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The Trials of Frank Carson

Author: Los Angeles Times

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From Christopher Goffard, the Los Angeles Times reporter and host behind the hit podcasts “Dirty John” and “Detective Trapp,” comes a new eight-episode true crime podcast, “The Trials of Frank Carson.” “The Trials of Frank Carson” is a story of power, politics and the law in California’s Central Valley. Frank Carson was Stanislaus County’s most controversial defense attorney, a wizard with juries and a courtroom brawler with an unapologetically caustic style. He racked up legal wins for decades. He was the terror of police and prosecutors, often accusing them personally of corruption. When a small-time thief disappeared, police — some of them Carson’s longtime adversaries — launched a massive investigation into a spectral underworld of street hustlers, junkies and snitches. Carson was charged with murder, accused of masterminding a conspiracy. It would be one of the longest criminal trials in California history, with the flinty veteran of so many courtroom wars on trial for his life. The Trials of Frank Carson was produced by the Los Angeles Times and Western Sound.
13 Episodes
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Frank Carson spent his career accusing police of corruption. Then they charged him with murder. From Christopher Goffard, the Los Angeles Times reporter and host behind the hit podcasts Dirty John and Detective Trapp, comes a new eight-episode true crime podcast, The Trials of Frank Carson. The Trials of Frank Carson is a story of power, politics and the law in California’s Central Valley. 
From Christopher Goffard, the Los Angeles Times reporter and host behind the hit podcasts Dirty John and Detective Trapp, comes a new eight-episode true crime podcast, The Trials of Frank Carson. The Trials of Frank Carson is a story of power, politics and the law in California’s Central Valley. Frank Carson was Stanislaus County’s most controversial defense attorney, a wizard with juries and a courtroom brawler with an unapologetically caustic style. He racked up legal wins for decades. He was the terror of police and prosecutors, often accusing them personally of corruption. When a small-time thief disappeared, police — some of them Carson’s longtime adversaries — launched a massive investigation into a spectral underworld of street hustlers, junkies and snitches. Carson was charged with murder, accused of masterminding a conspiracy. It would be one of the longest criminal trials in California history, with the flinty veteran of so many courtroom wars on trial for his life.
Introducing Frank Carson, Stanislaus County’s most controversial defense attorney, famous for his high-profile courtroom victories and take-no-prisoners style. A longtime nemesis of local law enforcement, he is representing homicide defendants in the very courthouse where he is on trial for murder himself. If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
A disappearance | 2

A disappearance | 2

2021-05-2541:5311

When a young scrap-metal thief named Korey Kauffman vanishes, local police do not immediately show great interest. Then a parolee named Big Mike Cooley tells a story that gets their attention: Kauffman was last seen venturing onto Frank Carson’s property to steal some pipes. Authorities confront Carson and work to build a case against him.If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
The discovery of Korey Kauffman’s remains gives the investigation new impetus, and a man named Robert Woody offers a methamphetamine-fueled “confession.” Threatened with the death penalty, he cooperates — and becomes the government’s star witness. But his story changes again and again.If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
Mugshots | 4

Mugshots | 4

2021-06-0139:184

After a three-year investigation, Frank Carson and his co-defendants are arrested, accused of a complicated murder-and-coverup conspiracy. Among the accused are three men who worked for the California Highway Patrol. How did an attorney famous for his distrust of local cops stand accused of conspiring with three of them?If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
Prisoners | 5

Prisoners | 5

2021-06-0842:432

Frank Carson and his co-defendants confront the charges against them. The government cites years of Carson’s supposedly authority-hating behavior and his “behavioral control issues.” Interviews and wiretap recordings explore how Carson’s wife and stepdaughter, an art student, came to be wrapped up in the case. And former California Highway Patrol Officer Walter Wells endures jail.If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
Prelim | 6

Prelim | 6

2021-06-1546:167

As a marathon preliminary hearing continues, the defendants face mounting pressure to climb aboard “the witness bus” and cut a deal. Frank Carson hits rock bottom, and offers his co-defendants a way out. The prosecution belatedly reveals a cache of undisclosed evidence — with major consequences.If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
Trial | 7

Trial | 7

2021-06-2245:402

Defense attorneys offer alternate theories to explain Korey Kauffman’s death, and the trial becomes an endurance test. As Frank Carson’s health deteriorates, he wonders whether he will live to see a verdict. After more than a year in trial, defendants fear that the jury might give up, forcing a mistrial — and that this is exactly what the DA wants. If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
Verdicts | 8

Verdicts | 8

2021-06-2955:244

The fates of Frank Carson and his co-defendants are decided, and jurors explain their reasoning. The DA’s office is sued for malicious prosecution, but prosecutors stand by their case. An interview with the state’s star witness, now out of lockup, raises troubling questions about the state’s handling of the case.If you like podcasts like Dirty John, Detective Trapp and The Trials of Frank Carson, subscribe to the L.A. Times. Subscribers will get exclusive bonus episodes of The Trials of Frank Carson that share the story behind this podcast. We will share interviews with experts who will weigh in on the case and play extra tape that sheds light on important parts of our story. Subscribe today to listen. Go to latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts. Thanks!
Our host Christopher Goffard is joined by his editor, Steve Clow, to discuss the origins of The Trials of Frank Carson.
Our host Christopher Goffard is joined by his editor, Steve Clow, to talk about how authorities linked the disappearance of Korey Kauffman to Frank Carson.This is a subscriber-exclusive bonus episode of “The Trials of Frank Carson.” Subscribe now to unlock all eight of these exclusive bonus episodes — and also enjoy our award-winning journalism and Unlimited Digital Access on our website, mobile app and eNewspaper. https://www.latimes.com/exclusive-podcasts
Introducing Firebug

Introducing Firebug

2021-07-2707:20

For ten years, a fire bug terrorized Southern California, burning down businesses in broad daylight. Four people had died. Then a manuscript for a novel leads investigators to the last person they would have ever suspected. From Truth.Media, host Kary Antholis and executive producer Marc Smerling (The Jinx, Wilderness of Error, Crimetown) comes the true-crime series Firebug. The series launched July 21st.
Comments (7)

Rebecca Butcher

Wow, incredible and very scary story! I really hope she loses the next election.

Jul 22nd
Reply

Michael Eidson

the ads with the female with the lisp. dude y'all are killing me. her voice makes me want to drop kick a min.

Jul 5th
Reply

Meeister Sean

Everybody is guilty in this case, it's an interesting story of the flexibility of our legal system and the types of corrupt individuals that like to exercise the manipulation of it. No heroes in this tale

Jul 3rd
Reply

Deborah Cassidy

This lady has no business being a prosecutor my fucking god wtf is happening in America

Jun 30th
Reply

ID17786533

Very similar to modern day news regardless of which political side your on depending on the network you already know that all your going to get is an opinion piece or story fomenting authors hatred and largely slanted one way or the other. Americans are all really smart and can figure out the truth If we’re given a non bias story and can handle the truth. Please run a series and see if you can simply tell it without bias or trying to start civil disobedience please.

Jun 26th
Reply

Adso

I'm halfway through this podcast, and although it is heavily biased towards Carson and his innocence, I can't ignore that these highway patrolmen sound awful guilty of the crimes they are accused of....no matter how much Goffard tries to make it seem otherwise.

Jun 11th
Reply

Timmy Beasley

#shitpolicework a 12 year old can see these cops are reaching for anything even if it doesn't stick it will work for them.

Jun 1st
Reply
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