Once Upon A Crime | True Crime

A weekly True Crime, Society and History podcast featuring
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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. Resources: For more information about women's organizations in Juarez: https://hiponline.org/how-casa-amiga-helps-free-the-women-of-juarez/ https://theculturetrip.com/north-america/mexico/articles/meet-the-mexican-activists-fighting-for-womens-rights/ https://web.archive.org/web/20040414134540/http://www.mujeresdejuarez.org/ 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.      
On this second part of a two-part episode we continue the story of 9-year-old Walter Collins who went missing from Los Angeles in 1928.  In part two, we discover that a serial killer, Gordon Stewart Northcott, has been preying on boys and young men in the LA area.  Was Walter Collins a victim of Northcott's?  Sources:  The Wineville Chicken Coop Murders, retrieved online at crime museum.org. https://www.crimemuseum.org/crime-library/serial-killers/wineville-chicken-coop-murders/ The Disappearance of Walter Collins, by Gabriela Serrato for STMUhistorymedia.org.  https://stmuhistorymedia.org/author/gabriela.serrato/  Movie: Changeling (2008), Written, directed, and produced by Clint Eastwood for Imagine Entertainment. Starring Angelina Jolie, John Malkovich, Jeffrey Donovan and Amy Ryan.  Links: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime  Fruit Loops: Serial Killers of Color Podcast - https://fruitloopspod.com 
In this month's series I'll tell you stories about people who missing and then, months or years later, miraculously reappeared.  But, these stories all have a twist - were they who they claimed to be or were they imposters?  In this first episode, you'll hear about a young boy who goes missing in 1928.  When he returns home, his mother will say he's an imposter, but her claims are dismissed.  Who was the boy claiming to be her missing son and what happened to the real Walter Collins?  Resources:  The 1920s boy who impersonated a kidnapping victim, Suzanne Raga for MentalFloss.com, Jan 20, 2016 Collins Hoax Comes to an End, The Los Angeles Times, Oct 3, 1928 The Disappearance of Walter Collins, Gabriela Serrato, STMU History Media, March 26, 2017  Links: Patreon - www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime  
A serial killer preys on vulnerable women in Tokyo, Japan.  He will meet his victims on Twitter.  (Caution: This episode contains the subject of suicide.)  Resources:  "Inside the mind of the Japanese serial killer who killed 9 people" by Walter Sim for The Straits Times, Nov 5, 2017.  "Japan's 'Twitter Killer' Given Death Sentence for 9 Murders" by Ben Dooley for The New York Times, Dec 15, 2020.  "Killer who kept heads in cool boxes advertised himself as a professional hangman to lure suicidal victims" by Claire Carter for The Mirror, Nov 3, 2017.  Sponsors: Ana Luisa - www.analuisa.com/once and use offer code ONCE to get 10% off your order.  Best Fiends - Download free on the Apple App Store or Google Play Modern Fertility - www.modernfertility.com/ONCE to get $20 off your test.  Munk Pack - www.munkpack.com and use code ONCE at checkout to get 20% off your order.  Links: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime   
Two women meet a man on Match.com. After they end the relationship, Wade Ridley vows deadly revenge.  Resources: 20/20: In an Instant - "Match Made in Hell", ABC Television, aired July 1, 2017 Dating App Horrors: The Untold Story, A&E Network, aired May 2, 2019.  "Mary Kay Beckman Sues Match.com", The Huffington Post, Jan 24, 2013 Sponsors: Prose - www.prose.com/once for 15% off Apostrophe - www.apostrophe.com/once - use discount code ONCE, click "Begin Visit", then use code ONCE at sign up to get $15 off your dermatology visit. The New Yorker - www.newyorker.com/once - Get 12 weeks for just $6 plus a free tote bag.  
