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Rank #1 in History category

History
True Crime

Sword and Scale

Updated 2 months ago

Rank #1 in History category

History
True Crime
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The Sword and Scale true-crime podcast is an immersive audio experience covering the dark side of humanity and human nature. Our stories delve into the worst of the worst and include murder, rape, dismemberment and cannibalism. No crime is too brutal and no victim is too pure. The worst monsters are real.

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The Sword and Scale true-crime podcast is an immersive audio experience covering the dark side of humanity and human nature. Our stories delve into the worst of the worst and include murder, rape, dismemberment and cannibalism. No crime is too brutal and no victim is too pure. The worst monsters are real.

iTunes Ratings

44233 Ratings
Average Ratings
31567
2827
1480
1373
6986

Avoid this crap

By shan189572 - Jun 01 2020
Read more
Unnecessarily judgmental host with a vitriolic attitude and weirdly defensive delivery. Lazy podcasting with over-reliance on audio (911 calls, interviews, court hearings) to tell the narrative. Overall boring and bad. I had these thoughts already and then I found out Mike the host is literal garbage. Steer clear, there are plenty of actually good true crime podcasts out there instead of this waste.

Fell off

By David F Ryder - Jun 01 2020
Read more
I agree with other reviews about Mike the host. His Arrogant, condescending and patronizing remarks are off putting. He seems to be harping on other personal issues and is expressing it on his latest episodes. Go back to the way you told the stories before. Much better. Too much negative energy on this cast and the host is at the helm of it. Dude is a weirdo

iTunes Ratings

44233 Ratings
Average Ratings
31567
2827
1480
1373
6986

Avoid this crap

By shan189572 - Jun 01 2020
Read more
Unnecessarily judgmental host with a vitriolic attitude and weirdly defensive delivery. Lazy podcasting with over-reliance on audio (911 calls, interviews, court hearings) to tell the narrative. Overall boring and bad. I had these thoughts already and then I found out Mike the host is literal garbage. Steer clear, there are plenty of actually good true crime podcasts out there instead of this waste.

Fell off

By David F Ryder - Jun 01 2020
Read more
I agree with other reviews about Mike the host. His Arrogant, condescending and patronizing remarks are off putting. He seems to be harping on other personal issues and is expressing it on his latest episodes. Go back to the way you told the stories before. Much better. Too much negative energy on this cast and the host is at the helm of it. Dude is a weirdo
Cover image of Sword and Scale

Sword and Scale

Latest release on Aug 02, 2020

Read more

The Sword and Scale true-crime podcast is an immersive audio experience covering the dark side of humanity and human nature. Our stories delve into the worst of the worst and include murder, rape, dismemberment and cannibalism. No crime is too brutal and no victim is too pure. The worst monsters are real.

Rank #1: Episode 120

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Everyone loves the idea of having the perfect family and keeping everyone close together. Go to work, come home, play with the kids, eat dinner together. Unfortunately, that isn’t always how things go. In 2015, the Bever family was the perfect example of this. The family of nine stuck close together within the four walls of their home in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

But, stick a family together long enough, and eventually someone will blow their lid. On the evening of July 22nd, 2015, Robert and Michael Bever carried out a savage attack on their family, leaving most of their family dead, but their plans reached further than the closed doors of their home.

Aug 19 2018

58mins

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Rank #2: Episode 117

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During the early morning hours of September 22nd, 2010, 13-year-old Alexis Mitchell awoke to the sight of her father looming over her and wearing a Halloween mask. His hands were around her neck, but he let up after she elbowed and bit him. Either having passed out or fallen asleep again thinking it was all a dream, Alexis eventually woke again up to the sound of screaming. 

Jun 17 2018

1hr 6mins

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Rank #3: Episode 153

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A neighbor dispute turns deadly after a brain damaged war vet with PTSD finally snaps on Labor Day 2012. Did Billy Woodward plan his military style assault, or did he have no choice but to Stand His Ground?

Dec 19 2019

1hr 26mins

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Rank #4: Episode 3

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It's really true that Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. This week we examine the fascinating topic of female serial killers, including the tale of Belle Gunness - a woman who makes Ted Bundy look like an amateur. Although the town of La Porte, Indiana has been made famous by the bizarre events that happened there over a hundred years ago, many have never heard of this woman or her series of cold and calculated murders on a pig farm.

We're joined by Bruce R. Johnson, a local expert on the Belle Gunness story, along with Director/Producer of Belle Gunness: The Movie and The Gunness Mystery, Stephen Ruminski. We also chat with local librarian Mary Hedge about La Porte's unusual relationship with the Gunness case.

