CULTURE

Happy International Podcast Day: What's Your Favorite Murder?

Vote for the best episode of a true crime podcast!

Back in the dark ages (before 2004), you had to go to a coffee shop or use public transportation in order to eavesdrop on strangers' conversations.

Luckily, Adam Curry and Dave Winer invented the podcast, and ever since then it's become much easier for us to pretend we have more friends than we actually do. Today, which is International Podcast Day, we can reflect on our favorite podcasts—which means talking about murder, The Office, Joe Rogan's interviews with garbage people like Ben Shapiro, and more murder (according to the iTunes Charts).

But let's be honest, so many of us tune into podcasts for the true crime. There are more of us than we'd like to admit who have learned to accept—nay, adore—Georgia Hardstark's vocal fry in My Favorite Murder; and as inflammatory as host Mike Boudet's real-life personality is, Sword & Scale is a seminal fix for true crime junkies.

Here are some of the best episodes from our favorite true crime podcasts, from the most disturbing to the unexpectedly uplifting. Be sure to vote for your favorite, so we can all remind each other that loving true crime isn't always a morbid fascination and can be unexpectedly inspiring about survival and the strength of the human spirit.

"My Favorite Murder" Episode 18: The Survival of Mary Vincent

MFM The Top 3: #1 - Episode 18 - Investigateighteen Discovery

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Mary Vincent was 15 years old in 1978 when she accepted a ride from Lawrence Singleton. He would later be sentenced to a mere 14 years in prison for kidnapping, mayhem, attempted murder, forcible rape, sodomy, and forced oral copulation for what he did to Vincent. As she told the sentencing judge, "I was raped. I had my arms cut off. He used a hatchet. He left me to die." Singleton was released after only 8 years, and he's became a symbol of the justice system's failings. But the story of Mary Vincent and the full life she went on to lead is as inspiring as her attack was heinous.

"Sword & Scale" Episode 55: Kermit Gosnell's Bloody Abortion Clinic

Episode 55

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As per this graphic episode's description, "This story about abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell illustrates the workings of a man who has lost his humanity and no longer cares who he hurts on his path to profit. The Women's Medical Society, the clinic with a grandiose name that Gosnell ran, was a pill mill by day and an illegal abortion clinic by night. It is estimated Gosnell earned well over a million dollars conducting illegal late-term abortions. Many of the women who came to the clinic were poor and easily fooled by Gosnell and his staff of unlicensed 'doctors' who administered dangerous drugs to the unsuspecting patients.

"Even after two patients died, the Philadelphia Department of Health did nothing, due to political pressure. Had it not been for a tip related to illegal prescription medications bearing Gosnell's name, the clinic may still be operating today."

"Crime Junkie" MURDERED: Robert Wone

MURDERED: Robert Wone

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If My Favorite Murder's conversational and off-the-cuff comedian isn't for you, Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat's research-based reporting is chilling in its accounts of murder, kidnapping, and unsolved disappearances. In telling the twisted mystery of Robert Wone, they describe, "This is probably the strangest case of murder we have ever covered here on Crime Junkie. It's the story of Robert Wone who, while staying in a friend's DC guest room, was brutally attacked. But with a staged crime scene, a timeline that doesn't add up, and three people keeping secrets we may never get to the bottom of what happened in the Swann Street house on August 2, 2006."

"Case File" Case 109: Belanglo (5 Parts)

Case 109: Belanglo (Part 1)

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People outside of Australia might be unfamiliar with the fact that an uncanny number of eerie murders have occurred in the country's isolated territories. For instance, western Australia is the home of the Claremont serial killer and the killer couple David and Catherine Birnie, British tourist Peter Falconio disappeared from a northern road and has never been found, and the "Backpacker murders" refers to the seven bodies found in the Belanglo State Forest. Ivan Milat was eventually identified as having murdered seven missing young people aged 19 to 22 betwen 1989 and 1993.

"Casefile's" anonymous host recounts many of Australia's most lurid crime stories with a thick Australian accent and calm, steady baritone mixed with real audio from victims and criminals.

