Alright, I’m just going to put this out there and let the judgments come as they may be.
I’m fascinated with true crime; including murder, missing people, unsolved cases, profiling, etc.
What I’m willing to bet is that I’m not the only one who is a closet true crime aficionado. In my college days, I even explored avenues of what route I would need to take to become an FBI profiler. Took criminology classes, entertained the idea of being a lawyer and ultimately decided upon majoring in psychology so I could hopefully learn more about the psyche of what makes a serial murderer tick. I read books on Aileen Wuornos, Jeffrrey Dahmer and more like them.
Over the years the books went aside and then came the TV shows, movies and documentaries that completely enthralled me. It wouldn’t be rare to find 48 hours playing on my office tv. I’m currently immersed in “The Night Of” on HBO and am often theorizing who actually killed her. I just love this stuff.
For awhile I fought against this concept of podcasts. I thought it was just people talking about news, sharing their opinions and to be honest, wasting my time. I knew people who lived by podcasts for their morning commutes, but I just never had an interest in them. It wasn’t until I heard about the podcast, Serial, that I finally downloaded the 1st season and literally binge listened to it on my morning walks. That was all it took and then I was hooked on true crime podcasts.
I’ve listened to a good number of them and thought that I would share what my 7 favorites are in case you too are in search of really good true crime podcasts. If you have any to recommend, PLEASE share them with us in the comments below.
Season 1 is about Adnan Syed being accused, and ultimately convicted of the brutal murder of fellow classmate and ex-girlfriend, Have Min Lee. Throughout the season they walk you through interviews with Adnan, break down the case, make you come up with a million conclusions of your own as to what happened and ultimately leaving you enraged at the justice system, confused and wanting more. This is definitely where I would say to start your true crime podcast journey.
There is a Season 2 featuring the story of Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl who is accused of being a deserter after walking off his base in Afghanistan and ultimately being a prisoner of the Taliban for 5 years before being rescued. I’ll be honest, this is “true crime” to me so I listened to it, but I didn’t love it.
This true crime podcast series has quickly become one of my favorites and I’m so excited that they just released the first episode of Season 3 last week. This is produced by CBC radio in Toronto with the host, David Ridgen. David does a FANTASTIC job narrating the series, his investigative findings and shows such compassion for the task he has set forth to do, which is ultimately solve a very old murder.
Season 1 is about the case of a missing 5-year old boy, Adrien McNaughton, from back in 1972. He was on a family fishing trip and simply disappears with zero trace. It’s a very interesting case, one in which David is very thorough with his investigative strategies and you really find yourself saying, “how in the heck did this little boy disappear when his family was right there?” Trust me, you want to start this series !
Season 2 dives in the missing persons case of Sheryl Sheppard from 1998. This season definitely gives you the feeling of someone knows something and they just aren’t speaking up about it! I really hope that more updates about this case come along because that girls poor Mom deserves answers as to what happened to her daughter.
As I mentioned, Season 3 has just gotten underway and it has taken David to Mississippi to investigate the heinous murders of two African-Americans teenagers in 1964, during the heart of the Civil Rights movement. I’m only one episode in as I write this post, but I’m really curious to hear how this season plays out because I’m guessing David will encounter some unfriendly folks who don’t want to talk about Civil Rights and the Ku Klux Klan movement of the 60’s.
This investigative, true crime podcast looks into the disappearance and murder of Georgia beauty queen and high school teacher, Tara Grinstead. What’s really great about this podcast is the host, Payne Lindsey, is really exploring this avenue of investigative journalism for the first time and ends up being completely enthralled with this unsolved case and you wouldn’t believe where the story ends up to date. Go listen to this now!
This is a podcast from the creators of Serial and it takes place in a small Alabama town with the focus being on conversations heralded by John B McLemore who asked Brian Reed (the host) to look into a family who is bragging that they got away with murder. Let me just tell you …. this podcast takes you a much different path than what was originally planned!
Initially drawn to this true crime podcast because it took place in Minnesota, but became completely immersed the failures of law enforcement involving the 27-year old abduction and murder of Jacob Wetterling. The approach to this podcast is ultimately asking the questions as to how did this go unsolved for so many years and how the current sex-offender registry is affecting the system. It’s quite good, but note, it does leave you plenty frustrated with officials!
Sworn is a podcast created from the producers of Up and Vanished and is hosted by one of the frequent contributors to U&V, Philip Holloway. Philip is a former prosecutor and police officer in Georgia and is now a practicing attorney and media analyst for criminal cases. In this podcast, they pull back the curtain on the criminal justice system and review major cases that have either been unsolved, wrongfully convicted or controversial in manner. It’s a new case every 1-2 episodes so things stay fresh and happening each time a new podcast episode is released.
Another really great podcast around the unsolved murder of college student, Elizabeth Andes, in 1978. Where this one differs is that they originally accused and charged her boyfriend at the time only to have a jury declare that he didn’t do it. Here we sit though some 40 years later though and the murder still hasn’t been solved but the investigative reporting by Amber Hunt is brilliantly done.
As I’m typing this, I just realized there is a Season 2 of Accused! Oh my gosh, this gets me so excited. It’s about the unsolved murder of prison-minister, Retha Welch, in Kentucky. Crazy thing is, they convicted a man in which it just got overturned and now the case is once again unsolved. Ohhh I can’t wait to dive into this one!
There you have it, those are my 7 favorite true crime podcast to date. As I mentioned above, if you have any recommendations, please please send them my way! I’m always looking for new content to listen to .
… and if you are willing to admit that you are fascinated by true crime as well, don’t leave me standing here alone! LOL