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Crimes of the Centuries

Author: Amber Hunt

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Crime is so commonplace that it takes something particularly shocking to be labelled the “crime of the century.” Even so, there are a lot of cases that have earned the distinction. In each episode of Crimes of the Centuries, award-winning journalist Amber Hunt will examine a case that’s lesser known today but was huge when it happened. The cases explored span the centuries and each left a mark. Some made history by changing laws. Others were so shocking they changed society.
157 Episodes
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Soon after London bade farewell to 1885 and welcomed the new year, a woman named Adelaide Bartlett roused her sleeping house with screams. Her husband, Edwin, who had seemed to have turned a corner on his recent illness, was dead. Housemates who arrived in a panic immediately noticed a chemical smell in the room that suggested Edwin hadn't died of natural causes. The case, which would soon be dubbed the Pimlico Poisoning, proved to be one of the most sensational in 19th-century England. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Quince. Go to Quince.com/COTC for free shipping on your order and 365-day returns. Cremo. You can find all the new, decadent scents of Cremo Women’s Body Wash at Walgreens and CVS Or CremoCompany.com. Wildgrain. For a limited time, you can get $30 off the first box, PLUS free croissants in every box, when you go to Wildgrain.com/COTC to start your subscription. 
In the 1970s, an aerospace firm in Redondo Beach, California, had the clever idea of handing over access to highly classified spy satellite secrets to a 20-something named Christopher Boyce. It didn't end well. Boyce and his high school buddy -- a drug dealer named Daulton Lee -- soon began selling that classified info to the Russians in a scheme that's still regarded today as one of the most damaging acts of espionage in U.S. history. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Cremo. You can find all the new, decadent scents of Cremo Women’s Body Wash at Walgreens and CVS Or CremoCompany.com. Greenlight. Sign up for Greenlight today and get your first month free when you go to Greenlight.com/COTC Ritual. Get 25% off your first month at ritual.com/cotc Miracle Made. Go to TryMiracle.com/COTC and use the code COTC to claim your free three-piece towel set and save over 40% off.
After World War II stole a great many men from their loving wives, Lonely Hearts clubs were all the rage for lonely widows looking for love. A number of them thought they'd met their soul mates when they traded letters with a man calling himself Chris Martin who was so devoted to his family, he often had his sister in tow. In truth, those unsuspecting women were communicating with Ray Fernandez and his lover, Martha Beck, who would come to be known as the Lonely Hearts Club Killers. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Miracle Made. Go to TryMiracle.com/COTC and use the code COTC to claim your free three-piece towel set and save over 40% off. IQ Bar. Our special podcast listeners get 20% off all IQBar products plus FREE shipping. To get your twenty percent off, just text CENTURIES to 64000. Smalls.  Head to Smalls.com/COTC and use promo code COTC at checkout for 50% off your first order PLUS free shipping.
Randy Ayers was a 17-year-old high school senior when he was spotted at school and identified as the man who raped and tried to kill a 15-year-old girl in November 1981. It would take nine agonizing years -- and an unsolicited confession from a serial killer -- before Randy's case would change how prosecutors in Hamilton County, Ohio, treated eyewitness identification. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: IQ Bar. Special podcast listeners get 20% off all IQBar products plus FREE shipping. To get your twenty percent off, text CENTURIES to 64000. Wildgrain. For a limited time, you can get $30 off the first box, PLUS free croissants in every box, when you go to Wildgrain.com/COTC to start your subscription. 
The 937 passengers aboard the M.S. St. Louis had every reason to be optimistic as they left Hamburg, Germany, on May 13, 1939. After years of their rights being slowly stripped away, the Jewish men, women and children felt lucky to be sailing off to start anew in Cuba. But once they spotted their destination, a new nightmare began. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Smalls. Head to Smalls.com/COTC and use promo code COTC at checkout for 50% off your first order PLUS free shipping. Athena Club. Head over to AthenaClub.com to try their award-winning razor and body products and get 20% off your purchase with code CENTURIES at checkout. You can also find AthenaClub Razors at your local Target store.
When 26 California schoolchildren and their bus driver failed to show up after a swimming trip on the penultimate day of summer school, authorities launched a search that grew much more frantic after the school bus they'd been traveling in was discovered hidden in 20-foot-tall bamboo. What happened next shocked and befuddled the nation. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Magic Mind. For a limited time, this special link offers up to 48% off your first subscription or 20% off one-time purchases with code COTC at checkout. You can claim it at www.magicmind.com/cotc20. 
In 1898, a pair of killers stalked a worksite in the Tsavo region of Kenya. They evaded blockades and booby traps to torment hundreds of men who'd simply signed up to do a job but instead found themselves marked as prey for a seemingly unstoppable deadly duo. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Laundry Sauce. For 15% off your order, head to LaundrySauce.com/COTC and use code COTC Ritual. Get 25% off your first month at ritual.com/cotc. Field of Greens. 15% off your first order, plus free rush shipping. Visit FieldofGreens.com and use promo code COTC.
