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25 True Crime Podcasts That You Probably Haven't Heard Yet

The most interesting new and under-appreciated true crime podcasts.

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25 True Crime Podcasts That You Probably Haven't Heard Yet

The most interesting new and under-appreciated true crime podcasts.

The Best New Shows From The Past Year Or So:

1. Happy Face from HowStuffWorks and iHeartRadio

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Happy Face is the story of Melissa Moore, who discovered at the age of 15 that her father–a man she thought of as an affable, loving parent–was actually a serial killer responsible for the deaths of 8 women across the US. Along with producer Lauren Bright Pacheco, Moore investigates her father's crimes and considers the impact that her father's notorious legacy has had on her and her family.

2. Repeat from KPCC

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Investigative journalist Annie Gilbertson tracks the career of a Los Angeles County Sheriff deputy named Deputy Inzunza, a known "shit magnet" who seems to attract the attention of gun-carrying criminals. Over the course of his career, Deputy Inzunza has fired 37 shots at four different criminals during arrests, but has never been found guilty of any wrongdoing.

3. Dr. Death from Wondery

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It's unclear why nobody bothered to stop Christopher Duntsch–a neurosurgeon based in Dallas, Texas–from performing surgeries, even after maiming four patients and killing two others. Medical journalist Laura Beil investigates Duntsch's career and the broken system that allowed him to keep practicing despite gross incompetence and malpractice.

4. Atlanta Monster from iHeartRadio and Tenderfoot TV

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Atlanta Monster is the second podcast from producer Payne Lindsey (whose other show, Up and Vanished, is featured later in this list), and follows his efforts to solve the infamous Atlanta Child Murders of 1979-1981 and exonerate the man who is still behind bars for the killings to this day. It lacks the same satisfying climax as his first show, but it's a compelling narrative and does a good job of exploring the circumstances surrounding the murders and the racial climate in Georgia both then and now.

5. Bear Brook from New Hampshire Public Radio

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In 1985, a hunter deep in the woods of Bear Brook State Park discovered a barrel containing the remains of two young women, which set in motion a series of events that would uncover another barrel, more unidentifiable victims, and a series of investigations that would continue to perplex investigators for over 30 years.

6. Dirty John from the Los Angeles Times and Wondery

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Dirty John, the story of an abusive manipulator named John Meehan, came out in late 2017 and instantly blew up. (It's already been adapted into a TV show, which debuted on Bravo on November 25th.) The podcast, hosted by investigative journalist Christopher Goffard, was released alongside a splashy 6-part feature on latimes.com, so it's really up to you how you experience the story. (Though I'd recommend the podcast, obv.)

7. Last Seen from WBUR and the Boston Globe

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Last Seen is a breath of fresh air in the true crime genre because it's as intense and gripping as the rest of the shows on this list, but instead of tracking grisly murders or serial killers, the show is instead about a 1990 art heist at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. If you like true crime but are squeamish about blood and guts, Last Seen might be exactly what you've been waiting for.

8. Believed from NPR

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You probably read about the sentencing of the former USA Gymnastics national team doctor, Larry Nassar, earlier this year. Nassar was accused of sexual misconduct by over 300 women over the course of 20 years. Believed follows the survivors of his assaults as they seek justice and try to figure out how he got away with his crimes for so long. it's another compelling story that is horrifying in its own right, but something different from the usual death and gore of the true crime genre.

9. American Scandal from Wondery

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Instead of following the true crime podcast formula of investigating a single (usually unsolved) crime over the course of a season, American Scandal covers its topics over the course of month-long miniseries. Each series tracks a noteworthy scandal from recent American history–such as the BALCO steroids scandal of the early 2000s or New York's long history of corruption within the state government–and are concise and fascinating.

10. Uncover from CBC

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Uncover is actually already well into it's second season after launching earlier this year. The first season covered Keith Raniere's infamous NXIVM cult from the perspective of a former insider who managed to get out. Season two covers the bombing of Canadian Pacific Flight 21 in 1965, which killed 65 people and remains one of Canada's biggest unsolved mysteries to this day.

11. Cold from KSL Podcasts

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Cold is a well-polished investigation into the disappearance of Susan Powell. The show is full of first-hand accounts from friends and family as well as primary sources in the form of recordings of Powell and her husband, the primary suspect in the case who was never arrested for her disappearance before killing himself and his two sons.

12. Assassinations from Parcast

Parcast

Assassinations is like the most interesting history class you'll ever sit in on. It's another show that handles its topics in limited-run miniseries, each about a different assassination. The show just recently debuted with a series about the assassination of JFK, so it's a great time to jump in and start listening.

13. The Making of a Massacre from Audible and ProPublica

Audible Originals

Billed as an "audio documentary," The Making of a Massacre has all the hallmarks of an excellent investigative series, but with a flourish of dramatization in the form of vocal performances from actors such as Danny Trejo and Cheech Marin. The five-part series details a drug cartel-related mass killing in Allende, Mexico and how various government agencies may be culpable for the alarming events. The show is only available through Audible, so you'll need an active subscription if you want to listen.

