Davis revisit this drug war footnote in a tale that features REO Speedwagon, lawn mowing Playboy bunnies, and an attack turkey. We hear from residents, investigators and drug smugglers while the actor and the journalist banter with each other about the story’s quirky twists and turns. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "VARNAMTOWN" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:39

21 Mar 24

The Program: Cons, Cults and Kidnapping

Concerned by her adolescent behavior, Katherine Daniel’s parents sent the teenager to the Academy at Ivy Ridge, a school that promised to set her straight through a rigorous program. But within its walls, Ivy Ridge’s students were subjected to humiliation and violence at the hands of its staff. Years later, Katherine and her former classmates returned to the now-closed school. Riffling through its abandoned files and surveillance tape, they put together the pieces of their traumatic experiences, hoping to prove to an unconvinced world they were abused by so-called educators more interested in collecting tuition than in their well being.The Netflix documentary series “The Program: Cons, Cults and Kidnapping” is a unique view of the troubled teen industry told through the eyes of a former student. Katherine Kubler retraces the academy’s history while confronting former workers and pursuing current owners. She also attempts to come to terms with her own experience at the school and her strained relationship with the parent who put her there.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE PROGRAM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 14 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: rise, dry, reboot. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Program: Cons, Cults and Kidnapping

Concerned by her adolescent behavior, Katherine Daniel’s parents sent the teenager to the Academy at Ivy Ridge, a school that promised to set her straight through a rigorous program. But within its walls, Ivy Ridge’s students were subjected to humiliation and violence at the hands of its staff. Years later, Katherine and her former classmates returned to the now-closed school. Riffling through its abandoned files and surveillance tape, they put together the pieces of their traumatic experiences, hoping to prove to an unconvinced world they were abused by so-called educators more interested in collecting tuition than in their well being.The Netflix documentary series “The Program: Cons, Cults and Kidnapping” is a unique view of the troubled teen industry told through the eyes of a former student. Katherine Kubler retraces the academy’s history while confronting former workers and pursuing current owners. She also attempts to come to terms with her own experience at the school and her strained relationship with the parent who put her there.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE PROGRAM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 14 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: rise, dry, reboot. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:27

18 Mar 24

Shocking, Heartbreaking, Transformative

Journalist Jess Shane had become disillusioned with the documentary industry and its effects on those profiled. She set off to create a new paradigm and craft stories with input from the people whose lives she’s covering. Shane reveals her process of creating a new kind of storytelling, featuring four people who’ll receive compensation and editorial input. But after months of collaboration, the subjects are unable to offer meaningful contributions to Shane’s presentation of their life stories. And the documentarian must confront what happens when subjects want more of the control she offered.From PRX’s Radiotopia Presents comes “Shocking, Heartbreaking, Transformative.” Shane lets listeners into her earnest project to create stories that do right by their subjects, only to learn what is lost by doing so. It also asks questions about the commoditization of nonfiction programs by the companies that supply them and the audiences that demand them.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SHOCKING, HEARTBREAKING, TRANSFORMATIVE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 16 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Shocking, Heartbreaking, Transformative

Journalist Jess Shane had become disillusioned with the documentary industry and its effects on those profiled. She set off to create a new paradigm and craft stories with input from the people whose lives she’s covering. Shane reveals her process of creating a new kind of storytelling, featuring four people who’ll receive compensation and editorial input. But after months of collaboration, the subjects are unable to offer meaningful contributions to Shane’s presentation of their life stories. And the documentarian must confront what happens when subjects want more of the control she offered.From PRX’s Radiotopia Presents comes “Shocking, Heartbreaking, Transformative.” Shane lets listeners into her earnest project to create stories that do right by their subjects, only to learn what is lost by doing so. It also asks questions about the commoditization of nonfiction programs by the companies that supply them and the audiences that demand them.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SHOCKING, HEARTBREAKING, TRANSFORMATIVE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 16 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

56:06

14 Mar 24

The Truth About Jim

Sierra Barter’s step-grandfather had terrorized her family for years before his death in 2008. Jim Mordecai sexually abused the women in his life, including his step-daughter and his high school students. But he also seemed to have knowledge about a string of 1970s unsolved murders involving hitchhikers near his Northern California hometown. Sierra launches an investigation into Jim’s life which draws her closer to estranged relatives, but what she learns of her dead step-grandfather fits the profile of a man who could be responsible for some of the most infamous killings in the Bay Area.The Max Original “The Truth About Jim” follows Sierra’s journey to learn about Mordecai’s past, his victims, and his penchant for violence. Was this serial sexual offender also responsible for the Santa Anna Hitchhiker Murders? Or even more shocking…could he have been the Zodiac Killer?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE TRUTH ABOUT JIM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: frankly disappointing.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Truth About Jim

Sierra Barter’s step-grandfather had terrorized her family for years before his death in 2008. Jim Mordecai sexually abused the women in his life, including his step-daughter and his high school students. But he also seemed to have knowledge about a string of 1970s unsolved murders involving hitchhikers near his Northern California hometown. Sierra launches an investigation into Jim’s life which draws her closer to estranged relatives, but what she learns of her dead step-grandfather fits the profile of a man who could be responsible for some of the most infamous killings in the Bay Area.The Max Original “The Truth About Jim” follows Sierra’s journey to learn about Mordecai’s past, his victims, and his penchant for violence. Was this serial sexual offender also responsible for the Santa Anna Hitchhiker Murders? Or even more shocking…could he have been the Zodiac Killer?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE TRUTH ABOUT JIM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: frankly disappointing.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:19

11 Mar 24

CWO Classic: Murder on Middle Beach

A young filmmaker sets off to find his mother’s killer. What he uncovers shocks him. In this CWO Classic Rewind we’ll revisit our December 7, 2020 review of HBO’s “Murder on Middle Beach.” For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Murder on Middle Beach

A young filmmaker sets off to find his mother’s killer. What he uncovers shocks him. In this CWO Classic Rewind we’ll revisit our December 7, 2020 review of HBO’s “Murder on Middle Beach.” For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

34:29

7 Mar 24

Cover Up: Body Brokers

Sunset Mesa Funeral Home was a trusted business for bereaved residents in Montrose, Colorado. Director Megan Hess smooth-talked family members and offered steep discounts on cremations for those who donated their bodies to science. But the community was shocked when it learned the ashes in their urns were not those of their loved ones. Investigators discovered customers were being misled as to how their remains would be used. Hess was getting rich in the shadowy world of body dealing. In the backroom, she was dismembering heads and limbs to be illegally sold to medical companies for research.From Sony Music Entertainment, Campside Media and Black Bar Mitzvah, comes “Cover Up: Body Brokers.” The podcast recounts how Hess and her mother harvested body parts from their funeral home while giving families cremains from a mixed pile of ashes. Host Ashley Fantz talks to investigators, Sunset Mesa employees, and loved ones affected by the scam. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "COVER UP: BODY BROKERS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: By any other name. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Cover Up: Body Brokers

Sunset Mesa Funeral Home was a trusted business for bereaved residents in Montrose, Colorado. Director Megan Hess smooth-talked family members and offered steep discounts on cremations for those who donated their bodies to science. But the community was shocked when it learned the ashes in their urns were not those of their loved ones. Investigators discovered customers were being misled as to how their remains would be used. Hess was getting rich in the shadowy world of body dealing. In the backroom, she was dismembering heads and limbs to be illegally sold to medical companies for research.From Sony Music Entertainment, Campside Media and Black Bar Mitzvah, comes “Cover Up: Body Brokers.” The podcast recounts how Hess and her mother harvested body parts from their funeral home while giving families cremains from a mixed pile of ashes. Host Ashley Fantz talks to investigators, Sunset Mesa employees, and loved ones affected by the scam. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "COVER UP: BODY BROKERS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: By any other name. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

50:11

4 Mar 24

CWO Classic: True Detective 3

An aging detective with a failing memory struggles to solve the kidnapping case that has haunted him his whole career. On this CWO Classic Rewind, we'll revisit our February 4, 2019 and March 4, 2019 reviews of HBO's "True Detective" season three. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: True Detective 3

An aging detective with a failing memory struggles to solve the kidnapping case that has haunted him his whole career. On this CWO Classic Rewind, we'll revisit our February 4, 2019 and March 4, 2019 reviews of HBO's "True Detective" season three. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:03

29 Feb 24

True Detective: Night Country

After the last sunset of the year, a group of scientists vanish from their arctic research station near Ennis, Alaska. Police Chief Liz Danvers later finds the men naked and flash-frozen in the ice with no indication of how they got there.Danvers reluctantly reunites with Trooper Evangeline Navarro, her former partner still haunted by the unsolved killing of an indigenous woman. The uneasy pair seek to answer what happened at Tsalal station and whether it’s connected to Annie K’s murder. But as an endless darkness settles over the Night Country, are greater forces at play?“True Detective: Night Country” is season four of the HBO series and stars Jodi Foster, Kali Reis, Fiona Shaw, and Finn Bennett. Are the deaths linked to one another or with the mining operation polluting the water supply? Haunted both literally and figuratively by loss and isolation, the characters confront their own darkness living above the Arctic Circle.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "TRUE DETECTIVE: NIGHT COUNTRY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: dick pic.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

True Detective: Night Country

After the last sunset of the year, a group of scientists vanish from their arctic research station near Ennis, Alaska. Police Chief Liz Danvers later finds the men naked and flash-frozen in the ice with no indication of how they got there.Danvers reluctantly reunites with Trooper Evangeline Navarro, her former partner still haunted by the unsolved killing of an indigenous woman. The uneasy pair seek to answer what happened at Tsalal station and whether it’s connected to Annie K’s murder. But as an endless darkness settles over the Night Country, are greater forces at play?“True Detective: Night Country” is season four of the HBO series and stars Jodi Foster, Kali Reis, Fiona Shaw, and Finn Bennett. Are the deaths linked to one another or with the mining operation polluting the water supply? Haunted both literally and figuratively by loss and isolation, the characters confront their own darkness living above the Arctic Circle.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "TRUE DETECTIVE: NIGHT COUNTRY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: dick pic.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

48:57

26 Feb 24

Runaway Joe

In 1985, Irish residents were stunned to learn the man they knew as country gentleman Michael O’Shea was actually Joseph Maloney, a fugitive from America, accused of poisoning his wife twenty years earlier. He had fled to Ireland after escaping custody in New York. Though a court ruled he be sent back to the US, a legal glitch with his extradition order allowed Maloney to flee with his second wife. Decades later, the accused murderer remains on the run, frustrating authorities on two continents.From RTÉ Documentary on One comes the podcast “Runaway Joe.” It looks at one of the FBI’s oldest cold cases. Host Pavel Barter interviews friends of Maloney’s murdered wife, American authorities hunting him, and Irish residents who knew him for years as Mick O’Shea. Can investigators find the elusive fugitive and bring him to justice nearly 60 years after the crime?  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "RUNAWAY JOE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Runaway Joe

In 1985, Irish residents were stunned to learn the man they knew as country gentleman Michael O’Shea was actually Joseph Maloney, a fugitive from America, accused of poisoning his wife twenty years earlier. He had fled to Ireland after escaping custody in New York. Though a court ruled he be sent back to the US, a legal glitch with his extradition order allowed Maloney to flee with his second wife. Decades later, the accused murderer remains on the run, frustrating authorities on two continents.From RTÉ Documentary on One comes the podcast “Runaway Joe.” It looks at one of the FBI’s oldest cold cases. Host Pavel Barter interviews friends of Maloney’s murdered wife, American authorities hunting him, and Irish residents who knew him for years as Mick O’Shea. Can investigators find the elusive fugitive and bring him to justice nearly 60 years after the crime?  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "RUNAWAY JOE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

41:29

22 Feb 24

They Called Him Mostly Harmless

The case of an unidentified hiker found dead in the Florida Everglades baffled police. He’d gone by the trail nickname “Mostly Harmless,” but no one knew who he really was. His story energized Internet sleuths who started their own investigation into the John Doe. The online community grew toxic, with splinter groups competing with one another in a search for answers. But when the identity of Mostly Harmless was uncovered and the questions to his life on the trail were answered, some wondered whether the quest had been worth it. The Max Original film “They Called Him Mostly Harmless” recounts the crowdsourced hunt for the mysterious man’s identity. It poses questions about whether these armchair detectives were searching for the hiker - or searching for themselves.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THEY CALLED HIM MOSTLY HARMLESS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week:  long in the tooth. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

They Called Him Mostly Harmless

The case of an unidentified hiker found dead in the Florida Everglades baffled police. He’d gone by the trail nickname “Mostly Harmless,” but no one knew who he really was. His story energized Internet sleuths who started their own investigation into the John Doe. The online community grew toxic, with splinter groups competing with one another in a search for answers. But when the identity of Mostly Harmless was uncovered and the questions to his life on the trail were answered, some wondered whether the quest had been worth it. The Max Original film “They Called Him Mostly Harmless” recounts the crowdsourced hunt for the mysterious man’s identity. It poses questions about whether these armchair detectives were searching for the hiker - or searching for themselves.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THEY CALLED HIM MOSTLY HARMLESS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week:  long in the tooth. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:34

19 Feb 24

On Our Watch: New Folsom

When Valentino Rodriguez Jr. died at home, his family believed it had something to do with his time in an elite investigative unit inside New Folsom Prison. He’d been driven out of the job by other corrections officers Valentino believed were behind the abuse of prisoners. KQED reporters Sukey Lewis and Julie Small began to dig through reams of newly-released documents and interview tapes, hoping to shed light on what was happening in California’s most violent prison. Meanwhile, with guidance from Valentino’s mentor, Val Senior launched his own investigation into his son’s final days with the help of an insider.Season two of KQED’s “On Our Watch: New Folsom” tells the tale of two corrections officers struggling with the pattern of violence and a culture of silence within the high-security facility. The hosts investigate the challenges they faced and follow in their footsteps to uncover the secrets hidden inside the most dangerous prison in the Golden State.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "ON OUR WATCH: NEW FOLSOM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.Note: This episode has been updated to correct an error in an earlier posted version. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

On Our Watch: New Folsom

When Valentino Rodriguez Jr. died at home, his family believed it had something to do with his time in an elite investigative unit inside New Folsom Prison. He’d been driven out of the job by other corrections officers Valentino believed were behind the abuse of prisoners. KQED reporters Sukey Lewis and Julie Small began to dig through reams of newly-released documents and interview tapes, hoping to shed light on what was happening in California’s most violent prison. Meanwhile, with guidance from Valentino’s mentor, Val Senior launched his own investigation into his son’s final days with the help of an insider.Season two of KQED’s “On Our Watch: New Folsom” tells the tale of two corrections officers struggling with the pattern of violence and a culture of silence within the high-security facility. The hosts investigate the challenges they faced and follow in their footsteps to uncover the secrets hidden inside the most dangerous prison in the Golden State.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "ON OUR WATCH: NEW FOLSOM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.Note: This episode has been updated to correct an error in an earlier posted version. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

