Every week host Dan Zupansky will interview the true crime authors that have written about the most shocking killers of all time.
ZENITH MAN-McCracken Poston Jr.
Was this small-town TV repair man “a harmless eccentric or a bizarre killer” (Atlanta Journal Constitution). For the first time, Alvin Ridley’s own defense attorney reveals the inside story of his case and trial in an extraordinary tale of friendship and an idealistic young attorney’s quest to clear his client’s name—and, in the process, rebuild his own life.
In October 1997, the town of Ringgold in northwest Georgia was shaken by reports of a murder in its midst. A dead woman was found in Alvin Ridley’s house—and even more shockingly, she was the wife no one knew he had.
McCracken Poston had been a state representative before he lost his bid for U.S. Congress and returned to his law career. Alvin Ridley was a local character who once sold and serviced Zenith televisions. Though reclusive and an outsider, the “Zenith Man,” as Poston knew him, hardly seemed capable of murder.
Alvin was a difficult client, storing evidence in a cockroach-infested suitcase, unwilling to reveal key facts to his defender. Gradually, Poston pieced together the full story behind Virginia and Alvin’s curious marriage and her cause of death—which was completely overlooked by law enforcement. Calling on medical experts, testimony from Alvin himself, and a wealth of surprising evidence gleaned from Alvin’s junk-strewn house, Poston presented a groundbreaking defense that allowed Alvin to return to his peculiar lifestyle, a free man.
Years after his trial, Alvin was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, a revelation that sheds light on much of his lifelong personal battle—and shows how easily those who don’t fit societal norms can be castigated and misunderstood. Part true crime, part courtroom drama, and full of local color, Zenith Man is also the moving story of an unexpected friendship between two very different men that changed—and perhaps saved—the lives of both. ZENITH MAN: Death, Love, and Redemption in a Georgia Courtroom-McCracken Poston Jr.
Introducing the Jordan Harbinger Show
Follow the award-winning Jordan Harbinger Show wherever you get your podcasts!
A MURDER IN HOLLYWOOD-Casey Sherman
From the outside, Hollywood starlet Lana Turner seemed to have it all―a thriving film career, a beautiful daughter, and the kind of fame and fortune that most people could only dream of. But when the famous femme fatale began dating mobster Johnny Stompanato, thug for the infamous west coast mob boss Mickey Cohen, her personal life became violent and unpredictable. Lana's teenage daughter, Cheryl, watched her beloved mother's life deteriorate as Stompanato's intense jealousy took over. Eventually, the physical and emotional abuse became too much to bear, and Lana attempted to break it off with Johnny―with disastrous consequences. The details of what happened that fateful night remain foggy, but it ended in a series of frantic phone calls and Stompanato dead on Lana's bedroom floor, with Cheryl claiming to have plunged a knife into his abdomen in an attempt to protect her mother. The subsequent murder trial made for the biggest headlines of the year, its drama eclipsing every Hollywood movie.New York Times bestselling author Casey Sherman pulls back Tinseltown's velvet curtain to reveal the dark underbelly of celebrity, rife with toxic masculinity and casual violence against women, and tells the story of Lana Turner and her daughter, who finally stood up to the abuse that plagued their family for years. A Murder in Hollywood transports us back to the golden age of film and illuminates one of the 20th century's most notorious true crime tales. A MURDER IN HOLLYWOOD: The Untold Story of Tinseltown's Most Shocking Crime-Casey Sherman
THE EDGE OF DOUBT-David Miraldi
In the tight-knit community of Lorain, Ohio, a whirlwind of horror swept through as unsettling allegations surfaced - a trusted bus driver and her alleged companion accused of shattering the innocence of preschoolers in the respected Head Start program. The verdict? Life-long prison sentences that would cast a shadow over a community, and initiate an untiring quest for truth.'
The Edge of Doubt' is a meticulously researched true crime narrative that delves into the reverberations of a sensational trial. This gripping tale is anchored in three decades of unwavering claims of innocence. As the pages turn, you'll find yourself torn between the scales of justice and the resilience of the human spirit.In a world that is quick to judge, 'The Edge of Doubt' compels you to lend an ear to the whispers of truth. This is your invitation to dive into a powerful account that will challenge your assumptions and unveil the complexities of human nature. Read it, and prepare to see the world with new eyes. THE EDGE OF DOUBT: The Trial of Nancy Smith and Joseph Allen-David Miraldi
On January 21, 1958, nineteen-year-old Charles Starkweather changed the course of crime in the United States when he murdered the parents and sister of his fourteen-year-old girlfriend (and possible accomplice), Caril Ann Fugate, in a house on the edge of Lincoln, Nebraska. They then drove to the nearby town of Bennet, where a farmer was robbed and killed. When Starkweather’s car broke down, the teenagers who stopped to help were murdered and jammed into a storm cellar. By the time the dust settled, ten innocent people were dead and the city of Lincoln was in a state of terror. Schools closed. Men with rifles perched on the roofs of their houses. The National Guard patrolled the street. If there is a cultural version of PTSD, the town suffered from it.
Starkweather and Fugate’s capture and arrest, and the resulting trials about the killing spree, received worldwide coverage. The event would serve as the inspiration for the movie Natural Born Killers and Springsteen’s iconic album Nebraska. Today, the story has dropped far from the national consciousness. With new material, new reporting, and new conclusions about the possible guilt or innocence of Fugate, the tale is ripe for an updated and definitive retelling. In Starkweather, bestselling author Harry N. MacLean tells the story of this shocking event and its lasting impact, a crime spree that struck deep into the heart of the heartland. STARKWEATHER: The Untold Story of the Killing Spree that Changed America-Harry N. MacLean
THE COLONIAL PARKWAY SERIAL KILLINGS and ALAN WADE WILMER SR.-Blaine Pardoe
In their book, A Special Kind of Evil: The Colonial Parkway Serial Killings, authors Blaine Pardoe and Victoria Hester wrote about Alan Wade Wilmer, Sr., who was the prime suspect in the 1988 disappearance and murders of Richard Keith Call and Cassandra Hailey. He was under police surveillance and fit the profile the F.B.I. had developed. An expert polygrapher administered a polygraph exam to Wilmer—and he passed. As a result he was cleared as a suspect.
On January 8th, 2024, the Virginia State Police announced that through DNA, Alan Wade Wilmer Sr., who died in 2017, has been identified as the killer of David Knobling and Robin Edwards, who are extensively written about in A Special Kind of Evil, and for the killing of a nearby Hampton, Virginia woman in 1989, Teresa Lynn Howell.
Blaine Pardoe joins me to discuss the latest developments in the Colonial Parkway serial killings; Alan Wade Wilmer Sr.; the F.B.I. agent who zeroed in on Wilmer—and what's next in the on-going Colonial Parkway murder investigation. A SPECIAL KIND OF EVIL: The Colonial Parkway Serial Killings and Alan Wade Wilmer Sr.—Blaine Pardoe
This is a great premise, but the sound is so terrible, you can't get into the content. you have to skip half of the episodes because the sound quality is so bad.
I enjoy this podcast. Especially the early episodes, they were raw like an old radio broadcast.
Mr. Dan Zupansky
He’s the BEST author and interviewer of all podcasters in our world today!! I’m so excited when I see true crime stories in my podcasts He’s the VERY best. Thank you Mr Zupanski