Rank #1: Episode 120
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
Rank #2: Episode 153
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
Rank #3: Episode 140
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
Rank #4: Episode 117
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
Rank #5: Episode 3
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
Rank #6: Episode 33
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
Rank #7: Episode 123
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
Rank #8: Episode 154
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
Rank #9: Episode 121
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
Rank #10: Episode 5
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
Rank #11: Episode 57
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
Rank #12: Episode 119
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
Rank #13: Episode 4
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
Rank #14: Episode 87
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
Rank #15: Episode 80
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
Rank #16: Episode 64
Apr 02 2016
Rank #17: Episode 34
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
Rank #18: Episode 62
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
Rank #19: Episode 115
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
Rank #20: Episode 75
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