14. Unspeakable Crime: The Killing of Jessica Chambers from Oxygen

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BuzzFeed covered the viral investigation of the murder of Jessica Chambers extensively and now the story of the young woman who was mysteriously burned alive in her car in 2014 is both a TV series and seven-part podcast from Oxygen. The show follows the investigation into Jessica's death as well as the trial of Quinton Tellis, the primary suspect in the killing.

15. Felonious Florida from Wondery

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Felonious Florida is kind of like Florida Man: The Podcast, and covers true crimes committed exclusively in the state of Florida, usually covering each crime over the course of a few episodes. The stories have all been pretty wild so far (the show is already on it's fourth series, despite just launching in April of this year) and feature gangland executions, gruesome murders, and homicidal clowns. Everything you've come to expect from Florida.

16. Hell and Gone from HowStuffWorks and iHeartRadio

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Hell and Gone is a classic true crime show. If you're a fan of the genre, then this show is exactly what you're looking for. Investigator Catherine Townsend returns to her childhood home in the Arkansas Ozarks to look into a 14-year-old murder of a young woman whose killer was never caught. The investigation is still unfolding, but promises to have a gratifying conclusion for listeners.

17. The Teacher’s Pet from The Australian

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The Teacher's Pet is a compelling story of a 36-year-old cold case out of Sydney, Australia. It's an absolutely unbelievable story of betrayal, twin brothers who share way too much, high school teachers courting teenage lovers, the academic system that ignored these abuses, and the disappearance and likely murder of a woman named Lyn Dawson.


18. Frozen Truth from Scott Fuller

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Frozen Truth isn't quite as polished as the rest of the professionally produced shows on this list, but Scott Fuller's investigations into unsolved disappearances (the show's third season just debuted) are just as fascinating. Each season, Fuller speaks with experts, investigators, and even people involved in the cases to discover the truth about these mysterious disappearances.

19. Mile Marker 181 from Emily Nestor

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It's unclear what exactly happened near mile marker 181 on I-77 on November 19th, 2011, but a young woman named Jaleayah Davis ended up dead, mutilated, and only partially clothed in the middle of the interstate as her car drifted down the road without her. The official incident report concludes that Davis was ejected from her vehicle during a collision while driving drunk, but there are too many strange inconsistencies for that to completely add up.

20. Don’t Talk To Strangers from Nina Innsted

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You might recognize Nina Innsted from her other successful true crime podcast, Already Gone, and her new series promises to be just as compelling. The story of the Oakland County Child Murders of the 1970s is personal for Innsted, who grew up in Oakland County, Michigan during the time of the murders. The killer, who is responsible for the deaths of four children, has never been identified.

The Best Returning True Crime Podcasts:

21. In the Dark - Season Two from American Public Media

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Back in 2016, the first season of In the Dark–which exposed the shortcomings of the criminal justice system in its handling of the abduction of an 11-year-old boy in Minnesota–helped solve a 27-year-old cold case and won a Peabody Award in the process. The new season, which wrapped up earlier this summer, also uses the true crime model to expose corruption and injustice within the justice system. It follows the case of Curtis Flowers, who was convicted of murdering four people in 1996, and one prosecutor's continued attempts to seek the death penalty for Flowers.

22. Up and Vanished - Season Two from Tenderfoot

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Thanks in part to the attention season one of Up and Vanished brought to the disappearance of Tara Grinstead, her 12-year-old cold case was solved and her killer ended up behind bars. Now host Payne Lindsay is back with a new missing person case, this time out of Colorado, and it'll be interesting to see if his investigation will end with yet another conviction.

23. Crimetown - Season Two from Gimlet

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Season one of Crimetown explored the influence of organized crime in Providence, Rhode Island. With its focus on more widespread corruption, it was something new and different in the true crime genre and gained a pretty impressive following. Season two sets its sights on Detroit, Michigan, and catalogs rampant corruption and brutality within the Detroit police department in the 1970s.

24. Missing & Murdered: Finding Cleo from CBC

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CBC's Missing & Murdered podcast, currently in its second season, is focused on missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada, who are disproportionately harmed in violent crimes to the point that it has been declared a national crisis in Canada. In the current season, journalist Connie Walker attempts to find a 13-year-old girl named Cleo, who went missing after being placed in a foster home during the infamous "Sixties Scoop," a program in Canada that relocated Indigenous children from the 1950s through the 1980s.

25. Someone Knows Something - Season Five from CBC

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Another CBC show, Someone Knows Something has mostly focused on missing person and unsolved murder cases in Canada. Season five of the series debuted this fall, and covers the murder of a young woman named Kerrie Ann Brown in Manitoba.

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