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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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!

Mar 23, 2020

In 1991, Kurt Cobain released a song on the album Nevermind. Titled "Polly" the song was inspired by a kidnapping and rape of a young girl in Tacoma, Washington.  This is the story of that crime.

Listen to "Polly" by Nirvana here:


"Story Behind the Song - Polly" by Hayley Selfridge on YouTube

"Nirvana's Darkest Song" by The Nerdwriter on YouTube

"Police suspect rapist in serial killings", Tri-City Herald, June 19, 1987.

Links to episodes mentioned: 

The Day the Music Died: Kurt Cobain - Episode #10 -

True Crime Game Changers: Polly Klaas - Episode #21 -


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Mar 9, 2020

A young girl is brutally murdered in New York's Central Park in 1986. Her killer, Robert Chambers, would be dubbed "The Preppy Killer" in the press and his victim's name would be dragged through the mud. This is the real story of "The Preppy Murder" you haven't heard before.  

Listen to "Jenny Was a Friend of Mine" by The Killers here:

Resources used in the research for this episode: 

"East Side Story" by Michael Stone for New York Magazine, June 27, 2008.

"Looking Back at the Preppy Killer Case, More Than 30 Years Later" by Elizabeth Angell for Town and Country Magazine, November 12, 2019. 


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Mar 5, 2020

In 1978, Rodney Alcala won a date on the popular TV show, The Dating Game. What no one knew was that he was a prolific serial killer in the middle of a cross-country murder spree. In this six-part series, co-hosts Tracy Pattin (Hollywood & Crime) and Stephen Lang (Avatar, Don’t Breathe) take listeners on an unbelievable journey into Alcala’s twisting secret life.  He hid behind normal jobs as a typesetter at a prominent newspaper and a summer camp counselor. How did this predatory monster fool employers, prison psychiatrists, and parole boards — all while committing heinous crimes from coast to coast? And how did a one-time appearance as a game show contestant help lead to his capture? From the makers of Dirty John, Dr. Death, and Young Charlie, learn the story of the most famous serial killer you’ve never heard of - The Dating Game Killer.

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Mar 3, 2020

The mysterious death of a young girl inspires Jon Bon Jovi to record a song dedicated to her.  This is the case of Katherine Korzilius. 

Resources used in the research for this episode: 

Unsolved Mysteries, Season 10: Episode 7 -

"Family Searches for Answers, Peace" by Hank Stuever for Austin American-Statesman, Aug 7, 1997. 

"Jon Bon Jovi Busy with Singing, Newfound Acting Career" by Winnie Bonelli for The Herald-New, Passaic, New Jersey, June 20, 1997. 


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Song: "August 7th, 4:15" by Jon Bon Jovi - 

CrimeCon tickets: - Use discount code ONCEUPON2020 for 10% off your registration

Music Credits:

Original theme music by

Other music from - Licensed under the Creative Commons 0 License. 


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, 

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


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Endurance Warranty - Go to for $300 off a vehicle protection plan. 

Music Credits:

Original theme music by

Other music:  Licensed under the Creative Commons 0 License.



Feb 11, 2020

In Kansas in 1958, an 18-year-old kills both of his parents and his only sibling. Was it a case of greed, mental illness, or was Andrews just a "bad seed"?  

#parricide #InColdBlood #TheBrothersKaramazov #deathrow #familyannihilators 


"Lowell Lee Andrews Was 'The Nicest Boy' in Wolcott by Beth Elias for 

"Nicest boy in Wolcott" by David J. Krajicek for, Feb. 21, 2010

"State vs. Andrews", Appeal Record, State of Kansas, Dec. 10, 1960. Retrieved on

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, Modern Library, Reprint Edition, 2013. 


Native Deodorant - - Use promo code ONCE for 20% off your first purchase.

Music Credits:

Original theme music by

Music from - "March of the Mind" by Kevin MacLeod ( License: CC BY (

Other music:  ,   Licensed under the Creative Commons 0 License.


Feb 4, 2020

In 1975, a rebellious teen enlists her boyfriend to kill her parents in a small, Northern California town. The gruesome crime would be dubbed "The Barbecue Murders" in the press. 


"Kill My Parents: The story of Marlene Olive" by Denise Noe for Crime Library, June 23, 2014

"A Local Murder: Terra Linda was the setting for a real-life 1975 crime" by Jim Wood for Marin Magazine, October 21, 2008


Firstleaf: for 6 bottles of wine for $29.95 plus free shipping 

Music Credits:

Original theme music by

Other music:,,, - all licensed under the Creative Commons 0 License


Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime - 

Affirmative Murder - - Use offer code ONCE2020 for 10% off your registration. 

Jan 28, 2020

In this special episode I'll do an in-depth look at the infamous serial killer Aileen Wuornos.  

Time stamps:

Early Life: 02:41

Teen Years: 13:25

Young Adult Life: 32:17

On the Road: 35:30

Criminal Activity: 36:12

Tyra: 47:30

The Victims: 55:57

Closing In/The Arrest: 1:36:40

The Confession: 1:44:46

Arlene Pralle/Adoption: 1:51:50

The Trial: 1:56:42

Death Sentence: 2:04:26

Execution 2:12:44

Final Thoughts: 2:14:35


"Lethal Intent", written by Sue Russell, Published 2002 for Pinnacle Books

"A Mother's Love" by Mike Clary for the LA Times, Dec 17 1991,


Away Travel:

Other links: 

Deadly Misadventures Podcast 

CrimeCon: - Use promo code ONCEUPON2020 for 10% off your standard registration. 

Music Credits: 

Aaron Michael Goldberg:

Music from "March of the Mind" by Kevin MacLeod ( License: CC BY (


Jan 5, 2020

On this bonus episode I share the highs and lows for 2019, list the top episodes of last year, talk about upcoming events and share the last word on the 2019 plagiarism scandal.  


Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime - 

Facebook Fan Group -

CrimeCon 2019 -  - Use promo code ONCE2020 for 10% off your registration. 


Dec 17, 2019

On this special episode my guest is Jack Luna from Crime Machine Podcast.  We discuss the evidence and theories behind the JonBenet Ramsey Case.


Foreign Faction: Who Really Killed JonBenet? by A. James Kolar, Ventus Publishing, 2012. 

JonBenet Ramsey Case Encyclopedia, 

"The Case of: JonBenet Ramsey". 

Crime Machine Podcast: 


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Dec 10, 2019

On this special episode, I discuss the death of Shawn Stephens Lewis. Shawn was the fifth wife of Jerry Lee Lewis, the rock and country music star.  When Shawn Lewis was found dead in Lewis's mansion on August 24, 1983, many questions would remain unanswered as to how she died. 

My very special guest this week is Erica Kelly from the Southern Fried True Crime podcast! - use offer code ONCE20 for 10% off your standard badge. 


"The Strange and Mysterious Death of Mrs. Jerry Lee Lewis" by Richard Ben Cramer for Rolling Stone, March 1, 1984

"The Sudden Death of Wife No. 5 Confronts Jerry Lee Lewis with Tragedy - and Troubling Questions" by People Staff for People Magazine, Sept 12, 1983. 

"Jerry Lee Lewis: 'The Killer' Says the Wild Times are Behind Him" by Jim Sullivan for The Chicago Tribune


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Detective Trapp: 

Dec 3, 2019

On this year-end wrap up episode, I answer listener questions and share updates on cases I've covered in past episodes. 


Detective Trapp: 

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Nov 26, 2019

In this last episode about fugitives on the run from the law I tell you the story of the very first woman ever to make the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List.  Ruth Eisemann-Schier, along with her boyfriend, Gary Krist, carried out a bizarre kidnapping plot in 1968.  


"Femmes Fatals: The Ten Women on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List" by Anna Hopkins for, Sep 11, 2017. 

"A kidnapping with Deltona ties gripped the nation 50 years ago" by Tony Holt for The Daytona Beach News Journal, Dec 20, 2017. 

Krist v. The State of Georgia, Appeal Record, Dec 3, 1970. Retrieved online at www.Cite.Case.Law

"Gary Krist: The Einstein of Crime" by David Krajicek for 


Detective Trapp - Listen here: 

Onyx and Rose - and use offer code ONCE at checkout for 15% off your first purchase. 

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Come see me at Podcast Row at CrimeCon, May 1 - 3, 2020 in Orlando Florida! Go too and use discount code ONCE2020 to get 10% off your standard registration.  

Music Credits: 

"On My Way" by Kevin MacLeod ( CC BY (

Outro Music by Chesare Gray Music


Nov 19, 2019

A young man from a wealthy family is accused of committing two rapes while still in high school. Before he could be tried on these charges he'd flee the jurisdiction and disappear for eight years before finally being brought to justice.


"Accused Rapist and His Flight Trouble Darien" by Elizabeth Neuffer for The New York Times, Aug 27, 1987

"From Ski Slopes of Europe to a Rape Trial" by George Judson for The New York Times, Jan 31, 1995. 

"Judgment Days" by Bill Hewitt for, Nov 4, 1996.

"Son of Darien" by Susan Cheever for The New York Times, April 27, 1997. 

Vanity Fair Confidential: Fugitive Son, based on reporting by Jennet Conant for Vanity Fair Magazine, first aired on Jan 24, 2017. 


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Nov 12, 2019

In this episode I’ll share two separate cases of women who became part of a very small and exclusive club - women who made the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted List.  

Nazira Ugalde killed for financial gain and flees to South America.  A young woman in Texas, Brenda Delgado, plans the murder of her romantic rival and disappears soon after being questioned by police.  


"New details emerge about Reno 'Black Widow', Behind the Crime Tape Blog, Nov. 27, 2012

"Fugitive Black Widow wanted in ex-husband's 2008 murder arrested i Peru", by Nina Golgowski for New York Daily News, Jun 5, 2014. 

"Mother of Hygenist at center of deadly love triangle sas her daughter is 'not the jealous type'", by Shekhar Bhatia for, Sep 12, 2015. 

"Duo Behind Killing of Dentist in Murder-for-Hire Plot May be Linked to Drug Cartel", Chicago 5 News, Oct 23, 2015. 

"Brenda Delgado: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know",, Jun 7, 2019. 

