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Once Upon A Crime | True Crime

Once Upon a Crime is a true crime podcast that researches the crime, criminals and victims to discover the “why” behind some infamous crimes as well as fascinating lesser known cases. Host, Esther Ludlow presents “the story behind the story” you won’t hear anywhere else. Each month a new true crime topic is covered - kidnappings, mass murders, tragic deaths of musical icons, killer kids and deadly duos and more.
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Now displaying: Category: historical true crime

Welcome to Once Upon a Crime!

THE podcast for the true crime addict.

Join me for each episode as I dive in to some of the most fascinating true crime cases told one chapter at a time.

Please subscribe to the show in iTunes, Google Play and Stitcher and tell a friend!

Aug 10, 2020

On this second part of a two-part episode we continue the story of 9-year-old Walter Collins who went missing from Los Angeles in 1928.  In part two, we discover that a serial killer, Gordon Stewart Northcott, has been preying on boys and young men in the LA area.  Was Walter Collins a victim of Northcott's? 

Sources: 

The Wineville Chicken Coop Murders, retrieved online at crime museum.org. https://www.crimemuseum.org/crime-library/serial-killers/wineville-chicken-coop-murders/

The Disappearance of Walter Collins, by Gabriela Serrato for STMUhistorymedia.org.  https://stmuhistorymedia.org/author/gabriela.serrato/ 

Movie: Changeling (2008), Written, directed, and produced by Clint Eastwood for Imagine Entertainment. Starring Angelina Jolie, John Malkovich, Jeffrey Donovan and Amy Ryan. 

Sponsors: 

Brooklinen - www.brooklinen.com. Use promo code ONCE for 10% off your first order

Native - NativeDEO.com/ONCE or use promo code ONCE for 20% off your first order 

Links:

www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime 

Fruit Loops: Serial Killers of Color Podcast - https://fruitloopspod.com 

Aug 3, 2020

In this month's series I'll tell you stories about people who missing and then, months or years later, miraculously reappeared.  But, these stories all have a twist - were they who they claimed to be or were they imposters? 

In this first episode, you'll hear about a young boy who goes missing in 1928.  When he returns home, his mother will say he's an imposter, but her claims are dismissed.  Who was the boy claiming to be her missing son and what happened to the real Walter Collins? 

Resources: 

The 1920s boy who impersonated a kidnapping victim, Suzanne Raga for MentalFloss.com, Jan 20, 2016

Collins Hoax Comes to an End, The Los Angeles Times, Oct 3, 1928

The Disappearance of Walter Collins, Gabriela Serrato, STMU History Media, March 26, 2017 

Sponsors:

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Links:

Patreon - www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime

A Date with Dateline - https://www.adatewithdateline.com 

Jul 27, 2020

The life and tragic death of a young socialite in the 1930s inspires an Academy Award winning movie. But, Starr Faithfull's life was far from the glamorous treatment it would receive on the big screen. 

Sources:

Ripped from the Headlines: The Shocking True Stories Behind the Movie's Most Memorable Crimes by Harold Schechter (Little A, 2020)  

The Passing of Starr Faithfull by Jonathan Goodman (Piatkus, 1990). 

Open Files: A Narrative Encyclopedia of the World's Greatest Unsolved Crimes by Jay Robert Nash (Rowman & Littlefield, 1983). 

BUtterfield 8, (1960), directed by Daniel Mann for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Starring Elizabeth Taylor, Eddie Fisher, Laurence Harvey

Sponsors: 

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Links:

www.haroldschechter.com

 

Jul 13, 2020

Two women accused of murder in the Roaring 20s would become the inspiration for one of the best known and longest running shows in American musical theater history. This is the story of the real life Roxie and Velma from "Chicago". 

Resources: 

"1924 - Beulah Annan & Belva Gaertner". Newspaper articles compiled and posted on Chicagology.com.  

Ripped from the Headlines by Harold Schechter, Published by Little A, New York, 2020. 

"Musical Theater and Law: Chicago, The Musical" by Geraldine Davila Gonzalez, April 30, 2019. 