In the 1960s, after losing all 10 of the babies they'd conceived, Marie Noe and her husband, Arthur, became the most famous bereaved parents in America, with most of the deaths attributed to "crib death," later called Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). After a journalist revisited the case in 1998, investigators took another look at the mysterious series of deaths, prompting Marie Noe to share a horrifying secret that had been weighing on her for more than 30 years. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Wildgrain. For a limited time, you can get $30 off the first box-PLUS free Croissants in every box-when you go to Wildgrain.com/COTC to start your subscription. Hiya. Receive 50% off your first order. To claim this deal, go to hiyahealth.com/COTC. Rocket Money. Stop wasting money on things you don’t use. Cancel your unwanted subscriptions by going to RocketMoney.com/COTC
On September 6, 1949, 28-year-old World War II veteran Howard Unruh ate the breakfast his mother made him, then armed himself with a Luger pistol and walked calmly through his Camden, New Jersey, neighborhood, shooting everyone in sight. He told police afterward he'd had a kill list of specific people he'd felt had wronged him, but by the end of his 12-minute rampage, 13 would be fatally wounded, three of them innocent children. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: Smalls. Head to Smalls.com/COTC and use promo code COTC at checkout for 50% off your first order PLUS free shipping. Athena Club. Head over to AthenaClub.com to try their award-winning razor and body products and get 20%off your purchase with code COTC at checkout.
While the grift he deployed had been named for another man, Bernie Madoff took the concept of a Ponzi scheme and pumped it full of steroids, allowing it to keep him -- and plenty of others -- filthy rich for literally decades. In the end, Madoff bilked some $65 billion from thousands of clients, all while maintaining such a sheen of respectability that he was charged with helping write the very rules he himself eschewed. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod
Italian-born Charles Ponzi had grown up hearing from his mother that he was destined for greatness, so it was no surprise to her when she visited him in America to find him wealthy beyond her wildest dreams. Ponzi had come up with a get-rich-quick scheme that he insisted was legal. To his credit, it took federal authorities a good seven months to figure out how it wasn't. In this episode, meet the man whose name would go down in history to be synonymous with "grifter."   "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod • Hiya Health Products. Get 50% off your first order of Hiya Health’s best-selling children’s vitamin by going tohiyahealth.com/COTC • Field of Greens. For 15% off your first order plus free rush shipping, visit FieldofGreens.com and use promo code COTC.
In the midst of nationwide bombings that pit union backers against anti-union bosses, an explosion at the Los Angeles Times building crossed a line that changed everything. At 1:07 a.m. on Oct. 1, 1910, a blast tore through the Times building, killing 21 people. Times officials immediately blamed organized labor, which ultimately bore out: Not only were three union-affiliated co-conspirators convicted soon after the bombing, but nearly 40 other union officials would eventually be convicted on charges related to that and other bombings that had been plaguing the country. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsor: • Ritual. Synbiotic+ and Ritual are here to celebrate, not hide, your insides. Get 25% off your first month for a limited time at ritual.com/cotc. 
In September 1944, a 24-year-old married woman named Recy Taylor was walking home with friends from church when a carload of seven men stopped her. Forced into the car, Recy, a Black woman, was repeatedly raped by six white men at gunpoint, then tossed roadside with a warning: Tell anyone about this, and you're dead. Recy ignored the threats and her tale soon galvanized activists throughout Alabama -- including a woman whose name would eventually become synonymous with the Civil Rights movement. Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: • Smalls. Get 50% off your first order of protein-packed, preservative-free cat food by going to Smalls.com/cotc and use promo code COTC.  • Wildgrain. Get $30 off your first box of bake-from-frozen breads, pastries and pastas plus free croissants in every box when you go to Wildgrain.com/cotc to start your subscription.  • For Wellness. Get 25% off your first order from this functional food brand when you go to ForWellness.com/cotc and use code COTC.
When luggage leaking blood arrived at a Los Angeles train depot in 1931, the woman who'd traveled with the items feigned ignorance -- and then disappeared, leading to a nationwide manhunt that captivated the nation. Because one of the two victims found inside the Winnie Ruth Judd's trunks had been dismembered -- and because both she and the victims were beautiful women -- the case generated hundreds of headlines and a memorable moniker: The Trunk Murderess. But were prosecutors' theories about the Phoenix, Arizona, deaths really true? Or did Judd take the fall for a well-connected accomplice? "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode sponsors: • Hiya Health Products. Get 50% off your first order of Hiya Health’s best-selling children’s vitamin by going to hiyahealth.com/COTC • Field of Greens. For 15% off your first order plus free rush shipping, visit FieldofGreens.com and use promo code COTC. • Factor Meals. Head to factormeals.com/COTC50 and use code COTC50 to get 50% off.
The morning of Aug. 1, 1966, 25-year-old Charles Whitman called his wife's boss to say she'd be out, then did the same for his mother. After killing the two women, he climbed atop the observatory tower at the University of Texas and relentlessly began picking off pedestrians below in an attack unlike any before witnessed in America. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode Sponsors:     •    Rocket Money - Stop wasting money on things you don’t use. Cancel unwanted subscriptions by going to RocketMoney.com/COTC. Caden Lane - Your one-stop shop for all your newborn, infant and toddler apparel. Head to CadenLane.com/COTC and use code COTC for 20% off your order.