"The State of Texas vs Brenda Delgado", Criminal Indictment, October 2, 2018. 


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Podcast Recommendations: 

Crime Machine by Jack Luna and Sam Swenson. 

You can now find us on Stitcher Premium! 


Nov 5, 2019

A small time drug dealer kidnaps a rival's younger brother in order to settle a debt.  The unfolding series of events would become one of California's most bizarre and tragic kidnapping cases on record and would even inspire an award-winning Hollywood movie.  


Jesse Katz for Los Angeles Magazine, "The Last Ride of Jesse James Hollywood", February 2002. 

Colby Frazier for Daily Sound, "Hollywood tells his story", June 24, 2009. 

Henry Chu and Solomon Moore for The Los Angeles Times, "Fugitive Kept Low Profile in Quiet Brazilian Beach Town", March 11, 2005. 

Chris Hansen for Dateline, "The Real Story Behind 'Alpha Dog', Jan 15, 2007. 

Tyler Hayden for The Santa Barbara Independent, "Meet Mrs. Jesse James Hollywood", Feb 4, 2014. 


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Solid Gold Pet Food - for 30% off your first order. 

Music Credits: 

Music from
"Floating Cities" by Kevin MacLeod (
License: CC BY (

"Life of Riley" by Kevin MacLeod ( License: CC BY (



Oct 21, 2019

In this episode I dig into my file of spooky stories to share some haunted happenings in the world of rock and roll.  

#themansionatlaurelcanyon #redhotchilipeppers #slipknot #hauntedhouses #bonscott #joshuatreeinn #halloween #ghoststories 


Corey Taylor, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Heaven (Or How I Made Peace with the Paranormal and Stigmatized Zealots and Cynics in the Process), (Da Capo Press, 2013). 

Inside the Laurel Canyon Houdini Estate,, March 30, 2012. 

Funky Monks - Uncut Full Documentary (1st edit uncut w/bonus footage), YouTube, uploaded by MakingMonstersInk, April 10, 2013. 


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Promo: Murder In My Family:

Music credits from - License: CC BY (

"Halloween Theme 1" by Alexander Nakarada (

"Graveyard Shift" by Kevin MacLeod (

"Myst on the Moor" by Kevin MacLeod (

"Waltz of Treachery" by Kevin MacLeod (

"On My Way" by Kevin MacLeod (

"Life of Riley" by Kevin MacLeod (



Oct 14, 2019

Bob Marley went from singing R&B harmonies in Trenchtown, Kingston, Jamaica to becoming a pioneer of reggae music, bringing his own blend of reggae, rock and ska music to a global audience. But as a popular figure in Jamaica, he was unwillingly thrust into the country’s political strife.  The situation became so dangerous for Marley that on December 3, 1976, he became a target of assassins. 

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

Chris Salewicz, Bob Marley: The Untold Story, (New York: Faber and Faber), 2010., "Bob Marley",

Vivien Goldman, The Guardian, "Dread, beat and blood", July 16, 2006. 

Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, "Manufacturing Bob Marley", July 17, 2017

Mike Lanchin, BBC World Service, "I was there when gunmen tried to kill Bob Marley," December 4, 2016. 

Kief Davidson, Remastered: Who Shot the Sheriff?, Netflix, 2015. 


Truman's: - use promo code ONCE at checkout for 50% off your starter kit and subscription. 

Solid Gold: for 30% off your first order. 

Music Credits: 

Music from

Sunny Rasta" by Alexander Nakarada ( License: CC BY (

"Stealth Groover" by Kevin MacLeod ( CC BY ( 

"Dub Feral" by Kevin MacLeod ( License: CC BY (


Oct 7, 2019

A free concert took place in northern California in December of 1969 featuring The Rolling Stones.  It would descend into chaos due to poor planning, rampant drug use and the ill-advised use of the Hells Angels as concert security.  


Joel Selvin, Altamont: The Rolling Stones, the Hells Angels and the Inside Story of Rock's Darkest Day, (New York: Harper Collins), 2016. 

Lester Bangs, Reny Brown, John Burks, Sammy Egan, Michael Goodwin, Geoffrey Link, Greil Marcus, John Morthland, Eugene Schoenfeld, Patrick Thomas, and Langdon Winner, Rolling Stone Magazine, "The Rolling Stones Disaster at Altamont: Let It Bleed," January 21, 1970. 

Albert & David Maysles and Charlotte Zwerin, Gimme Shelter (1970), 
Note: Meredith Hunter can be seen in the crowd at timestamp 1:18:50. The attack on him begins at 1:23:26. 

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Sep 30, 2019

A woman begins receiving harassing phone calls and letters from a stalker.  It would take years to discover who the anonymous man was, but when he was finally identified a shocking secret would be revealed. 

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

Book: Little Girl Fly Away by Gene Stone


'Poet" makes life a living horror for Wichita Woman by Scott Kraft for AP in the Garden City Telegram, Jan 24, 1980

'Poet' strikes again and Wichita police still baffled by Scott Kraft for AP in Garden City Telegram, Feb 21, 1980

Harassed by an Unknown Author of Vicious Rhymes, Ruth Finley Confronts the Stranger Within Herself by Gene Stone for People Magazine, Sept. 5, 1988


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Sep 23, 2019

A 7-year-old goes missing while on a family camping trip in 1973.  Anonymous calls would be placed demanding a ransom, but, the trail would grow cold until exactly one year later when the kidnapper would call her mother to brag about taking her daughter.  

Several resources were used in the research of this episodes including:

Documentary: The FBI Files, "Dark Woods", Season 5, Episode 13. 


Bible Verse May Have Spurred Meirhofer, The Daily Interlake, October 4, 1974

Small Town Terror by Joseph MacNamara for The New York Daily News, December 22, 1994

The Quality of Mercy by Antoinette Martin for The Detroit Free Press, August 21, 1994

Not Another Victim by Amy Linn for The Missoula Independent, November 5, 2015

Music Credits:  Music from"Floating Cities" by Kevin MacLeod ( CC BY (


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Sep 16, 2019

In a small French village, a little boy goes missing and the family receives anonymous letters from a person taking responsibility who is dubbed "The Crow".  This strange case could be considered the Jon Benet Ramsey case of France.  

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


The Long Shadow of the Crow by Scott Kraft for The Los Angeles Times, December 9, 1993

Gregory by Anthony Davis for, April 30, 2009

The Murder of Little Gregory: The unsolved case that haunted France by John Henley for The Guardian, August 28, 2017


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Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime episode: 

Sep 9, 2019

A young girl goes missing in South Carolina in 1985.  Soon after, her kidnapper would begin calling her family - but not to make demands for her safe return, but only to cruelly taunt them.  This is the first chapter in the series "Taunting Terrors". 

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

Book: Murder in the Midlands: Larry Gene Bell and the 28 Days of Terror that Shook South Carolina by Rita Y. Shuler


South Carolina serial killer forced girl to write a farewell note and tormented his victims' families after sick spree in mid-80s by Mara Bovsun, New York Daily News, November 15, 2014

Left Behind: Survivors of Capital Crimes Don't want the Victims to be Forgotten by Becky Beane for

Court Records: 

United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit. Larry Gene Bell v. Parker Evatt, Commissioner, South Carolina Department of Corrections, T. Travis Medlock, Attorney General, State of South Carolina, December 18, 1995


Simple Health - or enter ONCE at checkout to try Simple Health for free.

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Social Media: 

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Facebook and Instagram @onceuponacrimepod 


Aug 19, 2019

From 1922 to the 1940s over 40 child actors would be cast in a popular series of short films and many of them would later fall victim to strange accidents, illnesses, drug addiction, financial hardship, murder and suicide.  This is The Curse of The Little Rascals.

Today's Sponsor: 


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

Television Episode: E! True Hollywood Story: Curse of the Little Rascals

Alfalfa's Mysterious Death -

Convicted killer of "Little Rascal" dies - AP, The Monitor, McAllen, Texas, July 19, 2014


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, Feb. 27, 2019

Who Killed Superman?, Nov. 17, 2006

Link to Listener Survey: 

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Aug 5, 2019

Three child actors become stars after being cast in the sitcom Diff'rent Strokes in 1978.  But, all three would go on to live troubled adult lives including drug addiction, legal troubles and untimely death. 

These are the stories of Todd Bridges, Dana Plato and Gary Coleman. 

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

The Tragic Stars of Different Strokes, People Magazine, March 25, 1991

Gary Coleman dies at 42; child star of hit sitcom Diff'rent Strokes by Dennis McClellan for The Los Angeles Times, May 29, 2010.  

The Overdose Death of Dana Plato by Frank Wilkins for 

Todd Bridges book: Killing Wills: From Diff'rent Strokes to the Mean Streets to the Life I Always Wanted, Simon and Schuster, 2010. 


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Jul 29, 2019

Susan Polk enters into a relationship with her therapist when she is a young girl. Years later, after 20 years of marriage, she will claim she has been abused by her husband for decades.  After he is found dead in their guest house the question would be, was this a case of self-defense or a cold-blooded murder? 

Several resources were used in the research of this case including:

Court record: The People, Plaintiff and Respondent, v. Susan Mae Polk, Defendant and Applellant, Contra Costa County Super. Ct. No. 031668-7, December 13, 2010


A California Murder Raises Troubling Issues by Carol Pogash for The New York Times, September 18, 2005

Obituary of Dr. F. Felix Polk,, November 5, 2002. 

Slaying rips apart a family in Orinda by Jason Dearen for Bay Area News Group, October 10, 2005. 

Convicted Orinda killer Susan Polk denied parole, kicked out of hearing midway through by Nate Gartrell for Bay Area News Group, July 17, 2019.  


Italic - use offer code ONCE for $15 off your first purchase. 



Jul 28, 2019

A mother seeks help for her special needs child, but a church prayer service ends tragically.  

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


True Stories of Law and Order by Kevin Dwyer and Jure Fiorillo 


Death by Exorcism by David Krajicek for the New York Daily News, October 8, 2006


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Jul 8, 2019

In the second chapter of the series "Deadly Therapy" a young girl who grows up in an unstable home is placed up for adoption.  Her adoptive mother finds her behavior problematic and has her undergo a new and controversial therapy - with tragic results.  