Music: 

"Hula Lou" - 1923 recording by Isabelle Patricola,

"Prohibition Blues", 1920 recording by The Missourians 

(Both available for use by public domain.)

Sponsors:

Brooklinen - www.brooklinen.com - Use promo code ONCE for 10% off your first order and free shipping.

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YouTube Channel: https://bit.ly/2UDxhEG

 

 

Mar 30, 2020

A gruesome crime would become a media sensation in Canada in 1946 when a beautiful young woman was accused of the grisly murder.  This is the case of the infamous Evelyn Dick and the Torso Murder of 1946.

Link to listen to the song "Evelyn Dick" by The Forgotten Rebels - https://youtu.be/OAkxFSM_rNs 

Resources: 

The Torso Murder by Brian Vallee published by Key Porter Books, Canada, 2001. 

Evelyn Dick on Murderpedia.org - http://murderpedia.org/female.D/d/dick-evelyn.htm

Links: 

To become a Patreon member go to:  www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime 

 

Feb 25, 2020

In Nebraska, in 1958, a high school junior holds animosity towards his mother and takes deadly revenge.  He is caught and imprisoned and, years later, disappears for decades.  Where is Leslie Arnold today? 

Resources used in the research for this episode: 

"Whatever Happened to Leslie Arnold, the Boy who Murdered his Parents?" by John William Tuohy,  www.mywriterssite.blogspot.com 

"The Mystery of Leslie Arnold" by Henry Cordes for The Omaha World-Herald, Sept 13, 2017. 

Sponsors: 

Best Fiends - A unique and exciting puzzle game that you can play anywhere. Download it today on your favorite app store. That's Best F-I-E-N-D-S, "friends without the "R"! 

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Music Credits:

Original theme music by http://AaronGoldberg.Bandcamp.com

Other music:  Licensed under the Creative Commons 0 License.

 

 

Aug 12, 2019

Every manifestation of the Man of Steel - comic books, television shows and films - has been marked by bad blood, shattered careers, tragic accidents and even murder.  This is the Curse of Superman. 

Several resources were used in the research for this episode including: 

George Reeves Revealed: An Inside Look at the Life and Tragic Death of Television's First Superman by Ed Gross for CloserWeekly.com, Feb. 27, 2019

Who Killed Superman? TheGuardian.com, Nov. 17, 2006

Feb 12, 2019

In this episode. I share a story about a particularly lethal woman who's long criminal career saw her acquitted of a murder, sentenced to life for another and still released to continue her murderous ways. This is Part One of the case of Louise Peete. 

Photo: Louise Peete on her way to San Quentin to serve her sentence for murder. 

Several resources were used in the research for this episode including: 

Dead Woman Walking:Louise Peete by Joan Renner - www.derangedlacrimes.com

Black Widow, Mara Bovsun, Daily News New York, November 18, 2001

She Buried Them All by Bill Walker in Saga: The Magazine for Men, January 1962. 

 

Oct 22, 2018

The last chapter of "Haunted Homicide" is the story of the LaLaurie Mansion known as "the most haunted house in America".  In this episode you'll hear the TRUE story of Madame Delphine LaLaurie who is called "the socialite serial killer".  

Resources: 

Ozzy and Jack's World Detour - https://www.aetv.com/shows/ozzy-and-jacks-world-detour

Mad Madame LaLaurie: New Orleans' Most Famous Murderess Revealed by Victoria Cosner Love and Lorelei Shannon

 

Oct 15, 2018

The Tower of London has a long history of torture, murder and royal intrigue.  It has also been the scene of many ghostly sightings over its 950-year history.  Travel with me to through the Tower to uncover some of its dark history.  

#ThomasBecket #WilliamWallace #HenryVIII #AnneBoleyn #ThePrincesintheTower #RichardIII #TudorEngland #ElizabethI

In a scene from the series "The Tudors" Anne Boleyn presents her executioner with a purse of coins as a "tip" before her beheading. 