42:53

15 Feb 24

Dr. Death: Bad Magic

Doctor Serhat Gumrukcu had been hailed as a genius whose experimental treatments for cancer and AIDS made a half-billion dollars for Enochian Biosciences. But the researcher seemed to have two obsessions: one was performing magic tricks and the other was a penchant for secrecy. Financial investors turned up troubling information on Serhat. His diplomas and other credentials were phony, and he’d left a trail of white collar crimes. They’d soon learn, on the other side of the country, a man in a business dispute with Serhat was lured from his home, murdered execution-style, and left in a snowbank. “Dr. Death: Bad Magic” is season four of Wondery’s hit podcast series. Host Laura Beil tells the tale of the amateur magician and professional con artist who fooled financiers, scientists, and patients - and now faces murder-for-hire charges. Was Serhat the medical pioneer he claimed to be or was it all an illusion?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DR. DEATH: BAD MAGIC" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of The Week: Cocaine bears. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Dr. Death: Bad Magic

Doctor Serhat Gumrukcu had been hailed as a genius whose experimental treatments for cancer and AIDS made a half-billion dollars for Enochian Biosciences. But the researcher seemed to have two obsessions: one was performing magic tricks and the other was a penchant for secrecy. Financial investors turned up troubling information on Serhat. His diplomas and other credentials were phony, and he’d left a trail of white collar crimes. They’d soon learn, on the other side of the country, a man in a business dispute with Serhat was lured from his home, murdered execution-style, and left in a snowbank. “Dr. Death: Bad Magic” is season four of Wondery’s hit podcast series. Host Laura Beil tells the tale of the amateur magician and professional con artist who fooled financiers, scientists, and patients - and now faces murder-for-hire charges. Was Serhat the medical pioneer he claimed to be or was it all an illusion?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DR. DEATH: BAD MAGIC" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of The Week: Cocaine bears. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:04

12 Feb 24

Gwyneth vs Terry: The Ski Crash Trial

In 2016, a pair of skiers collided on the slopes of Utah’s Deer Valley Resort. Retiree Terry Sanderson said the crash left him with brain damage and emotional pain, so he filed a $300,000 lawsuit against the other skier: A-list celebrity Gwyneth Paltrow. But Paltrow said Sanderson crashed into her. Rather than settle, she defended herself in court with an army of high-priced attorneys and expert witnesses. What might normally be a low-profile personal injury case turned into a televised cause celebre. The documentary “Gwyneth vs Terry: The Ski Crash Trial” from Discovery+ and Max looks back at the case that captivated pop culture. Was the actress using her star power to avoid responsibility or was the optometrist to blame and just looking for a payday?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GWYNETH vs TERRY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Gwyneth vs Terry: The Ski Crash Trial

In 2016, a pair of skiers collided on the slopes of Utah’s Deer Valley Resort. Retiree Terry Sanderson said the crash left him with brain damage and emotional pain, so he filed a $300,000 lawsuit against the other skier: A-list celebrity Gwyneth Paltrow. But Paltrow said Sanderson crashed into her. Rather than settle, she defended herself in court with an army of high-priced attorneys and expert witnesses. What might normally be a low-profile personal injury case turned into a televised cause celebre. The documentary “Gwyneth vs Terry: The Ski Crash Trial” from Discovery+ and Max looks back at the case that captivated pop culture. Was the actress using her star power to avoid responsibility or was the optometrist to blame and just looking for a payday?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GWYNETH vs TERRY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

43:56

8 Feb 24

The Runaway Princesses

In 2000, the daughter of Dubai’s leader, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ran off to England. Though her father was seen as a progressive champion of women’s rights in the Arab world, Shamsa claimed her father subjected his children to harsh punishment for disobedience. The princess was then forcibly taken from British soil by Sheikh Mohammed’s men, sparking a diplomatic crisis.After spending nearly four years in prison for her own escape attempt, Shamsa’s sister Latifa also fled the country in 2018 to get away from her father. Her swashbuckling, high-profile breakout made international news, but claiming she’d been kidnapped, Indian security forces captured her at sea and brought her home. From the team at The New Yorker and “In the Dark” comes “The Runaway Princesses.” Madeleine Baran and Heidi Blake report on Latifa’s and Shamsa’s attempts to leave Dubai, the consequences for doing so, and what’s happening with the princesses today. Is Latifa now living a happy life in Dubai as she claims, or is she making those statements under duress?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE RUNAWAY PRINCESSES" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: no tipping. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Runaway Princesses

In 2000, the daughter of Dubai’s leader, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ran off to England. Though her father was seen as a progressive champion of women’s rights in the Arab world, Shamsa claimed her father subjected his children to harsh punishment for disobedience. The princess was then forcibly taken from British soil by Sheikh Mohammed’s men, sparking a diplomatic crisis.After spending nearly four years in prison for her own escape attempt, Shamsa’s sister Latifa also fled the country in 2018 to get away from her father. Her swashbuckling, high-profile breakout made international news, but claiming she’d been kidnapped, Indian security forces captured her at sea and brought her home. From the team at The New Yorker and “In the Dark” comes “The Runaway Princesses.” Madeleine Baran and Heidi Blake report on Latifa’s and Shamsa’s attempts to leave Dubai, the consequences for doing so, and what’s happening with the princesses today. Is Latifa now living a happy life in Dubai as she claims, or is she making those statements under duress?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE RUNAWAY PRINCESSES" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: no tipping. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:36

5 Feb 24

The Vanishing Point

Emmilee Risling was last seen in 2021 on the Pecwan bridge. Hoopa Valley authorities were unable to determine whether the troubled woman threw herself into the Klamath River or met with foul play.Emmilee was just another in the growing number of indigenous men and women who vanished from tribal lands in the Pacific Northwest. All their stories are different. Some deal with addiction, mental health, or domestic violence. But what they all have in common is the same location in Northern California.“The Vanishing Point” from Tenderfoot TV looks at the story of five missing people from Hoopa Valley. Host Celisia Stanton and her team explore the cold cases and attempt to learn why this tribal land is a vanishing point for so many. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE VANISHING POINT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Vanishing Point

Emmilee Risling was last seen in 2021 on the Pecwan bridge. Hoopa Valley authorities were unable to determine whether the troubled woman threw herself into the Klamath River or met with foul play.Emmilee was just another in the growing number of indigenous men and women who vanished from tribal lands in the Pacific Northwest. All their stories are different. Some deal with addiction, mental health, or domestic violence. But what they all have in common is the same location in Northern California.“The Vanishing Point” from Tenderfoot TV looks at the story of five missing people from Hoopa Valley. Host Celisia Stanton and her team explore the cold cases and attempt to learn why this tribal land is a vanishing point for so many. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE VANISHING POINT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

39:25

1 Feb 24

Radical

In 2000, a deputy was killed and another wounded in Atlanta’s West End while trying to serve an arrest warrant. Authorities said the gunman was Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin, the leader of the local mosque and caretaker of the predominantly Muslim neighborhood. In the years before becoming Imam Jamil he’d been known as H. Rap Brown, a leader in the 1960s Black Power Movement accused by the FBI of inciting violence. West End residents did not think their spiritual leader was behind the fatal shooting and wondered if his arrest was motivated less by the contradictory evidence and more by his past as an outspoken activist.From Campside Media, Tenderfoot TV and iHeartMedia comes “Radical.” Host Mosi Secret investigates the night of the shooting and attempts to find out who Iman Jamil really is. Is he truly a man of God? Is he a dangerous extremist? Or is the answer somewhere in the middle?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "RADICAL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: fowl language.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Radical

In 2000, a deputy was killed and another wounded in Atlanta’s West End while trying to serve an arrest warrant. Authorities said the gunman was Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin, the leader of the local mosque and caretaker of the predominantly Muslim neighborhood. In the years before becoming Imam Jamil he’d been known as H. Rap Brown, a leader in the 1960s Black Power Movement accused by the FBI of inciting violence. West End residents did not think their spiritual leader was behind the fatal shooting and wondered if his arrest was motivated less by the contradictory evidence and more by his past as an outspoken activist.From Campside Media, Tenderfoot TV and iHeartMedia comes “Radical.” Host Mosi Secret investigates the night of the shooting and attempts to find out who Iman Jamil really is. Is he truly a man of God? Is he a dangerous extremist? Or is the answer somewhere in the middle?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "RADICAL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: fowl language.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

48:27

29 Jan 24

The Estate

Growing up, Alex Estrada knew there was something important about the phone calls his father would receive from a man in prison. He learned his dad and Calvin Jones were accused of having their business partner killed in 1973. They dropped the charges against Rosalio Estrada, but Jones got a life sentence. Already navigating a toxic relationship, Rosalio’s possible culpability confirmed Alex’s belief his father was a bad man. But was he a killer? Alex sets off to scrutinize the fifty-year-old murder case in an attempt to reconcile his complicated feelings for his dead father.In the podcast “The Estate” from Sonoro and Tenderfoot TV, Estrada re-examines the evidence in a long-forgotten case, looking for clues as to who Rosalio really was. It attempts to blend true crime, political science, and family memoir into one.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE ESTATE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Estate

Growing up, Alex Estrada knew there was something important about the phone calls his father would receive from a man in prison. He learned his dad and Calvin Jones were accused of having their business partner killed in 1973. They dropped the charges against Rosalio Estrada, but Jones got a life sentence. Already navigating a toxic relationship, Rosalio’s possible culpability confirmed Alex’s belief his father was a bad man. But was he a killer? Alex sets off to scrutinize the fifty-year-old murder case in an attempt to reconcile his complicated feelings for his dead father.In the podcast “The Estate” from Sonoro and Tenderfoot TV, Estrada re-examines the evidence in a long-forgotten case, looking for clues as to who Rosalio really was. It attempts to blend true crime, political science, and family memoir into one.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE ESTATE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:59

25 Jan 24

American Nightmare

In 2015, Aaron Quinn told Vallejo police his girlfriend had been kidnapped in the middle of the night by home-invading frogmen. Detectives thought he made up the far-fetched tale to hide her possible murder. But days later Denise Huskins turned up at her parents’ house with a similarly elaborate story of abduction and sexual captivity. Citing its parallels to the movie “Gone Girl,” investigators accused the couple of a hoax. But miles away, a rookie detective uncovered an out-of-place piece of evidence in a serial rape case: a strand of blonde hair attached to a pair of blackout goggles.  The Netflix series “American Nightmare” follows Aaron and Denise’s ordeal, first as the victims of a bizarre serial rapist, then as defendants humiliated by cops who said they lied about it. It also features the investigator who bucked the system to get them justice on more than one level.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "AMERICAN NIGHTMARE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: watch and wear.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

American Nightmare

In 2015, Aaron Quinn told Vallejo police his girlfriend had been kidnapped in the middle of the night by home-invading frogmen. Detectives thought he made up the far-fetched tale to hide her possible murder. But days later Denise Huskins turned up at her parents’ house with a similarly elaborate story of abduction and sexual captivity. Citing its parallels to the movie “Gone Girl,” investigators accused the couple of a hoax. But miles away, a rookie detective uncovered an out-of-place piece of evidence in a serial rape case: a strand of blonde hair attached to a pair of blackout goggles.  The Netflix series “American Nightmare” follows Aaron and Denise’s ordeal, first as the victims of a bizarre serial rapist, then as defendants humiliated by cops who said they lied about it. It also features the investigator who bucked the system to get them justice on more than one level.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "AMERICAN NIGHTMARE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: watch and wear.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:38

22 Jan 24

In Her Defence

After missing for six years, Miles Naslund was discovered at the bottom of an Alberta pond, his body welded inside a metal toolbox. Police arrested his wife Helen who said she shot him in 2011 while he slept after enduring three decades of abuse. But the full extent of her sons’ involvement in the killing remains murky. And Helen’s sentence was much harsher than that of other Canadian women who’ve used the Battered Woman defense. From The Globe and Mail  comes the podcast “In Her Defence.” Host Jana G. Pruden recounts Helen Naslund’s case through jailhouse interviews and commentary from friends, children, and legal experts. Did the court fully take into account the 30 years of domestic violence she endured at the hands of her shooting victim? And is she protecting any family members who might have played a larger role in the killing and coverup? OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "IN HER DEFENCE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

In Her Defence

After missing for six years, Miles Naslund was discovered at the bottom of an Alberta pond, his body welded inside a metal toolbox. Police arrested his wife Helen who said she shot him in 2011 while he slept after enduring three decades of abuse. But the full extent of her sons’ involvement in the killing remains murky. And Helen’s sentence was much harsher than that of other Canadian women who’ve used the Battered Woman defense. From The Globe and Mail  comes the podcast “In Her Defence.” Host Jana G. Pruden recounts Helen Naslund’s case through jailhouse interviews and commentary from friends, children, and legal experts. Did the court fully take into account the 30 years of domestic violence she endured at the hands of her shooting victim? And is she protecting any family members who might have played a larger role in the killing and coverup? OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "IN HER DEFENCE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:49

18 Jan 24

Peacock's Dr Death 2

TV producer Benita Alexander thinks the work of a transplant surgeon will make for a great story. Dr. Paolo Macchiarini is saving lives by implanting the first artificial tracheas, and Benita soon finds herself in a secret relationship with the charismatic medical pioneer. Once they’re engaged, Benita grows suspicious of his tales of famous friends and promises of a new life in Europe. But worse, Macchiarini has been obfuscating the results of his surgeries, treating patients like human guinea pigs while the devices rot inside their bodies.Peacock is out with the second installment of their dramatic adaptation of “Dr. Death,” based on the Miracle Man season of the Wondery Podcast. Actors Mandy Moore and Edgar Ramírez recreate Macchiarini’s catfishing romance in the US, while Luke Kirby plays one of the doctors in Sweden looking to expose the surgeon’s deadly lies.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DR. DEATH" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of Week: road script.    For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Peacock's Dr Death 2

TV producer Benita Alexander thinks the work of a transplant surgeon will make for a great story. Dr. Paolo Macchiarini is saving lives by implanting the first artificial tracheas, and Benita soon finds herself in a secret relationship with the charismatic medical pioneer. Once they’re engaged, Benita grows suspicious of his tales of famous friends and promises of a new life in Europe. But worse, Macchiarini has been obfuscating the results of his surgeries, treating patients like human guinea pigs while the devices rot inside their bodies.Peacock is out with the second installment of their dramatic adaptation of “Dr. Death,” based on the Miracle Man season of the Wondery Podcast. Actors Mandy Moore and Edgar Ramírez recreate Macchiarini’s catfishing romance in the US, while Luke Kirby plays one of the doctors in Sweden looking to expose the surgeon’s deadly lies.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DR. DEATH" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of Week: road script.    For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:26

15 Jan 24

Burden of Guilt

As a child, Tracyrachel Bern’s father would beat her if she asked about the 1971 death of her baby brother Matthew. Her parents would later tell her what they told police: that the two-year-old girl threw the infant from his crib. After living years with the guilt, Tracyrachel came to question details of the accident and whether her abusive father, Jan Barry Sandlin, may have killed the baby and blamed it on her. She set off on a four decades long journey to learn the truth and get justice for Matthew.From Glass Podcasts comes “Burden of Guilt.” Host Nancy Glass interviews Tracyrachel about her efforts to clear her name and hold Matthew’s killer responsible. Did a toddler really dash a baby’s head or was she scapegoated to hide someone else’s fatal act of violence?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BURDEN OF GUILT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Burden of Guilt

As a child, Tracyrachel Bern’s father would beat her if she asked about the 1971 death of her baby brother Matthew. Her parents would later tell her what they told police: that the two-year-old girl threw the infant from his crib. After living years with the guilt, Tracyrachel came to question details of the accident and whether her abusive father, Jan Barry Sandlin, may have killed the baby and blamed it on her. She set off on a four decades long journey to learn the truth and get justice for Matthew.From Glass Podcasts comes “Burden of Guilt.” Host Nancy Glass interviews Tracyrachel about her efforts to clear her name and hold Matthew’s killer responsible. Did a toddler really dash a baby’s head or was she scapegoated to hide someone else’s fatal act of violence?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BURDEN OF GUILT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