Several resources were used to research this episode including: 

Her Name was Candace by Carla Crowder and Peggy Lowe for Denver Rocky Mountain News, Oct. 29, 2000

Seeking Child’s Love, A Child’s Life is Lost by Barry Siegel for the Los Angeles Times, Feb. 4, 2001

Links from this episode:

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Jul 1, 2019

In this month's series, "Deadly Therapy", I’ll detail cases of people who sought help from experts, but rather than receiving healing and transformation, their journeys came to an abrupt and deadly end.  In this first chapter, you’ll hear how James, Arthur Ray, a self-described success coach and guru required his followers to perform increasingly more extreme mental and physical challenges all in the pursuit of “enlightenment” with deadly results. 

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


The Death Dealer by Matt Stroud in The Verge

Arizona Sweat Lodge: The Inside Story of James Ray's Fatal Retreat by Miguel Sancho and Kimberley Brown for ABC News



Enlighten Us: The Rise and Fall of James Arthur Ray (2016) 


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Jun 24, 2019

Identical twin sisters, Sunny and Gina Han were lifelong rivals.  One sister's jealousy would lead her to plot her twin's murder. 


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

Court Transcripts:

People v. Han, Court of Appeal, Fourth District, Division 3, California, Feb. 25, 2000

Opposition of Parole letter from Orange County District Attorney's Office to Office of Governor Jerry Brown, November 20, 2017. 


'Evil Twin' Granted Parole Despite DA's Objections by Nathan Solis for, June 21, 2018.


Jun 22, 2019

On this bonus episode I take you along with me to CrimeCon 2019 in New Orleans and my travels to New York City and Toronto for the Toronto True Crime Film Festival.  

#CrimeCon #NewOrleans #TorontoTrueCrimeFilmFestival #truecrimedocumentaries #NewYorkCity 

Jun 22, 2019

In this bonus episode, I interview Jan Broberg and Skye Borgman about their documentary film "Abducted in Plain Sight" LIVE at CrimeCon 2019 in New Orleans.

#AbductedinPlainSight #truecrimedocumentary #CrimeCon2019


Jun 10, 2019

I continue the story of the Gibbons Sisters - twins who were locked in a battle their entire lives. Neither believed they could survive without the other, but controlled each other so completely they only spoke to or associated with one another.  When they reached adolescence, they knew they had to find some way to break out of this destructive twin bond or both would perish.  Their desperation lead them to commit increasingly antisocial and criminal acts.  This is part two of "The Silent Twins". 

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


Marjorie Wallace, The Silent Twins, (London, Vintage Books 1998). 

BBC: Inside Story, The Silent Twin: Without my Shadow. YouTube, Uploaded by GottaFindPants, Nov 20, 2017. 



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Jun 3, 2019

June and Jennifer Gibbons were identical twins who, from a very young age, were so bonded to one another that they created their own “twin language” to communicate speaking only to one another.  They rejected any other relationships including their own parents and siblings.  Later, they would construct a fantasy world that only they inhabited.  This lead to more serious anti-social behavior that resulted in a shocking crime spree.  

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

Marjorie Wallace, The Silent Twins, (London, Vintage Books 1998). 

BBC: Inside Story, The Silent Twin: Without my Shadow. YouTube, Uploaded by GottaFindPants, Nov 20, 2017. 

Music credits: 

Music from
"Reflections" by Alexander Nakarada (
Licence: CC BY (


May 24, 2019

"Lost and Found" was the very first series of Once Upon a Crime in June, 2016.  In that series I covered the story of three young women who were held captive and abused by Ariel Castro for over a decade.  In this bonus episode we give you an update about these survivors - Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry and Gina De Jesus.  


Our website:

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May 17, 2019

This bonus episode gives news and announcements for the month of May including information on Season 4. 


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May 13, 2019

A mother takes justice into her own hands in Jamestown, California in 1993 when she discovers her son has been abused by a child molester.  Some called her a hero, others denounced her actions as vigilantism.  This is Chapter 2 of "Disorder in the Court".

Several resource materials were used for this episode including: 

The Nesler Family's Tragic Past - 

Pushed Over Edge, Mother Chose Own Brand of Justice by Mark Arak, Times Staff Writer, April 11, 1993. 

William Nesler Still a Fugitive by Lloyd Vries for CBS News, July 29, 2004. 

Ellie Nesler's Family Buries their Hero in Angels Camp, by John Holland in The Modesto Bee, January 2, 2009. 



May 6, 2019

In 2005, a man on trial for rape escapes custody in Atlanta's Fulton County Courthouse and goes on a violent rampage.  This is Chapter 1 of "Disorder in the Court".  


Several articles were used in the creation of this episode. Some of them are listed here:

3 Slain in Atlanta Courthouse Rampage, The Washington Post, March 12, 2005, Staff writers Manuel Roig-Franzia and Melanie Lasoff Levs 

A Manhunt and a Woman's Story, Washington Post, March 15, 2005, writer Manuel Roig-Franzia

A Youth Drifted from Deep Family Ties to Deep Trouble, The Baltimore Sun, March 18, 2005, writers Abigail Tucker and Stephen Kiehl

10 Years Later, Courthouse Safer, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, March 11, 2015, by Ernie Suggs 


Apr 29, 2019

A summer ball game descends into chaos when a promotional event goes seriously awry.  This is the last chapter in the series "Bad Sports" recounting the Cleveland Indians' "Ten Cent Beer Night" riot. 

Thanks to guest voice actors Lorne and Michael from The True Crime Guys podcast.

Some of the resources used in this episode include: 

Articles: The Night Beer and Violence Bubbled Over in Cleveland by Paul Jackson on

Forty Years Ago, 10-cent Beer Makes Memories by Anthony Castrovince on 

Video: Ten Cent Beer Night - Weird History on 

Other links: 

Our website:




Apr 8, 2019

Ray and Sally McNeil were a married couple who were both accomplished athletes in the sport of professional bodybuilding.  But, a combination of infidelity, abuse and anabolic steroid use would lead to a final, bloody confrontation on Valentine’s Day, 1995. 

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

Court Records:

McNeil v. Middleton, United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, Submitted April 8, 2003, Filed Sept 22, 2003.


Sally McNeil...This is My Story by Leigh Penman for, Nov 4, 2009

The Sally-Ray McNeil Murder by Peter McGough for, Feb 12, 2015. 

Once Upon a Crime website:


Hask hair care products - or shop online at

Harper Wilde - for a free home try-on plus a free bra wash bag.  


Apr 1, 2019

This month I'll be sharing stories of outrageous crimes that occurred at sporting events or by sports figures.  

First up, a neighborhood ice rink, a pee-wee hockey pick-up game and some unsportsmanlike conduct leads to a confrontation between parents that ends with tragic results. 


Mar 25, 2019

A man starts having vivid memories of a violent crime he believes he may have committed during an alcoholic blackout. 

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

Kevin Dwyer and Jure Fiiorillo, True Stories of Law & Order (New York: Berkley Boulevard Books), 74-82. 

Cox v. Miller, 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals Decision, retrieved from, July 17, 2002. 

David Goldnamn Biography, "AA vs DA: The Case of Paul Cox," March 2003, 21. to become a patron and receive podcast merch, bonus episodes and be entered into our monthly drawing. 

Mar 18, 2019

I conclude the story about Eileen Franklin who claimed to have witnessed her friend, 8-year-old Susan Nason's murder in 1969. She would say her memory of the event was only recovered after 20 years.  Her story would begin a debate about the validity of "recovered memories" used in criminal trials.


Click here to subscribe to "Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime"!

Mar 11, 2019

In this series I'll share crime stories that feature a very strange and rare phenomenon - recovered memories of murder.  Is it possible to forget about a murder?  Could a traumatic event, like witnessing a violent crime, cause a person to repress the memory so completely that they, in essence, “forget” they ever saw such a horrific event?

In this first chapter, Eileen Franklin recalls a 20-year-old murder.  She will claim that she witnessed the murder of her best friend, 8-year-old Susan Nason in 1969 and then repressed the memory for years.


Several articles, court records and other materials were used to research this case.  One resource was the book Once Upon a Time by Harry Maclean, published in 1993. 

Feb 26, 2019

A career criminal commits multiple murders plus an attempted murder and continues to be released on parole.  This is the case of Michael Keith Moon. 

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

Michael Hemmingston, San Diego Reader, "Moon Arraigned in Escondido Cold Case," Jan 16, 2008. 

Randy Kalp, The Coast News Group, Rancho Santa Fe, "Convicted felon takes wrap for 31-year-old slaying," Dec 11, 2008. 

Pauline Repard, The San Diego Union-Tribune, "Double murderer paroled to downtown San Diego," March 15, 2015. 


Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime - The Podcast - subscribe on Apple Podcasts.


Feb 19, 2019

In the conclusion of the story of Louise Peete, the convicted murderess is released from prison and, before long, goes on to commit another violent crime. 

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

Dead Woman Walking:Louise Peete by Joan Renner -

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. 

Feb 13, 2019

I'm pleased to announce my new podcast "Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime"!  Each episode will feature me and a special guest host talking about what's new, hot, and trending in true crime - in a fun and casual format. 

First episode drops on February 19th! 

Subscribe here on Apple Podcasts or search for "Let's Taco 'Bout True Crime" on your favorite podcast platform.  It's rolling out to more podcast platforms as we speak!

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 -

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. 


Feb 5, 2019

A man murders three innocent teens in 1966, is sentenced to death and later is released from prison to kill again.  This is the case of Kenneth Allen McDuff aka "The Broomstick Killer". 

Photo: Kenneth Allen McDuff at his first trial in 1966 for the murder of three teenagers. 

Research for this episode came from several sources including: Articles: "Free to Kill" by Gary Carthwright, Texas Monthly, August 1992.  "McDuff Likely to Take Grisly Secrets to Grave" by Mike Cochran for the Associated Press, published in the Lubbock-Avalanche Journal, 1996.

Jan 29, 2019

A rare form of serial killer are Black Widows - women who kill their spouses and other family members - usually for financial gain.  Even more rare are Black Widow Sisters.  This week I'll share two stories of sisters who set up murder syndicates for profit.  

