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Episode 33: Tom Fontana, Homicide and Oz

 Kary: This is the Crime Story Podcast with Kary Antholis where we have conversations about how and why narratives of crime and justice are told. Today’s podcast is a conversation with Tom Fontana, ground zero in the explosion of this golden age of television. Tom served as executive producer of St. Elsewhere, Executive Producer and Showrunner of Homicide: Life on the Streets, and Creator and Executive Producer of the first prestige drama of the cable television era, Oz. (Tom is currently the Executive Producer and Showrunner of the Showtime crime drama City on a Hill.) The conversation was recorded as part of...

Episode 32: George Pelecanos, The Wire

Kary: This is the Crime Story Podcast with Kary Antholis where we have conversations about how and why narratives of crime and justice are told. Today’s podcast is a conversation with George Pelecanos. George is one of the great detective novelists of his generation and the executive producer several HBO dramas including The Wire and The Deuce, the latter of which he co-created with David Simon.  The conversation was recorded as part of a series of classes that I taught at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. Each week I would host an artist for a discussion that would...

Episode 31: Molly Miller Reads: $7.99 Half Rotisserie Chicken

The sign read “Half Rotisserie Chicken — $7.99” On June 1st 2019, 43-year-old Mario Morataya stepped into the Super A Foods while his wife waited outside with their six-month-old baby. Morataya worked a minimum wage job at the recycling center, but it wasn’t nearly enough to pay his family’s bills. His wife was hungry. He was hungry. The rotisserie chicken glistened on its heating tray. According to loss prevention agent Adrian Murphy, Morataya looked to the left and looked to the right, then shoved the half chicken in his sweatpants. While holding the concealed bird in place, Morataya milled through the front...

Episode 30: Amanda Knox Reads: Conviction and Apology

A D.A., a Judge, and an Alford Plea In January 2006, 60-year-old Malcolm Burrows was lured from his home in Tracy City, Tennessee by a man who claimed he was having car trouble. The man beat Burrows to death, then returned to Burrows' home and attacked his sister, Becky Hill. She survived the assault only because her son, Kirk Braden, intervened and fought the man off. Hill and Braden reported to police that their attacker was a boyish, red-haired man driving a gold-colored vehicle. Investigators honed in on then 24-year-old Adam Braseel because he matched the description. When Hill and Braden...

Episode 29: Molly Miller Reads: The Law of Unintended Consequences

The law of unintended consequences is that actions always have unanticipated effects. Ms. Roberts, a homeless trans woman, was shaking. Her thin frame stood protectively over her upended shopping cart of belongings. It contained everything she owned in the world. Some people would call it trash, but to her it was her wardrobe, her pantry, and the place where she kept all items of sentimental value. Now it lay scattered on the pavement, mixed with dirt and unsanitary debris. Ms. Roberts stared at the ground and then looked up at the woman who had thrown her cart. Back-lit by the streetlamps, what...

Podcast 28: Molly Miller Reads: The Truths of Louie Cordero

“You do solemnly state that the testimony you may give in the cause now pending before this court shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God.” This is the oath taken by all witnesses who give testimony before a California court. It is the oath that Louie Cordero took when he was called to the stand.  Cordero is testifying in the trial of his step-brother, Cristian Iraheta, who is charged with attempted murder. Cordero looks small on the stand; slack jawed with bushy eyebrows, his five-foot two-inch frame swimming in a plaid...