40:30

11 Jan 24

Boston Globe's Murder in Boston Podcast

It was a crime story that shook Boston. The survivor of a fatal carjacking said his pregnant wife was murdered by an unknown Black man - triggering an unprecedented police crackdown in Black neighborhoods still dealing with the racial legacy of bussing. The city’s spotty track record on civil rights fueled police, politicians, and the media too eager to believe a fiction wrapped in racism. But even after it was revealed to be a hoax - and that Charles Stuart staged the death of his wife - the damage to the community could not be undone.  The “Murder in Boston Podcast” by The Boston Globe is a companion to, but separately produced from, the HBO series of the same name. Hosted by editor Adrian Walker, the podcast digs into the Charles Stuart case from a local point of view, going deeper into its many threads. It takes a critical look at the city’s racial backstory, flaws in the investigation, and the indiscriminate targeting of Black men - as well as the failures of its own newspaper. It even uncovers new information about who knew ahead of time that Stuart was the culprit.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER IN BOSTON PODCAST" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: pothole committed. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Boston Globe's Murder in Boston Podcast

It was a crime story that shook Boston. The survivor of a fatal carjacking said his pregnant wife was murdered by an unknown Black man - triggering an unprecedented police crackdown in Black neighborhoods still dealing with the racial legacy of bussing. The city’s spotty track record on civil rights fueled police, politicians, and the media too eager to believe a fiction wrapped in racism. But even after it was revealed to be a hoax - and that Charles Stuart staged the death of his wife - the damage to the community could not be undone.  The “Murder in Boston Podcast” by The Boston Globe is a companion to, but separately produced from, the HBO series of the same name. Hosted by editor Adrian Walker, the podcast digs into the Charles Stuart case from a local point of view, going deeper into its many threads. It takes a critical look at the city’s racial backstory, flaws in the investigation, and the indiscriminate targeting of Black men - as well as the failures of its own newspaper. It even uncovers new information about who knew ahead of time that Stuart was the culprit.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER IN BOSTON PODCAST" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: pothole committed. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:15

8 Jan 24

HBO's Murder in Boston: Roots, Rampage & Reckoning

In 1989, Boston was stunned by a dramatic carjacking. Charles Stuart said his wife Carol was shot in the head and he was gravely wounded by a Black man who robbed them. While the media fought each other for the latest details, police launched an aggressive and prolonged manhunt in the adjacent Black neighborhoods. Within the Black community, the harassment and heavy handed arrests opened fresh wounds in a city with a checkered past on race relations. But police were so willing to believe Stuart’s account of the bizarre attack, few suspected he was behind it all along.From HBO Documentary Films in association with The Boston Globe comes “Murder in Boston: Roots, Rampage & Reckoning. The three-part series retraces the investigation into who killed Carol Stuart against the backdrop of a liberal city unable to reconcile its racist history. We also hear from reporters, activists, and local residents affected by the manhunt and an unapologetic cop who helped run it.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER IN BOSTON: ROOTS, RAMPAGE & RECKONING" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

HBO's Murder in Boston: Roots, Rampage & Reckoning

In 1989, Boston was stunned by a dramatic carjacking. Charles Stuart said his wife Carol was shot in the head and he was gravely wounded by a Black man who robbed them. While the media fought each other for the latest details, police launched an aggressive and prolonged manhunt in the adjacent Black neighborhoods. Within the Black community, the harassment and heavy handed arrests opened fresh wounds in a city with a checkered past on race relations. But police were so willing to believe Stuart’s account of the bizarre attack, few suspected he was behind it all along.From HBO Documentary Films in association with The Boston Globe comes “Murder in Boston: Roots, Rampage & Reckoning. The three-part series retraces the investigation into who killed Carol Stuart against the backdrop of a liberal city unable to reconcile its racist history. We also hear from reporters, activists, and local residents affected by the manhunt and an unapologetic cop who helped run it.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER IN BOSTON: ROOTS, RAMPAGE & RECKONING" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

52:03

4 Jan 24

The Bakersfield Three

In 2018, Micah Holsonbake’s family said the 34-year-old banker went missing from Bakersfield, California. Two weeks later, a friend of Micah’s reported his 20-year-old girlfriend Baylee Despot also vanished. Just weeks after that, another friend, 38-year-old entrepreneur James Kulstad, was gunned down in a quiet neighborhood. Their families believed the fates of the three were more than a coincidence.The three were loosely connected in a world filled with drug addiction, sex trafficking, and illegal weapons. The mothers of the so-called Bakersfield 3 banded together to alert the public, keep pressure on investigators, and support each other, all while Baylee’s boyfriend publicly taunted her mom. But as new evidence turned up, the answer to what happened threatened to tear their alliance apart.From Casefile Presents comes the 15-part podcast “The Bakersfield Three.” Host Olivia LaVoice draws upon her years of covering the case as a TV reporter. Using her police sources, intimate relationships with the families, and her own story, LaVoice walks us through a mystery filled with shocking twists.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE BAKERSFIELD THREE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: gold brick.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Bakersfield Three

In 2018, Micah Holsonbake’s family said the 34-year-old banker went missing from Bakersfield, California. Two weeks later, a friend of Micah’s reported his 20-year-old girlfriend Baylee Despot also vanished. Just weeks after that, another friend, 38-year-old entrepreneur James Kulstad, was gunned down in a quiet neighborhood. Their families believed the fates of the three were more than a coincidence.The three were loosely connected in a world filled with drug addiction, sex trafficking, and illegal weapons. The mothers of the so-called Bakersfield 3 banded together to alert the public, keep pressure on investigators, and support each other, all while Baylee’s boyfriend publicly taunted her mom. But as new evidence turned up, the answer to what happened threatened to tear their alliance apart.From Casefile Presents comes the 15-part podcast “The Bakersfield Three.” Host Olivia LaVoice draws upon her years of covering the case as a TV reporter. Using her police sources, intimate relationships with the families, and her own story, LaVoice walks us through a mystery filled with shocking twists.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE BAKERSFIELD THREE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: gold brick.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

48:58

1 Jan 24

Best TV of 2023

There was something for everyone on the TV in 2023. We saw documentaries that dug deep into issues of crime and punishment. There were several true stories told in real time by the people in the middle of them. But there were also shows that made us laugh…and sometimes sing.But which TV shows and documentaries truly stood out? The crime writers will reveal their lists for the Best TV of 2023. Lara's Top TenGreat Photo, Lovely LifeNavajo Police: Class 57Victim/ suspectRealityOnly Murders in the Building season 3NavalnyTelemarketersHow to Create a Sex ScandalJury dutyLast Call Toby's Top TenGreat Photo, Lovely LifeRealityShiny Happy PeopleTelemarketersLast CallSavior ComplexMurder in Big HornOnly Murders in the Building  season 3NavalnyThe Diplomat Kevin's Top TenJury DutyVictim/SuspectGreat Photo, Lovely LifeOnly Murders in the Building season 3BS HighScouts HonorStolen YouthBurden of ProofTelemarketersMurder in Big Horn Rebecca's Top TenGreat Photo, Lovely LifeJury DutyThe DiplomatShiny Happy PeopleOnly Murders in the Building season 3TelemarketersNetflix's Murdaugh Murders: A Southern ScandalNavalnyNavajo Police: Class 57Last Call For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Best TV of 2023

There was something for everyone on the TV in 2023. We saw documentaries that dug deep into issues of crime and punishment. There were several true stories told in real time by the people in the middle of them. But there were also shows that made us laugh…and sometimes sing.But which TV shows and documentaries truly stood out? The crime writers will reveal their lists for the Best TV of 2023. Lara's Top TenGreat Photo, Lovely LifeNavajo Police: Class 57Victim/ suspectRealityOnly Murders in the Building season 3NavalnyTelemarketersHow to Create a Sex ScandalJury dutyLast Call Toby's Top TenGreat Photo, Lovely LifeRealityShiny Happy PeopleTelemarketersLast CallSavior ComplexMurder in Big HornOnly Murders in the Building  season 3NavalnyThe Diplomat Kevin's Top TenJury DutyVictim/SuspectGreat Photo, Lovely LifeOnly Murders in the Building season 3BS HighScouts HonorStolen YouthBurden of ProofTelemarketersMurder in Big Horn Rebecca's Top TenGreat Photo, Lovely LifeJury DutyThe DiplomatShiny Happy PeopleOnly Murders in the Building season 3TelemarketersNetflix's Murdaugh Murders: A Southern ScandalNavalnyNavajo Police: Class 57Last Call For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

01:03:46

28 Dec 23

Best Podcasts of 2023

This year brought us podcasts that examined interesting characters - from the super famous to the terribly infamous. There were the meticulously investigated stories of people caught in a system stacked against them. And it provided us with many series told by hosts with very personal connections to the crimes they covered. But which titles truly stood out? All four crime writers present their top 10 podcasts for 2023.In Crime of the Week: A lot of nerve swerve. Lara's Top TenEarwitnessSuspect: Five Shots in the DarkThe RetrievalsBlind PleaGhost StoryThe Kids of Rutherford CountyFiasco: VigilanteVerified: Full DisclosureOverlookedAdmissible Sheds of Evidence Toby's Top TenFiasco: VigilanteYou Didn’t See Nothin’Blind PleaEarwitnessI’m Not a Monster season 2Alabama AstronautWitnessed: Devil in the DitchGhost StoryChameleon: Dr. DanteThe Retrievals Kevin's Top TenYou Didn't See NothinEarwitnessI Am Not a Monster season 2Fiasco: VigilanteWitnessed: Devil in the DitchCity of Tents: Veterans RowSuspect: Five Shots in the DarkBlind PleaThe RetrievalsOverlooked Rebecca's Top TenYou Didn't See NothinEarwitnessWitnessed: Devil in the DitchThe RetrievalsThink Twice: Michael JacksonFiasco: VigilanteGhost StoryBlind PleaDear Alana,The Dream season 3  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Best Podcasts of 2023

This year brought us podcasts that examined interesting characters - from the super famous to the terribly infamous. There were the meticulously investigated stories of people caught in a system stacked against them. And it provided us with many series told by hosts with very personal connections to the crimes they covered. But which titles truly stood out? All four crime writers present their top 10 podcasts for 2023.In Crime of the Week: A lot of nerve swerve. Lara's Top TenEarwitnessSuspect: Five Shots in the DarkThe RetrievalsBlind PleaGhost StoryThe Kids of Rutherford CountyFiasco: VigilanteVerified: Full DisclosureOverlookedAdmissible Sheds of Evidence Toby's Top TenFiasco: VigilanteYou Didn’t See Nothin’Blind PleaEarwitnessI’m Not a Monster season 2Alabama AstronautWitnessed: Devil in the DitchGhost StoryChameleon: Dr. DanteThe Retrievals Kevin's Top TenYou Didn't See NothinEarwitnessI Am Not a Monster season 2Fiasco: VigilanteWitnessed: Devil in the DitchCity of Tents: Veterans RowSuspect: Five Shots in the DarkBlind PleaThe RetrievalsOverlooked Rebecca's Top TenYou Didn't See NothinEarwitnessWitnessed: Devil in the DitchThe RetrievalsThink Twice: Michael JacksonFiasco: VigilanteGhost StoryBlind PleaDear Alana,The Dream season 3  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

01:04:20

25 Dec 23

Great Photo, Lovely Life

International photojournalist Amanda Mustard returns home to pursue an open family secret. As her grandfather Bill Flickinger nears the end of his life, Amanda investigates the decades of sexual abuse he inflicted on his young chiropractic patients. Mustard looks at how Flickinger avoided accountability for decades and reaches out to her grandfather’s many victims. They include her mother and sister, but the effort to find forgiveness between them threatens to tear the family apart.In the raw HBO Original “Great Photo, Lovely Life,”  Mustard chronicles her family’s story, seeks to empower survivors, and confronts the fallout that facing family trauma head-on can bring. Viewers are presented with home movies, boxes of mementos, and intimate conversations aimed at disrupting a cycle of abuse, blame, and anger.OUR-SPOILER FREE REVIEWS OF "GREAT PHOTO, LOVELY LIFE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Great Photo, Lovely Life

International photojournalist Amanda Mustard returns home to pursue an open family secret. As her grandfather Bill Flickinger nears the end of his life, Amanda investigates the decades of sexual abuse he inflicted on his young chiropractic patients. Mustard looks at how Flickinger avoided accountability for decades and reaches out to her grandfather’s many victims. They include her mother and sister, but the effort to find forgiveness between them threatens to tear the family apart.In the raw HBO Original “Great Photo, Lovely Life,”  Mustard chronicles her family’s story, seeks to empower survivors, and confronts the fallout that facing family trauma head-on can bring. Viewers are presented with home movies, boxes of mementos, and intimate conversations aimed at disrupting a cycle of abuse, blame, and anger.OUR-SPOILER FREE REVIEWS OF "GREAT PHOTO, LOVELY LIFE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

49:18

21 Dec 23

Gooned

The Troubled Teen Industry comprises the wilderness programs, therapeutic boarding schools, and group programs desperate parents turn to when their kids are struggling with mental health, substance misuse, and behavioral issues - whether real or perceived. Often, kids are escorted to these programs by so-called Goons - transport agencies hired to take kids away from home, often against their will in the dark hours before dawn. But are these Goons a last-resort tactic for families at the end of their rope or a high-ticket, legal kidnapping operation?In the podcast “Gooned,” journalist Emma Lehman details many facets of the Troubled Teen Industry, interviewing survivors, former employees, and even impersonating the parent of a teen in crisis in order to dig up dirt on what she asserts is ground zero for the emotional, physical, and psychological abuse that leads to lasting trauma for those the industry is claiming to help.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GOONED" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: ghost in the machine. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Gooned

The Troubled Teen Industry comprises the wilderness programs, therapeutic boarding schools, and group programs desperate parents turn to when their kids are struggling with mental health, substance misuse, and behavioral issues - whether real or perceived. Often, kids are escorted to these programs by so-called Goons - transport agencies hired to take kids away from home, often against their will in the dark hours before dawn. But are these Goons a last-resort tactic for families at the end of their rope or a high-ticket, legal kidnapping operation?In the podcast “Gooned,” journalist Emma Lehman details many facets of the Troubled Teen Industry, interviewing survivors, former employees, and even impersonating the parent of a teen in crisis in order to dig up dirt on what she asserts is ground zero for the emotional, physical, and psychological abuse that leads to lasting trauma for those the industry is claiming to help.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GOONED" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: ghost in the machine. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:53

18 Dec 23

Gay Girl Gone

Amina Arraf grew a following for her blog recounting her life as an openly gay woman in Syria, a nation where homosexuality is illegal. She was revered by the queer community internationally, started an online romance, and drew attention from journalists covering the Arab Spring. Her legions of fans were shocked when Amina was arrested by the government and disappeared. But Amina’s descriptions of life under the Syrian regime didn't ring true to those in the small gay community of Damascus. As international efforts to locate and rescue Amina were underway, cracks in her story appeared.From the CBC comes the podcast “Gay Girl Gone.” Journalist Samira Mohyeddin investigates what happened to the famed blogger. The show also explores the impact on the people and political causes damaged by the whole affair. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GAY GIRL GONE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Gay Girl Gone