#BlackWidowsofLiverpool #BlackWidowsofElSalvador #serialkillers 

Photo: Margaret Higgins and Catherine Flanagan - The Black Widows of Liverpool 

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

Angela Brabin, The Black Widows of Liverpool: A Chilling Account of Cold-Blooded Murder in Victorian Liverpool. Lancaster:Palatine Books, 2003. 

Marcos Aleman, Chicago Tribune, "He pays to get married and emigrate to the US, then they kill him to collect the insurance," March 31, 2017. 


Jan 15, 2019

A woman is discovered to have murdered two of her husbands and hid their bodies in her yard.  


Book: Buried Memories: The Bloody Crimes and Execution of the Texas Black Widow by Irene Pence

Article: - "Texas Executes Betty Lou Beets for Husband's Murder", February 24, 2000


Southern Fried True Crime:

The Nighttime Podcast: 

Dec 18, 2018

As a special holiday episode Yolanda from Not Perfect or Functional Podcast aka my little sister returns! This time we discuss the ever-debated Darlie Routier case.  

Yolanda's Podcast: or look for it under "Not Perfect or Functional" on iTunes, Stitcher or wherever you listen to podcasts. 


Book: A Killer in My House: The Darlie Routier Story by David Kennedy

Link to DNA results:  Choose "accept" on main page and then enter case number F9639973 to see Darlie Routier's case-related documents. 

Video: "The Wrong Man?" (says 20/20 Full Episode, but it's not that show). 

Social Media: 

Patreon - 

Facebook - 

Twitter -

Instagram - 


Dec 11, 2018

On Christmas week 1992, a series of murders took place in Dayton, Ohio.  Some would call it a case of “thrill killing” others would point to juvenile delinquency, dysfunctional family issues or just plain bad kids.  The identified “ringleader” would fit none of these stereotypes and yet, made the decision to go on a murder spree that would shock his community.  

#MarvallousKeene #DaytonOhio #thrillkillers #Christmascrimes 

Dec 4, 2018

Three generations of one family are murdered on Christmas Eve, 2007 in Carnation, Washington.  


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

The State of Washington v. McEnroe and Anderson, Certification for Determination of Probable Cause, Dec 28, 2007.

Natalie Singer, Seattle Times, "Court papers tell of victims' terrifying last moments," Dec 29, 2007. 

Steve Miletich, Jennifer Sullivan, Sara Jean Green and Sonia Krishnan, Seattle Times, "Carnation slaying suspects: a history of arguments, paranoia," Dec 28, 2007. 

Levi Pulkkinen, Seattle News, "Man admits to Carnation killings in bid to dodge death sentence,", Jan 9, 2014. 


Nov 27, 2018

A young couple play a deadly game with perfect strangers on Memorial Day weekend, 2002 in Ocean City, Maryland. 

#homicide #killercouples #thrillkillers 

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

Jeff Barker, The Baltimore Sun, "Erika Sifrit is found guilty in Ocean City double-killing," June 11, 2003. 

Sifrit v. State of Maryland, Court of Appeals Decision, retrieved from, Aug 27, 2008. 


Nov 20, 2018

Thank you to listener Alexandre Guglielmelli from Brazil for this case suggestion! In 2002, a wealthy couple is found murdered in their home in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Their own daughter soon becomes a suspect and the case becomes a media sensation in Brazil. 


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

Murder in Brazil #5 - The von Richthofen Case, 

Rogerio Pagnan, UOL, Sao Paulo, "Suzane Richthofen, Sentenced for Murdering her Parents to Marry Female Prisoner," Oct 29, 2014. 

The Creepy Case of Suzane von Richthofen: The Evil Blonde. YouTube, uploaded by Brief Case, May 27, 2018,


Nov 13, 2018

A young couple conspire to kill a romantic rival in Texas in 1995.  Thanks to listener Casey Graham for the suggestion of this case.  This is the case of Diane Zamora and David Graham - The Texas Cadet Murder case.

Make-a-Wish North Texas -


Photo: Diane Zamora (left), Adrienne "AJ" Jones (right), David Graham and Diane (bottom)

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

Bryan Robinson, "Texas v. Diane Zamora: The Diane Zamora Trial,"

Confessions of Diane Zamora and David Graham to Grand Prairie Police Department dated Sept, retrieved from


Nov 6, 2018

This month I'm picking cases from listener suggestions as a "thank you" to my audience.  First up is a case from Warwick, Rhode Island suggested by Mikala Fortin.

When a series of brutal murders takes place in one neighborhood in 1989, investigators zero in on an unlikely suspect - a teenage boy who would be considered one of the country's youngest serial killers. 

Photo: Craig Price is taken into custody and charge with four murders in Rhode Island. 


To give a donation or find out more about Rhode Island Relay for Life go to 

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

Helen O'Neill, San Francisco Chronicle, "Juvenile Serial Killer Remains in Prison," Dec 15, 2007. 

Rachael Bell,, "Craig Price: Confessions of a teenage serial killer".  

Tim White,, "Brother of murder victim calls Craig Price's shrinking sentence 'ridiculous'," April 23, 2015. 



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".  


Ozzy and Jack's 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. 


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

Oct 8, 2018

A house with a dark history is purchased by a young couple in 1975.  They soon begin experiencing unexplained and terrifying events inside the home.  Was it a result of their imaginations run wild? A hoax? Or the after effects of a horrific multiple homicide committed there? 

#Amityville #AmityvilleHorror #DeFeoMurders #RonaldDeFeo 

112 Ocean Avenue, Amityville, New York - photographed on the night of the DeFeo family murders. 


Audio Clip from documentary My Amityville Horror (2013) directed by Eric Walter.  Click here to rent or purchase.  



Oct 1, 2018

A serial killer uses his own home as his killing grounds.  After his crimes are discovered his property, Fox Hollow Farm, will be considered one of the most haunted places in the midwestern United States.  This is chapter one of the series, "Haunted Homicide".  

Fox Hollow Farm in Carmel, Indiana where serial killer Herb Baumeister took his victims.  Many bones were found in the woods just behind the home. 

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

The Haunting of Fox Hollow Farm (2011), Directed by Dan T. Hall, Vizmo Films.  

Investigative Reports: Herb Baumeister: Secret Life of a Serial Killer (2010), A&E Television Network.  

Joe Geringer,, "Baumeister: Skeletons Beyond the Closet,". 

Richard Jerome, People, "While Julie Was Away," Dec 23, 1996. 

Fox Hollow Farm, Paranormal Witness, Season 2, Episode 8.

Other Links:

Once Upon a Crime Facebook Page:

Edensphere Band:



Sep 17, 2018

A series of fast food restaurant robberies take place in Nashville, Tennessee in 1997.  The accused, Paul Dennis Reid, would claim that his early history of brain damage was to blame. 

Photos from top left (clockwise): Tennessee map, Paul Dennis Reid, Baskin Robbins restaurant, McDonald's restaurant, the Nashville skyline, Captain D's restaurant


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

State of Tennessee v. Paul Dennis Reid, Court of Criminal Appeals Decision, retrieved from, October 2, 2002. 

It Takes a Killer: The Fast Food Killer, Oxygen Channel, YouTube, uploaded by dolly hostetter, Feb 12, 2017,

Sep 10, 2018

A series of women are found raped and strangled in their homes in Charlotte, North Carolina between 1992 and 1994.  Later it would be discovered that they could all be linked to one man - a manager at a Taco Bell restaurant in Charlotte. 

#CharlotteStrangler #serialkiller #HenryLouisWallace #FBIprofilers 

Photo: Some of the young women whose lives were cruelly snuffed out by Henry Louis Wallace. 

Clockwise from top left: Caroline Love, Shawna Hawk, Valencia Jumper, Deborah Slaughter, Betty Baucom, Vanessa Mack, and Michelle Stinson

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

It Takes a Killer: Bad Henry. YouTube, uploaded by Crime Vault, July 14 2018,

Jason Lapeyre, Crime Magazine, "The Serial Killer the Cops Ignored: The Henry Louis Wallace Murders," Oct. 14, 2009. 


Aug 27, 2018

We continue the story of one of the most infamous murders ever committed in New Zealand. Known as the Parker-Hulme Murder it was shocking because of it's brutality as well as because, it was soon discovered, it had been perpetrated by two teenaged girls.  In the conclusion, we'll discover that one of the convicted murderers would go on to an illustrious career as one of the world's most well known crime-fiction writers.  Her past would stay concealed for almost 40 years before her true identity was discovered. 

Today's episode also includes Patreon supporter shout outs and the winner of this month's prize drawing. 


Book: Anne Perry and the Murder of the Century by Peter Graham

Movie: Heavenly Creatures (1994) directed by Peter Jackson


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. 

Aug 13, 2018

In this second chapter of "Written in Blood" I detail cases of two writers who became wife killers - and then hid their crime from the public.  

#domesticviolence #authors #writers 


For Domestic Violence resources and help:

In the U.S.: 1-800-799-7233

In the U.K.: 0808 2000 247

In Australia: 1800-737-732


Social Media links:

Aug 6, 2018

In this series I detail crimes committed by authors or writers.  First up, two authors who became literary celebrities despite their criminal history....or even because of it. 

#JackHenryAbbott #IsseiSagawa #NormanMailer #GaryGilmore #TheExecutionersSong #Japan #cannibalism 

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

Sewell Chan, The New York Times, "Mailer and the Murderer," Nov 12, 2007. 

Bruce Jackson, Buffalo Report, "Jack Henry Abbott, 58," Mar 1 2002. 

M.A. Farber, The New York Times, "Freedom for Convict-Author: Complex and Conflicting Tale," 1981. 

Katherine Ramsland,, "The Cannibal Celebrity: Issei Sagawa,". 

Julian Ryall, Post Magazine, "Poetic Justice: is the Japanese cannibal finally paying a price?," Dec 7, 2013. 

Social Media Links:


Jul 23, 2018

Diane Whipple lost her life on January 26, 2001 after she was attacked by two dangerous dogs. You'll hear about the public outcry after this horrible incident and how the owners, Robert Noel and Marjorie Knoller, made matters worse by insisting they had no responsibility for Whipple's death. This is part two of The Pacific Heights Dog Mauling Case. 

