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"My dead migrant has fingerprints, but nobody claims her. *I* claim her; she is mine."

A year ago this August, 72 migrant workers -- 58 men and 14 women -- 'were on their way to the US border when they were murdered by a drug gang at a ranch in northern Mexico, in circumstances that remain unexplained. Since then, a group of Mexican journalists and writers have created' a "Day of the Dead-style Virtual Altar" Spanish-language website, 72migrantes.com, to commemorate each of the victims, some of whom have never been identified. The New York Review of Books has English translations of five of their profiles. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Sep 7, 2011 - 7 comments

Just an Ordinary Day of Death

About one person is murdered every 35 minutes in Mexico. Statistics are bland, so the WSJ decided to track down the 25 murders on July 29th, an ordinary day of death.
posted by stbalbach on Aug 27, 2011 - 57 comments

Of Matters Criminous

“Before me as I write lies an inch-square bit of brown leather --- not, you would think, an inspiring subject for a tale. But perpend. This fragment of human skin, for such it is, has been since 1829 in the possession of three persons only: The original owner, my grandfather, and myself. Inconsiderable in size and unimpressive of aspect, it was nevertheless potent to influence the direction of my future studies… While yet a small boy, my grandfather would often show me by request this singular relic and I never wearied of hearing how he came by it. As a matter of history, its first proprietor, the late Mr. William Burke of Edinburgh, in the circumstances hereafter to be related, was publicly anatomized, his carcass thereafter flayed, his hide tanned, and his skeleton by order of Court preserved in the Anatomical Museum of Edinburgh University, where it remains as a memorial of his infamy even unto this day. Mr. Burke’s integument being cut up into sortable parcels to suit buyer’s tastes and exposed for sale by private bargain, my grandfather, who was then but a young man, invested a modest shilling’s worth. Wealthier purchasers bought larger lots --- I have heard that the late Professor Chiene had a tobacco pouch made of this unique material. Personally, despite my predilection for crime, I prefer India-rubber.” --- "The Wolves of the West Port" [more inside]
posted by Diablevert on Aug 24, 2011 - 12 comments

The Chessboard Killer

Russia had never seen anything quite like the prolific serial killer Alexander Pichushkin, for whom “life without killing is like life without food.” In the end, the Maniac was what his mother and Suprunenko say he was: ordinary. He didn’t have strong opinions. He lacked preferences or ideas about other people, God, art, beauty. He could talk about these things, and did, but these were simply words in the service of killing; they were bits of theater; they were nothing. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty on Jul 29, 2011 - 38 comments

How News of the World interfered with hunt for 13-year-old's killer

Thirteen-year-old Milly Dowler was kidnapped and murdered on her way home from school in 2002. During the six-month hunt before her body was found, her parents gave exclusive interviews to the News of the World, saying they believed she would be found alive. That hope was based partly on the fact that her voicemails were still being listened to and deleted. Today, it was revealed that the deleting was being done by the News of the World. [more inside]
posted by bonaldi on Jul 4, 2011 - 324 comments

The Neverending Nightmare of Amanda Knox

The Neverending Nightmare of Amanda Knox. In an in-depth new article in Rolling Stone, writer Nathaniel Rich makes a compelling case for the innocence of the American student at the center of a sordid, long-running Italian crime drama. [via Longreads]
posted by killdevil on Jun 28, 2011 - 92 comments

The Bravest Woman in Seattle

The Bravest Woman in Seattle "The reason for her sitting on the witness stand of a packed and sweltering eighth-floor courtroom at the King County Courthouse on June 8, in jeans and a short-sleeved black blouse, hands clasped over knees, a jury of strangers taking notes, a crowd of family and friends and strangers observing, a bunch of media recording, was to say: This happened to me. You must listen. This happened to us. You must hear who was lost. You must hear what he did. You must hear how Teresa fought him. You must hear what I loved about her. You must know what he took from us. This happened." (Trigger warning for rape and violence.)
posted by verbyournouns on Jun 22, 2011 - 86 comments

I ain't mad at ya.

Man confesses to Tupac Shakur robbery and shooting Dexter Isaac, now serving a life sentence for murder, told AllHipHop.com that he robbed Shakur outside the Quad Studio in Manhattan in November 1994 on the orders of hip hop management mogul James "Jimmy Henchman" Rosemond. [more inside]
posted by Uther Bentrazor on Jun 15, 2011 - 23 comments

"I just hugged the man that murdered my son."

A mother talks with the man who murdered her son, for Storycorps. [more inside]
posted by empath on May 20, 2011 - 17 comments

WTF has totally sold out to The Man. Totally.

