I’m on location in New Orleans for the beginning of production on a special Crime Story project, and so today we present an abbreviated summary of this week’s events at CrimeStory.com and The Crime Story Podcast. Below we share links to our major story of the week and to Hannah Teich’s weekly summary of the Crime Story Daily. (Next week’s update, we will also offer a full report on the other stories from this week.)


On Tuesday we reported that Robert Durst lodged some shockingly critical assertions about his lawyers in a Los Angeles Court. The assertions were delivered in the form of a letter as Judge Mark E. Windham was wrapping up an April 13 hearing for defense motions for a mistrial in advance of the planned May 17 resumption of Durst’s trial for the murder of his friend, Susan Berman.⁠

You can read that full story here.


Below we present Hannah Teich’s condensed curation of the week’s more interesting stories from Crime Story Daily. (Read Hannah’s full essay including links to the mentioned articles.)

On the criminal justice policy front: Mother Jones and New York Magazine report from Maryland, which, earlier this week, became the first state in the country to repeal its police bill of rights. Pieces from the Trace and the Wall Street Journal examine the future of police reform in New Mexico and Newark, NJ. And, in a piece for the New Yorker, Jelani Cobb reflects on “the shooting of Daunte Wright and the meaning of George Floyd’s death.”

In muckraker/watchdog reporting: More than a year into the pandemic, pieces from the Guardian and the New York Times track the spread of COVID-19 through the US prison system. The LA Times reports from California, where the emergency shutdown of federal jury trials during the pandemic has upended the state’s justice system; and a piece from the Atlantic goes inside the strange new world of “Zoom court.”

In complex crime storytelling: A piece from Rolling Stone centers on the 2019 “Grindr Murder,” while a piece from the Atlantic recounts “the forgotten story of a diplomat who disappeared.” And a piece from ProPublica focuses on Steven Carrillo, the “active duty airman [who] tried to start a civil war.”

In culture/true crime: New York Magazine reviews Mare of Easttown, a new crime drama from HBO. CNN highlights The Serpent, a new true-crime miniseries from Netflix and BBC One. And a piece from People Magazine centers on the murder of Kristin Smart and the true-crime podcast that helped crack the case. Again, you can read Hannah’s full weekly essay and find links to each of the mentioned articles.

And finally, here is your opportunity to catch up on previous Crime Story Newsletters.

Thanks again for reading and listening.

Kary Antholis

Publisher/Editor, Crime Story

[email protected]