Photo: Diane Whipple

Photo: One of the two Presa Canarios involved in the attack is removed from the Pacific Heights apartment building.


Book: Red Zone: The Behind the Scenes Story of the San Francisco Dog Mauling by Aphrodite Jones

Article:  "Mad Dogs and Lawyers" by Evan Wright, Rolling Stone Magazine, February 28, 2002. 

Jul 16, 2018

A fatal dog mauling case shocked the San Francisco Bay Area and the world in early 2001.  When the details were revealed about the dogs and their owners the story took a bizarre twist.

Join me for part one of this two-part episode as I detail the tragic death of a young, lacrosse coach and the strange and unusual backstory that lead to her demise. 


Book: Red Zone: The Behind the Scenes Story of the San Francisco Dog Mauling by Aphrodite Jones

Article: Mad Dogs and Lawyers by Evan Wright, Rolling Stone Magazine, February 28, 2002. 


Jul 9, 2018

Dian Fossey became the foremost expert on the mountain gorillas of the Congo.  She conducted the first long-term field study of these animals and her story was immortalized in the book and movie Gorillas in the Mist. A few days after Christmas 1985 Dian Fossey was found brutally murdered in her cabin at the primate research center she founded.  People around the world wanted to know who killed Dian Fossey?

#Rwanda #poachers #gorillaconservation #Virunga #Karisoke 

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

Nicholas Gordon, Murders in the Mist: Who Killed Dian Fossey? (London: Hodder & Stoughton) 1993. 

Dian Fossey: Secrets in the Mist (2017), National Geographic Channel. 

Social Media Links:


Jul 2, 2018

If true crime stories teach us anything it's that man is the most dangerous animal of all. In this new series I will detail cases where human's behavior results in wild animals becoming involved in crime stories.  

This series will NOT detail cases of animal cruelty.

First up, a tiger escapes its enclosure at a zoo and attacks three men? Was the tiger provoked? What would cause an animal to attack humans out of the blue? 

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

Patricia Yollin, Tanya Schevitz, and Kevin Fagan,, "SF Zoo visitor saw 2 victims of tiger attack teasing lions," Jan 3, 2008. 

Linda Goldston, San Jose Mercury News, "Tiger attack: San Jose brothers receive $900,000 settlement from San Franciscio Zoo," May 29, 2009. 


Jun 28, 2018

On this bonus episode I discuss the 4-part documentary series "Dead North" that premiered on A&E in late May. 

My special co-host is my brother, Tony.  

Ways to watch:

Today's sponsors: - Use offer code ONCE to get $75 off your order. for a 60-day free trial for all C200 models. and use offer code OUAC to get $45 off your first month.


Jun 25, 2018

Season 3 will begin on July 2nd! Bonus episode will release this week! Get all the news, announcements and info here!


#Season3 #bonusepisode #patreon #thankyou

Jun 7, 2018

A young, Canadian college students goes missing from the Cecil while visiting Los Angeles in 2013.  The hotel's surveillance camera captures bizarre behavior by the young woman adding to the mystery.  

#ElisaLam #mysteriousdeaths #elevatorvideo 


Photos: Elisa Lam (right), Elisa in the elevator (left), scene from the recovery of the body from the water tanks on the roof of The Cecil Hotel (below)


Elevator video - last sighting of Elisa Lam:

TX Files episode where I discuss the connection between the Elisa Lam case and the film Dark Water. 




Jun 4, 2018

We continue the series "Infamous Locales" with another true crime story from the infamous Cecil Hotel. This time, I'll tell you about another serial killer who made the Cecil his base of operations -  Jack Unterweger, "The Vienna Woods Killer". 

#serialkillers #Austria #Vienna #ViennaWoodsKiller 

(Photo: A publicity shot of ex-con and writer, Jack Unterweger)


Books: Entering Hades: The Double Life of a Serial Killer by John Leake

The Unknown Darkness: Profiling the Predators Among Us by Gregg O. McCrary



May 28, 2018

The Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles has been home to at least two serial killers, numerous tragic deaths, a sniper shooting and one mysterious death.  Join me for this first installment of a 2-part episode covering the Cecil Hotel's history. #serial killers #RichardRamirez #TheNightStalker #

Photo: The Exterior of the Cecil Hotel / Richard Ramirez "The Night Stalker" in court. 


Resources: Book: The Life and Crimes of Richard Ramirez: The Night Stalker by Philip Carlo 


May 21, 2018

In this special episode I give a wrap-up of CrimeCon - all the true crime celebrity sightings, the true crime podcast rockstars I got to hang out with, and all the inside gossip and info.  I also discuss a couple of cases related to what I learned in CrimeCon sessions this year. I'll talk about the Patsy Ramsey 911 call, Ted Bundy and Jodi Arias. 

Shout outs to many, many podcasts including Southern Fried True Crime, Trace Evidence, InSight, True Crime Fan Club, The Fall Line, Minds of Madness, Misconduct, Crime and Precedents, Undisclosed, Red Wing Audio Drama, and many, many more. 

With The Manks (Josh Mankiewicz, Dateline)


The Netflix series I referenced is "Manhunt: Unabomber".  

The CBS special I referenced was "The Case of Jon Benet Ramsey".  You can find it at


Canidae Pet Food: for a free sample & special offers.

FabFitFun: and use offer code ONCE for $10 off your first subscription box.

TalkSpace: for $45 off your first month.


May 14, 2018

The district of Whitechapel in London, England was the location of one of the most infamous, unsolved serial murders in history - the Jack the Ripper Murders. But, there was possibly a second serial murderer operating at the same time. Journey with us to Whitechapel for some historical true crime cases.

Warning: This episode details more graphic details than normal. I give you a trigger warning before it begins in the episode if you'd like to skip ahead. 

#whitechapel #London #JacktheRipper #historicalcrime #crimehistory #TorsoMurders #ThamesTorsoMurders 


May 7, 2018

One intersection in Beverly Hills has been the site of many events from airplane crashes, car accidents, and murders. Could it be a coincidence or is the area cursed? 

Photo: The intersection of Sunset Blvd, North Linden and North Whittier Drive in Beverly Hills, known as "The Beverly Hills Bermuda Triangle". 

#beverlyhills #bermudatriangle #howardhughes #hollywood #bugsysiegel #ronnichasen 

A.J. Benza: Fame is a Bitch - Subscribe on ITunes


May 3, 2018

Surprise! Here's an extra episode for you since I'm off this week.  This is as bonus episode that I would normally make available only for Patreon members, but I'll give you a little sneak peek of Patreon bonus content by sharing it with everyone.

This is the story of another murder committed by the Aum Doomsday Cult that did I did not talk about on Episode #86: Last Stop: Chapter 3: The Tokyo Subway Attack. 

To become a Patreon supporter of Once Upon a Crime go to


Apr 23, 2018

A woman takes revenge for hundreds of raped and murdered women in Juarez, Mexico by targeting city bus drivers.

Photo: Pink crosses spring up around Juarez with the words "Ni una mas" or "not one more" after hundreds of women are murdered beginning in 1993.


For more information about women's organizations in Juarez:

Book: The Daughters of Juarez: A True Story of Serial Murder South of the Border by Teresa Rodriguez

Paper: The Femicide Machine by Sergio Gonzalez Rodriguez, published by Semiotext (c) with support from Mexico's National Fund for Culture and the Arts 2011-2013.




Apr 16, 2018

On March 20, 1995 a group of men board the Tokyo Metro subway system and release deadly sarin gas.  The mass murder was ordered by Aum Supreme Truth cult leader Shoko Asahara.

#massmurder #cults #Japan #terrorism #chemicalweapons


Books: The Cult at the End of the World by David Kaplan and Andrew Marshall

Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche by Haruki Mrakami to become a patron and get bonus content and merchandise.

Social Media Links:


Apr 9, 2018

A hijacking on a bus unfolds live on television in central Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in June of 2000. 

#hijacking #hostagecrisis #Brazil 


Documentary: Bus 174 (2002) directed by Jose Padilha

Podcast Recommendations:

Trace Evidence

Not Perfect or Functional


Apr 2, 2018

In 1976, in the small farming community of Chowchilla, California, a school bus full of children is kidnapped for ransom. 

#kidnappings #Chowchilla #ransom #crimehistory #California

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

Dan Noyes, ABC7 News, "Parole hearing reveals new details about Chowchilla kidnapping," Nov 29, 2012. 

Holly Yan, CNN, "California mass kidnapping: After being buried alive, victims relive nightmare," Dec 28, 2015. 

Robert Lindsey, The New York Times, "26 Children Found Safe After Being Kidnapped from Bus in Caliifornia," July 17, 1976.




Mar 26, 2018

A 16-year-old boy from a well-to-do Fort Worth family commits a quadruple vehicular homicide.  His attorneys will argue that his overprivileged upbringing resulted in him not knowing how to discern right from wrong. The term "affluenza" was coined to describe defendants like Ethan Couch - wealthy, spoiled and held unaccountable for their bad behavior. 


I'll also describe how this same defense was used in 1924 to defend the wealthy teenaged murderers Leopold and Loeb. 

#LeopoldandLoeb #CrimeoftheCentury #EthanCouch #Affluenza 

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

Manny Fernandez, Richard Perez-Pena and Azam Ahmed, The New York Times, "Ethan Couch, 'Affluenza' Teenager, Had Last Party Before Fleeing," Dec 29, 2015. 

Michael J. Mooney, D Magazine, "The Worst Parents Ever," May 2015.  

American Experience, PBS Television, "The Perfect Crime: Leopold and Loeb". 


Mar 12, 2018

Supervisor Dan White murders San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk in 1978. His defense would claim "diminished capacity" to keep him from being sentenced to death. The media dubbed this "The Twinkie Defense". But, what really caused Dan White to become a double murderer?

From L to R: Supervisor Harvey Milk, Mayor George Moscone, Dan White


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

John Geluardi, SF Weekly, "Dan White's motive more about betrayal than homophobia," Jan 30, 2008.

Carol Pogash,, "Myth of the 'Twinkie Defense', Nov 23, 2003. 