Amina Arraf grew a following for her blog recounting her life as an openly gay woman in Syria, a nation where homosexuality is illegal. She was revered by the queer community internationally, started an online romance, and drew attention from journalists covering the Arab Spring. Her legions of fans were shocked when Amina was arrested by the government and disappeared. But Amina’s descriptions of life under the Syrian regime didn't ring true to those in the small gay community of Damascus. As international efforts to locate and rescue Amina were underway, cracks in her story appeared.From the CBC comes the podcast “Gay Girl Gone.” Journalist Samira Mohyeddin investigates what happened to the famed blogger. The show also explores the impact on the people and political causes damaged by the whole affair. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GAY GIRL GONE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

40:40

14 Dec 23

Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God

In 2021, police in Oregon discovered the mummified corpse of Amy Carlson. Her body had been transported and adorned by the members of her small cult “Love Has Won.” The woman they called Mother God had been emaciated and her skin had turned blue. Her followers believed Carlson was the reincarnation of Joan of Arc and Marilyn Monroe, and communed with a group of Galactics led by dead celebrities like Robin Williams and John Lennon. The cult sustained itself through online donations and selling miracle cures as new leaders annointed by Mother God sewed internal strife. Was it her very practices and beliefs that led to her failing health and eventual death?From HBO Documentary Films, the series “Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God” examines Carlson’s rise as spiritual guru and her conspiracy-laced convictions. It features interviews with her followers in the immediate days after her death, still enthralled with her dogma.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "LOVE HAS WON: THE CULT OF MOTHER GOD" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: A Santa Claus bites the dust. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God

In 2021, police in Oregon discovered the mummified corpse of Amy Carlson. Her body had been transported and adorned by the members of her small cult “Love Has Won.” The woman they called Mother God had been emaciated and her skin had turned blue. Her followers believed Carlson was the reincarnation of Joan of Arc and Marilyn Monroe, and communed with a group of Galactics led by dead celebrities like Robin Williams and John Lennon. The cult sustained itself through online donations and selling miracle cures as new leaders annointed by Mother God sewed internal strife. Was it her very practices and beliefs that led to her failing health and eventual death?From HBO Documentary Films, the series “Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God” examines Carlson’s rise as spiritual guru and her conspiracy-laced convictions. It features interviews with her followers in the immediate days after her death, still enthralled with her dogma.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "LOVE HAS WON: THE CULT OF MOTHER GOD" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: A Santa Claus bites the dust. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:03

11 Dec 23

Ghost Story

Journalist Tristan Redman had no idea his wife's great-grandmother Naomi Dancy had been shot in the eyes by her brother in a 1937 murder-suicide that happened in the house next door. He wondered if it was connected to the spooky incidents in his bedroom or claims from the new owners that it was haunted by a ghost with no face. Naomi’s husband had narrowly escaped a bullet during the crime, but modern researchers questioned whether it was he who might have killed his wife and brother-in-law. Redman wondered if the apparition was Naomi asking him to prove John “Feyther” Dancy was the real killer…an inquiry that wouldn’t sit well with Redman's in-laws.In the podcast “Ghost Story” from Wondery and Pineapple Street Studios, Redman explores the life of the accomplished-yet-problematic patriarch while managing his in-laws’ misgivings. He employs historians, cold case detectives, and spiritual mediums to determine whether his long-dead neighbor was killed by her troubled war veteran brother or her braggadocious husband.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GHOST STORY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Ghost Story

Journalist Tristan Redman had no idea his wife's great-grandmother Naomi Dancy had been shot in the eyes by her brother in a 1937 murder-suicide that happened in the house next door. He wondered if it was connected to the spooky incidents in his bedroom or claims from the new owners that it was haunted by a ghost with no face. Naomi’s husband had narrowly escaped a bullet during the crime, but modern researchers questioned whether it was he who might have killed his wife and brother-in-law. Redman wondered if the apparition was Naomi asking him to prove John “Feyther” Dancy was the real killer…an inquiry that wouldn’t sit well with Redman's in-laws.In the podcast “Ghost Story” from Wondery and Pineapple Street Studios, Redman explores the life of the accomplished-yet-problematic patriarch while managing his in-laws’ misgivings. He employs historians, cold case detectives, and spiritual mediums to determine whether his long-dead neighbor was killed by her troubled war veteran brother or her braggadocious husband.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "GHOST STORY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

49:12

7 Dec 23

Imperfect Paradise: People vs. Karen

Mommy-influencer Katie Sorensen went viral with a story of a couple who attempted to kidnap her kids in a craft store. When Sadie and Eddie Martinez saw their photos in the news, they knew they’d been racially profiled and falsely accused in the latest so-called “Karen” incident.As it became clear Katie had exaggerated the event, police charged her with filing false reports. The criminal case turned into a litmus test on the online phenomenon of white women accusing people of color of criminal behavior for innocuous things. Did she make up the story to get clicks, or did other factors contribute to her allegation?In a short series from LAist Studios, “Imperfect Paradise: People vs. Karen” looks into the backlash against one white woman’s incrimination and the people who fought back against the racism and social media shaming. Reporter Emily Guerin also examines other things in the zeitgeist that may have led to her thinking her children were at risk.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "IMPERFECT PARADISE: PEOPLE VS. KAREN" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Airing of the Grievances. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Imperfect Paradise: People vs. Karen

Mommy-influencer Katie Sorensen went viral with a story of a couple who attempted to kidnap her kids in a craft store. When Sadie and Eddie Martinez saw their photos in the news, they knew they’d been racially profiled and falsely accused in the latest so-called “Karen” incident.As it became clear Katie had exaggerated the event, police charged her with filing false reports. The criminal case turned into a litmus test on the online phenomenon of white women accusing people of color of criminal behavior for innocuous things. Did she make up the story to get clicks, or did other factors contribute to her allegation?In a short series from LAist Studios, “Imperfect Paradise: People vs. Karen” looks into the backlash against one white woman’s incrimination and the people who fought back against the racism and social media shaming. Reporter Emily Guerin also examines other things in the zeitgeist that may have led to her thinking her children were at risk.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "IMPERFECT PARADISE: PEOPLE VS. KAREN" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Airing of the Grievances. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:41

4 Dec 23

Witnessed: Fade to Black

Screenwriter Gary DeVore vanished in 1997 driving through the Mojave Desert. He’d been writing an action film with input from CIA agent Chase Brandon. His wife Wendy wondered whether Gary's disappearance and his missing script were linked to the CIA and whether authorities were trying to scuttle the case. And even when his body and SUV were discovered a year later in the California Aqueduct, she still was convinced things didn’t add up.The newest season of “Witnessed: Fade to Black” looks into the conspiracy theories around the famous case and explores the CIA’s very real Hollywood influence efforts. Host Josh Dean tries to pull apart fact from fiction, with new reporting on whether Gary’s death was a high-stakes assassination or a simple accident.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WITNESSED: FADE TO BLACK" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: flying horses couldn't drag me away. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Witnessed: Fade to Black

Screenwriter Gary DeVore vanished in 1997 driving through the Mojave Desert. He’d been writing an action film with input from CIA agent Chase Brandon. His wife Wendy wondered whether Gary's disappearance and his missing script were linked to the CIA and whether authorities were trying to scuttle the case. And even when his body and SUV were discovered a year later in the California Aqueduct, she still was convinced things didn’t add up.The newest season of “Witnessed: Fade to Black” looks into the conspiracy theories around the famous case and explores the CIA’s very real Hollywood influence efforts. Host Josh Dean tries to pull apart fact from fiction, with new reporting on whether Gary’s death was a high-stakes assassination or a simple accident.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WITNESSED: FADE TO BLACK" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: flying horses couldn't drag me away. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

50:09

27 Nov 23

The Kids of Rutherford County

A fight among children caught on video led to the arrest of eleven Black students, charged for not stopping the fight. Kids as young as 8 were cuffed and booked into jail, even though Tennessee law says juveniles can’t be detained for minor infractions. Two attorneys were shocked to learn that over a decade officials in Rutherford County arrested hundreds of children for small violations and left them in jail cells for days. The police, the prosecutors, and the detention center all ignored the case law for one reason: the juvenile court judge told them to.From Serial Productions and The New York Times comes “The Kids of Rutherford County.” Host Meribah Knight looks at a massive civil rights violation, reveals how it came to be, and follows the two juvenile delinquents-turned-lawyers who try to do something about it.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE KIDS OF RUTHERFORD COUNTY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: faked Alaska. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Kids of Rutherford County

A fight among children caught on video led to the arrest of eleven Black students, charged for not stopping the fight. Kids as young as 8 were cuffed and booked into jail, even though Tennessee law says juveniles can’t be detained for minor infractions. Two attorneys were shocked to learn that over a decade officials in Rutherford County arrested hundreds of children for small violations and left them in jail cells for days. The police, the prosecutors, and the detention center all ignored the case law for one reason: the juvenile court judge told them to.From Serial Productions and The New York Times comes “The Kids of Rutherford County.” Host Meribah Knight looks at a massive civil rights violation, reveals how it came to be, and follows the two juvenile delinquents-turned-lawyers who try to do something about it.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE KIDS OF RUTHERFORD COUNTY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: faked Alaska. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:00

20 Nov 23

Unrestorable

In 2014, Catherine Hoggle returned home without her three- and two-year old children. Though their bodies have never been recovered, Hoggle was placed in a psychiatric facility to treat her mental illness and restore her competency for trial. But Maryland law states if a defendant is still deemed incompetent after five years, their charges will be dropped. With the deadline approaching, both prosecutors and the children’s father accuse Hoggle of faking it, trying to run out the clock and avoid prison.In the podcast “Unrestorable,” journalists Sarah Treleaven and Beth Karas examine the balance between a father’s quest for justice and the rights of the mentally ill in the justice system. Meanwhile, one key question that overshadows this case: Can you really fake being incompetent and get away with murder? OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "UNRESTORABLE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTE OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Unrestorable

In 2014, Catherine Hoggle returned home without her three- and two-year old children. Though their bodies have never been recovered, Hoggle was placed in a psychiatric facility to treat her mental illness and restore her competency for trial. But Maryland law states if a defendant is still deemed incompetent after five years, their charges will be dropped. With the deadline approaching, both prosecutors and the children’s father accuse Hoggle of faking it, trying to run out the clock and avoid prison.In the podcast “Unrestorable,” journalists Sarah Treleaven and Beth Karas examine the balance between a father’s quest for justice and the rights of the mentally ill in the justice system. Meanwhile, one key question that overshadows this case: Can you really fake being incompetent and get away with murder? OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "UNRESTORABLE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTE OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:19

16 Nov 23

Earwitness

In 1995, Deputy Sheriff William Hardy was shot while moonlighting at a Birmingham hotel. An informant told police the shooter was Toforest Johnson. Even though ten people saw him in a nightclub at the time of the crime, detectives believed they had their man. But after Yolanda Chambers’s statements were discredited, prosecutors turned to Violet Ellison who said she overheard Johnson confess on a three-way phone call. Years later, even the prosecutor has doubts about the so-called “earwitness” and whether Johnson should be on Alabama’s death row.From the producers of “Bone Valley” comes “Earwitness.” Host Beth Shelburne picks apart the original investigation, police conduct, and the credibility of the key witness. What does it say when even the people who put an innocent man on death row can’t get the justice system to right a wrong?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "EARWITNESS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: It's a small turd after all. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Earwitness

In 1995, Deputy Sheriff William Hardy was shot while moonlighting at a Birmingham hotel. An informant told police the shooter was Toforest Johnson. Even though ten people saw him in a nightclub at the time of the crime, detectives believed they had their man. But after Yolanda Chambers’s statements were discredited, prosecutors turned to Violet Ellison who said she overheard Johnson confess on a three-way phone call. Years later, even the prosecutor has doubts about the so-called “earwitness” and whether Johnson should be on Alabama’s death row.From the producers of “Bone Valley” comes “Earwitness.” Host Beth Shelburne picks apart the original investigation, police conduct, and the credibility of the key witness. What does it say when even the people who put an innocent man on death row can’t get the justice system to right a wrong?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "EARWITNESS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: It's a small turd after all. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:37

13 Nov 23

Murder in Apartment 12

In 2005, Kevin Jones discovered his girlfriend bludgeoned to death in her Russellville, Arkansas apartment. Police zeroed in on Jones, thinking the murder of former beauty queen Nona Dirksmeyer was an open-and-shut case. Despite a strong alibi and critical evidence pointing to an unknown assailant, prosecutors would not alter their theory of the case. And years after a jury would decide Jones’s fate - and DNA from the scene was linked to Nona’s violent neighbor - many would not change their minds about what happened in apartment 12.From Dateline NBC comes their latest podcast, “Murder in Apartment 12.” Host Keith Morrison looks back at his two decades of covering the case. While still employing his famous droll delivery style, this Dateline mystery does not get wrapped up in a bow at the end.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER IN APARTMENT 12" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Murder in Apartment 12

In 2005, Kevin Jones discovered his girlfriend bludgeoned to death in her Russellville, Arkansas apartment. Police zeroed in on Jones, thinking the murder of former beauty queen Nona Dirksmeyer was an open-and-shut case. Despite a strong alibi and critical evidence pointing to an unknown assailant, prosecutors would not alter their theory of the case. And years after a jury would decide Jones’s fate - and DNA from the scene was linked to Nona’s violent neighbor - many would not change their minds about what happened in apartment 12.From Dateline NBC comes their latest podcast, “Murder in Apartment 12.” Host Keith Morrison looks back at his two decades of covering the case. While still employing his famous droll delivery style, this Dateline mystery does not get wrapped up in a bow at the end.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MURDER IN APARTMENT 12" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:08

9 Nov 23

Navajo Police: Class 57

The Navajo Nation is the only tribe that runs its own police academy, training officers for an understaffed force patrolling the largest reservation in the US. The latest class of about two dozen Navajo recruits must go through a rigorous 28 week boot camp to prepare them for the rigors of the job.But Class 57 begins to dwindle, with recruits dropping out or being dismissed for misconduct. Yet those who graduate find themselves unprepared for the emotional reality of patrolling a reservation filled with poverty, addiction, and violence which mirrors their own experiences growing up Navajo.  The HBO Original documentary series “Navajo Police: Class 57” takes us inside the academy of a police force desperately trying to fill its ranks and into the complicated lives of those seeking to wear the uniform. It reveals how the NPD is a microcosm of the Navajo Nation itself…revealing its history, uncertain future, and its resiliency.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "NAVAJO POLICE: CLASS 57" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.Plus, the Crime Writers read a statement regarding toxicity in podcasting.In Crime of the Week: Mamas boys.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Navajo Police: Class 57

The Navajo Nation is the only tribe that runs its own police academy, training officers for an understaffed force patrolling the largest reservation in the US. The latest class of about two dozen Navajo recruits must go through a rigorous 28 week boot camp to prepare them for the rigors of the job.But Class 57 begins to dwindle, with recruits dropping out or being dismissed for misconduct. Yet those who graduate find themselves unprepared for the emotional reality of patrolling a reservation filled with poverty, addiction, and violence which mirrors their own experiences growing up Navajo.  The HBO Original documentary series “Navajo Police: Class 57” takes us inside the academy of a police force desperately trying to fill its ranks and into the complicated lives of those seeking to wear the uniform. It reveals how the NPD is a microcosm of the Navajo Nation itself…revealing its history, uncertain future, and its resiliency.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "NAVAJO POLICE: CLASS 57" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.Plus, the Crime Writers read a statement regarding toxicity in podcasting.In Crime of the Week: Mamas boys.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

