If you know me, you know I'm convinced I am either going to get serial killed or I was serial killed in a prior life. Their brains terrify and fascinate me. From as far back as the 5th grade, I wanted to work for the FBI and solve crimes. I read a ton. I watched every documentary. When I was in college, I started out in engineering but quickly changed to psychology because I wanted to work with the criminally insane. Then I realized how much schooling that would take, and switched to accounting.
Still, whenever I'm in a hotel, and the fire alarm goes off in the middle of the night, my first thought is:
"a serial killer has pulled the fire alarm so we will leave our rooms and he can ax murder us." Paranoid, probably, but then again, who knows??
Fortunately, work-related training and assignments have allowed me to explore a little more of the psychology of crime, perpetuating my fascination with crazy criminals. Which leads us to my current obsession with murder-related podcasts. A bunch of people have asked me which ones I listen to, so here is a list of what I've listened to and some of what I'm subscribed to right now:
Serial – SEASON 1 The podcast that started it all. About Adnan Syed – who was convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend in their senior year of high school. The story of the investigation and trial is told here, with some pretty damn important info. Still not a DEEP dive, but lays the groundwork for everything that is to come. SO SO SO SHADY – and this poor boy has spent 18 years in jail for this. During Serial, two other podcasts popped up.
Undisclosed – SEASON 1 Rabia Chaudry is the attorney/ family friend of the Syeds who originally got Sarah Koenig, the developer for Serial, to do the story. She decided at some point that there needed to be a deeper dive on all the evidence, which she had been carrying around in her car and/or storing in her basement all these years. She is joined by 2 other attorneys, and holy CRAP they come up with some amazing evidence, along with:
Truth and Justice – SEASON 1 Bob Ruff started this podcast and has since quit his job as a Fire Fighter to pursue it full time. There are crazy shady players, weird cell phone ping issues, REALLY WEIRD lividity evidence ( I didn’t even know what that was until these podcasts), a random STREAKER, falsified time sheets, an attorney who goes nuts, prosecutors who LIE LIE LIE, and MUCH more!!…..it is INSANE. During the course of their investigations, Bob, Rabia, and the 2 other attorneys (Susan Simpson and Colin Miller) on Undisclosed found evidence mismanaged, missed, or falsified SO BAD they got Adnan’s conviction overturned!!!! He is now awaiting either release or a new trial. Sorry for the spoiler, but you need to know! This is happening right now! This means, of course, that this is actually an UNSOLVED MURDER. But we pretty much know who did it. P.S. – NOT ADNAN!!! Non-Adnan Syed podcasts::
Undisclosed – SEASON 2 “The State Vs. Joey Watkins” Another kid in jail for YEARS. Convicted of a murder he seems highly unlikely to have committed. This one is in process, and the team has already uncovered a LOT of shady stuff happening with the apparent coercion of “witnesses” (there were none) by the DA. They also keep us updated as things are happening with Adnan’s case.
Truth and Justice – SEASON 2 OMG. I want to be Bob Ruff when I grow up. He has uncovered some AMAZING stuff. This season, he started working on the case of a guy in jail for a RIDICULOUS amount of time for armed robbery in Tyler, Texas. It has evolved from there into a very deep investigation of the murder of a woman, and the (again – teenage) boy who has ended up doing serious time for something it does NOT seem he had anything to do with. Corruption in the Smith County, Texas DA’s office appears to be really, really, really HORRENDOUS. He still hasn’t given up on the case he started the season with, but it all ties together. I will be very surprised if this guy’s conviction is not overturned – SOON – and that means this is another UNSOLVED MURDER!! I also won’t be surprised if Bob solves this one. He pretty much has solved the one in the Adnan case (not “proven” yet – but the theory is sound). THEN, he got involved with the Kerry Max Cook case. He stayed in jail for 20 years for a murder he didn’t commit. Is now out. Murder is technically UNSOLVED, but Bob’s theory is SPOT ON, and could result in Cook being declared “actually innocent”. (I think he took an Alfred Plea once the state figured out they screwed up completely.)
Truth and Justice – SEASON 3 currently on-going. The story of the murder of Keow Gove, and the shady, shady, shady case against the convicted (innocent probably) guy sitting in jail for it. Still loving Bob.
My Favorite Murder – MY FAV! This one is hilarious. 2 girls sit around and talk about 1 murder each. There are LOTS of F-Bombs, so if you don’t like that, skip it. You will be missing out, though. This one makes me laugh so much. They still talk about murders, some solved some unsolved. And they are sweet and sad and kind when they talk about them. But otherwise, they are wild and FUNNY. They end every podcast with STAY SEXY, DON'T GET MURDERRRRED! I want to just go hang out with them.
Real Crime Profile – These 2 people are retired FBI profilers, specialized in serial killings, domestic abuse, slaking behavior. I first heard about them when they did some profiling/ analysis on the Adnan Syed case. Now they have their own podcast. They have gone in to GREAT detail about some very well-known cases – OJ Simpson, Jon Benet Ramsey, and now Amanda Knox. I didn’t think I would like it. Thought I would be bored. But WOWZERS. They explain SO much more about the evidence and behavioral profiles than I knew before. WELL worth the listen.
The Vanished – This one is done by Marissa Jones. Paralegal by day, podcaster by night. Her voice is soothing. The stories she features are ones I haven’t heard before -the much less well known ones.
Last Podcast on the Left – This one is hilarious and I love it. They just recently did a DEEP dive into L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology which was awesome. However, if you are easily offended by language or raunchiness, this one is not for you.
Others I listed to religiously:
Sword and Scale
Once Upon a Crime
Thin Air Podcast
Already Gone Podcast
The Trail Went Cold
Casefile True Crime
The Unresolved Podcast
Up and Vanished
And yes, Jimmy, I finally started listening to S-Town last night, and I am already totally HOOKED! J