Mar 6, 2018

Three cases are outlined where a person commits murder and then blames the crime on sleepwalking. 

First up, Albert Tirrell murders his mistress in 1846 claiming he was in a trance-like state at the time. Kenneth Parks travels 23 km to commit a murder - all while asleep, he claimed. Finally, another man tries to use the sleepwalking defense after killing his wife in Phoenix, Arizona in 1997.

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

Karen Abbott,, "The Case of the Sleepwalking Killer," April 30, 2012.

 Paul Rubin,, "A Killer Sleep Disorder," Nov 19, 1998. 

True Crime Truant, "Scott Falater: Sleepwalking Killer Gets a Wakeup Call," July 20, 2017. 

Berit Brogaard and Kristian Marlow, Psychology Today, "Sleep Driving and Sleep Killing: The Kenneth Parks Case," Dec 13, 2012. 


Feb 27, 2018

The last chapter of this series continues with stories of the darker side of the Academy Awards.  You'll hear about missing and stolen Oscars, the tragic story of the Oscar Night Streaker and a murder committed by the son of an Oscar winning songwriter.

Note: Harvey Milk was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors and served for almost a year before his murder. I apologize for the omission. 

#Oscars #AcademyAwards #CelebrityCrimes #HollywoodCrime


Documentary - Uncle Bob, written, produced and directed by Robert Oppel

Television Show: Do Not Disturb: Hotel Horrors - Season 1, Episode 1 - Power, Privilege and Passion, (Investigation Discovery Channel) - This episode details the case of the murder of Sylvie Cachay. 


Feb 20, 2018

A man escapes the genocide in Cambodia and becomes an Academy Award Winning Actor in the U.S. 

#genocide #Cambodia #VietnamWar #refugees #Hollywoodcrime

                Dr. Haing S. Ngor as Dith Pran in The Killing Fields & with his Oscar


Books: A Cambodian Odyssey by Haing. S. Ngor and Roger Warner, Survival in the Killing Fields by Haing S. Ngor

Movies: The Killing Fields (1984), directed by Roland Joffe, starring Haing S. Ngor, Sam Waterston, John Malkovich

Documentary: The Killing Fields of Dr. Haing S. Ngor (2015), Produced, written, directed and edited by Arthur Dong (Deep Focus Productions)


Thrive Market - for $60 in free organic groceries, free shipping and a 30-day free trial.

Harney & Sons Teas - - Use offer code ONCE to get $15 off your first order of $49 or more.

LinkedIn Learning: for a free 30-day trial.


Feb 13, 2018

Roman Polanski lives a life of hardship and tragedy before becoming an award winning director - and a fugitive from justice after being charged with the rape of a 13-year-old girl. 

We'll hear from my special guest AJ Benza, the host of the podcast Fame is a Bitch about the inner workings of Hollywood and his first-hand impressions of Roman Polanski. 

Roman Polanski and Sharon Tate on their wedding day in 1968. 

#hollywoodcrimes #charlesmanson #celebritycrime 


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

Jeffrey Toobin, The New Yorker, "The Celebrity Defense: Sex, fame and the case of Roman Polanski," Dec 14, 2009. 

Christopher Sandford, The Telegraph UK, "Why did Roman Polanski risk it?," Oct 3, 2009. 

Marlow Stern, The Daily Beast, "Roman Polanski is a Child Rapist: It's Long Past Time for Hollywood to Cast Him Out," Oct 23, 2017. 


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


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)  

Jan 30, 2018

A teenage hitchhiker is picked up by a violent rapist in Northern California in 1978. The attack upon her would horrify the public and Lawrence Singleton would serve as a terrifying warning about accepting rides from strangers. 

Mary Vincent soon after her attack by Larry Singleton.

Mary Vincent testifies at Singleton's murder trial in 1998.


Music on today's episode is by St. Patrick. You can purchase the music on iTunes at this link or on the website

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

Paul Dean, The Los Angeles Times, "Mary Vincent Speaks Out: 'He Destroyed Everything About Me'," Feb 25, 1997. 

People v. Singleton, Court of Appeals Decision, Fourth District, Div I, California, Nov 20, 1980. 

Jacqui Morice Crawford, I Survived, Mary/Brooke/Sharene (2009). 




Jan 23, 2018

A woman leaves her abusive husband and spends months trying to get  law enforcement authorities to help her escape her abuser. In 1983, she survives one of the most brutal and vicious incidents of domestic violence I've ever encountered. She will file a civil lawsuit against the city an the police department for failing to protect her. 

Tracey Thurman Motuzick

Patricia Brennan, The Washington Post, "A Cry for Help," Oct 1, 1989. 

Thurman v. City of Torrington, Ruling on Motion to Dismiss, Retrieved from, Oct 23, 1984. 

Republican-American, "She survived thirteen stab wounds, a broken neck," Jun 9, 2008. 


Jan 16, 2018

A young woman is offered a ride by a nice looking man in Salt Lake City in 1974. By the end of the day she would be attacked and almost killed by the infamous serial killer, Ted Budy. 

My special guest, Rhonda Stapley, is the author of "I Survived Ted Bundy: The Attack, Escape and PTSD That Changed My Life".  You can find it here on Amazon.

Rhonda can be found on Facebook here.

If you are someone you know would like help and/or information about post-traumatic stress you can go to

Jan 9, 2018

A young girl is abducted on her way home from school in Lugoff, South Carolina in 2006. 


14-year-old Elizabeth Shoaf masterminded her own rescue from this underground bunker hidden deep in the woods.


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

Sarah Beckett, Investigation Discovery Channel, "Surviving Evil: Underground Terror," 2013. 

Mike Celizic, Today, "Kidnapped teen describes bunker ordeal," Mar 7, 2008. 

Twitter: @uponacrime


Facebook and Instagram: @onceuponacrimepod


Dec 19, 2017

I continue my discussion of the Laci Peterson case with my co-host, Yolanda of the Not Perfect or Functional Podcast. In this episode we take a deep dive into the background and psychology of Scott Peterson and what we believe contributed to his crime.

Holiday Greetings in this episode from:

The True Crime Guys

The Fall Line

Hillbilly Horror Stories

Not Perfect or Functional

Happy Holidays! 

Dec 19, 2017

On Christmas Eve day, 2002, an 8-month pregnant woman went missing from her home. A large-scale search was started right away, but suspicion immediately fell upon her husband, Scott Peterson. 

This episode will be a little different for OUAC. I have a special co-host, Yolanda Norris from the Not Perfect or Functional Podcast who will be discussing the case with me. Yolanda is my sister so this is a real holiday treat for me - and I hope it will be for you too!

Also, while you may think you know this story, we've come at it from a different angle. First, it will be in response to the A&E program "The Murder of Laci Peterson" in which they lay out a case for the reasons some believe Scott Peterson was tried in the media and should have been found not guilty.

Second, we will do a deep into the background and psyche of Scott Peterson to give our take on why we think not only is he guilty, but that there were signs pointing to how and why Scott may have been able to so casually murder his wife and unborn son. 

This episode is Part One of a two-part special episode. Part Two comes out tomorrow! Happy Holidays! 

Holiday Greetings in this episode were shared with you by:

Podcasts We Listen To

Twisted Philly 

True Crime Sweden 

Minds of Madness 


They Walk Among Us

FBI Retired Case File Review with Jerri Williams

In the Myx and Criminal Musings by Myxter Hyde 




Dec 12, 2017

We're talking Black Friday Madness, Grinchy burglars, and more true crime holiday craziness on this special holiday edition episode.  

Hear holiday greetings from some of my pod friends including Canadian True Crime, True Crime Garage, Southern Fried True Crime, Insight Podcast, True Crime Island, Murder Road Trip, The Cleaning of John Doe, Killifornia Dreaming and Done Disappeared.



Dec 5, 2017

We kick our true crime holiday season with stores of Santas who go bad.

#Christmascrime #badsantas #historicalcrime


Nov 28, 2017

Two cousins from a prominent and wealthy family seek revenge on their own relatives and turn to murder.



Books: Bitter Blood: A True Story of Southern Family Pride, Madness and Multiple Murder by Jerry Bledsoe

Movies/Television: In the Best of Families: Marriage, Pride and Madness (Also known as "Bitter Blood") starring Harry Hamlin and Kelly McGillis (1994)






Nov 21, 2017

A mother-son team of grifters turns to murder to get away with their financial schemes.

Sante & Kenny Kimes on 60 Minutes.

#serialkillers #SanteKimes #KennyKimes #conartists



Nov 14, 2017

One of the most prolific serial killer families in history was discovered in Jalisco, Mexico in 1964.  This is the story of the Gonzalez Sisters. 

Serial killers, sex slavery - become a Patron starting at only $2 month for merch, early release episode, series wrap-up discussions and bonus episodes. 


Nov 7, 2017

Our new series "Murder in the Family" details cases where family members commit murder together. First up, the story of The Briley Brothers who went on an 8-month crime spree in Richmond Virginia.

Left to right: Linwood, James (JB), and Anthony Briley, Douglas Meekins

serial killers, death row, prison escapes, executions



Oct 23, 2017

As a special treat I'll share a couple of creepy urban legends...with a twist. These tales are actually based on true crime stories.

Son of Sam, The Zodiac Killer, 3x Killer, The Watcher

Podcast Recommendations:

Murder Road Trip

They Walk Among Us

Ticklish Business



Oct 16, 2017

A pregnant mother dies as a result of a car accident. Thousands of Facebook friends mourn her loss. Could her whole life have been fabricated online? Chapter 2 tells the fascinating story of a case of Munchausen by Internet. 

Thanks to Taryn Harper Wright for her help with this episode. Find her at, on Facebook at

One of the hundreds of supporter bracelets sent out to supporters of Eli Dirr.  

Oct 9, 2017

In this series I'll details cases of those who deceived others in elaborate and bizarre ways. First up, a case out of Australia and and a case of Munchausen by Internet.