"True Crime Guys" #22 The Murder of Mark Kilroy

#22 The Murder of Mark Kilroy

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Though not as popular as My Favorite Murder or Crime Junkies, True Crime Guys mixes fact-based reporting, real audio of news coverage and interviews, and light banter to cover odd murders all over the world. The story of Mark Kilroy is particularly compelling for its mix of gruesome cult violence with ultimate justice. As per the episode's description, "Many people were mysteriously going missing on the streets of Mexico City in the late 80's to early 90's. It wasn't until the disappearance of a young and promising pre-med student that people took notice. Mark Kilroy seemed to have all the characteristics of someone who could change the world, but who knew those very traits could make him a target for one of the most gruesome rituals known to man."

"Last Podcast on the Left" Episode 152: The Dylatov Pass Incident

Episode 152: The Dylatov Pass Incident

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This mystery is f*cking insane, and it's only appropriately covered by a chaotic comedy podcast co-hosted by Ben Kissel, podcast producer and researcher Marcus Parks, and comedian and actor Henry Zebrowski. In covering "one of the 20th century's most enduring mysteries," they ask, "What killed nine hikers in the Siberian mountains one fateful night in 1959? Was it an avalanche? The KGB? Aliens? Indigenous peoples? Yetis? TINY TORNADOS?"

"Sword & Scale" Episode 31: Vince Li

Episode 31

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Sometimes referred to as the Greyhound Bus Cannibal Killer, Vince Li was a Canadian man suffering from severe and untreated mental illness in 2008 when he experienced a psychotic episode that resulted in him attacking, decapitating, dismembering, and partially consuming the body of Tim McLean on a Greyhound Bus. But what happened to Li afterwards is probably the most shocking part and speaks volumes about how the mental health system and justice system work inconsistently with each other.

BONUS: Morgan Ingram

Episode 11

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Even if Mike Boudet is a misogynistic loud-mouth, the story of 20-year-old Morgan Ingram being found dead in her childhood bedroom is too odd to be true. Dr. Phil has weighed in. NBC has weighed in. Legions of internet sleuths have weighed in. As Sword & Scale asks, "What happens when a family's grief slips into malice and madness, when a mother is so hell-bent on being portrayed as a victim that she begins victimizing everyone who doesn't see her as one? Welcome to the sad story of Morgan Ingram's untimely death and the circus of insanity that followed and continues to this day."

The new trial that Adnan Syed, subject of the famed podcast, Serial has been waiting so many years for, is facing even more delays as the state intends to appeal the ruling in June that overturned his 2000 murder conviction.

As Popdust previously reported, the Adnan Syed case garnered world wide attention after it was featured on NPR reporter, Sarah Koenig's uber-successful podcast, Serial.

Now possibly one of the most famous inmates in the country, Syed is currently serving life in prison after being found guilty of the murder of his ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee.

Syed, now 35, was 19-years old when he was convicted of murdering Lee, back in 1999, and he has always maintained his innocence. A follow up podcast to Serial, Undisclosed dug into the case in way more depth and from more of a legal standpoint than Koenig's episodes. The Undisclosed team of lawyers were led by Rabia Chaudry, a lawyer whose brother is a close friend of Syed. Together, the team pulled apart the state's case, uncovered a whole heap of evidence and a potential alibi witness, as well as totally debunking the prosecution's timeline of the day of the murder.

They discovered a crucial fax cover sheet from AT&T which undermined the reliability of cell phone records that placed Syed in the area where Lee's body was discovered—something that was a key factor in the prosecutor's case. The prosecution's own cell phone expert was unaware of the document and signed sworn affidavits stating he was concerned about his testimony during the trial in the light of the fax cover sheet.

adnan syed new trialThe affidavit signed by the state's expert who testified at the original trial.


READ MORE...

