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Episode 25: The Portrait (8.28.2015)
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More than eighty years ago, a North Carolina family of nine posed for a Christmas portrait. Two weeks later, all but one of them had been shot dead. The Lawson Family, December 1929   Thanks to Elephant Micah for collaborating with us this month. Download their version of “Lawson Family” on iTunes or Bandcamp, and see them perform it live (along with their arrangement of “Pearl Bryan“) when they go on tour this September. And thank you to Sarah...

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Episode 24: Pearl Bryan (8.7.2015)
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In February of 1896, a little boy discovered a woman’s headless body in a farmer’s field in Fort Thomas, Kentucky. No one knew who she was, or what had happened. Newspapers carried headlines like “Hunt for the Head” and “Headless Horror.” Quickly, the crime scene became a tourist attraction and visitors traveled from all over to collect bloody souvenirs. The gruesome details were adapted into a popular song that’s been recorded...

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Episode 23: Triassic Park (7.17.2015)
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The Petrified Forest National Park in Arizona has the largest collection of petrified wood in the world. The beautiful wood is more than 200 million years old, and visitors to the park often take a little piece home with them as a souvenir. But stealing the wood has serious consequences, both legal and, some say, supernatural. See photographs of the conscience letters and learn more about Ryan Thompson’s book here. itunes download...

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Episode 22: Ex Libris (6.26.2015)
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Hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of rare books have been disappearing across America since the late 90s, and haven’t resurfaced in the marketplace. They’ve just vanished, never to be seen again. But unlike most thieves, this thief is motivated by something more abstract and romantic than money, which makes him extremely difficult to catch.   Check out the book dealers in this story: John Crichton at The Brick Row Book Shop, Ken Sanders of Ken...

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EPISODE 21: BLOODLINES (6.5.2015)
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Julius Robinson had killed for revenge before, and so when his sister was brutally murdered in her sleep last year, he says he planned to “get” the killer. He felt like his family expected him to get revenge, because that’s what he’d always done, both in and out of prison. But when his 17-year-old nephew was charged with the crime, Robinson struggled against his family’s expectations and his own. Thanks to Elephant Micah for allowing us to use...

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EPISODE TWENTY: GIL FROM LONDON (5.15.2015)
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Karen Miller met a man named Gil Harper on Facebook. They started flirting. The flirtation grew more serious. Eventually, they planned to meet in real life. Gil would travel from London to meet Karen for her birthday. With his arrival just a few days away, Karen’s son scrambled to learn more about Gil’s identity. But trying to determine whether someone is who they say they are turned out to be a whole lot more confusing and dangerous than Chris imagined. Thanks...

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Episode Nineteen: Mother’s Little Helper (4.24.2015)
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Sandie Alger is a 71-year-old woman with a very long rap sheet. She was in and out of prison throughout the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, and upped her game each time she got out. Prison, she says, is where you move “up the criminal ladder, just like the corporate ladder.”...

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Episode Eighteen: 695BGK (4.3.2015)
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Police officer John Edwards was patrolling a quiet neighborhood in Bellaire, Texas when he saw an SUV driven by two young African-American men. It was just before 2am on December 31, 2008. Edwards followed the SUV and ran the license plate number. His computer indicated that the SUV was stolen, and Edwards drew his gun and told the two men to get down on the ground. It wasn’t until later that he realized he’d typed the wrong license plate number into his...

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Episode Seventeen: Final Exit (3.13.2015)
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No one disputes that it’s against the law to take another person’s life, but is it against the law to sit with someone and watch while they commit suicide? We meet an elderly woman who sneaks around the country as an “exit guide.” Music performed live by Uncle Igor...

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EPISODE SIXTEEN: POSTER BOY (2.20.2015)
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On July 17th, 1889, the residents of Clayton County, Iowa woke up to news of the worst crime in their history. A Civil War veteran and his young wife had been murdered in their bed in a grisly attack. Their two children escaped to raise the alarm. But something was off. There were no suspects. There were no clues. To quote the local newspaper, the whole thing was “surrounded in a veil of mystery.”...

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EPISODE FIFTEEN: HE’S NEUTRAL (1.30.2015)
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Dan Stevenson has lived in Oakland’s Eastlake neighborhood for 40 years. He says crime has been an issue for as long as he can remember, but he isn’t one to call the police on drug dealers or sex workers. He’s a pretty “live and let live” kind of guy. Or he was. Before he finally got fed up and took matters into his own hands....

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EPISODE FOURTEEN: THE FIFTH SUSPECT (1.9.2015)
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In June 2014, authorities released information about a massive child pornography ring being conducted in North Carolina. Four suspects had already been arrested, and the police were asking the public for help finding a fifth suspect. But they didn’t need to look very hard — the suspect was about to turn himself in, almost by accident....

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EPISODE THIRTEEN: THE BIG SLEEP (12.19.2014)
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Raymond Chandler is often called the greatest American crime novelist, famous for murder mysteries like The Big Sleep and Farewell, My Lovely. He’s the subject of several biographies, and his correspondence and manuscripts are archived at Oxford. But something very, very important to Chandler had gotten lost. No one noticed until a pair of Chandler’s biggest fans, newlyweds in their seventies, got on the case....

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EPISODE TWELVE: BREAK THE INTERNET (11.25.2014)
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In 1999, most of America’s tech hysteria centered around Y2K. But at that same time, a teenager in Canada was messing around in chat rooms, meeting hackers, and learning tricks. At 15, he decided to put his knowledge to the test. To push up against the Internet’s limits, and in some places, break them. He managed to pull off something no one had ever seen before....

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EPISODE ELEVEN: I’M ABOUT TO SAVE YOUR LIFE  (10.30.2014)
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In 1977, a mild-mannered aeronautical engineer sideswiped a parked car in Compton, CA. He stopped his car to see the damage, and all of a sudden a man opened his car door, jumped in the car and said, “I’m about to save your life.” What happened next would torture him for the rest of his life....

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EPISODE TEN: DEAR SHEILA (9.26.2014)
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Working as a reporter for a TV station in New Hampshire, Kevin Flynn was covering the capture and arrest of a female serial killer named Sheila LaBarre. As he grew more and more obsessed with LaBarre’s story, Flynn decided to write her a letter. She wrote back. Their correspondence became flirtatious, and eventually he went to visit her in person....

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