To Donate Funds to Flood, Earthquake and Las Vegas Shooting Victims:

Hurricanes Maria, Harvey, Irma and PuertoRico as well as Mexico Earthquakes and California Wildfires:

Relief for Puerto Rico:

Las Vegas Victims Fund - click here

To help pets affected by natural disasters:

The Human Society of the United States:

Humane Society International:



Oct 2, 2017

In our last chapter of "With Friends Like These" four young people are gunned down in Clear Lake City, Texas. A bullied girl had been taken under their wing - did their kindness cost them their lives?

Marcus Precella, Tiffany Rowell, Adelbert Sanchez and Rachel Koloroutis

Christine Paolilla


Book: Never See Them Again by M. William Phelps


Sep 25, 2017

A woman goes missing in a small town in Tennessee. Soon, a kidnapper calls demanding a ransom. The communication from him becomes more bizarre and townspeople begin to believe the culprit might be one of their own community members.



Not Perfect of Functional, Twisted Philly, Murder Road Trip, The Minds of Madness, True Crime Fan Club, Generation Why, The Peripheral, Pleasing Terrors, Killafornia Dreaming, The Fall Line



Sep 11, 2017

A group of teens conspire to kill a young man - the best friend of one of the conspirators - in Hollywood, Florida in 1993. 

Bobby Kent was proud of his muscles and sometimes used them to bully his friends.

The 7 conspirators (clockwise from top left):

Marty Puccio, Ali Willis, Donny Semenec, Heather Swallers,

Derek Dzvirko, Derek Kaufman, Lisa Connelly


Book: Bully: A True Story of High School Revenge by Jim Schutze

Movie (based on this case): Bully

Link to Survey:


Sep 4, 2017

Our new series "With Friends Like These" I detail cases where friends turn upon friends - and become deadly. The first is a case of high school jealousy. Kirsten Costas is attacked by a classmate in Orinda, California.

Kirsten Costas (left) and Bernadette Protti (right) were classmates at Miramonte High School in Orinda, California. Bernadette became obsessed with Kirsten and wanted to be included in her circle of popular girls.

Recommendations for other true crime podcasts:

Kiwi Crimes (New Zealand Crimes)

Canadian True Crime

S'laughter (UK Crimes)

Aug 28, 2017

Marie Hilley poisons her husband to death and attempts to kill her daughter in Alabama. When her crime is discovered she goes on the run. What she does next is one of the most bizarre tales of true crime in U.S. history.



Book: Poisoned Blood by Philip E. Ginsburg

Television show: American Monster - Alabama Murder Mystery 





Aug 21, 2017

The story of Marie Hilley's life is one of the most strange and bizarre true crime cases I've encountered. There are so many twists and turns in this case that I've split it into two parts.

Frank and Marie Hilley early in their marriage.


Once Upon a Crime Podcast Fan Page on Facebook

Aug 14, 2017

Our second chapter focuses on a case of Munchausen by Proxy - but this time the perpetrator is a health care worker preying on unsuspecting hospital patients.

Beverley Allitt was a British serial killer dubbed "The Angel of Death". Many believe she killed because she had Munchausen's Syndrome. Others simply believe she was an evil person who used her position to attack the most vulnerable - the young and helpless.




Aug 7, 2017

A rare phenomenon causes a mother to make her children ill for her own selfish gain. Chapter 1 of "Sick and Murdered".

Laurie Williamson is wheeled into court to face charges (she claimed to be paralyzed).


Podcasts featuring the Dee Dee & Gypsy Blanchard Case -

Generation Why - Episode 234

Sword and Scale - Episode 49

Documentary: Mommy Dead and Dearest


Jul 31, 2017

Part 2 of "Murder in the Hamptons" tells of the ugly and costly divorce of Ted and Generosa Ammon and how hate a resentment boiled over to murder.

Clockwise from top: Greg & Alexa Ammon, The East Hampton beach house, Danny Pelosi, Ted Ammon, Generosa Ammon

Check out this independent podcast! The Noir Factory Podcast

Book: Almost Paradise: The East Hampton Murder of Ted Ammon by Kieren Crowley

Jul 24, 2017

A love story turn into a murder when a multi-millionaire finds himself in an ugly and vicious divorce.

The Ammon family in happier times.

Thanks for sharing independent podcasts! This week's recommendations:

Murder Dictionary - Join Kelly & Brianna as they discover true crime cases from A-Z focusing on a new type of crime for each letter of the alphabet. You'll laugh, you'll scream, you'll come back for more!




Jul 17, 2017

Edmond Safra was a billionaire banker who lived in a highly secure penthouse in Monaco. So, how did attackers get in - or was the story all a fabrication by an insecure employee? This is the strange and tragic story with many questions yet to be answered.

La Leopolda, one of the most opulent villas on the French Riviera was just one of  the residences owned by the vastly wealthy couple, Edmond & Lily Safra.

Thanks for supporting independent podcasts!

Find me on Twitter @uponacrime

and on Facebook and Instagram @onceuponacrimepod

Don't forget - tell a friend about his podcast this month and show them how to subscribe!

Jul 10, 2017

The new series details cases of the rich who were targeted for their wealth. In our first chapter a young man's greed prompts him to plot a heinous crime.

The Ewell family from L to R: Dana, Glee, Tiffany and Dale



Jun 26, 2017

Two couples collide on a deserted island in the South Seas. Only one would leave the island alive. 


Mac & Muff Graham on the Sea Wind, Duane Buck Walker, Stephanie Stearns

Book: And the Sea Will Tell - Vincent Bugliosi

Video: The FBI Files: Season 1: Deadly Paradise 


Jun 19, 2017

A woman goes missing on the beautiful island of Aruba in 2011 under mysterious circumstances.



Jun 12, 2017

This week I'll take you the beautiful Italian countryside - where a serial killer will stalk and kill young lovers. 

  The Monster of Florence strikes again the the area surrounding Florence, Italy.


Jun 5, 2017

A serial killer is hunting and killing women in Yosemite National Park in 1999. His ties to another well-known true crime case would make this story even more bizarre. 

Cary Stayner after his arrest for the murders of four women in Yosemite National Park in 1999.

Carole Sund/Carrington Memorial Reward Foundation:


Social Media Links:

Once Upon a Crime Podcast Fan Page 




May 22, 2017

A woman finds out her husband of 10 years is having an affair and takes matters into her own hands - in a particularly gruesome way.

David, Lindsay and Clara Harris in happier times.


May 15, 2017

Part 2 tells about the investigation, interrogation, arrest and trial of Jodi Arias for the murder of Travis Alexander. This is Chapter 3 of "A Woman Scorned"

Jodi Arias was on the stand for 18 days during her trial.

May 9, 2017

A young woman who felt spurned by her on-again-off again lover and realizaing she couldn’t have him for herself, decides to take deadly revenge. This case became one of the most sensationalized trials on record.  

Chapter 2 of "A Woman Scorned" is the murder of Travis Alexander by Jodi Arias.




May 2, 2017

In 1989, Betty Broderick guns down her ex-husband and his new wife. Did her cheating husband cause her to snap or did she commit cold-blood, premeditated murder?

This is Chapter 1 of our new series "A Woman Scorned". 

            Betty and Dan Broderick on their wedding day in 1969. Their love would not last forever.



Twitter: @UponaCrime



Apr 25, 2017

A divorced dad takes revenge out on his ex-wife by attempting to murder his own son.

A 1988 television movie titled "David" detailed the terrible crime Charles Rothenberg committed on his 6-year-old son.


Show links:

Apr 18, 2017

A woman reports her car stolen with her 2 young sons inside. After a 9 day search, the unthinkable would be discovered.

Michael and Alex Smith went missing on October 25, 1994.






Apr 11, 2017

An entire family is found murdered in their home in 1971. The patriarch, John List, murdered his wife, mother and children and then disappeared.



Apr 3, 2017

Three children are shot on a lonely road one night in 1983. Was it the work of a violent stranger or was it even more horrifying? Could their own mother be to blame?

Diane Downs and her children - Danny, Christie and Cheryl.

#truecrimepodcast #truecrime #dianedowns



Mar 27, 2017

In this episode I detail a rare phenomenon - female mass murderers. You'll hear three cases of women who killed several people in a single incident in the U.S., Germany and Kuwait. 

Jennifer San Marco killed 7 people in Goleta, California in 2006


Dept. of Homeland Security - How to Respond to Active Shooter Situation

ADT Webinar: Active Shooter Preparedness and Response



Mar 20, 2017

The worst case of mass murder in the U.S. at the time occurred on July 18, 1984. The shooter entered a crowded McDonald's restaurant in San Ysidro, California and killed 21 men, women and children before the siege was over.

San Diego police escort McDonald employees out of the restaurant after a shooter killed 21 employees and customers in 77 minutes.


#massmurderers  #SanYsidroMcDonaldsMassacre


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




Feb 28, 2017

A couple deceive, rob and, ultimately, kill women who place ads in "Lonely Hearts" columns in the 1940s.

Thank you and congrats to Podcast 1289 - our 1500th Twitter follower!

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

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


Feb 13, 2017

A couple begin a reign of terror across several states in the Midwest United States in the summer of 1984.  The FBI would be called in to find and apprehend the serial killers.

Alton Coleman and Debra Brown in court, 1984.


Feb 7, 2017

A young girl infatuated with an older, married man sets out to eliminate her rival - his wife of 15 years. But, the story is soon discovered to be more sordid than originally thought.


Jan 31, 2017

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, Massachusetts is robbed of over a half a billion dollars of rare art in 1990.

Image: Thieves smash and grab over a half billion dollars of art at the Isabella  Stewart Gardner Museum in 1990.



Jan 24, 2017

A young aspiring writer shoots pop art icon Andy Warhol in 1968.

Valerie Solanas, just after shooting Andy Warhol, June 3, 1968.



Book: Valerie Solanas: The Defiant Life of the Woman Who Wrote SCUM (and Shot Andy Warhol) by Breanne Fahs

Movie: I Shot Andy Warhol

Jan 17, 2017

The great artist Caravaggio lives an unparalleled life as a painter of masterpieces and as a mercurial and violent young man who became a convicted murderer before the age of 35.

true crime artists murderers historical crime


Book: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane by Andrew Graham-Dixon 

Facebook & Instagram: @OnceUponACrimePod Twitter: @UponACrime    

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

Vincent Van Gogh Art History Artists Impressionism Suicide True Crime Murder

Dec 30, 2016

A man leads police to a body buried in a snowbank on Christmas Day, 1977. This murder in Madison, Wisconsin, would captivate the public with a tale of sex, murder, drugs and money.    