Sword and Scale highly encourages you to support our guests. If you're a fan of Sword and Scale, we're certain you'll enjoy The Gunness Mystery on DVD. To order it, please visit http://www.thegunnessmystery.com/. Also, be sure to check out the La Porte County Historical Society's website for all the wicked little details surrounding this story, and if you want to dig deeper there's always our new friend Mary Hedge at The La Porte County Public Library. Also, if you're into that sort of thing, a horrifying collection of photos related to the Belle Gunness case is available at Murderpedia.

If you're interested in the Belle Gunness Story, check out Sword and Scale Staff Writer's profile: Did Belle Get Away With Murder?

Jan 15 2014

1hr 1min

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Rank #5: Episode 123

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In the early morning hours of February 5th, 2015, a man wearing a mask and black tactical gear burst into the bedroom of Lisa Trubnikova. Eventually, he took the mask off to reveal a familiar face. He wanted the women to know who he was and why he was there.

For years, Lisa had not thought about this man. But he had been doing a lot of thinking about her…

Special Guest: Chris D'Elia (http://chrisdelia.com)

Sep 30 2018

1hr 3mins

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Rank #6: Episode 140

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During the early morning hours of May 5th, 2012, Mark Duenas was awoken by what sounded like a catfight outside of his family home. He got up from his recliner and began checking the outside of the home. Walking down the hallway, he noticed the light on in his wife’s bedroom. When he opened up the door, he found her crumpled on the ground, covered in blood. No one knew who could have done such a thing. But in trying times such as these, it’s important for families to stick close.

Jul 04 2019

1hr 3mins

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Rank #7: Episode 121

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On July 21st, 2006, an entire family seemingly disappeared from their home in Hopkinton, Massachusetts. When police searched the residence, there were no signs of a break-in. Nothing was disturbed, and nothing of value appeared to be missing.

But there was no sign of Neil, Rachel, or Lillian Entwistle.

Sep 02 2018

1hr 9mins

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Rank #8: Episode 33

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One of the more bizarre stories of our lifetime, the story of Luka Magnotta is wrought with remorseful refrains and awkward pauses. This is a man, who was so narcissistic that there would be nothing to stand between him and what he wanted in life... fame. Had he been "normal" his goals might have been awe-inspiring, but Luka was the worst type of person, a psychopathic narcissist, and he would flaunt it in the nose of the good people of the world.

The hell he would unleash online is something that would bring many to tears. He would find a way to reach fame, or infamy, one way or another. Whether it be adult films or the slaughter of animals, Luka was destined for stardom. Unfortunately for the Chinese International Student Jun Lin, who would eventually become a victim of his madness, Magnotta would find the International spotlight he was looking for. His crime, would be one so brutal and so bizarre that it would prompt Canada's largest International manhunt, but would they ever catch this killer, who was a virtual phantom, before it was too late?

Jan 04 2015

1hr 3mins

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Rank #9: Episode 132

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On July 17th, 2016, Cara Beckerle went up to the bedroom of her 19-year-old daughter, Aleah, to check on her. When she opened the door, the bed was empty, and Aleah’s wheelchair was sitting next to it.

Aleah could not have left of her own free will, as she was incapable of moving on her own due to physical disabilities, and she was nonverbal due to mental disabilities. She was also prone to seizures and had to take daily medication for them. That medication was also still in her room.

What happened to Aleah Beckerle?

Feb 25 2019

59mins

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Rank #10: Episode 119

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We all love to talk about all of the things we’re going to do to better ourselves… all of the changes we want to make. Maybe we’d like to focus more on our families, start a business, or go back to school. Whatever the case, these aspirations often remain nothing more than that… aspirations. We put them on hold for so long that we forgot about them.  

This is the story of 26-year-old Laura Ackerson, a young woman who was taking those steps.  She was determined to build a brighter future for herself and for her children. 

But just as it was starting to take shape, that future was cut short.

Aug 05 2018

1hr 5mins

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Rank #11: Episode 5

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Imagine a criminal conspiracy and cover-up so so massive in scale, involving the highest levels of government and industry, that it threatens the very fabric of the American system. Now imagine that the crimes of this criminal syndicate are so horrible, so horrendous, that the mere mention of them would be frowned upon in polite society, and the very idea of such a conspiracy being possible would be laughable and downright absurd. Yet, in September of 1982, the unexplained disappearance of a 12-year-old boy named Johnny Gosch, set a series of events into motion that would have earth-shattering ramifications to this day.

In this episode of Sword and Scale, we'll delve into Part 1 of a series titled The Massive Cover-Up one of the strangest and most outrageous criminal conspiracy theories ever told, including audio from many of those who witnessed the story unfolding firsthand. We're also delve into all the bizarre side-stories that spin off like fractals into their own mysterious endings.