Adnan Syed Alibi Witness Testifies At Hearing For New Trial
Undisclosed—New Evidence Blows Apart State's Case Against Adnan Syed Yet Further
411 On Baltimore City PD Corruption, Racism, Witness Coercion And Coaching


Despite a hearing in 2014 where a request for a new trial was denied, Syed's lawyer, Justin Brown has been working tirelessly to get his conviction overturned. The new evidence, together with a ruling by Judge Martin P Welch that Syed's original defense attorney Cristina Gutierrez provided ineffective counsel, meant that on June 29 Syed was finally granted what he has waited so long for—a new trial.

However, it now appears that Adnan may have to wait up to ANOTHER year before his case is re-heard, as Maryland's attorney general has asked that the new trial be delayed pending their appeal of the June ruling.

They have until August 1 to file that appeal, and the process could take months, with the losing side then having the right to appeal further to the state's highest court for intervention. It is only at the end of that process, if Judge Welch's decision is affirmed, that a new trial date would be set.

The Maryland AG's office said that it would "defend what it believes is a valid conviction."

The thing is, if they are so utterly convinced that Adnan is guilty, why aren't they confident that they would get another conviction at a new trial? They are totally blinkered (as they have been from the start) and won't even begin to entertain the possibility that a series of seemingly unlikely events conspired and meant that they got it wrong.

At this point defending their office, the cops and their reputations is more important to them than a flawed conviction and a potentially innocent man in jail.

But hey, Adnan's been in prison for 16 years now, what's another couple of years right?


Adnan Syed Investigation Discovery Channel special promises to help fuel your need to know—did he or didn’t he do it?

An upcoming Adnan Syed Investigation Discovery Channel special promises to deliver that Adnan fix we’ve all been jonesying for.

Not to mention, fuel yet further our need to know—did he, or didn’t he do it?

As Popdust previously reported, the Adnan Syed case garnered world wide attention after it was featured on NPR reporter, Sarah Koenig’s uber-successful podcast, Serial.

For those who have been hiding under a rock the past year or so—Syed is currently serving life in prison after being found guilty of the murder of his ex-girlfriend, Hae Min Lee.

Syed, now 34, was 19-years old when he was convicted of murdering Lee, back in 1999, and he has always maintained his innocence.

Despite the in-depth reporting on the case—most Serial listeners—in addition to Koening herself—were left still not firmly convinced as to Syed’s innocence or guilt.

The story gripped the nation—and had more twists and turns than an Agatha Christie novel.

But, unlike, an Agatha Christie novel—there is no definitive, written in print ending—no resolution to who actually dunnit.

So, it’s little surprise, that Serial fans are still obsessed with the case.

Cue, Investigation Discovery Channel.

The network has announced they will be airing a one off special, titled: ADNAN SYED: INNOCENT OR GUILTY?

According to the press release:

Fans of the hit podcast "Serial" may soon learn the latest twist in the case of Adnan Syed, who was convicted for the 1999 murder of his former high school girlfriend, Hae Min Lee.

As the decision for Syed's possible retrial looms, Investigation Discovery (ID) presents ADNAN SYED: INNOCENT OR GUILTY? examining the new evidence, brought to light by "Serial" and others, that was submitted to Maryland courts.

ADNAN SYED: INNOCENT OR GUILTY? is produced by ABC's Lincoln Square Productions, and features ABC News correspondent Ryan Smith as he uncovers the latest intriguing developments in the story, and takes an in-depth look at the new evidence through the eyes of key players surrounding the case.

In his first-ever one-on-one interview, Syed's current defense attorney, Justin Brown, goes on the record with Smith to explore the details on two critical pieces of evidence being reexamined by the Baltimore City circuit court:

•    Potential alibi witness, Asia McClain. McClain says she was in the library with Syed after school on January 13, 1999 at the exact same time prosecutors say Hae Min Lee was murdered. On the heels of the June release of a memoir recounting her experience, "Confessions of a Serial Alibi," the special features interview excerpts from McClain's exclusive interview on Good Morning America earlier this year.