A Canadian man, inspired by the television show Dexter, lures his murder victims through online dating sites.  Resources:  Dateline: Deadly House of Cards, NBC Television, September 16, 2011. "Alleged First Victim Recalls His Escape" by Nahreman Issa for CTV News, April 1, 2011.  "'Dexter Killer' Mark Twitchell among members of dating site for inmates" by Scott Stevenson for CBC News, Jan 9, 2017 Mark Twitchell's "Profile of a Psychopath", retrieved on Scribd.com. https://www.scribd.com/document/52942084/Mark-Twitchell-s-Profile-of-a-Psychopath  Alleged Diary from Mark Twitchell's Computer (GRAPHIC WARNING), retrieved on Scribed.com. https://www.scribd.com/doc/202712564/51755869-WARNING-GRAPHIC-Alleged-Diary-From-Twitchell-s-Computer  Sponsors:  Munk Pack: www.munkpack.com and use discount code ONCE for 20% off any product.  Skout's Honor: www.SkoutsHonor.com/once for 20% off your order.  Links: The Troubles Podcast: https://shows.acast.com/the-troubles-podcast   
In Part 3 of this miniseries, Curtis Dean Anderson confesses to a high-profile missing child case.  He would be investigated for a series of abductions and murders of children in Northern California.  Was he a serial killer as he claimed or was it just another manipulation by this serial predator?  Resources:  “Portrait of ‘an absolute monster’” by Kevin Fagan for The San Francisco Chronicle, July 7, 2009 “List of Bay Area child kidnapping cases”, San Jose Mercury News, August 27, 2009.  “Murderer’s Confession to 1988 Slaying is Valid”. LawOfficer.com, July 7, 2009.  Most Wanted: Curtis Dean Anderson.  Retrieved from FBI.gov  Link: https://www.fbi.gov/wanted/seeking-info/curtis-dean-anderson  The Charley Project:  Amber Swartz-Garcia. Link: https://www.fbi.gov/wanted/seeking-info/curtis-dean-anderson Ilene Misheloff.  Link: https://charleyproject.org/case/ilene-beth-misheloff Sponsors:  Care/of: takecareof.com/ONCE50 for 50% off your first Care/of order  Best Fiends: Download on the Apple App Store or Google Play. Modern Fertility: www.modernfertility.com/ONCE for $20 off your test. 
If you could call a number and say you’re sorry, and no one would know...what would you apologize for? For fifteen years, you could call a number in Manhattan and do just that. This is the story of the line, and the man at the other end who became consumed by his own creation. He was known as "Mr. Apology." As thousands of callers flooded the line, confessing to everything from shoplifting to infidelity, drug dealing to murder, Mr. Apology realized he couldn’t just listen. He had to do something, even if it meant risking everything. From Wondery the makers of Dr. Death and The Shrink Next Door, comes a story about empathy, deception and obsession. Marissa Bridge, who knew Mr. Apology better than anyone, hosts this six episode series. Listen today at:  http://wondery.fm/AL_OnceUponaCrime  
In part two of this miniseries the bravery of an 8-year-old girl unmasks a serial predator named Curtis Dean Anderson. He would be linked to the disappearance of Xiana Fairchild.  Resources: "Portrait of 'an absolute monster'", by Kevin Fagan for The San Francisco Chronicle, July 7, 2009.  "Midsi Sanchez finds purpose, peace 20 years after being kidnapped in Vallejo", by Amy Maginnis-Honey for The Daily Republic - Solano County, July 2020.  Letters from a Serial Killer, Kristi Belcamino and Stephanie Kahalekulu, Publisher - Kristi Belcamino, 2018.  Sponsors:  Munk Pack - www.munkpack.com - enter discount code ONCE at checkout to save 20% off your purchase.  The New Yorker - www.newyorker.com/once and use promo code ONCE to get 12 weeks of The New Yorker for just $6 plus a free tote bag.  Links: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime   
A 7-year-old goes missing from Vallejo, California in 1999.  It would be some time before Xiana Fairchild would be linked to a serial predator who would ultimately be connected to several missing and murdered women and children in Northern California and beyond. This is the first part of a month-long series about serial predator Curtis Dean Anderson.  Resources:  Letters from a Serial Killer: The true story of a mother and a journalist's fight to save a little girl's life by Kristi Belcamino and Stephanie Kahalekulu, Publisher: Kristi Belcamino, 2018.  "A Sad End to Xiana's Story" by Stacy Finz, Patrick Hoge, Tyche, Hendricks, Matthew B. Standard for The San Francisco Chronicle, Feb 4, 2001.  Sponsors:  Skout's Honor: www.SkoutsHonor.com/once for 20% off your order. Acorn TV:  www.acorn.tv - use offer code ONCE to get your first 30 days free.  Links: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime
This week my special guest is Leroy Luna from Excuse Me, That's Illegal Podcast. We discuss some bizarre crimes, the dumbest criminals and crime stories that could only have happened in 2020. Links to resources:  https://www.clickorlando.com/news/2020/06/09/naked-florida-man-accused-of-bizarre-crime-spree-that-included-trying-to-kiss-elderly-woman/  https://www.newser.com/story/296711/guy-gets-year-in-jail-for-covid-era-parties.html https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/man-gets-caricature-done-robs-artist-and-leaves-painting-of-himself-behind https://www.dailydot.com/unclick/dine-and-dash-restaurant-ceiling/ https://nypost.com/2020/02/14/man-wearing-dumbass-sweatshirt-arrested-after-stolen-car-chase/ Sponsors: Acorn TV: www.ACORN.tv and use code ONCE to get your first 30 days free.  SimpliSafe: www.SimpliSafe.com/once to get a free home security camera and a 60-day risk-free trial.  Links:  Excuse Me, That's Illegal Podcast: https://www.podchaser.com/podcasts/excuse-me-thats-illegal-1380261 Women and Crime Podcast: https://www.podchaser.com/podcasts/women-and-crime-986553 Patreon: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC17PL60EqRV7DcDdgLC3YTQ     
Nineteen eighty was going to be Dorothy Stratten’s year. Playboy’s Hugh Hefner thought it might even be her decade. She was just 20 years old, the girl next door with the shy smile and whispery voice who didn’t know her own beauty. But who was Dorothy really? And how did her rise to fame ultimately lead to her death? This is a six-part series about love, sex and murder in 1970s Hollywood when glitter pants and roller skates were all the rage, and the Playboy mansion hosted the biggest party in town. Listen today at http://wondery.fm/Starlet_OnceUponACri  
In this episode I'll share three true crime cases you may not have heard of, but should have.  My special guest host is Laurah from The Fall Line and One Strange Thing Podcasts.  Resources:  "Murder in a Silent Place" by David Van Biema for Time, Jun 17, 2001.  People Magazine Investigates: The Sounds of Silence, Season 3, Episode 13, Investigation Discover Channel.  "Gwen Araujo murder 14 years later: Trangender teen's killers face parole" by Malaika Fraley for The Bay Area News Group, Oct 14, 2016.  Sponsors:  Native Deodorant - www.nativeDEO.com/once or use promo code ONCE for 20% off your first order. EverlyWell At-Home Lab Testing Kits - www.EverlyWell.com/once and enter promo code ONCE for 20% off your test.  PlushCare - www.PlushCare.com/once to start your free 30-day trial.  Resources mentioned in this episode:  A Girl Like Me: The Gwen Araujo Story (2006), Lifetime TV. Trained in the Ways of Men (2007), directed by Michelle Prevost.  Lumbee Indians in the Jim Crow South: Race, Identity, and the Making of a Nation, Malinda Maynor Lowery, (University of North Carolina Press, 2010). The Lumbee Indians: An American Struggle, Malinda Maynor Lowery, (University of North Carolina Press, 2018). If you have any information regarding the Brittany Locklear case you can contact the State Bureau of Investigation in North Carolina at (919) 662-4500 or the Hoke County Sheriff's Office at (910) 875-5111. There is a $20,000 reward for information leading to a resolution of Brittany's case.  Other links: Once Upon a Crime Patreon - www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime The Fall Line Podcast - www.thefalllinepodcast.com  One Strange Thing Podcast - www.onestrangethingpodcast.com   
Two women thought they'd met the man of their dreams. But one of them would be found dead of mysterious circumstances and one would go missing never to be seen again. Would justice prevail to convict Drew Peterson for these crimes?  Resources: Marcia Clark Investigates the First 48: Drew Peterson, Investigation Discovery Channel, April 5, 2018 Justice Cafe, petersonstory.wordpress.com  Sponsors: EverlyWell - www.everlywell.com/once and use ONCE at checkout for 20% off your test. SimpliSafe - www.simplisafe.com/once For 30% off your SimpliSafe system plus a free security camera.  Links: CrimeCon House Arrest: www.crimecon.com/housearrest Patreon: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime    
A teenager goes missing in Morgan Hill, California never to be seen again. It would take meticulous detective work to prove she'd been the victim of a murder and bring her killer to justice. "Disappearance tests 'no-body' murder cases" by Jenna Lyons for The San Francisco Chronicle, Jan 16, 2017 Statement of Facts: Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office Case #12-076-0868G, May 24, 2012 "Dissecting Torres' Past", Staff Writers, The Gilroy Dispatch, May 25, 2012.  "No body, no weapon, no crime scene: How disappearance led to guilty conviction" by Elizabeth Cho for The Davis Vanguard The State of California vs. Antolin Garcia-Torres, Indictment dated Feb 11, 2014.  Investigation Discovery Channel: See No Evil - Season 6, Episode 17, "Come Home Sierra".  Sponsors:  Away Travel: www.awaytravel.com/once20 Organ: www.TryOrgain.com/once  Links: www.onestrangethingpodcast.com www.crimecon.com/housearrest  