"For about six months now, Sound of Young America editor Nick White and I (Jesse Thorn) have been working on a secret project. Now, the secret can be revealed... please welcome WTF with Marc Maron, the public radio series!" [more inside]
posted by item on May 17, 2011 - 39 comments

The Lazarus File

The Lazarus File. "In 1986, a young nurse named Sherri Rasmussen was murdered in Los Angeles. Police pinned down no suspects, and the case gradually went cold. It took 23 years—and revolutionary breakthroughs in forensic science­—before LAPD detectives could finally assemble the pieces of the puzzle. When they did, they found themselves facing one of the unlikeliest murder suspects in the city’s history." [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 14, 2011 - 60 comments

Bill James Applies His Science to Serial Killers

Bill James, a pioneer in the field of baseball statistics, has now turned his attention to serial killers and their methods.
posted by reenum on May 5, 2011 - 38 comments

The Philanthropist "Godman"

"For the progress of humanity, work alone is not adequate, but the work should be associated with love, compassion, right conduct, truthfulness and sympathy. Without the above qualities, selfless service cannot be performed."
On Sunday morning, Indian guru Sri Sathya Sai Baba passed away. He leaves behind a massive empire, several million mourning devotees worldwide, an extensive religious philosophy, a great deal of controversy and a legacy of large-scale philanthropic projects in India, including free hospitals and mobile medical facilities, a free university and schools, and other efforts which included supplying clean water to hundreds of rural villages. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 25, 2011 - 41 comments

Unfit counsel

"This conflict of interest hits at the heart of the attorney-client relationship." Robert Caulley has served 14 years of a life sentence for the murder of his parents, a crime he says he didn't commit. Some hope that unknown DNA found on a gun at the crime scene will prove his innocence, citing similar exonerations in other high-profile Ohio cases, but so far Caulley's attempts to revisit his case with further DNA testing have failed. But look, Caulley already had his day in court with his lawyer by his side, doing everything possible to clear him, right? So he thought -- until he learned that his defense attorney was sleeping with his wife during his trial.
posted by escabeche on Apr 21, 2011 - 20 comments

...your brain power might help bring a killer to justice.

On June 30, 1999, sheriff’s officers in St. Louis, Missouri discovered the body of 41-year-old Ricky McCormick. He had been murdered and dumped in a field. The only clues regarding the homicide were two encrypted notes found in the victim’s pants pockets. The FBI is now asking the public to help them solve the murder.
posted by iamkimiam on Mar 30, 2011 - 93 comments

A Murder Foretold

"My name is Rodrigo Rosenberg Marzano and, alas, if you are hearing or seeing this message it means that I’ve been murdered by President Álvaro Colom, with the help of Gustavo Alejos." Rosenberg went on, "The reason I'm dead, and you're therefore watching this message, is only and exclusively because during my final moments I was the lawyer to Mr. Khalil Musa and his daughter Marjorie Musa, who, in cowardly fashion, were assassinated by President Álvaro Colom, with the consent of his wife, Sandra de Colom, and with the help of . . . Gustavo Alejos."
posted by vidur on Mar 28, 2011 - 48 comments

Conviction

Betty Anne Waters's brother Kenny was sent to prison for first degree murder and armed robbery in 1982. Over the next 16 years, Betty Anne got her GED, college degree, and law degree, all in an effort to prove Kenny was innocent. With the assistance of the Innocence Project, Betty Anne was able to use DNA evidence to show Kenny was innocent. [more inside]
posted by reenum on Mar 24, 2011 - 28 comments

ATF: Fast and Furious

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives deliberately allowed assault rifles to be smuggled into Mexico, so they could be tracked. The weapons were then used in a spree of murders, including that of US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. The operation was called "Fast and Furious". The Mexican government was apparently unaware of the operation, and is investigating. The ATF is going to have a review of whether their strategy supports "the goals of ATF to stem the illegal flow of firearms to Mexico".
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Mar 7, 2011 - 66 comments

The Book That Tried To Kill Me

Why Do Writers Abandon Novels? [more inside]
posted by philip-random on Mar 5, 2011 - 48 comments

In the library with a wrench

Various ways of killing porcelain vases.
posted by twoleftfeet on Feb 21, 2011 - 11 comments

Tell me more about these Finns

Winston Burdett, one of the original Murrow's Boys, was a reporter for CBS Radio. He covered World War II, the invasion of Norway, the Axis retreat in North Africa (mp3), the invasion of Sicily (mp3), the invasion of Italy (mp3) and the capture of Rome (mp3). But from 1940 - 1942 Winston Burdett was also a spy for the Soviet Union. [more inside]
posted by IvoShandor on Feb 13, 2011 - 3 comments

David Kato killed in Uganda

Gay activist David Kato has been beaten to death in Uganda after his photo (along with others) was published in a newspaper under the banner "Hang Them". [SLNYT]
posted by hippybear on Jan 27, 2011 - 84 comments

How many tweens lifers are there?

