Criminal

An illustration of a young girl in an empty room with a magnifying glass.

Kids on the Case

Episode #147

2020-09-11 11:13:04

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The summer after Jessica Maple finished 6th grade, she found out that her great-grandmother’s house had been burglarized. So, 12-year-old Jessica got out her notebook, looked for fingerprints, and decided she would conduct her own investigation. This week, four stories of kids who cracked the case.
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Ten Doors

Episode #146

2020-08-28 12:20:11

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In 1978, Tim Jenkin was charged under South Africa’s Terrorism Act for disseminating anti-apartheid material, and sentenced to 12 years in prison. Just before he was convicted, someone gave him a book called Papillon, which he said “was really a manual of escape.”
An illustration of an old Victorian mansion with a foot sticking out the front door, and a hand sticking out the back window.

How to Sell A Haunted House

Episode #145

2020-08-07 12:02:04

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In 1989, Helen Ackley decided to sell her old Victorian house in Nyack, New York. It didn't go as planned. The house became the center of a case that's referred to as “The Ghostbusters ruling.” The judicial opinion read: “as a matter of law, the house is haunted.”
An illustration of 12 critters, including birds, centipedes, snails, and frogs.

Looking Out

Episode #144

2020-07-17 11:57:32

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People incarcerated in California’s San Quentin State Prison aren’t allowed to have pets — but some people, like Ronell Draper, have found ways to work around that. Meet Ronell Draper, also known as “Rauch,” plus Ear Hustle’s Nigel Poor and Earlonne Woods join Phoebe to talk about the impact of Covid-19 at San Quentin.
Text: Knock and Announce. Illustrations of pot leaves, a video game controller, a doorknob, and a gun.

Knock and Announce

Episode #143

2020-07-03 11:58:47

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“I didn’t do what they said I did. And it was like, I don’t know how to disprove the police. I mean, it’s my word against theirs. I don’t really stand a chance.” - Julian Betton
An illustration of a map of Robert Smalls' escape route, with his ship indicated leaving Charleston.

Robert Smalls

Episode #142

2020-06-19 12:10:59

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On May 13, 1862, Robert Smalls took command of a Confederate ship and liberated himself and his family from enslavement. His great-great-grandson, Michael Boulware Moore, tells the story.
An illustration of a man throwing a tear gas canister, a photographer in front of him taking a picture.

It Looked Like Fire

Episode #141

2020-06-05 12:37:47

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On August 10th, 2014, one day after 18-year-old Michael Brown was shot and killed by Officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri, Edward Crawford went to his first protest. “The people, you know, I guess they were out there to be heard,” Ed told us.
An illustration of a cowboy hat.

Cowboy Bob

Episode #140

2020-05-15 11:52:21

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In May 1991, a bank robber walked into a bank in Irving, Texas, and without speaking handed the teller a note that read, “This is a bank robbery. Give me your money. No marked bills or dye packs.” Witnesses reported that the robber was wearing a cowboy hat and a brown leather jacket. And then it happened again. And again. But when FBI agents finally got a lead, they discovered that robber wasn't who they expected at all.
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Learning How to Forgive

Episode #139

2020-05-01 11:58:38

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"The question becomes, when is enough enough?" Today, we're talking about forgiveness.
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Starlight Tours

Episode #138

2020-04-17 11:47:14

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In January 2000, two bodies were found frozen in a remote area of Saskatoon, Canada. It was a place where nobody walked, especially in the winter. And then, a man came forward and said he had been dropped off by police on the outskirts of town, but he had made it back alive.
An illustration of a wolf.

Wolf 10

Episode #137

2020-04-03 12:11:21

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In April of 1995, wildlife biologists flew small airplanes over Yellowstone National Park, looking for two missing wolves. “They’re just gone. And that’s implausible because wolves don’t just disappear.”
An illustration of two woolly mammoths and a scuba diver entering a tar pit.

La Brea Dave

Episode #136

2020-03-20 11:52:40

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Sgt. David Mascarenas was the Dive Supervisor for the Los Angeles Police Department. He’s been diving his whole life, and prides himself on never refusing a dive, no matter how treacherous. At least until the summer of 2013, when a murder investigation led him into the unusually murky waters of the La Brea tar pits. We first spoke with Sgt. Mascarenas in 2015. This week, we’re adding to the story, with information about the crime he couldn't tell us before.
An illustration of a couch on fire.

527 Lime Street

Episode #135

2020-03-06 12:52:11

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Just before midnight on October 15, 1990, police arrived at 527 Lime Street in Jacksonville, Florida, to find the small wood-frame house on fire. There was a man standing in the front yard. He said there were people inside the house. What happened next was so unusual that it changed the way we think about arson.
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Call Russ Ewing

Episode #134

2020-02-21 13:32:22

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"The police had surrounded the house. They had been there for quite a while. They didn't want to try to rush the house because they thought he might kill one of the innocent people. But after waiting for a long time, I asked the police: 'Let me see if I can talk to the guy.'"
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Red Hair, Gold Car

Episode #133

2020-02-07 12:22:35

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One day Adam Braseel got a phone call from his mother. She said that a man in Grundy County, Tennessee, had been murdered, and the police thought Adam had something to do with it.
An illustration of two miners standing at the entrance of a mine.

Herrin Massacre

Episode #132

2020-01-24 13:06:18

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In the summer of 1922, in a town in southern Illinois, 23 people were murdered over two days. Men, women, and children came out of their houses to watch, and in some cases, to take part in the violence.