Book: Winter of Frozen Dreams - by Karl Harter

Video: Winter of Frozen Dreams  

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.



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

Dec 5, 2016

A 9-year-old girl is abducted in Arlington, Texas. The community and, ultimately, the country would call for changes in the way law enforcement responds to missing and abducted children  

You can find the video about Amber and her family here: WFAA Amber Hagerman Documentary

Click here to find out more about the AMBER Alert System

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children can be contacted at 1-800-THE-LOST or .

You can see a list of active AMBER alerts here.

Tips to keep your children safe:

1) Have a code word phrase. This is a phrase that you would share with your children, especially as it relates to adults they should and can trust. They should know that if you send someone to pick them up from school or any activity, the code word will be used. Make it something funny or personal so it’s easy for the kids to remember. A child should only go with someone who tells them that phrase. 2) Teach your kids that adults don’t need help from kids. If an adult needs directions, help finding a pet or anything else, they should ask another adult, not a child.

3) Let your child know it’s OK to yell, scream, and say no to an adult if they feel uncomfortable or scared. We teach children to listen to adults and not to be disruptive, but there are times they should disobey and be loud. It’s a good idea to practice with your kids. Give them a scenario and have them practice say no firmly and loudly, screaming, and running away.

4) Be careful of sharing too much identifying information on the internet. Of course, we like to share pictures and information about the cute and fun things are children do on Facebook and other social media. But predators can get information about a child's location, routine, etc., if identifying information is shared such as school names, names of parks you frequent, even locations of meeting places like scout troop meetings, sports fields, etc. So, just keep that information to a minimum and without details. Family members and good friends already probably know it so it's not necessary to share.  

Nov 29, 2016

The murder of a young girls leads to sweeping changes in sentencing laws.

Polly Hannah Klaas was 12 years old when she was abducted by a stranger out of her own bedroom.


People v. Davis, Appeal Record, Superior Court of California, June 1, 2009

"The Man Who Kept Going Free" by Jeffrey Toobin for The New Yorker, March 7, 1994. 

Polly's Story - 

"An Angel Named Polly" by Elizabeth Gleick and Maria Eftimiades for People Magazine, Nov 28, 1994. 

Book recommendation: American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst by Jeffrey Toobin   

Nov 21, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving! Just sharing some info about the holiday schedule of podcast releases and some shout outs to listeners and podcasters!

Thanks to our new sponsor Audible who is offering our listeners a 30-day free trial and a free audiobook download! Go to for your free offer.


Nov 17, 2016

An abused woman spends years being beaten and terrorized by her husband while police and others turn a blind eye. In desperation, she takes the law into her own hands.


The National Domestic Violence Hotline (U.S.) 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)

Victim Support (U.K.)

Domestic Violence Resource Centre (AU)

U.S. Dept. of Justice Office on Violence Against Women

Book: The Burning Bed by Faith McNulty  

People show support for the defendant at the trial of Francine Hughes./Farrah Fawcett's portrayal of Francine in "The Burning Bed".    

Nov 8, 2016

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

. Kitty Genovese


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

Oct 28, 2016

On this special bonus Halloween episode I share something a little different. Instead of the usual true crime case I'm sharing two ghost stories with you. Feel free to listen in the dark! Happy Halloween!


#Halloween #ghoststories #spooky Please rate and review the show on iTunes! And tell a friend. Thanks!

Oct 11, 2016

Mark David Chapman stalks and murders John Lennon on a New York city street in 1980. This is Chapter 3 of Fatal Fans.


John Lennon autographs his album for Mark Chapman a few hours before Chapman shoots him dead on December 8, 1980.


Let Me Take You Down: Inside the Mind of Mark David Chapman by Jack Jones


Oct 11, 2016

John Hinckley, Jr. tries to impress an actress by killing President Ronald Reagan. Was he legally insane? This is the final chapter in the series "Fatal Fans". 


John Hinckley's mug shot - dated 3/30/81 - the day he tried to kill President Reagan.

Please rate and review us on iTunes! Twitter: @UponACrime Facebook: OnceUponaCrimePod    

Resources: "At the Edge of Death" by Edmund Morris for Newsweek, October 4, 1999.

Dutch: A Memoir of Ronald Regan by Edmund Morris, Random House, 1999. 

Oct 4, 2016

An unhinged fan has murderous plans towards young actress Rebecca Schaeffer.



Rebecca Schaeffer

Robert John Bardo in court.


"An Innocent Life, A Heartbreaking Death" by Pete Axthelm, People Magazine, July 31, 1989. 

"In the Mind of a Stalker" by M. Tharp, U.S. News and World Report, Feb 17, 1992. 

Sep 13, 2016

A young actress is stalked by an unhinged drifter who is intent on killing her.

Facebook: OnceUponACrimePod Twitter: @UponACrime Celebrity crime, stalking victims, true crime.

Theresa Saldana arrives at the court house 2 weeks after her near fatal attack.


Arthur Jackson in court charged with first degree attempted murder.



Sep 9, 2016

The Queen of Tejano Music is gunned down by a fan in 1995.

Resources: Music: Selena - Ones - (Greatest Hits Album)

DVD: Selena - the Movie 

Book: To Selena with Love - by Chris Perez

To connect with the show: On Twitter: @uponacrime On Facebook and Instagram @OnceUponaCrimePod Website:    


Aug 28, 2016

Two of music's biggest rap stars are cut down in their prime. But, who killed them? This week's episode - Tupac and Biggie.

Follow us on Twitter @UponACrime and on Facebook and Instagram @OnceUponaCrimePod

Resources for this episode:

Music: 2Pac's Greatest Hits The Notorious B.I.G. Greatest Hits  

Books: Tupac Shakur: The Life and Times of an American Icon - Tayannah Lee McQuillar and Fred L. Johnson III, PhD Notorious C.O.P.: The Inside Story of Tupc, Biggie and Jam Master Jay Investigations - Derrick Parker The Rose that Grew from Concrete: Poems by Tupac Shakur

Movies and Documentaries: Tupac: Resurrection Notorious Biggie and Tupac: The Story Behind the Murders of Rap's Biggest Superstars  

Aug 17, 2016

The second installment in the series about the tragic endings of musical icons this time I discuss the life and death of Nirvana's frontman, Kurt Cobain. Justin Evans from the Generation Why and The Peripheral podcasts weighs in on "Soaked in Bleach" and the murder theory.

Click on the links below for resources and to purchase the music.

Books: Heavier than Heaven: A Biography of Kurt Cobain - Charles R. Cross

Videos: Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck Soaked in Bleach  

Aug 2, 2016

This series tells the tragic stories of recording artists who were killed or died under mysterious circumstances. In the first chapter, Marvin Gaye, a top R&B recording artist is murdered by a family member in 1984.


Books: Marvin Gaye: My Brother by Frankie Gaye Divided Soul: The Life of Marvin Gaye by David Ritz      

Jul 26, 2016

The first school mass shooting in the U.S. is committed by a 16-year-old year girl. Brenda Spencer mugshot wearing her "lucky" hat.

   Brenda Spencer's mugshot. January 29, 1979. Wearing her "lucky" hat.

Brenda Spencer goes to court.

Brenda Spencer goes to court.

"Does Anyone Like Mondays? The Brenda Spencer Murder Case" by Eric Hart

Follow us on Twitter @UponACrime

Subscribe on iTunes 


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. 



Jul 13, 2016

A bonus episode partially recorded at The Warfield Theater in San Francisco, CA. Making a Murderer's Dean Strang and Jerry Buting on their speaking tour "A Conversation on Justice".

To subscribe to Once Upon a Crime on iTunes, click here.

To subscribe to Once Upon a Crime on Stitcher, click here.

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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  

Jun 23, 2016

When kidnap victims are held for a period of time the public often wants to know "why didn't they try to escape?" This episode explains a psychological phenomenon known as "Stockholm Syndrome", how it might apply to the victims I discussed in the series "Lost and Found", and share probably the most well-known case of Stockholm Syndrome, the kidnapping of Patty Hearst. Kidnappings, true crime, Stockholm Syndrome, Patty Hearst  

Jun 9, 2016

Three girls go missing over as many years in a Cleveland, Ohio neighborhood.  Years go by before they are ever seen again. When it was revealed who had taken them and what they were subjected to the city was stunned to find that the perpetrator had been right under their nose all along.

Book: The Lost Girls: The True Story of the Cleveland Abductions by John Glatt   

True crime stories told one chapter at a time: kidnappings.  

Jun 9, 2016

This is our second installment in the series "Lost and Found". Elizabeth Smart was a 14-year-old girl from a loving, Mormon family living in Salt Lake City, Utah. The family's kindness towards a local transient would make her a target for kidnapping. Her ordeal would encompass months of captivity and hundreds of miles before the final outcome in her story. 

Jun 9, 2016

This is the first installment in our series "Lost and Found". When a loved one goes missing the families are left in a terrible limbo. How long do you hold out hope for your loved one to be found? Many never give up hope and, for a few, a miracle happens and their prayers are answered. In this first episode, an 11-year-old girl is abducted by strangers in broad daylight. The abductors have carefully planned for their captive. The story of this well-publicized kidnapping is even more bizarre and unbelievable than you might have heard.                  









A Stolen Life: A Memoir - Jaycee Dugard Lost and Found: The True Story of Jaycee Dugard and the Abduction that Shocked the World - John Glatt    




Jun 9, 2016

Welcome to Once Upon a Crime the true crime podcast that tells the story behind the story of real life crime. 

New episodes release every Monday. Subscribe today on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Pandora or wherever you listen to podcasts. 

Clips from show are from the following episodes:

Episode 142: Taunting Terrors: Shari Faye Smith

Episode 146: Rocktober: Altamont, The Rolling Stones and the Hells Angels

Episode 158: Bad Seeds: Lowell Lee Andrews

Episode 149: Fugitives from Justice: Jesse James Hollywood

Episode 156: Behind the Crime: Aileen Wuornos

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