The show concludes with a viral video that made headlines last week. In keeping with the theme, it is that of a sexual abuse victim named Jamie that decided that if the law wasn't going to help her, perhaps YouTube and the outrage of millions could. You won't want to miss this clip.

Jan 29 2014

54mins

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Rank #12: Episode 57

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It's one thing to kill someone, it's quite another to publish your handiwork on social media for all your friends and family to see like some sort of macabre trophy. That's exactly what Facebook Killer Derek Medina did after killing his wife Jennifer Alfonso in the kitchen of their Miami condominium, while her 10-year-old daughter cowered upstairs under a red blanket. After shooting the unarmed woman eight times, in his words "emptying the clip", he went back upstairs and got dressed before taking a picture of the body, posting it on Facebook, and leaving the residence with the 10-year-old girl still upstairs. Horrified friends and family could do nothing but wait for news of what had transpired, meanwhile the picture of Jennifer's corpse remained posted on Facebook for hours before it was finally taken down.

In this two-part story we will cover the trial of this cold-blooded killer with special guest Cathy Russon from courtchatter.com, and get to know the man behind this horror show.

Jan 04 2016

57mins

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Rank #13: Episode 4

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On Friday, October 5th 2012, 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway disappeared on her way to school. This is the story of what happened to her and how the suburban city of Westminster coped with the aftermath, including the perpetrator's chilling confession. We warn you, some of the details are quite disturbing and not intended for all audiences.

We also examine how common child abductions are in the United States and cover some of the week's most eye-catching headlines.

Jan 22 2014

53mins

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Rank #14: Episode 87

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Over the course of a normal school day, a mystery unravels. At first there is chaos, confusion and much worry, but soon all of that anxiety melts into a river of loss and agony as friends and family members find out the truth. This first part of a two-part story is sure to keep you riveted, at the edge of your seat, and pulling your hair out waiting for the next part.

Apr 08 2017

59mins

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Rank #15: Episode 80

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The stories we like to tell the most here are those of serial killers and homicidal maniacs. Those archetypes can be somewhat predictable, if not downright boring. We like to focus instead on everyday people, just like you and me, who find themselves suddenly in the midst of a monster. A monster who looks just like them.

This is part two of the two part story of Phillip Markoff, a young and handsome Med student from New England, who came to be known as The Craigslist Killer.

Nov 20 2016

1hr 3mins

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Rank #16: Episode 64

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After Michelle Macneill, a healthy 50-year old mother, dies mysteriously of a heart condition in the bathtub of her Pleasant Grove, Utah home, questions begin to emerge. Her husband, Martin Macneill, begins to exhibit strange behavior even on the very day of his wife's death. Soon afterwards, a nanny is introduced into the family home and a sordid affair is revealed, along with a motive for murder.

Apr 02 2016

1hr 5mins

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Rank #17: Episode 34

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Probably the most horrific murder publicly accessible though a variety of social media, the death of Lin Jun was a public execution for all to see. The culprit was a narcissistic psychopath named Luka Magnotta, and the terror he would unleash upon the world would reach out like evil tentacles across nations, cultures, and ages through the free-flowing highway of information we call the Internet.

Magnotta's evil wasn't limited to humanity, he also tortured animals. The kind of animals that are so adorable, innocent, and unable to defend themselves that it literablly makes you sink to even think about it. But Magnotta wanted fame, so he wasn't content with having you think about it. He wanted you to see it, as many did, including young children who will undoubtedly be scarred for the rest of their lives.

Jan 11 2015

58mins

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Rank #18: Episode 62

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A 30-year-old woman named Jenelle Potter has spent her entire life sheltered from the world. Not being allowed to get a job, drive a car, date, or even leave the house without the supervision of her mother Barbara, Jenelle turns to the Internet and social media as her only escape. However her lack of real-world social skills translate to disaster online. She starts making enemies just as fast as she makes friends and eventually the online feuds turn vicious.

When her mother Barbara and her father Buddy, and ex-WW2 POW, get involved the online attacks turn deadly. Jenelle uses a fake identity to coerce her own father into killing innocent people, simply because of her jealousy and bitterness to the outside world.

We're joined this week by Assistant District Attorney Dennis Brooks, author of the book Too Pretty To Live: The Catfishing Murders of East Tennessee.

Mar 13 2016

57mins

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Rank #19: Episode 75

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This is a bizarre tale. Part gruesome murder tale, part love story. Yes, you read that right..