Resources:

Books: Tower: An Epic History of the Tower of London by Nigel Jones

The Lady in the Tower: The Fall of Anne Boleyn by Alison Weir

Aug 20, 2018

A brutal murder takes place in Christchurch, New Zealand in 1954.  Two teenage girls are quickly identified as the murderers.  The crime would become infamous in New Zealand and the girl exposed as a well-known writer decades later.  This is Part 1. 

#Parker-HulmeMurder #NewZealand #PaulineParker #JulietHulme #matricide 

Photo: Pauline Parker (left), Juliet Hulme (right) during their trial. 

Feb 6, 2018

The Academy Awards is held annually to honor the best of Hollywood. But, there is a darker side of this star-studded ceremony. The first is the true story of the crime portrayed in the Academy Award winning film Dog Day Afternoon

#bankrobberies #johnwojtowicz #chasemanhattanbank #newyorkcrimes 

   Left: The real John Wojtowicz, Right: Al Pacino as "Sonny" in Dog Day Afternoon

Resources:

Movie: Dog Day Afternoon, Starring Al Pacino, John Cazale & Charles Durning (1975) 

Documentary: The Dog, Written, produced and directed by Alison Berg & Frank Keraudren (2014)  

Mar 14, 2017

Eight student nurses are found dead one morning in 1966. There was only one survivor. This is the case of mass murderer Richard Speck.

Book: The Crime of the Century: Richard Speck and the Murders that Shocked a Nation - Dennis Breo and William J. Martin

www.patreon.com/OnceUponaCrime

 

 

Save

Feb 21, 2017

Two teens go on a killing spree in America's heartland in 1958.

Charles Starkweather and Caril Fugate

Music: Nebraska by Bruce Springsteen

www.patreon.com/OnceUponaCrime

Spree killers, American murderers, teenage killers, couples who kill

 

Jan 10, 2017

The series "Artful Crimes" details cases of crimes committed by and against artists. In Chapter 1 we'll explore the death of Vincent Van Gogh - suicide or murder?  

Resources: Book: Van Gogh: A Life by Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith

Music: Vincent (Starry Starry Night) by Don McLean

www.truecrimepodcast.com

Vincent Van Gogh Art History Artists Impressionism Suicide True Crime Murder

Dec 20, 2016

On Christmas Day, 1929, one of the country's worst mass murders took place in North Carolina. This is Chapter 2 of Holiday Homicides: The Lawson Family Murders.

The Lawson family portrait - part of Charlie Lawson's "Christmas surprise".

The crime scene became a tourist attraction complete with blood splatter.

 

Resources:

Book: The Meaning of Our Tears: The True Story of the Lawson Family Murders by Trudy J. Smith

Ballad: The Lawson Family Murder by Doc Watson

 

Dec 12, 2016

In the early morning hours of Christmas Eve, 1881, a brutal attack was perpetrated on three sleeping teens in Ashland, Kentucky.

The three suspects in the Ashland murders

 

Poem: The Ashland Tragedy, composed as a ballad by Peyton Buckner Byrne of Greenup County, Kentucky.

Music: The Cherry Tree Carol and Carol of the Bells from An Appalachian Christmas, Composer Mark O'Connor

Nov 8, 2016

A young woman's murder becomes and indictment on American apathy and changes the way crime is reported.

. Kitty Genovese

Resources:

Film: The Witness Book: Kitty Genovese: The Murder, The Bystanders, The Crime that Changed America - Kevin Cook

Jul 19, 2016

An 11-year-old is accused of murdering two boys in the 1960s.

Several resources were used in the research for this episode including: 

Gitta Sereny, The Case of Mary Bell (London:Pimlico), 1995. 

Audio Clip: The Mary Bell Case. YouTube, uploaded by chewyisacat, March 7, 2013. https://youtu.be/moFhGzE_xRI 

 

 

Jul 5, 2016

A young serial killer terrorizes South Boston in 1872.                  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book links: The Wilderness of Ruin: A Tale of Madness, Fire and the Hunt for America's Youngest Serial Killer by Roseanne Montillo

Fiend: The Shocking True Story of America's Youngest Serial Killer by Harold Schecter

The Autobiography of Jesse H. Pomeroy written by Himself Murder, serial killers, true crime, Jesse Pomeroy, Boston, Massachusetts  

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