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Episode 134: Amanda Knox Reads: The Too-Steep Climb to Righting Wrongful Convictions

Chris and I got married on February 29th, 2020—just in time, it seems. Only two of our guests cancelled at the last minute for fear of travel due to the coronavirus. This was before Governor Inslee called for the cancellation of any event with over fifty participants. Now, just two weeks later, Chris and I are grateful that we’ve only had to cancel our honeymoon. We were planning on travelling to Germany to visit Jens Soering who, after 33 years wrongfully imprisoned, has reentered the world at a very strange time. We were hoping to write about meeting him in...

Episode 133: Amanda Knox Interview: The Threat to Habeas Corpus

"Without it…the Game is Over": Justin Brooks, director of the California Innocence Project, on the DOJ's move to suspend habeus corpus On March 21, 2020, Politico reported that the Trump Administration Justice Department submitted documents to Congress requesting lawmakers to grant the Attorney General power to ask the chief judge of any district court to pause court proceedings “whenever the district court is fully or partially closed by virtue of any natural disaster, civil disobedience, or other emergency situation.” This broad authority to pause court...

Episode 132: Kary Antholis Reads: The Durst Trial: Victim Shaming Strategy Meets the Supermodel

“When writing a novel a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.” Ernest Hemingway, Death in the Afternoon Anne Andersen-Doyle has traveled to Los Angeles from North Stradbroke Island, off the coast of Brisbane, Australia, where she volunteers teaching indigenous children to read. When asked by Prosecutor Habib Balian whether she was eager to come testify in the trial, Andersen-Doyle replies:  ANDERSEN-DOYLE: CONSIDERING THE IMPORTANCE OF THE MATTER, I THOUGHT I OWED IT TO...

Episode 131: Karen Ann Coburn Reads: Defending Robert Durst: The Opening Statement

Robert Durst did not murder his long-time friend Susan Berman on December 23, 2000, and he doesn’t know who did. A generous man with Asperger’s syndrome, psychological damage from a traumatic childhood, and a history of poor decision making, Durst discovered Berman’s body when entering her home for a planned holiday visit. And because he had been hounded by the press and an overzealous New York prosecutor in the years following the disappearance of his first wife, Kathie, he ran. Later, out of love and respect for his friend Berman, he sent an anonymous...

Episode 130: Molly Miller Reads: Cops and the Art of Lying 2: The Polygraph Tactic

The following is Part 2 of Crime Story’s coverage of the People vs. Jose Peralta. You can find Part 1 here. You’re innocent.  So when a detective accuses you of murdering your neighbor, you agree to take a polygraph test. It doesn’t matter that the officer claims that they have security footage and DNA evidence of your guilt. This is a misunderstanding. It’s a nightmarish who-dunnit that manifested in reality. It should be easy to clear up. Because you know you’re innocent.

Episode 129: CRIME STORY Contributors Read: The Prosecutor’s Cinematic Opening in The People vs. Robert Durst

John Lewin, the lead prosecutor in the trial of Robert Durst appears to be on a mission that goes beyond convicting Durst for the murder of Durst's long-time friend Susan Berman. With his opening statement in the trial, Lewin seems to be laying the groundwork for a story that he hopes will be so compelling, with a presentation of evidence so persuasive, that he will convince the jury beyond a reasonable doubt that Robert Durst murdered THREE people (Berman, Durst’s wife Kathie and his Texas neighbor, Morris Black). In so doing, Lewin also...