None of of the Gainesville Ripper story makes much sense, but it made an entire university of 30,000+ students panic and leave their studies and futures behind, for the sake of their personal safety.

This story also challenges our ideas of what crime-journalism is and should be. "Guilty until proven innocent?" ...that's not a well-recognized concept these days. And the media and public are quick to judge those on the periphery of the story as well. Sometimes their judgements are right, but sometimes they can equally be misguided.

Sep 12 2016

58mins

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Rank #20: Episode 115

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31-year-old Nicole VanderHeyden was substitute teacher and mother of three. She lived with her boyfriend and father of her infant son, Doug Detrie, in Bellevue, Brown County, WI. The Green Bay metro area. Her body was found naked and strangled in a farm field on May 21, 2016. Her skull was fractured and she suffered blunt force trauma to the left side of her head breaking and dislocating her jaw as well as injuries to her esophagus, trachea, and neck consistent with strangulation. Her clothes were found off the side of a highway on-ramp. Doug reports her missing that same morning. Police arrest him a couple days later after Nicole’s blood is found on the pavement and the murder weapon, a “black cord,” outside his home.

May 20 2018

1hr 15mins

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Episode 167

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The lives of Kevin and Marina Krim were forever changed on October 25th, 2012. All of New York City was suddenly rethinking their caregivers. “Is the person taking care of mom, dad, the dog, or the baby actually safe? What are the chances we could unknowingly hire a lunatic?” It could happen to anyone. The Krim family was unlucky.

Aug 02 2020

1hr 4mins

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Episode 166

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July of 2016 was a bad month in Bend, Oregon. Isabel Ponce Lara woke up one morning to her husband, Edwin Lara, acting very strangely. The events that would follow over the next 2 days changed her life forever. Isabel’s life would not be the only one turned upside down. 5 families in total would be absolutely traumatized by Edwin Lara’s choices.

Jul 19 2020

1hr 12mins

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Episode 165

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Freedom of speech and religion are two foundational parts of what this nation has to offer. They’re important to us and when we feel they’re being infringed upon, Americans speak up. What happens when freedom of religion directly causes harm to someone though? Are there limits to this freedom? Seth Welch found that there are hard limits. Not every state cracks down on how freedom of religion can put children in direct danger, but Michigan does.

Jun 29 2020

57mins

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Episode 164

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Orange County California has seen its fair share of bizarre crimes. When Sam Herr, a decorated combat veteran is nowhere to be found and his best friend Julie Kibuishi is discovered dead in Sam’s apartment, police are quick to begin a manhunt. As the investigation continues, more bizarre details begin to emerge, leaving the entire county stunned. The many people affected by this case have learned, if nothing else, that you never truly know who someone is, or what goes through their mind. 

Jun 15 2020

1hr

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Episode 163

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8-year-old Isabella Cipriano woke up in the middle of the night in April of 2012 to find that her father, mother, and brother were being attacked in the family home in Farmington Hills, Michigan. On the surface, this seemed to be a random home invasion, until Isabella saw the perpetrator. The truth behind who committed these atrocities, and why, would cause pain for the Cipriano family that may take longer to heal than their many physical scars.

Jun 01 2020

1hr 11mins

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Episode 162

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Ryan Lawrence appeared to be a caring and dutiful father, taking his 21-month-old daughter Maddox with him as he delivered pastries throughout Syracuse, New York, and holding her hand through a rare form of cancer she was diagnosed with before her first birthday. But unbeknownst to everyone, an even more terrible storm is gathering on the horizon.

May 18 2020

1hr 1min

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Episode 161

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On May 6th, 2013, Sharlene Bosma watched as her husband Tim pulled away from their house on a test drive with two strange men, never to return again. Finding the mysterious kidnappers will only be part of the struggle. Finding out what happened to Tim Bosma will lead to the most gruesome discovery of all.

May 04 2020

1hr 5mins

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Episode 160 - COVID CRIMES

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Never before have so many of us been forcibly cooped up in our houses for this length of time. COVID-19 has shaken up our routines and our state of mind. During this quarantine, we’ve seen an increase in drug and alcohol consumption, in stress-levels and exacerbated mental illness, loneliness, hopelessness, all of the things that breed conflict. In this episode, we’re starting with a broad scope, talking about all of the attempted acts of domestic terrorism happening on the outside while we sit at home in our own little bubbles, but also the turmoil happening inside homes right now.

We're joined by Charles Adams from the KPRC 950 AM and iHeartRadio show The Truth with Charles Adams to dissect the psychology, legal and political issues behind the recent COVID19-related crime wave.