•    New information about cellphone tower evidence ultimately used to convict Syed in 2000. A fledgling technology at the time, AT&T had sent an explicit warning to the Baltimore police that the information was not considered, but was used in the 2000 trial anyway.

Also interviewed in the special is Dr. William Manion, a medical examiner with nearly 30 years of experience who reviewed the autopsy report, and provides insight into critical information about that report that could also play a key role in a new trial.

"As Investigation Discovery did earlier this year with a special on the controversial Steven Avery case as featured in the hit Netflix series Making A Murderer, we are excited to share the latest in this unfolding saga with viewers," said Henry Schleiff, Group President, Investigation Discovery, American Heroes Channel and Destination America.

"The serialized podcast in 2014 has more than 130 million downloads to date, proving unequivocally that this is one of the great true crime stories of our time.

With a judge expecting to make a decision at any time, we want to give our viewers not only the crucial information surrounding Adnan Syed's case, but also the personal, first-hand accounts of what to expect from key players."

Additional interviews in ADNAN SYED: INNOCENT OR GUILTY? include:

•    Saad Chaudry: Adnan's best friend

•    Krista Meyers (Krista Remmers): friend of Hae and Adnan

•    Douglas Colbert: Adnan's original attorney for bail

•    Inez Butler: Hae's teacher and last to see her on campus

•    Mohammad Jameel: president of the Islamic Society of Baltimore

•    Bob Ruff: independent podcaster/ case expert

•    Theodore Wojtas: juror from 2000 trial

•    Philip Buddemeyer: former Baltimore City surveyor who assessed body at the scene

•    Roberto Gutierrez: son of Christina Gutierrez

The Adnan Syed Investigation Discovery Channel special: ADNAN SYED: INNOCENT OR GUILTY premieres Tuesday, June 14 at 9/8c on ID.

For more entertainment, music and pop culture updates and news, follow Max Page on Twitter

411 On Baltimore City PD Corruption, Racism, Witness Coercion And Coaching

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

Adnan Syed Alibi Witness Testifies At Hearing For New Trial

Undisclosed: State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

Undisclosed—Did Jay Lie About Adnan Killing Hae, Purely To Save His Own Ass?

 

adnan syed investigation discovery channel special

Undisclosed Breaks Down Hae’s Last Day, Casts More Doubt On Adnan Syed’s Guilt

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?

Murder By Numbers—The Most Prolific, Sadistic And Blood Thirsty Serial Killers Of All Time

Adnan Syed Attorney Says New Phone Evidence Should Overturn Murder Conviction

Adnan Syed— Legal Victory As He Wins Chance To Call Alibi Witness

adnan syed investigation discovery channel

Undisclosed Addendum 2—Could Hae’s Secret Diary Hold The Key To Adnan’s Innocence?

Will We FINALLY Learn If Adnan Syed Is Innocent Or Guilty? New Podcast Coming!

adnan syed investigation discovery channel

 

adnan syed alibi witness Testifies At Hearing For New Trial

Adnan Syed alibi witness, Asia McClain, has testified for a second day at his hearing for a new trial.

As Popdust previously reported, Syed, 34, was 19-years old when he was convicted of murdering his ex girlfriend, and fellow student Hae Min Lee, back in 1999, and he has always maintained his innocence.

State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

The case sparked national attention last year when NPR reporter and This American Life producer Sarah Koenig made it the focus of her hugely successful podcast, Serial, which attracted over 5 million listeners.

There were a number of serious flaws in the investigation and Serial raised legitimate questions to be answered by Baltimore PD regarding their treatment of the case.

Adnan Syed Attorney Says New Phone Evidence Should Overturn Murder Conviction

In addition, Syed has argued that his trial attorney, Cristina Gutierrez, made a series of mistakes, including failing to speak McClain, who maintains she saw Syed in the library at the time he is accused of murdering Lee.

Adnan Syed alibi witness

McClain testified yesterday and today, as part of a three-day hearing at Baltimore Circuit Court, and stood firmly by her alibi.

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?