48:15

6 Nov 23

CWO Classic: Happy Face

A serial killer father! Truckers! Bunk beds! Prison letters! BEARS! This podcast seemed to have everything, except maybe a point. In this CWO Classic, we'll revisit our October 22, 2018 review of "Happy Face." For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Happy Face

A serial killer father! Truckers! Bunk beds! Prison letters! BEARS! This podcast seemed to have everything, except maybe a point. In this CWO Classic, we'll revisit our October 22, 2018 review of "Happy Face." For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

19:08

2 Nov 23

Big Vape

Grad students James Monsees and Adam Bowen envisioned a new technology, one that would give smokers like them the hit of nicotine they craved without the carcinogens of a combustible cigarette. After a decade of refining vape products, they finally achieved commercial success with Juul. But instead of reaching smokers wanting to quit, Juul’s biggest customer base were young people attracted by their fruity flavors and extra pack of nicotine. Instead of being an alternative to Big Tobacco, the company had its own problems with regulators, parents, and public health officials.With users, experts, and former employees, Netflix’s “Big Vape: The Rise and Fall of Juul” chronicles the history of the controversial tobacco product. Did Juul’s mission backfire, making the public health crisis it tried to mitigate only worse? Or did its financial success blind its creators to the inevitable outcomes of perfecting smokeless tobacco?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BIG VAPE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: gummin' bears. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Big Vape

Grad students James Monsees and Adam Bowen envisioned a new technology, one that would give smokers like them the hit of nicotine they craved without the carcinogens of a combustible cigarette. After a decade of refining vape products, they finally achieved commercial success with Juul. But instead of reaching smokers wanting to quit, Juul’s biggest customer base were young people attracted by their fruity flavors and extra pack of nicotine. Instead of being an alternative to Big Tobacco, the company had its own problems with regulators, parents, and public health officials.With users, experts, and former employees, Netflix’s “Big Vape: The Rise and Fall of Juul” chronicles the history of the controversial tobacco product. Did Juul’s mission backfire, making the public health crisis it tried to mitigate only worse? Or did its financial success blind its creators to the inevitable outcomes of perfecting smokeless tobacco?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BIG VAPE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: gummin' bears. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

52:01

30 Oct 23

CWO Classic: MANslaughter

The 1970 shooting of a Wisconsin man should have been an open-and-shut case - but it led the victim’s niece on a decade’s long search for the truth. On this CWO Classic we’ll revisit our epic April 12, 2021 review of MANslaughter. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: MANslaughter

The 1970 shooting of a Wisconsin man should have been an open-and-shut case - but it led the victim’s niece on a decade’s long search for the truth. On this CWO Classic we’ll revisit our epic April 12, 2021 review of MANslaughter. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

31:42

26 Oct 23

Magnificent Jerk

When Maya Lin Sugarman was cleaning out her grandmother’s home, she discovered some screenplays written by her late uncle. Galen Yuen was in a Chinese street gang before becoming a small-time actor. Maya had no idea the script about his life story was made into the 1997 movie “Crazy Six.” By the time Hollywood was finished with the semi-biographical thriller about an Asian crack addict looking to rip off some Oakland drug dealers, it featured Rob Lowe trying to steal plutonium from Eastern European gangsters. The screenplays send Maya on a quest to uncover her uncle’s true life story, find the real people who inspired the characters, and learn how his movie got whitewashed in the first place.The Apple Original podcast “Magnificent Jerk,” produced by Pineapple Street Studios, is the true story of the fake story of a real life. The host takes a journey into the colorful past of the uncle she thought she knew and finds a tale about identity, ambition, and family.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MAGNIFICENT JERK" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Paying your debt to society. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Magnificent Jerk

When Maya Lin Sugarman was cleaning out her grandmother’s home, she discovered some screenplays written by her late uncle. Galen Yuen was in a Chinese street gang before becoming a small-time actor. Maya had no idea the script about his life story was made into the 1997 movie “Crazy Six.” By the time Hollywood was finished with the semi-biographical thriller about an Asian crack addict looking to rip off some Oakland drug dealers, it featured Rob Lowe trying to steal plutonium from Eastern European gangsters. The screenplays send Maya on a quest to uncover her uncle’s true life story, find the real people who inspired the characters, and learn how his movie got whitewashed in the first place.The Apple Original podcast “Magnificent Jerk,” produced by Pineapple Street Studios, is the true story of the fake story of a real life. The host takes a journey into the colorful past of the uncle she thought she knew and finds a tale about identity, ambition, and family.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "MAGNIFICENT JERK" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Paying your debt to society. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:36

23 Oct 23

The Shell Lake Massacre

While his wife and eight of his children lay sleeping, James Peterson awoke to a stranger at his farmhouse door. Within a matter of minutes, all but one family member would be shot to death in Canada’s worst random murder spree. The scope of the 1967 crime shook Saskatchewan, leaving locals in fear for their lives. Mounties would later interrogate a neighbor who’d been recently released from a hospital and had been hallucinating about the devil.Rawlco Radio presents the six-part podcast “The Shell Lake Massacre.” Host Brittany Caffet recounts one of Canada’s most gruesome slayings. She also introduces us to Kathy Hill, the only surviving member of the Peterson family, as they both return to the scene of the crime.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE SHELL LAKE MASSACRE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Shell Lake Massacre

While his wife and eight of his children lay sleeping, James Peterson awoke to a stranger at his farmhouse door. Within a matter of minutes, all but one family member would be shot to death in Canada’s worst random murder spree. The scope of the 1967 crime shook Saskatchewan, leaving locals in fear for their lives. Mounties would later interrogate a neighbor who’d been recently released from a hospital and had been hallucinating about the devil.Rawlco Radio presents the six-part podcast “The Shell Lake Massacre.” Host Brittany Caffet recounts one of Canada’s most gruesome slayings. She also introduces us to Kathy Hill, the only surviving member of the Peterson family, as they both return to the scene of the crime.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE SHELL LAKE MASSACRE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:15

19 Oct 23

Savior Complex

In 2009, nineteen-year-old Renee Bach said the Lord called her to go to Uganda and establish a charity to feed the hungry. But the Serving His Children clinic morphed into an intensive care unit for gravely malnourished babies and toddlers. Her work attracted Christian donors and filled her social media feed. But Bach became the target of Ugandan activists opposed to white missionaries using African children as props for their own agendas. And observers noted why starving babies continued to die at her clinic: Bach was personally directing the children’s care even though she had no medical training.“Savior Complex” from HBO Documentaries uses video of the clinic shot by Bach to tell a story of white privilege and religious hubris. It also follows local activists drumming up opposition to Bach and other Westerners more interested in grabbing the spotlight than providing humanitarian relief.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SAVIOR COMPLEX" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: stick 'em up. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Savior Complex

In 2009, nineteen-year-old Renee Bach said the Lord called her to go to Uganda and establish a charity to feed the hungry. But the Serving His Children clinic morphed into an intensive care unit for gravely malnourished babies and toddlers. Her work attracted Christian donors and filled her social media feed. But Bach became the target of Ugandan activists opposed to white missionaries using African children as props for their own agendas. And observers noted why starving babies continued to die at her clinic: Bach was personally directing the children’s care even though she had no medical training.“Savior Complex” from HBO Documentaries uses video of the clinic shot by Bach to tell a story of white privilege and religious hubris. It also follows local activists drumming up opposition to Bach and other Westerners more interested in grabbing the spotlight than providing humanitarian relief.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SAVIOR COMPLEX" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: stick 'em up. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

50:25

16 Oct 23

The Dream season 3

People are spending thousands of dollars to get the guidance of life coaches, so-called experts who promise to motivate clients, provide clarity to their problems, and set them on the path to financial reward. But often these gurus recruit new coaches, ensnaring them and their downstream clients in a multi-level marketing cycle. But who gets to say they’re an expert in giving life advice or promising prosperity to clients for the right fee? And why do people think these self-styled gurus can change their emotional and financial situations in the first place? In season three of “The Dream,” host Jane Marie explores the life coaching industry, and whether followers can transform themselves by altering mindsets or tapping into the universe. Jane makes the journey personal by discussing her feelings of dread and depression, and employing her own life coach to improve her outlook.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE DREAM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Dream season 3

People are spending thousands of dollars to get the guidance of life coaches, so-called experts who promise to motivate clients, provide clarity to their problems, and set them on the path to financial reward. But often these gurus recruit new coaches, ensnaring them and their downstream clients in a multi-level marketing cycle. But who gets to say they’re an expert in giving life advice or promising prosperity to clients for the right fee? And why do people think these self-styled gurus can change their emotional and financial situations in the first place? In season three of “The Dream,” host Jane Marie explores the life coaching industry, and whether followers can transform themselves by altering mindsets or tapping into the universe. Jane makes the journey personal by discussing her feelings of dread and depression, and employing her own life coach to improve her outlook.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE DREAM" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:59

12 Oct 23

Who Killed Jill Dando?

In 1999, Great Britain was shaken when popular BBC news presenter Jill Dando was gunned down at her front door. In their search for the shooter, police examined loved ones, fans, assassins, political extremists, and connections to her popular TV show “Crimewatch.” After months of false leads, a neighbor caught the attention of authorities. Would a single particle of gunpowder be enough to convict a suspect of killing the nation’s most beloved television star…or put the wrong man in jail?The Netflix series “Who Killed Jill Dando?” explores the 1999 slaying of the journalist and the many twists and turns of the investigation. Why does her death continue to grip experts and the public all these years later?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WHO KILLED JILL DANDO" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: hard rock. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Who Killed Jill Dando?

In 1999, Great Britain was shaken when popular BBC news presenter Jill Dando was gunned down at her front door. In their search for the shooter, police examined loved ones, fans, assassins, political extremists, and connections to her popular TV show “Crimewatch.” After months of false leads, a neighbor caught the attention of authorities. Would a single particle of gunpowder be enough to convict a suspect of killing the nation’s most beloved television star…or put the wrong man in jail?The Netflix series “Who Killed Jill Dando?” explores the 1999 slaying of the journalist and the many twists and turns of the investigation. Why does her death continue to grip experts and the public all these years later?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WHO KILLED JILL DANDO" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: hard rock. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:10

9 Oct 23

Only Murders in The Building s3

When last we saw our heroes, temperamental actor Ben Gilroy had died on stage at the premier of Oliver’s new Broadway show. But a very-much alive Ben returns from the hospital, only to plummet to his death  in the Arconia’s elevator shaft. Who among the cast and crew would want Ben dead? Oliver fears the show will tank if it’s a cast member - like the alluring Loretta Durkin whom he’s crushing on. Charles is struggling with both his love life and the musical’s patter song. Meanwhile Mabel is leaving the Arconia and feels disconnected from the guys. As she moves forward on the podcast without them, can this trio solve the latest murder in the building?Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez return in season three of Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building.” Meryl Streep and Paul Rudd round out the cast. The show turns its focus away from true crime podcasts to musical theater, while providing another group of odd-ball suspects to investigate.    OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "ONLY MURDERS IN THE BUILDING" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Only Murders in The Building s3

When last we saw our heroes, temperamental actor Ben Gilroy had died on stage at the premier of Oliver’s new Broadway show. But a very-much alive Ben returns from the hospital, only to plummet to his death  in the Arconia’s elevator shaft. Who among the cast and crew would want Ben dead? Oliver fears the show will tank if it’s a cast member - like the alluring Loretta Durkin whom he’s crushing on. Charles is struggling with both his love life and the musical’s patter song. Meanwhile Mabel is leaving the Arconia and feels disconnected from the guys. As she moves forward on the podcast without them, can this trio solve the latest murder in the building?Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez return in season three of Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building.” Meryl Streep and Paul Rudd round out the cast. The show turns its focus away from true crime podcasts to musical theater, while providing another group of odd-ball suspects to investigate.    OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "ONLY MURDERS IN THE BUILDING" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

48:31

4 Oct 23

Exposed: Cover-Up at Columbia University

After a patient reported Dr Robert Hadden assaulted her in the exam room, many women came forward with similar accusations. But aggressive tactics by lawyers for the OB-GYN stymied the prosecution, ultimately resulting in a slap on the wrist. Survivors learned behind the hardball maneuvers was Hadden’s employer. For years, Columbia University ignored the complaints against the doctor, choosing to protect its brand instead of its patients.In the Wondery podcast “Exposed: Cover-Up at Columbia University,” “Dr. Death” host Laura Beil talks to survivors, advocates, and prosecutors about the decade’s long effort to hold a serial sexual predator accountable. The series also explores how elite institutions wield their influence to avoid responsibility. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "EXPOSED: COVER-UP AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Don't give a flying f*ck.Support Kevin's Walk a Mile in Their Shoes 👠 by donating here. Proceeds go to the Crisis Center of Central New Hampshire.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Exposed: Cover-Up at Columbia University

After a patient reported Dr Robert Hadden assaulted her in the exam room, many women came forward with similar accusations. But aggressive tactics by lawyers for the OB-GYN stymied the prosecution, ultimately resulting in a slap on the wrist. Survivors learned behind the hardball maneuvers was Hadden’s employer. For years, Columbia University ignored the complaints against the doctor, choosing to protect its brand instead of its patients.In the Wondery podcast “Exposed: Cover-Up at Columbia University,” “Dr. Death” host Laura Beil talks to survivors, advocates, and prosecutors about the decade’s long effort to hold a serial sexual predator accountable. The series also explores how elite institutions wield their influence to avoid responsibility. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "EXPOSED: COVER-UP AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Don't give a flying f*ck.Support Kevin's Walk a Mile in Their Shoes 👠 by donating here. Proceeds go to the Crisis Center of Central New Hampshire.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:01

2 Oct 23

Scouts Honor

Though thought of as a leading youth group for skills and character building, the Boy Scouts often attracted adults who preyed on children. For decades, the national headquarters cataloged these incidents in confidential files, but publicly they denied there was a problem. It wasn’t until a former scout sued that the files were disclosed, revealing leaders knew about, but never acted on, hundreds and hundreds of cases of abuse. And even today, after a multi-billion dollar settlement with victims, whistleblowers say the Boy Scouts are failing in their mission to protect its members.The Netflix documentary “Scouts Honor: The Secret Files of the Boy Scouts of America” looks into the cover-up behind the largest sex abuse case in history. Survivors, journalists, and insiders recount what happened when the organization that urged young men to be honest and trustworthy ignored its own ideals in favor of self-preservation.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SCOUTS HONOR" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Scouts Honor

Though thought of as a leading youth group for skills and character building, the Boy Scouts often attracted adults who preyed on children. For decades, the national headquarters cataloged these incidents in confidential files, but publicly they denied there was a problem. It wasn’t until a former scout sued that the files were disclosed, revealing leaders knew about, but never acted on, hundreds and hundreds of cases of abuse. And even today, after a multi-billion dollar settlement with victims, whistleblowers say the Boy Scouts are failing in their mission to protect its members.The Netflix documentary “Scouts Honor: The Secret Files of the Boy Scouts of America” looks into the cover-up behind the largest sex abuse case in history. Survivors, journalists, and insiders recount what happened when the organization that urged young men to be honest and trustworthy ignored its own ideals in favor of self-preservation.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SCOUTS HONOR" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