Apr 23 2020

1hr 17mins

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Episode 159

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The quiet seclusion of rural Maine gives many people a feeling of solace but sometimes the isolation can fracture a person’s psyche. The rural town of Winthrop, Maine had never seen a murder case like the one on Halloween 2016. Andrew Balcer, a minor, accused of murdering his parents… and the reason would surprise everyone even Andrew.

Apr 20 2020

1hr 11mins

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Episode 158

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Citizens of Bakersfield California were in for a crazy day on December 10, 2016. The public events of this day would result in a police chase, and two deaths, eventually a third.

Manuel Vela was no stranger to dealing with the law, and resisting arrest almost every single time. Beating on his woman was not an unknown pastime for him. He spent his entire life in and out of juvenile homes and eventually prison, but his final crimes against his fiance would be beyond any act of violence he had committed before.

Mar 26 2020

1hr 5mins

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Episode 157

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Who do we blame when an innocent 8-year-old boy is brutally murdered in a stranger’s kitchen? In this particular case, fingers are pointed in every direction. The cut-and-dry cases of random abduction and murder are terrible and tragic, yet simple. The murder of Markie Mason, however, is anything but simple.

Mar 16 2020

1hr 5mins

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Episode 156

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The United States has experienced a slew of mass murders in recent years, but the two mass shootings that occurred within 14 hours of each other in August of 2019 have made a big impact on a society that is becoming more complacent by the day. The 24-hour news cycle consistently seems to have a negative effect on the frequency of these mass shootings as well as the continued desensitization of our society.

Mar 01 2020

1hr 3mins

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Episode 155

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We’re back with the riveting conclusion to the tale of Ezra McCandless and her claims of repeated sexual victimization. To understand the many facets of this case, you absolutely must go back and listen to part 1 before you listen to this episode.

We ended part 1 with some final details about Ezra’s love triangle with Jason Mengel and Alex Woodworth, and all of her many rape allegations against the men in her life, but we still don’t know what happened to Alex on March 22, 2018. Ezra is the only person who can help the police locate him, and her missing car.

Feb 15 2020

1hr 4mins

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Episode 154

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Ezra McCandless wove a web of complicated relationships for herself, getting involved romantically with many of the men in her coffee-shop clique in a hipster Wisconsin college town. Things were going well for her until they weren’t, and one person in the exclusive friend group ended up dead.

Feb 02 2020

1hr 10mins

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Episode 153

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A neighbor dispute turns deadly after a brain damaged war vet with PTSD finally snaps on Labor Day 2012. Did Billy Woodward plan his military style assault, or did he have no choice but to Stand His Ground?

Dec 19 2019

1hr 26mins

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Episode 152

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This is the exciting conclusion of the Sheila Davalloo Story. If you haven’t listened to part one go back one episode and start there.

The leads in Anna Lisa Raymundo’s murder investigation were dead ends… that is until Sheila Davalloo tries to kill her husband. During the attempted murder Sheila makes a phone call, but not to 911. That phone number leads the police to a common thread in both investigations… Nelson Sessler.

Dec 08 2019

1hr 2mins

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Episode 151

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This is the riveting first part of a two-part story that will leave you wondering “how well do I know my significant other.”

Sheila Davalloo is educated and from an affluent family. She lives among the well-to-do and works for the powers that be but her life is anything but as mundane as that. Sheila Davalloo had a secret obsession that involved mind games, spying, and eventually… murder.

Nov 23 2019

50mins

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Sword and Scale Daily - Nov 15, 2019

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A school shooting in Santa Clarita, California, leaves two students dead and five injured.


A Texas jury sentences a man to death for the double-murder of his roommate, and his roommates 17-year-old girlfriend.


Finally, law enforcement in California release new video evidence in the October kidnapping and murder of Indian-American Tech CEO, Tushar Atre.

Nov 15 2019

13mins

Play

iTunes Ratings

44233 Ratings
Average Ratings
31567
2827
1480
1373
6986

Avoid this crap

By shan189572 - Jun 01 2020
Read more
Unnecessarily judgmental host with a vitriolic attitude and weirdly defensive delivery. Lazy podcasting with over-reliance on audio (911 calls, interviews, court hearings) to tell the narrative. Overall boring and bad. I had these thoughts already and then I found out Mike the host is literal garbage. Steer clear, there are plenty of actually good true crime podcasts out there instead of this waste.

Fell off

By David F Ryder - Jun 01 2020
Read more
I agree with other reviews about Mike the host. His Arrogant, condescending and patronizing remarks are off putting. He seems to be harping on other personal issues and is expressing it on his latest episodes. Go back to the way you told the stories before. Much better. Too much negative energy on this cast and the host is at the helm of it. Dude is a weirdo