According to the Baltimore Sun, McClain told the packed court that defense attorneys never spoke to her about her claim that she saw Syed at the Woodlawn library on January 13, 1999, for 20 minutes at around 2:15 p.m.

That’s the time that prosecutors maintain Syed was strangling Lee to death, in a Best Buy car park across town. So, it was no surprise that McClain also testified to a prosecutor having dismissed her potential alibi as “irrelevant.”

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

McClain wrote a letter to Syed, following his arrest, offering to testify to his whereabouts at the time of Hae's murder, but never heard back from any of his defense team.

In court today, Deputy Attorney General Thiru Vignarajah grilled McClain about the letter, claiming a friend of McClain's told cops that Syed had actually written it himself, then sent it to McClain to type up and send back to him.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl, Cowardly Deserter Or Brave Whistleblower?

McClain denied the claim, insisting she was the original author of the letter, and that Vignarajah’s information was based on classroom gossip.

Cristina Gutierrez's defense of Adnan Syed

The majority of Wednesday’s testimony centered on the competence of Gutierrez, who died in 2004.

Two of the attorney’s former associates claimed Gutierrez was falling apart both mentally and physically at the time of Syed’s trial, and that her work standards, and judgement, had dropped significantly—testimony that Vignarajah worked hard to shoot down.

Undisclosed Breaks Down Hae’s Last Day, Casts More Doubt On Adnan Syed’s Guilt

Vignarajah told retired Judge Martin P. Welch, who is residing over the hearing, that in addition to proving Gutierrez made questionable decisions—such as not following up on McClain’s potential alibi—the defense also need to prove that she acted incompetently, and provided her client with a level of service that was ”constitutionally deficient" and "below the standard of conduct."

He urged Welch to deny the request for a retrial, claiming, "Mr. Syed was convicted on the basis of overwhelming evidence.

“Mr. Syed was convicted because he did it, and the state proved it."

Undisclosed—Did Jay Lie About Adnan Killing Hae, Purely To Save His Own Ass?

The hearing continues tomorrow.

For more entertainment, world, music and pop culture updates and news, follow Max Page on Twitter

adnan syed cell phone evidence

Could Adnan Syed finally be facing the real possibility of freedom?

Well, according to his attorney, yes—as, C. Justin Brown claims he has new evidence that, if allowed, should overturn his client's 1999 murder conviction.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl Taliban Capture Story Is Like Adnan, But On Steroids

As Popdust previously reported, Syed has spent the past 15 years behind bars, after being sentenced to life plus 30, for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee—the 35-year-old vehemently maintains his innocence.

The case garnered national attention last year after NPR reporter, and This American Life producer, Sarah Koenig, covered it in great depth, on Serial, her weekly podcast series. However, after twelve gripping episodes, listeners were left no clearer as to Syed's innocence or guilt.

411 On Baltimore City PD Corruption, Racism, Witness Coercion And Coaching

Rabia Chaudry, the lawyer who first alerted Koenig to the case, along with fellow attorneys, Susan Simpson and Colin Miller, have been giving their all in an attempt to remedy that—working tirelessly to tear apart the State's case against Syed—and broadcasting their findings every two weeks on their podcast series, Undisclosed: The State Vs Adnan Syed.

The Undisclosed team dissected the State's version of what occurred on January 13, 1999, the day Hae was murdered—pulling to pieces many of the witness statements, and turning up two shocking new accounts of what allegedly went down that day—they shredded vital, key pieces of the prosecution's case against Syed; presented the revelation that Hae kept a second diary, which, if found, could possibly hold the key to Adnan proving his innocence; and presented a solid case that Baltimore PD may have coached their star witness, Jay Wilds, and coerced him into giving false testimony against Syed.

Undisclosed: State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

During trial, the prosecution relied heavily on cell phone data to help build their case—providing much needed backup for their purported murder timeline and bolstering for their claim that Adnan strangled Hae to death in a Best Buy car park in broad daylight, before going on to dump her body in Leakin Park.