43:42

28 Sep 23

Over My Dead Body: Gone Hunting

In December 2000, Florida’s Mike Williams disappeared in alligator-infested waters while duck hunting. His loss seemed to crush his wife Denise and his best friend Brian Winchester. While authorities ruled his presumed-death an accident, his mother Cheryl believed it was foul play. For years, she begged police and reporters to look into Denise’s involvement. It wasn’t until years later, when Denise got an insurance payout and married Brian, did investigators reopen Mike’s case.From Wondery comes “Over My Dead Body: Gone Hunting,” season four of the true crime podcast series. Host Jennifer Portman recounts the two decades-long investigation and her own reporting on whether Mike’s wife and best friend were involved in his disappearance.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "OVER MY DEAD BODY: GONE HUNTING" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: weird science. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Over My Dead Body: Gone Hunting

In December 2000, Florida’s Mike Williams disappeared in alligator-infested waters while duck hunting. His loss seemed to crush his wife Denise and his best friend Brian Winchester. While authorities ruled his presumed-death an accident, his mother Cheryl believed it was foul play. For years, she begged police and reporters to look into Denise’s involvement. It wasn’t until years later, when Denise got an insurance payout and married Brian, did investigators reopen Mike’s case.From Wondery comes “Over My Dead Body: Gone Hunting,” season four of the true crime podcast series. Host Jennifer Portman recounts the two decades-long investigation and her own reporting on whether Mike’s wife and best friend were involved in his disappearance.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "OVER MY DEAD BODY: GONE HUNTING" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: weird science. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

43:13

25 Sep 23

Dear Alana,

In 2019, Boulder, Colorado residents were shocked by the death by suicide of 24-year-old Alana Chen. The woman who once dreamed of being a nun had struggled with her sexual identity and was left scarred by conversion therapy. The reports intrigued Simon Kent Fung, who interviewed her mother and friends to learn more about Alana’s story. Exploring her inner life through the journals she left behind, Alana’s journey made Simon reflect on the parallels of his own struggles to reconcile his faith with his efforts to change his hidden sexuality.“Dear Alana,” from Tenderfoot TV, Aslept Audio, and the Center for Independent Documentary, traces the life of a young woman looking for acceptance in the Church by denying the truest part of herself. It’s also Simon’s self-study on the price he and Alana paid to balance the love of God with the love for themselves.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DEAR ALANA," BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Dear Alana,

In 2019, Boulder, Colorado residents were shocked by the death by suicide of 24-year-old Alana Chen. The woman who once dreamed of being a nun had struggled with her sexual identity and was left scarred by conversion therapy. The reports intrigued Simon Kent Fung, who interviewed her mother and friends to learn more about Alana’s story. Exploring her inner life through the journals she left behind, Alana’s journey made Simon reflect on the parallels of his own struggles to reconcile his faith with his efforts to change his hidden sexuality.“Dear Alana,” from Tenderfoot TV, Aslept Audio, and the Center for Independent Documentary, traces the life of a young woman looking for acceptance in the Church by denying the truest part of herself. It’s also Simon’s self-study on the price he and Alana paid to balance the love of God with the love for themselves.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DEAR ALANA," BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:00

21 Sep 23

BS High

America was introduced to Ohio’s Bishop Sycamore High School during a nationally televised football game. When they lost 58-0, people first questioned how a team so clearly bad made it on to ESPN. But there was a bigger twist: the high school they played for didn’t exist! Coach Ray Johnson had dreamed up Bishop Sycamore just so he could put together a football team. Along the way, he flouted safety rules and sporting codes, while taking financial advantage of the players, creditors, and the government.The HBO Originals documentary “BS High” tells the story of the scam around a fake school and its gridiron team, as well as the conman-turned-coach. We hear from officials who tried to sound the alarm on the scheme and from the many Black, impoverished players who were led astray. It also explains why, despite the evidence, there’s nothing officials can do about a fictitious football team.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BS HIGH" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: The Big Sleep.   For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

BS High

America was introduced to Ohio’s Bishop Sycamore High School during a nationally televised football game. When they lost 58-0, people first questioned how a team so clearly bad made it on to ESPN. But there was a bigger twist: the high school they played for didn’t exist! Coach Ray Johnson had dreamed up Bishop Sycamore just so he could put together a football team. Along the way, he flouted safety rules and sporting codes, while taking financial advantage of the players, creditors, and the government.The HBO Originals documentary “BS High” tells the story of the scam around a fake school and its gridiron team, as well as the conman-turned-coach. We hear from officials who tried to sound the alarm on the scheme and from the many Black, impoverished players who were led astray. It also explains why, despite the evidence, there’s nothing officials can do about a fictitious football team.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BS HIGH" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: The Big Sleep.   For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:22

18 Sep 23

The Girlfriends

In the 1990s, Carole Fisher started dating Doctor Bob Bierenbaum, but she broke it off with the charming physician after seeing his dark side. Carole created a kind of support group among Bob’s ex-girlfriends and talk soon turned to a strange part of his past: the doctor’s first wife disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Gail Katz vanished from New York City in 1985, around the time she told friends she was going to leave Bob. The case stayed cold for years, until detectives turned to Carole and her friends for help.The podcast “The Girlfriends” from Novel and iHeartMedia describes the sisterhood formed among Bob’s suspicious former lovers and how investigators used their knowledge to get an arrest. The women also meditate on their relationship with each other and the murder victim they never knew.OUR SPOILER-FREE EPISODES OF "THE GIRLFRIENDS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Girlfriends

In the 1990s, Carole Fisher started dating Doctor Bob Bierenbaum, but she broke it off with the charming physician after seeing his dark side. Carole created a kind of support group among Bob’s ex-girlfriends and talk soon turned to a strange part of his past: the doctor’s first wife disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Gail Katz vanished from New York City in 1985, around the time she told friends she was going to leave Bob. The case stayed cold for years, until detectives turned to Carole and her friends for help.The podcast “The Girlfriends” from Novel and iHeartMedia describes the sisterhood formed among Bob’s suspicious former lovers and how investigators used their knowledge to get an arrest. The women also meditate on their relationship with each other and the murder victim they never knew.OUR SPOILER-FREE EPISODES OF "THE GIRLFRIENDS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:50

14 Sep 23

Telemarketers

Teenager Sam Lipman-Stern started videotaping his eccentric co-workers at a chaotic New Jersey call center which raised money for police organizations. When his friend Pat Pespas discovered Civil Development Group was keeping most of the donations, the pair hoped to expose the fraud. Though the feds took down CDG, Sam and Pat wondered why the police organizations were never held accountable for their role in the scheme. A decade later, the pair resumed their investigation, only to meet resistance at every turn.The HBO Originals “Telemarketers” follows the ne'er-do-wells’ quixotic attempts to shake up a billion-dollar industry. It also shows Sam and Pat’s unconventional friendship from their wild days in the boiler room to their earnest demands for answers from police and politicians alike.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "TELEMARKETERS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: wigged out! For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Telemarketers

Teenager Sam Lipman-Stern started videotaping his eccentric co-workers at a chaotic New Jersey call center which raised money for police organizations. When his friend Pat Pespas discovered Civil Development Group was keeping most of the donations, the pair hoped to expose the fraud. Though the feds took down CDG, Sam and Pat wondered why the police organizations were never held accountable for their role in the scheme. A decade later, the pair resumed their investigation, only to meet resistance at every turn.The HBO Originals “Telemarketers” follows the ne'er-do-wells’ quixotic attempts to shake up a billion-dollar industry. It also shows Sam and Pat’s unconventional friendship from their wild days in the boiler room to their earnest demands for answers from police and politicians alike.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "TELEMARKETERS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: wigged out! For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:14

11 Sep 23

CWO Classic: Wild Wild Country

A cult takes over an Oregon town, then resorts to violence to keep their community…built on love. We'll return to our March 28, 2018 review of Netflix's "Wild Wild Country."  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Wild Wild Country

A cult takes over an Oregon town, then resorts to violence to keep their community…built on love. We'll return to our March 28, 2018 review of Netflix's "Wild Wild Country."  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

40:27

7 Sep 23

Fiasco: Vigilante

In 1984, a man shot four Black teens who approached him in a subway car, then vanished into the station. Reflecting New Yorkers’ growing anxiety about crime, the shooter was hailed by residents and the media as “The Subway Vigilante.” The unknown suspect was Bernie Goetz, who told investigators his unrelenting fear of city life fueled his actions. But as a more accurate portrait of the events emerged, a heated debate began whether his use of force was appropriate. And the case became a Rorschach test on crime, race, and justice that continues to resonate.Exclusively on Audible and slated soon for full release, “Fiasco: Vigilante” is the latest installment in the series by host Leon Neyfakh. It features interviews with witnesses, reporters, lawyers, and victims’ family members all touched by the infamous Bernie Goetz case. It also recounts the external factors that shaped public attitudes about the shooting that turned Goetz from populous hero to a cautionary tale of violent paranoia.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "FIASCO: VIGILANTE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 14 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: graduation part-ly.To support our teachers by purchasing an item from their wish lists, go to this post  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Fiasco: Vigilante

In 1984, a man shot four Black teens who approached him in a subway car, then vanished into the station. Reflecting New Yorkers’ growing anxiety about crime, the shooter was hailed by residents and the media as “The Subway Vigilante.” The unknown suspect was Bernie Goetz, who told investigators his unrelenting fear of city life fueled his actions. But as a more accurate portrait of the events emerged, a heated debate began whether his use of force was appropriate. And the case became a Rorschach test on crime, race, and justice that continues to resonate.Exclusively on Audible and slated soon for full release, “Fiasco: Vigilante” is the latest installment in the series by host Leon Neyfakh. It features interviews with witnesses, reporters, lawyers, and victims’ family members all touched by the infamous Bernie Goetz case. It also recounts the external factors that shaped public attitudes about the shooting that turned Goetz from populous hero to a cautionary tale of violent paranoia.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "FIASCO: VIGILANTE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 14 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: graduation part-ly.To support our teachers by purchasing an item from their wish lists, go to this post  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

52:54

4 Sep 23

CWO Classic: Abducted in Plain Sight

How did a man get away with kidnapping his neighbors’ daughter not once - but twice? We'll revisit our January 28, 2019 review of the unforgettable true crime documentary "Abducted in Plain Sight." For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Abducted in Plain Sight

How did a man get away with kidnapping his neighbors’ daughter not once - but twice? We'll revisit our January 28, 2019 review of the unforgettable true crime documentary "Abducted in Plain Sight." For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:00

31 Aug 23

Demons & Saviors

Teenager Tina Resch made news in the 1980s with stories of supernatural disturbances in her Ohio home. The so-called “Poltergeist Girl” was the focus of academics who wanted to research her powers and skeptics who believed the whole thing was an act. As an adult now going by Christina Boyer, the young mother returned from work to find her three year old Amber fatally injured while in the care of her boyfriend. Though she maintained her innocence, Boyer accepted a life plea to avoid the death penalty.After three decades in prison, a group of Georgetown students dug into Boyer’s case, looking to expose a miscarriage of justice. Despite questions about the evidence used to convict her, officials remained unshaken the mother is deceptive and guilty of murder.The Hulu series “Demons & Saviors” from ABC News Studios digs into Boyer’s paranormal origin story, the circumstances around Amber’s death, and the effort to win her release. What role did her supernatural fame play in her prosecution? And can she find justice when authorities feel in the absence of solid evidence, she’s still criminally responsible just because the victim was her child?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DEMONS & SAVIORS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: a series of unfortunate events. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Demons & Saviors

Teenager Tina Resch made news in the 1980s with stories of supernatural disturbances in her Ohio home. The so-called “Poltergeist Girl” was the focus of academics who wanted to research her powers and skeptics who believed the whole thing was an act. As an adult now going by Christina Boyer, the young mother returned from work to find her three year old Amber fatally injured while in the care of her boyfriend. Though she maintained her innocence, Boyer accepted a life plea to avoid the death penalty.After three decades in prison, a group of Georgetown students dug into Boyer’s case, looking to expose a miscarriage of justice. Despite questions about the evidence used to convict her, officials remained unshaken the mother is deceptive and guilty of murder.The Hulu series “Demons & Saviors” from ABC News Studios digs into Boyer’s paranormal origin story, the circumstances around Amber’s death, and the effort to win her release. What role did her supernatural fame play in her prosecution? And can she find justice when authorities feel in the absence of solid evidence, she’s still criminally responsible just because the victim was her child?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DEMONS & SAVIORS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 13 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: a series of unfortunate events. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

52:33

28 Aug 23

CWO Classic: Accused season 2

On this CWO Classic, we revisit our October 20, 2017 split-decision review of Accused season 2.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Accused season 2

On this CWO Classic, we revisit our October 20, 2017 split-decision review of Accused season 2.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

35:23

24 Aug 23

Stephenville

After Susan Woods’s killer died from cancer, his diary about the 1987 case was discovered. The 30 year old woman was murdered in her Stephenville, Texas home. Family and friends were convinced the killer was her estranged husband, Michael. Had Stephenville police taken the story of a teenage rape victim more seriously, they might have spotted a big clue to the killer’s identity. But it would take decades and advances in technology to finally solve the cold case. “Stephenville” from Texas Monthly revisits the Woods case. Host Bryan Burrough sheds light on the effects of the crime on a small town and how it did wrong by the outsiders caught up in the case. He also explores the mind of a murderer through his own writings.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "STEPHENVILLE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: smell ya later. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Stephenville

After Susan Woods’s killer died from cancer, his diary about the 1987 case was discovered. The 30 year old woman was murdered in her Stephenville, Texas home. Family and friends were convinced the killer was her estranged husband, Michael. Had Stephenville police taken the story of a teenage rape victim more seriously, they might have spotted a big clue to the killer’s identity. But it would take decades and advances in technology to finally solve the cold case. “Stephenville” from Texas Monthly revisits the Woods case. Host Bryan Burrough sheds light on the effects of the crime on a small town and how it did wrong by the outsiders caught up in the case. He also explores the mind of a murderer through his own writings.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "STEPHENVILLE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: smell ya later. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:51

21 Aug 23

CWO Classic: Catch and Kill

On this CWO Classic, we revisit the panel's December 16, 2019 review of Ronan Farrow's "Catch and Kill." For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Catch and Kill

On this CWO Classic, we revisit the panel's December 16, 2019 review of Ronan Farrow's "Catch and Kill." For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

33:08

17 Aug 23

Last Call

In 1992, authorities were slow to make connections between separate murders. A pair of affluent, but closeted men disappeared after leaving New York City gay bars, their dismembered bodies later discovered in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. As more men were killed, gay activists tried to sound the alarm that someone was stalking club-goers. But New York police were indifferent to the crimes and hostile to the queer community. The culprit known as The Last Call Killer escaped detection for a decade until new technology gave detectives the clues to his identity.The HBO Original series “Last Call: When a Serial Killer Stalked Queer New York” recounts the crime spree that shook the community. Based on the Edgar-winning book by Elon Greene, the series also dives into the lives of the victims, the challenges for investigators, and the cultural issues of the day. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "LAST CALL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: crash course. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Last Call

In 1992, authorities were slow to make connections between separate murders. A pair of affluent, but closeted men disappeared after leaving New York City gay bars, their dismembered bodies later discovered in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. As more men were killed, gay activists tried to sound the alarm that someone was stalking club-goers. But New York police were indifferent to the crimes and hostile to the queer community. The culprit known as The Last Call Killer escaped detection for a decade until new technology gave detectives the clues to his identity.The HBO Original series “Last Call: When a Serial Killer Stalked Queer New York” recounts the crime spree that shook the community. Based on the Edgar-winning book by Elon Greene, the series also dives into the lives of the victims, the challenges for investigators, and the cultural issues of the day. OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "LAST CALL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: crash course. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:20

14 Aug 23

CWO Classic: Missing Richard Simmons

On this CWO Classic, we revisit our February 24, 2017 review of "Missing Richard Simmons," the first of six episodes dedicated to the groundbreaking podcast series. The panel heralded the arrival of Dan Taberski as a fresh, new voice  in the industry. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Missing Richard Simmons

On this CWO Classic, we revisit our February 24, 2017 review of "Missing Richard Simmons," the first of six episodes dedicated to the groundbreaking podcast series. The panel heralded the arrival of Dan Taberski as a fresh, new voice  in the industry. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

29:36

10 Aug 23

Where is Baby Gabriel?