Every parent has worried about their children hauling home tainted candy on Halloween, but not everyone knows where that fear originated. On Halloween in 1974, an 8-year-old boy named Timothy O’Bryan was granted one pick from his basket before bed — and soon after downing the contents of his Pixy Stix, he went limp in his father’s arms. The investigation threw parents into a panic, prompting tons of candy to be taken to sheriff’s offices for inspection. As horrifying as the case appeared to be at first, what police uncovered was far more sinister than anyone had imagined. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode Sponsors:     •    Dipsea - Hundreds of short, sexy audio stories designed by women for women. Dipsea is offering an extended 30-day free trial when you go to DipseaStories.com/COTC.     •    Smalls - Protein-packed, preservative-free cat food. Use promo code COTC for 50% off your first order PLUS free shipping at smalls.com/cotc.    •    Ritual - Ritual and Synbiotic+ support the relief of mild digestive issues. Get 25% off your first month for a limited time at ritual.com/cotc. 
Notorious labor union leader Jimmy Hoffa had for decades been a polarizing figure, with his ties to organized crime investigated as early as 1957 by future U.S. Attorney General Bobby Kennedy. A jury tampering conviction eventually took him out of official power, but Hoffa worked tirelessly behind the scenes to reclaim his position -- until his disappearance in 1975. Despite countless theories about what happened to him, Hoffa's fate remains one of the most infamous unsolved mysteries in American history.  "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode Sponsors:   • Athena Club - Upgrade your shaving experience. Go to AthenaClub.com (http://AthenaClub.com) and use code COTC to get 20% off your purchase. • Cerebral - Online professional therapy and medication management support. Go to cerebral.com/podcast (http://cerebral.com/podcast) and use code COTC to get 15% off the first month of online therapy, medication or both. • Laundry Sauce - The world’s best smelling laundry detergent. Go to laundrysauce.com/cotc (http://laundrysauce.com/cotc), promo code COTC, to get 15% off your order.
Living in Occupied Paris during World War II was utter chaos, with the Gestapo police constantly changing rules, kidnapping people from the streets and sidelining the Parisian police. A physician named Marcel Petiot claimed to be among the brave men and women working for the Resistance — a group determined to help smuggle endangered people to safety, far from the reach of the Third Reich. But when neighbors reported a fire at a townhouse Petiot owned, police arrived to uncover a scene so horrific, it managed to bury news about the war in newspapers worldwide. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book (https://www.centuriespod.com/book)! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode Sponsors:     •    Caden Lane - Your one-stop shop for all your newborn, infant and toddler apparel. Head to CadenLane.com/COTC and use code COTC for 20% off your order.     •    Dipsea - Hundreds of short, sexy audio stories designed by women for women. Dipsea is offering an extended 30-day free trial when you go to DipseaStories.com/COTC.     •    Rocket Money - Stop wasting money on things you don’t use. Cancel unwanted subscriptions by going to RocketMoney.com/COTC. .   Grab Bag Collab - An egalitarian podcast network that provides a hodgepodge of shows available for $5 and up at Patreon.com/grabbagcollab.
For years, the violence that occurred in the area known as "Black Wall Street" in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1921 was remembered as the "Tulsa Race Riot" - when it was even remembered at all.  But that name, promoted by the media and government officials, was at best a misleading description of what we've now started to reveal over the past few decades as a massacre perpetrated on a thriving Black community that took generations to recover. "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode Sponsors: For Wellness - Snacks and supplements to help you get the most out of your body and mind. Head to www.ForWellness.com/COTC and use code COTC for 25% off your order. Stitch Fix - Your style partner to shop new styles and brands. Try today at www.StitchFix.com/COTC. Wildgrain - The first-ever baked-from-frozen subcription box for sourdough breads, pasta, and pastries. Go to www.wildgrain.com/COTC for free croissants in every box and $30 off your first box.
Handsome and charismatic, the actor Bob Crane led the cast of the hit sitcom "Hogan's Heroes" for six seasons from the mid-sixties into the beginning of the next decade.  The show ended in 1971, and Crane began traveling the country in a touring play.  When he was found dead in his hotel room in Arizona in 1978, was it due to a secret life that he kept hidden from public view?  "Crimes of the Centuries" is a podcast from Grab Bag Collab exploring forgotten crimes from times past that made a mark and helped change history. AND DON'T FORGET ABOUT THE CRIMES OF THE CENTURIES BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE!  Order today at www.centuriespod.com/book! Follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @centuriespod Episode Sponsors: Ritual - It's time to listen to your gut. Go to www.ritual.com/COTC for 20% off your first month.  3 Day Blinds - Get your free, obligation consultation for custom blinds, shades, shutters, and drapery with a buy one get 50% off deal at www.3DayBlinds.com/COTC. Cerebral - Get started on your path towards better mental health. Go to www.cerebral.com/podcast and us code COTC to get 15% off your first month. Smalls - For 50% off your first order, head to Smalls.com/COTC and use code COTC.
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Comments (53)