This month's series features crimes that were solved...without a body. Tom Capano thought he'd pulled off the perfect murder when his ex-girlfriend disappeared. Meticulous detective work and dogged determination would be needed to solve the crime.  Resources: And Never Let Her Go by Ann Rule, 1996, Simon & Schuster. The FBI Files: Deadly Obsession, Jan 18, 2020, retrieved on YouTube.com.  Sponsors: Brooklinen - www.brooklinen.com and use promo code ONCE for 10% off your first order plus free shipping. Nutrafol - www.nutrafol.com and use promo code once for 25% off your first order.  Acorn TV - www.acorn.tv and use code ONCE for your first 30 days free.  Links: www.crimecon.com/housearrest www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime www.truecrimepodcast.com 
A story about a teenage stalker who hides in his victim's homes to prey upon them becomes an urban legend.  But, the true life and crimes of Daniel J. LaPlante would be a real-life horror story.  Resources:  "Witness describes abduction by LaPlante", Paul Langner for The Boston Globe, Oct 21, 1988. Commonwealth v. Daniel J. LaPlante, Sept 14 - Nov 16, 1993, Middlesex County Superior Court filing.  "A Teen Terrorized a Family by Living in Their Walls", Laura Allan for Ranker.com, June 14, 2019.  "Daniel LaPlante appeals sentence in 1987 murders", The Associated Press, retrieved from Telegram.com-Worcester, Massachusetts, Mar 5, 2019.  Sponsors:  Away Travel - www.awaytravel.com/once20 for a risk-free 100-day trial and free shipping.  SimpliSafe - www.simplisafe.com/once for a 60-day risk-free trial and a free security camera. Orgain - www.tryorgain.com/once for 20% off your first order plus additional savings when you subscribe. 
The mysterious murder of Fred William Oesterreich in Los Angeles in 1922 would be revealed years later as one of the strangest and most bizarre true crime cases in California history  Resources:  A Crime to Remember: Guess Who?, Season 4, Episode 6, The Investigation Discovery Channel  "The Story of Dolly Oesterreich" by Erin Kelly for All That's Interesting, Dec 19, 2017.  Sponsor: Everlywell - www.everlywell.com/once and use promo code ONCE for 20% your first lab test. 
News, updates and announcements for our listeners! Links: Nominate Once Upon a Crime for the Discover Pods Awards at www.awards.discoverpods.com.   To sign up for a Patreon membership go to www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime  To register for Alta Asks Live Digital Event go to https://altaonline.com/true-crime-podcasts-alta-asks-live/.  You can read my interview in Alta Magazine here: https://altaonline.com/true-crime-podcast-denise-hamilton/ Register for CrimeCon House Arrest online event here: https://www.crimecon.com/housearrest. You can enter to win one of two free live passes by following us on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/OnceUponACrimePod/ or Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/onceuponacrimepod/ to get all the information.   To get information and register for CrimeCon 2021 in Austin, Texas, June 4-6, 2021 go to https://www.crimecon.com/CC21.  To get information and register for CrimeCon UK in London, June 12 - 13, 2021 go to https://www.crimecon.com/international.  Use my offer code ONCEUPON21 when registering for either event for 20% off your CrimeCon registration!  Our website: www.truecrimepodcast.com     
In 1998, a 14-year-old disappeared from Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia.  It would be feared she had become a victim of serial killer, Leonard Fraser, but this story would end with a shocking revelation.  Sources:  60 Minutes Australia - ‘The Girl in the Cupboard’”(2003) - https://youtu.be/os_K-e_qwu8  "She had everyone fooled" in TheAge.com.au, Apr 11, 2003 "The girl who returned from death" by Greg Ansley for NZHerald.co.nz, Apr 18, 2003 "The 'dead' schoolgirl who fooled a nation" by Shannon Molloy for News.com.au, Dec 22, 2018. Crime Investigation Australia - Predator: Leonard John Fraser - https://youtu.be/ueb8xNmxZF8 Sponsor: Stitcher True Crime Week - use offer code ONCEUPONACRIME at www.stitcher.com/premium to get your first month of Stitcher Premium free.  Additional music: Halloween Theme 1 by Alexander Nakarada Link: https://filmmusic.io/song/4735-halloween-theme-1 License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