Will an 11-year-old get life in prison? Here’s what you need to know. [more inside]
posted by fixedgear on Jan 25, 2011 - 115 comments

Solving A 1964 Cold Case: Mystery Of Frank Morris

In December 1964, Frank Morris' shoe shop was set ablaze in the middle of the night. Still inside at the time, Morris was severely injured; he died four days later at a nearby hospital in Ferriday, La. Like many Southern crimes against blacks in the 1960s — an era of racial strife dominated by criminal activities by the Ku Klux Klan — the incident went unsolved, despite an FBI investigation at the time.
A vast amount of research and investigation by the Civil Rights Cold Case Project (especially Stanley Nelson on this case) is described in gripping detail in the documentary David Ridgen brings us here called Murder at The Shoe Shop (MP3 download link). [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation on Jan 12, 2011 - 2 comments

Interesting profile of a unique person who somehow negotiated a life that fitted them in this world.

Transgender lawyer killed under tube train in London last year bravely created her own life.
posted by maiamaia on Jan 9, 2011 - 37 comments

No Pardon for Billy

New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson has declined to pardon William H. Bonney, aka Kid Antrim, aka Henry McCarty, but best known as Billy the Kid. [more inside]
posted by steambadger on Dec 31, 2010 - 44 comments

Interview With The Cannibal

(NSFW) In the 1980's, a brilliant university student named Issei Sagawa went ahead and killed and, uhm, ate one of his fellow classmates. VBS TV interviews Issei Sagawa, who became a celebrity in Japan after walking free, having been deemed "sane, but evil" by a team of psychologists in France. "Was Sagawa suffering from a mental disorder? Was he really a sexual psychopath? Probably both. By his own admission, Issei Sagawa says that he had to possess a caucasian woman completely, and the only way this overwhelming need could be truly satisfied was by eating her." [more inside]
posted by fantodstic on Dec 21, 2010 - 107 comments

Bully For Them

Ken Rex McElroy for years had terrorized the small town of Skidmore Missouri, and was considered the town bully. He had been charged with more than 20 felonies, robbing, raping, burning, shootings. He intimidated people by driving by at night and firing a shotgun blast, putting a rattlesnake in their mailbox, etc. He was murdered on July 10, 1981. No one in town would identify Ken Rex's killer and no one has ever been charged with his killing, though there has been intense speculation about who did it. There have been various dramatic depictions of the crime. Is vigilante justice ever justified?
posted by Xurando on Dec 16, 2010 - 148 comments

Gays able to be executed without cause

On 16 November 2010, the UN General Assembly Third Committee removed a reference to sexual orientation from a resolution on extra-judicial, summary or arbitrary executions, a move condemned by gay and lesbian rights groups. [more inside]
posted by wilful on Nov 28, 2010 - 24 comments

Beaten, Bound, Burned

Echoing the brutality of the Matthew Shepard case, a Texas teenager blames his slaying of classmate Josh Wilkerson on unwanted gay advances. (He has also been charged with failing to identify himself and attempting to take a weapon from an officer.) While the "gay panic" defense is often considered something of a joke, it's clearly still very much alive.
posted by hermitosis on Nov 18, 2010 - 53 comments

truth hangs by a hair

A DNA test has proven that a man was executed for murder by the State of Texas on the basis of false forensic evidence. [more inside]
posted by hat on Nov 12, 2010 - 99 comments

Most Horrible & Shocking Murders

The National Library of Medicine has put a selection of murder pamphlets from the late 1600s to the late 1800s online.
These pamphlets have been a rich source for historians of medicine, crime novelists, and cultural historians, who mine them for evidence to illuminate the history of class, gender, race, the law, the city, crime, religion and other topics. The murder pamphlets in the NLM's collection address cases connected to forensic medicine, especially cases in which doctors were accused of committing-or were the victims of-murder.
[more inside]
posted by gman on Nov 7, 2010 - 7 comments

A small measure of justice

The Arkansas Supreme Court has ordered new hearings for the three men convicted of the Robin Hood Hills Murders, known as the West Memphis 3.
posted by boo_radley on Nov 5, 2010 - 43 comments

This man is not by brother.

"His Face All Red," a comic by Emily Carroll. Happy Halloween! [via]
posted by brundlefly on Oct 31, 2010 - 41 comments

Blonde Swedish Identical Twins, but not what you were hoping for.