Jennifer Steele

Really, 4 minutes in and there's already a commercial?

Mar 5th
Reply (1)

Len Conyers

Was it just me, or was the host ESPECIALLY annoying in this episode?

Aug 7th
Reply

John Paul

You are the Queen of true crime, I love your show, ! Thanks

May 25th
Reply

John Paul

👍

May 24th
Reply

Art 34

Way too snarky...couldn't finish.

May 14th
Reply

Len Conyers

These people love to use the word cringe, but somehow don't understand how cringe it really is for modern white folks to try and distance themselves from the "colonizers", and the "brown people" they exploited. I think I have a pretty damn good idea how many of them would give up their creature comforts of given the chance to leave, and give it all back.

May 11th
Reply

John Paul

beautifully done,. Thanks 👍

Apr 25th
Reply

Karly Mc

Does this clown seriously refer to the acclaimed author as "Paul Haines" rather than Paul Holes? Credible much 🙄

Apr 14th
Reply

stephen martin

Love the show. Sad that it still hasn't completely changed.😓😡

Apr 10th
Reply

A Gannon

The mixing on this episode is just terrible; I cannot hear a word the man is saying and if I raise the volume enough to make anything out, the narrator comes on and blows out my eardrums.

Dec 26th
Reply

Brenda Klies

Narrator needs to learn the correct pronunciation. It's not Raymond Navarro, but "Ray moan" Navarro.

Nov 2nd
Reply

Sue Miller

Thank you! Your show was excellent. I was really engrossed in this case because I had not heard of it before. I enjoy your Work. I can’t wait till next week thank you

Sep 12th
Reply

WheelMagick

Tiny Kenneth Bianchi: "these aren't even my pants! YOU gave me these pants, maybe YOU put the candy there." I had a cousin like this. Walk in the store, pick up something and start eating it in front of the owner, all while telling him she came in with it. Get kicked out, go in the next day... "Naw, that must have been my sister." 😒

Aug 1st
Reply

Fleetwood McDuecen25

Fiction.

Jul 27th
Reply

Helen Frances Wright

You mentioned Sam Sheppard studied ostyopothy yet it is listed as a neurosurgeon. in the US is this one and the same?

Jun 21st
Reply (1)

Jessica Cooper

She looks super similar to Dakota Johnson!

Jun 14th
Reply

Jessica Cooper

Every neighborhood that did absolutely nothing should have caught charges. They aided the murderer. Pure and simple.

Jun 13th
Reply

Sue Miller

Great show!

Apr 5th
Reply

Sue Miller

Excellent show! I love the way you weave your stories, it was very interesting and educational. Thank you

Mar 15th
Reply

David Schultz

what happened to husband Elijah?

Feb 28th
Reply
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