No one has seen Gabriel Johnson since 2009, when his mother took the eight month old from her home in Arizona to Texas. In the middle of a custody dispute with her ex, Elizabeth Johnson told him she smothered the baby and threw his body in the garbage.When she returned home, Elizabeth had a different story. She said she gave Gabriel up in a black market adoption in San Antonio - a transaction facilitated by a couple who’d been trying to adopt the child themselves.The Peacock series “Where is Baby Gabriel?” explores the theories around the child’s disappearance? Was he murdered? Is he living with a new family? And what role did interloper Tammi Smith play in his fate?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WHERE IS BABY GABRIEL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Ghosted.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Where is Baby Gabriel?

No one has seen Gabriel Johnson since 2009, when his mother took the eight month old from her home in Arizona to Texas. In the middle of a custody dispute with her ex, Elizabeth Johnson told him she smothered the baby and threw his body in the garbage.When she returned home, Elizabeth had a different story. She said she gave Gabriel up in a black market adoption in San Antonio - a transaction facilitated by a couple who’d been trying to adopt the child themselves.The Peacock series “Where is Baby Gabriel?” explores the theories around the child’s disappearance? Was he murdered? Is he living with a new family? And what role did interloper Tammi Smith play in his fate?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "WHERE IS BABY GABRIEL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Ghosted.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:29

7 Aug 23

CWO Classic: Beware the Slenderman

On this CWO Classic, we revisit of February 3, 2017 review of the scary, provocative HBO documentary, "Beware the Slenderman." It looks at the case of two young girls who stabbed their friend to appease a modern-day internet boogeyman. The panel is split but agrees on one thing: don't watch this one in the dark. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Beware the Slenderman

On this CWO Classic, we revisit of February 3, 2017 review of the scary, provocative HBO documentary, "Beware the Slenderman." It looks at the case of two young girls who stabbed their friend to appease a modern-day internet boogeyman. The panel is split but agrees on one thing: don't watch this one in the dark. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

30:00

3 Aug 23

The Retrievals

Patients at a Yale fertility clinic complained of severe pain during common egg retrieval procedures. Despite nurses’ insistence they’ve received the maximum dosage of fentanyl, the women continued to suffer, unaware they were actually receiving a simple saline solution. After a tampered vial was discovered, authorities arrested an addicted nurse who’d been swapping out the opioid. But the many patients had more questions. Why were their complaints ignored? Could the clinic have done more? And how are these victims who want a family supposed to feel about the legal accommodations made for a defendant with children of her own?From Serial Productions comes “The Retrievals.” Host Susan Burton tells the story of the patients whose pain was ignored, the nurse who stole their medicine and watched them suffer, and the institution that failed them all.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE RETRIEVALS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.This episode was recorded in front of an online Patreon audience. Join us for other benefits at patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia.In Crime of the Week: do not taste this rainbow. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Retrievals

Patients at a Yale fertility clinic complained of severe pain during common egg retrieval procedures. Despite nurses’ insistence they’ve received the maximum dosage of fentanyl, the women continued to suffer, unaware they were actually receiving a simple saline solution. After a tampered vial was discovered, authorities arrested an addicted nurse who’d been swapping out the opioid. But the many patients had more questions. Why were their complaints ignored? Could the clinic have done more? And how are these victims who want a family supposed to feel about the legal accommodations made for a defendant with children of her own?From Serial Productions comes “The Retrievals.” Host Susan Burton tells the story of the patients whose pain was ignored, the nurse who stole their medicine and watched them suffer, and the institution that failed them all.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE RETRIEVALS" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.This episode was recorded in front of an online Patreon audience. Join us for other benefits at patreon.com/partnersincrimemedia.In Crime of the Week: do not taste this rainbow. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

48:27

31 Jul 23

CWO Classic: Crimetown

On this CWO Classic, we look back at our December 9, 2016 review of "Crimetown." Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier take us to Providence, Rhode Island, a city where organized crime corrupted every aspect of public life. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Crimetown

On this CWO Classic, we look back at our December 9, 2016 review of "Crimetown." Marc Smerling and Zac Stuart-Pontier take us to Providence, Rhode Island, a city where organized crime corrupted every aspect of public life. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

23:42

27 Jul 23

Suspect: Five Shots in the Dark

Leon Benson says he’s innocent of the 1998 murder of Kasey Schoen, who was shot in his truck in Indianapolis. Despite his alibi, no motive, and a lack of physical evidence, Leon was convicted based on a cross-racial identification from 150 feet at night. Attorney Lara Bazelon looks for clues to winning Leon’s exoneration. Was evidence about alternative suspects withheld? And should Bazelon’s team approach the man they believe actually pulled the trigger?“Suspect: Five Shots in the Dark” is season three of the acclaimed series from Campside Media and Wondery. In a break of format, host Matthew Shaer works with Bazelon in a side-by-side effort to clear Leon’s name. Will the one-two punch of lawyers and podcasters get him out of prison? And what does correcting this wrong mean for Schoen’s family? OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SUSPECT: FIVE SHOTS IN THE DARK" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Chinese food take down. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Suspect: Five Shots in the Dark

Leon Benson says he’s innocent of the 1998 murder of Kasey Schoen, who was shot in his truck in Indianapolis. Despite his alibi, no motive, and a lack of physical evidence, Leon was convicted based on a cross-racial identification from 150 feet at night. Attorney Lara Bazelon looks for clues to winning Leon’s exoneration. Was evidence about alternative suspects withheld? And should Bazelon’s team approach the man they believe actually pulled the trigger?“Suspect: Five Shots in the Dark” is season three of the acclaimed series from Campside Media and Wondery. In a break of format, host Matthew Shaer works with Bazelon in a side-by-side effort to clear Leon’s name. Will the one-two punch of lawyers and podcasters get him out of prison? And what does correcting this wrong mean for Schoen’s family? OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SUSPECT: FIVE SHOTS IN THE DARK" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Chinese food take down. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:24

24 Jul 23

CWO Classic: Lost Girls

Fresh off the news of an arrest in the Long Island serial killer case, we go back to March 23, 2020 for the panel's review of Netflix's film adaptation of "Lost Girls" staring Amy Ryan. Does this two-hour dramatization of Bob Kolker's excellent book live up to the expansive source material? For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

CWO Classic: Lost Girls

Fresh off the news of an arrest in the Long Island serial killer case, we go back to March 23, 2020 for the panel's review of Netflix's film adaptation of "Lost Girls" staring Amy Ryan. Does this two-hour dramatization of Bob Kolker's excellent book live up to the expansive source material? For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

26:34

20 Jul 23

Dark Valley

In 1988, twenty-two year old Jane Boroski was attacked at a soda vending machine. The seven-month-pregnant New Hampshire woman was stabbed 27 times and left for dead. Boroski is believed to be the last victim and only survivor of the Connecticut River Valley Killer, a suspect who murdered at least seven women between 1978 and ‘88. Decades later, the question remains why did he kill and where did he go?In the podcast “Dark Valley'' from Crawlspace Media and Glassbox Media, Jennifer Amell looks back at the murders along the Vermont/New Hampshire corridor. The host accompanies Jane as she reexamines the lasting impact of the attack on her life, all the while seeking new information on who the Valley Killer - or Valley Killers - were.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DARK VALLEY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: cowabunga!  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Dark Valley

In 1988, twenty-two year old Jane Boroski was attacked at a soda vending machine. The seven-month-pregnant New Hampshire woman was stabbed 27 times and left for dead. Boroski is believed to be the last victim and only survivor of the Connecticut River Valley Killer, a suspect who murdered at least seven women between 1978 and ‘88. Decades later, the question remains why did he kill and where did he go?In the podcast “Dark Valley'' from Crawlspace Media and Glassbox Media, Jennifer Amell looks back at the murders along the Vermont/New Hampshire corridor. The host accompanies Jane as she reexamines the lasting impact of the attack on her life, all the while seeking new information on who the Valley Killer - or Valley Killers - were.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "DARK VALLEY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: cowabunga!  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

43:20

17 Jul 23

Shiny Happy People

America was fascinated with the lives of the Duggars, a devout Christian family with 19 children and their own reality TV show. While they projected an image of wholesomeness on screen, off screen the Duggars tried to cover up allegations their son Josh had molested his sisters.The Duggars’ views on marriage, education, and childrearing were formed by the Institute of Basic Life Principles, a radical religious organization that espoused obedient children and subservient wives. Its practices shaped the Duggar household in which their growing kids were oppressed and groomed to be victims.The four-part Prime docuseries “Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets” looks at the truths hidden in plain sight about the ultra-conservative reality TV family. It also explores how the IBLP informed the Duggar’s worldview and how its purity culture is masking misogyny and sexual exploitation.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SHINY HAPPY PEOPLE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 14 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: lying liars who lie. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Shiny Happy People

America was fascinated with the lives of the Duggars, a devout Christian family with 19 children and their own reality TV show. While they projected an image of wholesomeness on screen, off screen the Duggars tried to cover up allegations their son Josh had molested his sisters.The Duggars’ views on marriage, education, and childrearing were formed by the Institute of Basic Life Principles, a radical religious organization that espoused obedient children and subservient wives. Its practices shaped the Duggar household in which their growing kids were oppressed and groomed to be victims.The four-part Prime docuseries “Shiny Happy People: Duggar Family Secrets” looks at the truths hidden in plain sight about the ultra-conservative reality TV family. It also explores how the IBLP informed the Duggar’s worldview and how its purity culture is masking misogyny and sexual exploitation.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SHINY HAPPY PEOPLE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 14 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: lying liars who lie. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:30

10 Jul 23

Jared from Subway

Jared Fogle became the pitchman for Subway after his unconventional sandwich diet helped him lose 245 pounds. While on a promotional tour, Fogle shocked a local radio host with a sexual comment about children. Rochelle Herman began taping their phone calls, hoping to record the celebrity’s fascination with pedophilia.  While Herman helped an FBI investigation, Fogle’s business associate Russell Taylor was creating explicit images of children. The two paths would cross, exposing the pop culture icon’s world of sexually exploiting minors.From Investigation Discovery and now streaming on Max, “Jared from Subway: Catching a Monster” looks at Fogle’s secret life of pedophilia. It features audiotape of him discussing his deeds and desires with Herman and the toll it took on her.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "JARED FROM SUBWAY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 16  MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Who's your daddy?Want to chip into the Go Fund Me for our Pet of the Week? Click here!  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Jared from Subway

Jared Fogle became the pitchman for Subway after his unconventional sandwich diet helped him lose 245 pounds. While on a promotional tour, Fogle shocked a local radio host with a sexual comment about children. Rochelle Herman began taping their phone calls, hoping to record the celebrity’s fascination with pedophilia.  While Herman helped an FBI investigation, Fogle’s business associate Russell Taylor was creating explicit images of children. The two paths would cross, exposing the pop culture icon’s world of sexually exploiting minors.From Investigation Discovery and now streaming on Max, “Jared from Subway: Catching a Monster” looks at Fogle’s secret life of pedophilia. It features audiotape of him discussing his deeds and desires with Herman and the toll it took on her.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "JARED FROM SUBWAY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 16  MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Who's your daddy?Want to chip into the Go Fund Me for our Pet of the Week? Click here!  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

53:19

3 Jul 23

Smoke Screen: Just Say You're Sorry

When a Texas Ranger asked Larry Driskill if he could help solve a cold case, he agreed to talk to him. But Ranger James Holland accused him of killing Bobbie Sue Hill in 2005. After two days of intense interrogation, Driskill wondered if maybe he did do it and walked into a confession. Holland is revered for his talent at getting confessions, even though he uses questionable techniques like deception, suggestion, and forensic hypnosis. Did the detective known as the “serial killer whisperer” ensnare an innocent man?In the latest season of “Smoke Screen: Just Say You’re Sorry,” host Maurice Chammah asks what happens when suspects are convinced they can’t trust their own memories to defend themselves. It does a deep dive into Holland’s interrogation of Driskill, as well as those of other suspects subjected to his unorthodox questioning style.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SMOKE SCREEN: JUST SAY YOU'RE SORRY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Smoke Screen: Just Say You're Sorry

When a Texas Ranger asked Larry Driskill if he could help solve a cold case, he agreed to talk to him. But Ranger James Holland accused him of killing Bobbie Sue Hill in 2005. After two days of intense interrogation, Driskill wondered if maybe he did do it and walked into a confession. Holland is revered for his talent at getting confessions, even though he uses questionable techniques like deception, suggestion, and forensic hypnosis. Did the detective known as the “serial killer whisperer” ensnare an innocent man?In the latest season of “Smoke Screen: Just Say You’re Sorry,” host Maurice Chammah asks what happens when suspects are convinced they can’t trust their own memories to defend themselves. It does a deep dive into Holland’s interrogation of Driskill, as well as those of other suspects subjected to his unorthodox questioning style.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SMOKE SCREEN: JUST SAY YOU'RE SORRY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

47:43

29 Jun 23

How to Create a Sex Scandal

While touring a building that had been a defunct swingers club, Margie Cantrell’s foster children said they’d been there before. As Margie helped police with questioning, the children said adults made them dance and have sex with each other. Seven people were charged with grooming and exploiting them for money. But there was no evidence nor adult witnesses who could corroborate the claims. Did the abuse actually happen - or were the allegations planted in the impressionable children by a caretaker with ulterior motives?The Max series “How to Create a Sex Scandal” examines the 2008 Mineola Swingers Club case. Did innocent people go to prison based solely on the word of children coaxed into making the allegations? And if so, why would somebody put them up to it?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "HOW TO CREATE A SEX SCANDAL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: scam of the cloth. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

How to Create a Sex Scandal

While touring a building that had been a defunct swingers club, Margie Cantrell’s foster children said they’d been there before. As Margie helped police with questioning, the children said adults made them dance and have sex with each other. Seven people were charged with grooming and exploiting them for money. But there was no evidence nor adult witnesses who could corroborate the claims. Did the abuse actually happen - or were the allegations planted in the impressionable children by a caretaker with ulterior motives?The Max series “How to Create a Sex Scandal” examines the 2008 Mineola Swingers Club case. Did innocent people go to prison based solely on the word of children coaxed into making the allegations? And if so, why would somebody put them up to it?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "HOW TO CREATE A SEX SCANDAL" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: scam of the cloth. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:40