Madness in the Fast Lane. Part 1, 2, 3, 4 (YT -- videos include footage of human-car collisions and some NSFW language). On May 17, 2008, the identical twins Ursula and Sabina Eriksson ran into traffic on the UK's M6 motorway, apparently for no reason whatsoever (original article & footage). Despite the first being run over by a lorry and the second hit head on by a car, both sisters survived, even cursing and struggling against the police who tried to help them. That's when things got weird. [more inside]
posted by Saxon Kane on Oct 29, 2010 - 50 comments

An Innocent Man

After 18 years in prison on false charges, Anthony Graves walked out a free man yesterday. This recent Texas Monthly article by Pamela Colloff played a major role in bringing awareness to his case. [more inside]
posted by mattbucher on Oct 28, 2010 - 36 comments

Murther Most Foul Mapped

The London Murder Map. A project-in-progress to map the variety (by gun, by knife, by bomb, by blunt object) of homicides that committed in London from the 19th century to now. Populated so far with only the last few years, Murder Map will eventually incorporate data from the oft-linked The Proceedings of the Old Bailey, 1674-1913. impressions so far? "Richmond, The City and Hampstead stand out as murderless pockets in an otherwise homogeneously dense circle of homicide."* (Somewhat Previously)
posted by grabbingsand on Oct 14, 2010 - 16 comments

Cost of Murder

A team of researchers at Iowa State University has found that a murder costs more than $17.25 Million to society. [via]
posted by AceRock on Oct 11, 2010 - 64 comments

The Gangster Prince of Liberia

Adam Higginbotham wrote an interesting article in 2007 about Chuckie Taylor's reign of terror in Liberia. (Note: PDF link) [more inside]
posted by reenum on Sep 27, 2010 - 9 comments

That was a long time ago

Ron Fanelli was a poker player. Victoria Coren liked him. Then she learned that he had confessed to brutally killing 'bar girl' Wanphen Pienjai in Thailand. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Sep 20, 2010 - 86 comments

US soldiers "killed Afghan civilians for sport and collected fingers as trophies"

The Guardian reports allegations that a group of US soldiers in Afghanistan killed civilians for sport and collected their fingers as trophies. [more inside]
posted by Zarkonnen on Sep 9, 2010 - 87 comments

Gun control and suicide rates.

In the wake of the Port Arthur massacre, in 1997 Australia implemented a gun buyback program that reduced the stock of firearms by around one-fifth, and nearly halving the number of gun-owning households. Leigh and Neill (2010) find that the buyback led to a drop in the firearm suicide rates of almost 80%, or about 200 lives per annum (with no significant effect on non-firearm death rates). This translates into an annual benefit of $500M, or $800 000 per weapon destroyed. However, Baker & McPhedran (2006) have previosuly concluded that there was no impact on homicides.
posted by wilful on Aug 29, 2010 - 131 comments

"It usually sounds ridiculous when opponents to video game describe them as murder simulators..."

"Serial Killer Roguelike" is exactly what it sounds like. Here's a video of it in action. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla on Aug 26, 2010 - 46 comments

MI6 employee murdered in London

A man believed to be a MI6 employee has been found murdered in a flat in Pimlico. [more inside]
posted by acb on Aug 25, 2010 - 84 comments

let's roll with Joel Hodgson's TV Wheel

"The TV Wheel was a television experiment created by and starring Joel Hodgson, of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame. Cable network HBO ordered a pilot, but ultimately passed on picking up the show. The pilot episode eventually aired once on Comedy Central as a special presentation following the last new episode of MST3K to be broadcast on that network."*

The pilot, bookended by introduction segments, is right through this door: [more inside]
posted by item on Aug 11, 2010 - 41 comments

The Big Easy To Get Away With Murder

In 2009, New Orleans, Louisiana learned that it had the unwelcome distinction of once again being the murder capital of the United States according to the FBI's homicide data. New Orleans' newspaper The Times-Picayune even has a special map for keeping track of murders (with associated twitter account). [more inside]
posted by komara on Jul 29, 2010 - 29 comments

Murders in Mexico

Statistical Analysis and Visualization of the Drug War in Mexico
posted by daksya on Jul 7, 2010 - 22 comments

Gaile Owens

Three months from today, Gaile [Part I] Owens [Part 2] will be dead in Tennessee after 25 years on death row. The mother of two boys went to the rough side of Nashville to find a hitman to kill her abusive and cheating husband. Due to a series of events, the jury never heard of or believed the abuse. She pleaded guilty in exchange for a life sentence, but will die on September 28. [more inside]
posted by daninnj on Jun 28, 2010 - 38 comments

Things Fall Apart

The City of Oakland, California, is preparing to fire more than one quarter of it's entire police force. [more inside]
posted by Avenger on Jun 22, 2010 - 101 comments

The Man in the Rockefeller Suit

“Where you going, Clark?” asked the agent. “I’m going to get a turkey sandwich,” he said. It would be the last lie he told before 20 agents with assault rifles wrestled him to the ground. The 2008 kidnapping that capped one of the longest, most fantastic impersonation cons of the 20th century won't keep the Man in the Rockefeller Suit behind bars for long. But what about the discovery of his link to skeletal remains from a family that vanished twenty-five years ago and 2,500 miles away? Who was this guy? [more inside]
posted by hat on Jun 7, 2010 - 43 comments

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