The phone data played a crucial part in Syed's ultimate conviction, as there was no physical evidence linking him to the murder, no actual eye witnesses, and no real credible motive for the brutal killing. All the prosecution had at the end of the day, was the ever-changing testimony of Wilds, a shady acquaintance of Syed's, who claimed he helped Adnan bury Hae's body.

Undisclosed—Did Jay Lie About Adnan Killing Hae, Purely To Save His Own Ass?

As the Undisclosed team proved, Wilds' testimony was highly unreliable—from his first supposed meeting with the cops, throughout subsequent interviews, and even during both of Syed's two trials, and interviews since—Wilds' account of what he claims happened on that day, along with key facts relating to the case, have consistently and dramatically changed.

And, according to Brown, it's not only Wilds' story that's unreliable—the cell phone evidence that was used to “back it up" is also not to be taken at face value, or as fact—by the phone company's own admission.

Adnan Syed— Legal Victory As He Wins Chance To Call Alibi Witness

Brown has uncovered a fax cover sheet from AT&T that was sent to the Baltimore PD, along with Syed's phone records, warning about the accuracy of their cell tower data… not surprisingly, the warning was totally ignored, and was never raised or even mentioned, at trial—despite Syed's original attorney, Cristina Gutierrez, being fully aware of its existence, and even having a copy of it in her files.

"Outgoing calls only are reliable for location status. Any incoming calls will NOT be considered reliable information for location," the warning reads.

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

Brown filed a motion Monday, requesting the unreliability of the cell phone records be taken into consideration as yet another reason for a post-conviction hearing to be granted for his client—and claiming it proves yet more negligence on behalf of Gutierrez, who also failed to interview Asia McClain, a potential key witness that Syed claimed could provide him with a solid alibi.

In the motion, Brown states:

[The prosecution] said the AT&T records showed [Syed's] phone connecting with towers close to Leakin Park when he received calls at 7:09 p.m. and 7:16 p.m. But those were the types of inbound calls AT&T warned were unreliable.
If AT&T, the architect and operator of the cell tower network, did not think incoming calls were 'reliable information for location,' it is unfathomable that a Baltimore City Circuit Court judge would have allowed an expert opinion ... under this method.
[If AT&T's warning had been] properly raised at trial, much of, if not all of, the cellular evidence would have been rendered inadmissible.

Now, whether your gut instinct tells you that Adnan Syed is innocent or guilty, at this point, you surely have to agree that the supposed evidence that was used to convict him of murder was questionable to say the least—and his first attorney did her client a major disservice and displayed startling levels of negligence when it came to defending him.

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?

Adnan Syed deserves a post conviction hearing at the very least—and Hae Min Lee deserves nothing less than true and absolute justice.

Adnan Syed's New Trial Likely To Be Even More Delayed

Arts

Undisclosed: State Vs Adnan Syed—Murder Case Fabrication, Baltimore Style

NOTE: Post has been updated to correct previous error regarding DNA testing of Hae's shirt.

You know that whole innocent until proven guilty nonsense that some people think so important to ensure justice is served and those silly human rights protected?

Well, turns out it's not all that important at all—at least, not when you're Baltimore PD, and you just KNOW inherently that someone's guilty of a crime—or, perhaps, you're Baltimore PD and you just want to close some homicide case quickly and easily, without having to go through all that annoying, time consuming, pesky detective work palaver….

Adnan Syed Alibi Witness Testifies At Hearing For New Trial


Charm City law enforcement has been dogged by reports of racism, brutality, corruption and questionable ethics for years—with a slew of supposedly air tight convictions ultimately being overturned after evidence of police, and or, prosecutorial misconduct comes to light.

And, it's looking more and more likely that another case is about to join the list—that of the State Vs Adnan Syed.