26 Jun 23

Under Cover of Knight

After Sue Knight’s body was found in her home, a past acquaintance was stunned she named him executor of her estate. While Steve Barksdale was settling her affairs, the Texas man received a mysterious phone call from the CIA. The Barksdales tried to set aside suspicions that the unassuming British ex-pat and pistol marksman was a spy. But a warning from a local sheriff made him think he should stop asking questions.From Apple TV+ and Spoke Media comes the podcast “Under Cover of Knight.” The hosts lay back and let the interviewees tell Sue’s story. Was her death a personal tragedy or the work of clandestine operatives? And is it possible Sue is still alive?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "UNDER COVER OF KNIGHT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Under Cover of Knight

After Sue Knight’s body was found in her home, a past acquaintance was stunned she named him executor of her estate. While Steve Barksdale was settling her affairs, the Texas man received a mysterious phone call from the CIA. The Barksdales tried to set aside suspicions that the unassuming British ex-pat and pistol marksman was a spy. But a warning from a local sheriff made him think he should stop asking questions.From Apple TV+ and Spoke Media comes the podcast “Under Cover of Knight.” The hosts lay back and let the interviewees tell Sue’s story. Was her death a personal tragedy or the work of clandestine operatives? And is it possible Sue is still alive?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "UNDER COVER OF KNIGHT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 9 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

45:11

22 Jun 23

The Curious Case of Natalia Grace

Michael and Kristine Barnett thought they were adopting a six-year-old little person with a disability from Ukraine. But Natalia had the physical traits of an adult, including pubic hair and a period. Soon the family lived in fear as the girl was threatening to harm them. The Barnetts petitioned a court to declare her an adult and they moved Natalia to her own apartment to live on her own. But police were not convinced Michael and Kristine hadn’t used the system to abandon a special needs child.From Investigation Discovery and available to stream on Max comes “The Curious Case of Natalia Grace.” With extensive interviews from Michael Barnett, the docuseries explores Natalia’s identity and true age, the family dynamics, and the legal fallout that resulted. Viewers are left to decide whether the Barnetts or Natalia are the actual victims.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE CURIOUS CASE OF NATALIA GRACE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: date crashers.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

The Curious Case of Natalia Grace

Michael and Kristine Barnett thought they were adopting a six-year-old little person with a disability from Ukraine. But Natalia had the physical traits of an adult, including pubic hair and a period. Soon the family lived in fear as the girl was threatening to harm them. The Barnetts petitioned a court to declare her an adult and they moved Natalia to her own apartment to live on her own. But police were not convinced Michael and Kristine hadn’t used the system to abandon a special needs child.From Investigation Discovery and available to stream on Max comes “The Curious Case of Natalia Grace.” With extensive interviews from Michael Barnett, the docuseries explores Natalia’s identity and true age, the family dynamics, and the legal fallout that resulted. Viewers are left to decide whether the Barnetts or Natalia are the actual victims.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "THE CURIOUS CASE OF NATALIA GRACE" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: date crashers.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

49:03

19 Jun 23

Blind Plea

In 2017, Deven Grey claimed self-defense when she shot and killed her abusive partner in a remote trailer in rural Alabama. Instead of freedom, she was handed a “blind plea” – an option to take an unknown sentence in exchange for pleading guilty. Deven’s 15-year sentence became the final link in a chain of generational trauma, coercive control, and a broken justice system. How did this academic star from Baltimore wind up in Alabama, living under a false name, trapped with a violent boyfriend, and no way outFrom the makers of “Believe Her” comes the ten-part podcast “Blind Plea” from Lemonada. Host Liz Flock asks who do we believe, and why? And in America, who has the right to self-defense and a fair trial?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BLIND PLEA" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Blind Plea

In 2017, Deven Grey claimed self-defense when she shot and killed her abusive partner in a remote trailer in rural Alabama. Instead of freedom, she was handed a “blind plea” – an option to take an unknown sentence in exchange for pleading guilty. Deven’s 15-year sentence became the final link in a chain of generational trauma, coercive control, and a broken justice system. How did this academic star from Baltimore wind up in Alabama, living under a false name, trapped with a violent boyfriend, and no way outFrom the makers of “Believe Her” comes the ten-part podcast “Blind Plea” from Lemonada. Host Liz Flock asks who do we believe, and why? And in America, who has the right to self-defense and a fair trial?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BLIND PLEA" BEGIN IN THE FINAL TEN MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:15

15 Jun 23

Burden of Proof

In 1987, Jennifer Pandos vanished from her Virginia home after a quarrel with her father. Her mother discovered a suspicious note from someone claiming Jennifer had willingly left with her, though she never returned.After odd behavior, flunked polygraphs, and accusatory handwriting analysis, Stephen Pandos believed his parents were involved in her disappearance and had covered up the crime for years. But his mother insisted she knew nothing and now only wants her son back in her life.Eight years in the making, the HBO series “Burden of Proof” follows Stephen’s journey to solve his sister’s cold case by getting his parents to confess. With a team of cops, private eyes and other experts in tow, can the answers to Jennifer’s disappearance be found within his family - or somewhere else?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BURDEN OF PROOF" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: bathroom break.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Burden of Proof

In 1987, Jennifer Pandos vanished from her Virginia home after a quarrel with her father. Her mother discovered a suspicious note from someone claiming Jennifer had willingly left with her, though she never returned.After odd behavior, flunked polygraphs, and accusatory handwriting analysis, Stephen Pandos believed his parents were involved in her disappearance and had covered up the crime for years. But his mother insisted she knew nothing and now only wants her son back in her life.Eight years in the making, the HBO series “Burden of Proof” follows Stephen’s journey to solve his sister’s cold case by getting his parents to confess. With a team of cops, private eyes and other experts in tow, can the answers to Jennifer’s disappearance be found within his family - or somewhere else?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BURDEN OF PROOF" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: bathroom break.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

49:42

12 Jun 23

Scamanda

Amanda Riley was known as a loving stepmother, devoted church member and an inspiration to an online community that followed her cancer journey. Her upbeat attitude in the face of a terminal diagnosis won her emotional and financial support from admirers far and wide. But despite her intricate medical details and convincing photos, a reporter became suspicious of Amanda’s back and forth stories of illness and remission. Soon investigators wanted to know if social media’s most popular cancer survivor was a phony.“Scamanda” from Lionsgate Sound recounts how Amanda Riley ripped off friends, celebrities, and online supporters by faking a terminal illness. Host Charlie Webster dissects her blog and interviews family and friends about a six-figure scheme that took advantage of people’s kindness.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SCAMANDA" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 8 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Scamanda

Amanda Riley was known as a loving stepmother, devoted church member and an inspiration to an online community that followed her cancer journey. Her upbeat attitude in the face of a terminal diagnosis won her emotional and financial support from admirers far and wide. But despite her intricate medical details and convincing photos, a reporter became suspicious of Amanda’s back and forth stories of illness and remission. Soon investigators wanted to know if social media’s most popular cancer survivor was a phony.“Scamanda” from Lionsgate Sound recounts how Amanda Riley ripped off friends, celebrities, and online supporters by faking a terminal illness. Host Charlie Webster dissects her blog and interviews family and friends about a six-figure scheme that took advantage of people’s kindness.  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "SCAMANDA" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 8 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:57

8 Jun 23

Reality

On June 3, 2017, two FBI agents arrived at the home of Reality Winner, an Arabic language translator with a top secret security clearance. While a team executed a search warrant, the pair gently quizzed the 25-year-old about documents she viewed and whether she may have mishandled classified material. The agents asked Reality whether she sent secret military documents to online journalists who published the leak. As she revealed more and more about her actions, the whistleblower said she felt the government was lying to the American people.The script for the HBO film “Reality” is made entirely from the interrogation during the espionage case. Sydney Sweeney portrays Reality Winner as smoldering with fear and sadness, as Josh Hamilton and Marchánt Davis softly tug the thread on how and why she’d risk everything.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "REALITY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL [ ] MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Bad license photo. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Reality

On June 3, 2017, two FBI agents arrived at the home of Reality Winner, an Arabic language translator with a top secret security clearance. While a team executed a search warrant, the pair gently quizzed the 25-year-old about documents she viewed and whether she may have mishandled classified material. The agents asked Reality whether she sent secret military documents to online journalists who published the leak. As she revealed more and more about her actions, the whistleblower said she felt the government was lying to the American people.The script for the HBO film “Reality” is made entirely from the interrogation during the espionage case. Sydney Sweeney portrays Reality Winner as smoldering with fear and sadness, as Josh Hamilton and Marchánt Davis softly tug the thread on how and why she’d risk everything.OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "REALITY" BEGIN IN THE FINAL [ ] MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: Bad license photo. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

42:46

5 Jun 23

Victim/Suspect

Emma Mannion told police she was raped in a car by a fellow University of Alabama student. When investigators said her story wasn’t credible, she reluctantly recanted her claim. That’s when cops arrested and prosecuted her for filing a false report.Journalist Rachel De Leon discovered a nationwide pattern of law enforcement using deceptive interview techniques to break the victim’s resolve, then turning the tables on them and accusing them of their own crimes. De Leon traveled the country to explore the story of Emma and others like her who were treated less like victims and more like suspects.The Netflix documentary “Victim/Suspect” follows De Leon as she exposes why women who sought justice for their assaults were falsely arrested and imprisoned because police didn’t believe them. It also recounts the case of several victims who’ve lived with the personal and public pain of false recantations.    OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "VICTIM/SUSPECT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Victim/Suspect

Emma Mannion told police she was raped in a car by a fellow University of Alabama student. When investigators said her story wasn’t credible, she reluctantly recanted her claim. That’s when cops arrested and prosecuted her for filing a false report.Journalist Rachel De Leon discovered a nationwide pattern of law enforcement using deceptive interview techniques to break the victim’s resolve, then turning the tables on them and accusing them of their own crimes. De Leon traveled the country to explore the story of Emma and others like her who were treated less like victims and more like suspects.The Netflix documentary “Victim/Suspect” follows De Leon as she exposes why women who sought justice for their assaults were falsely arrested and imprisoned because police didn’t believe them. It also recounts the case of several victims who’ve lived with the personal and public pain of false recantations.    OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "VICTIM/SUSPECT" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 12 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

54:30

1 Jun 23

Yellowjackets Season 2

Teenage Shauna and her stranded soccer teammates face death during the brutal winter after their plane crash in the wilderness. As the birth of Shauna’s baby approaches, the Yellowjackets are desperate for food. Meanwhile, Lottie emerges as a spiritual leader, getting the team to connect to the supernatural powers of the forest.  Back in present day, the police home in on Shauna and her family for the murder of her lover Adam, as Misty attempts to throw an internet detective off the track. A troubled Taissa reunites with Van as they join Natalie and the others at the cult-like self-help commune run by Lottie. With the world closing in on them, are the surviving Yellowjackets ready to confront their long-held secrets?Showtime’s Emmy-nominated “Yellowjackets” returns for a second season. We see the teenage survivors take their first steps toward the foreshadowed nature-worshiping, antler-wearing, cannibalistic tribe they’ll become - while their adult selves are drawn to their one-time woodland priestess for answers. Did the Yellowjackets escape the malevolent force of the wilderness, or did they bring it back with them?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "YELLOWJACKETS" SEASON TWO BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: long, long overdue.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Yellowjackets Season 2

Teenage Shauna and her stranded soccer teammates face death during the brutal winter after their plane crash in the wilderness. As the birth of Shauna’s baby approaches, the Yellowjackets are desperate for food. Meanwhile, Lottie emerges as a spiritual leader, getting the team to connect to the supernatural powers of the forest.  Back in present day, the police home in on Shauna and her family for the murder of her lover Adam, as Misty attempts to throw an internet detective off the track. A troubled Taissa reunites with Van as they join Natalie and the others at the cult-like self-help commune run by Lottie. With the world closing in on them, are the surviving Yellowjackets ready to confront their long-held secrets?Showtime’s Emmy-nominated “Yellowjackets” returns for a second season. We see the teenage survivors take their first steps toward the foreshadowed nature-worshiping, antler-wearing, cannibalistic tribe they’ll become - while their adult selves are drawn to their one-time woodland priestess for answers. Did the Yellowjackets escape the malevolent force of the wilderness, or did they bring it back with them?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "YELLOWJACKETS" SEASON TWO BEGIN IN THE FINAL 10 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: long, long overdue.  For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

51:21

29 May 23

Love and Death

Candy Montgomery seems to have it all: loving husband, adorable kids…and friends from church like Betty Gore. But to fight the mundanity of suburban life, Candy propositions Betty’s husband, Allen. After the affair runs its course, Candy and her husband Pat are closer than ever. But a visit to Betty’s house turns deadly when the women fight over an ax.Elizabeth Olsen stars in the Max Originals “Love and Death,” chronicling the 1980 murder that captivated the nation - and spawned a different miniseries about the case on Hulu less than a year ago. Why would Candy kill Betty with 41 blows from a three-foot ax? Was it the affair…or did she just snap?  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "LOVE AND DEATH" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Love and Death

Candy Montgomery seems to have it all: loving husband, adorable kids…and friends from church like Betty Gore. But to fight the mundanity of suburban life, Candy propositions Betty’s husband, Allen. After the affair runs its course, Candy and her husband Pat are closer than ever. But a visit to Betty’s house turns deadly when the women fight over an ax.Elizabeth Olsen stars in the Max Originals “Love and Death,” chronicling the 1980 murder that captivated the nation - and spawned a different miniseries about the case on Hulu less than a year ago. Why would Candy kill Betty with 41 blows from a three-foot ax? Was it the affair…or did she just snap?  OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "LOVE AND DEATH" BEGIN IN THE FINAL 11 MINUTES OF THE EPISODE. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

46:03

25 May 23

Brokers, Bagmen, & Moles

In the 1980s, brokers at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange were not Ivy League financial-types. They were mostly blue-collar workers with on-the-job training in commodities exchanges. And they were making more money than most knew what to do with. All that cash caught the interest of the FBI, who suspected financial fraud at the Merc. But after undercover agents spent thousands of hours on the floor losing millions of dollars in taxpayer money, their investigation turned out to be a bad investment.In “Brokers, Bagmen, and Moles” host Anjay Nagpal takes listeners into the pits of Chicago’s exchanges to detail one of the costliest FBI investigations ever. Were authorities really going after the handful of small fish they caught - or did they actually have their sights on some blue chip executives?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BROKERS, BAGMEN, AND MOLES" BEGIN IN THE FINAL NINE MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: booze cruise. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

Brokers, Bagmen, & Moles

In the 1980s, brokers at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange were not Ivy League financial-types. They were mostly blue-collar workers with on-the-job training in commodities exchanges. And they were making more money than most knew what to do with. All that cash caught the interest of the FBI, who suspected financial fraud at the Merc. But after undercover agents spent thousands of hours on the floor losing millions of dollars in taxpayer money, their investigation turned out to be a bad investment.In “Brokers, Bagmen, and Moles” host Anjay Nagpal takes listeners into the pits of Chicago’s exchanges to detail one of the costliest FBI investigations ever. Were authorities really going after the handful of small fish they caught - or did they actually have their sights on some blue chip executives?OUR SPOILER-FREE REVIEWS OF "BROKERS, BAGMEN, AND MOLES" BEGIN IN THE FINAL NINE MINUTES OF THE EPISODE.In Crime of the Week: booze cruise. For exclusive podcasts and more, sign up at Patreon.Sign up for our newsletter at crimewriterson.com

44:44

22 May 23

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