A multimillionaire in a feud with his family over money and property perpetrates a bizarre hoax in order to get revenge on his children and hold on to his assets.   Resources:  "Professor Donovan's Magnificent Entanglements" by John Wolfson for Boston Magazine, July 1, 2006 "Ex-professor found guilty of staging own shooting" by John R. Ellement for The Boston Globe, Aug 18, 2007.  "When Hollywood Moved In" by Sara Rimer for The New York Times, July 29, 2009 "John J. Donovan III" by Ray Lamont for The Gloucester Times, April 28, 2015.  "Hamilton Estate Auction to Feature English Antiques, Cars" by Taylor Rapalyea for The Patch, July 12, 2017 Links: Website - www.truecrimepodcast.com Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/OnceUponACrimePod 
A well-respected educator in Bakersfield, California is accused of a brutal crime - the murders of five of his family members.   Resources:  "The Mystery of the Lost Weekend", by Keith Morrison for Dateline NBC, July 24, 2009.  "Vincent Brothers and murdered wife had rocky relationship say witnesses" by Jessica Logan for Bakersfield.com, March 7, 2007.  "Vice Principal is still a suspect in fatal shootings of wife, kids, mother-in-law" by Kerri Ginis for The Fresno Bee, July 10, 2003.  "Woman Says Officials Covered Up Abuse by Murder Suspect" by John Johnson for The Los Angeles Times, Aug 11, 2004.  Links: Patreon - www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime Stitcher - www.stitcher.com/premium  Music Credits: Original theme music by http://AaronGoldberg.Bandcamp.com Other music: https://freesound.org/s/131913/, https://freesound.org/s/403662/, https://freesound.org/s/147495/, https://freesound.org/s/147495/ - all licensed under the Creative Commons 0 License  
In this month's series "Bad Teacher" I'll share cases of educators who committed newsworthy crimes.  First up, a 34-year-old teacher scandalizes the nation when she is convicted of child rape with one of her 6th grade students.  Sources: "Strange Love: Mary Kay Letourneau", 7 News Spotlight, July 8, 2020, retrived on YouTube.  "Mary Kay Letourneau: 15 Shocking Facts" by John Whitefoot for Crimeola.com, May 29, 2018.  "How the Media Turned Child Rape into a 'Tryst' for Mary Kay Letourneau" by EJ Dickson for Rolling Stone, July 8, 2020.  "Lawsuit over Letourneau affair blames police, school", HeraldNet, March 21, 2002 "Letourneau is a predator and don't forget it", Susan Paynter for Seattle Post-Intelligencer, August 8, 2004.  Video Interview:  Mary Kay Letourneau, 7News Spotlight, July 8, 2020 - https://youtu.be/7mowKsGWuW4  Links: www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime www.truecrimepodcast.com
We conclude this two-part episode with a young woman who comes forward claiming to be Grand Duchess Anastasia Romanov. The investigation into her claim would take decades to solve the mystery.  Time Stamps:  05:03 - "Miss Unknown" 22:47 - Investigating the Claim 28:06 - "Fraulein Annie"  30:20 - Anastasia Tchaikovsky - Rescue Story 53:30 - Anna Anderson - United States 57:41 - Anna the Hoarder 01:01:00 - Mrs. Manahan 01:07:00 - What Really Happened to The Romanovs? 01:16:00 - The DNA 01:19:00 - Who Was Anna Anderson? Franziska Schanzkowska 01:34:00 - Why Was She Believed?  Resources:  Resurrection of The Romanovs, Greg King and Penny Wilson, Turning Publishing, 2010.  The Woman Who Convinced the World She was Grand Duchess Anastasia, Crime Vault, Nov 8, 2018, retrieved on YouTube. Romanovs: The Missing Bodies, National Geographic, Nov 5, 2019, retrieved on YouTube.       
On this first part of a 2-part episode, I share the fascinating story of the disappearance of the last imperial family of Russia, the Romanovs.  After their disappearance, most believed they had been executed by the Bolsheviks, but sightings of one or more of the Romanovs would continue for years.  Did some of Tsar Nicholas II's family members escape?  Resources:  The Resurrection of the Romanovs by Greg King and Penny Wilson, published by John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 2011.  Romanovs: The Missing Bodies, produced by National Geographic, YouTube.com, Nov 5, 2019.  Music Credits:  Spring In Russia by Alexander Nakarada. Link: https://filmmusic.io/song/4845-spring-in-russia. License: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ Links: Excuse Me, That's Illegal podcast - https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/excuse-me-thats-illegal/id1526994548  Patreon - www.patreon.com/onceuponacrime To help in the California Wildfire Relief efforts:  https://www.mercurynews.com/2020/08/21/northern-california-wildfires-how-to-help-fire-victims-and-fire-fighters/ Our website:  www.truecrimepodcast.com   
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Podcast Details

Created by
Esther Ludlow
Podcast Status
Jun 9th, 2016
Latest Episode
Feb 23rd, 2021
Release Period
Avg. Episode Length
42 minutes

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