As Popdust previously reported, Syed has spent the past 15 years behind bars, after being sentenced to life plus 30, for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Hae Min Lee, back in 1999—the 34-year-old vehemently maintains his innocence.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl Taliban Capture Story Is Like Adnan Syed's....But On Steroids

The case garnered national attention last year after NPR reporter, and This American Life producer, Sarah Koenig, covered it in great depth, on Serial, her weekly podcast series. However, after twelve gripping episodes, listeners were left no clearer as to Syed's innocence or guilt.

Rabia Chaudry, the lawyer who first alerted Koenig to the case, along with fellow attorneys, Susan Simpson and Colin Miller, are giving their all in an attempt to remedy that—working tirelessly to tear apart the State's case against Syed—and they are broadcasting their findings every two weeks on their podcast series, Undisclosed: The State Vs Adnan Syed.

Adnan Syed Attorney Says New Phone Evidence Should Overturn Murder Conviction

During the first three episodes of Undisclosed, the team has dissected the State's version of what occurred on January 13, 1999, the day Hae was murdered—pulling to pieces many of the witness statements, and turning up two shocking new accounts of what allegedly went down that day—shredded vital, key pieces of the prosecution's case against Syed; presented the revelation that Hae kept a second diary, which, if found, could possibly hold the key to Adnan proving his innocence; and presented a solid case that Baltimore PD may have coached their star witness, Jay Wilds, and even perhaps coerced him into giving false testimony.

This week's podcast, titled, 28 Days, breaks down the actions of Baltimore PD from the day Hae went missing, through to the day her body was discovered—and, Goddammit, if you don't already have serious doubts about the validity of the State's case against Syed, you will after this—and, if you don't, I seriously do not know what's wrong with you.

Adnan Syed Case Dissected—What ACTUALLY Happened The Day Hae Lee Was Murdered?


Tuesday January 13, 1999:

Hae leaves school soon after 2.20pm, after telling Becky she had somewhere else to be. She is due to pick up her cousin from the Campfield Early Learning Center at about 3.15 pm…but she never shows up. Around 5.15 pm Hae's family contacts the police to report her missing, and Officer Adcock is dispatched to their home at approximately 5.30 pm. Thereafter, Adcock calls both Adnan and Aisha, who was Hae's best friend.

NOTE: So—why would cops respond so quickly? Usually a call about an 18-year-old who's gone AWOL would take a significantly longer amount of time than mere hours in order to launch a police investigation....

Undisclosed—So THIS Is Why Jay Kept Lying His Ass Off About That Day With Adnan

Well, turns out that just six months before Hae disappeared, there was another Woodlawn High student—by the name of Jada Denita Lambert—who had also disappeared. Lambert's body was subsequently discovered in the woods—she had been strangled to death.

Sound familiar? Seems it certainly did to the cops, which is why they were so quick to respond to the call about another missing teenage female student.

At the time of Hae's disappearance, the identity of Lambert's murderer was still unknown—it took three years for police to identify the killer as Roy Davis, following a DNA match from another crime scene. Davis is one of the individuals the Innocence Project is claiming could be the source of previously untested DNA from Hae's crime scene.

Could Hae's Secret Diary Hold The Key To Adnan's Innocence?

Adcock calls the Owings Mills Mall Lenscrafters, and they inform him that Hae has failed to show up to work that day.

Adcock then attempts to contact Don, Hae's current boyfriend, and Lenscrafters co-worker—but is unable to connect with him until around 1.30 am on Jan 14—Don tells Adcock he hasn't seen, or spoken, to Hae since January 12. Don goes on to tell Adcock that he'd been working at the Hunt Valley Lenscrafters that day, as he was covering for a staff member, that he finished around 6pm, and got home around 7. Don says that shortly after arriving home, he got a call from the Owings Mills Lenscrafters, where he usually worked, asking about Hae as she hadn't turned up to work.

411 On Baltimore City PD Corruption, Racism, Witness Coercion And Coaching

Which, as Chaudry points out, is kind of weird, don't you think? Hae was Don's girlfriend, they supposedly had plans to hang out after her shift that day—she was going to call him around 10—yet, Lenscrafters call Don and tell him she never showed up to work; he doesn't hear from her when he's supposed to; they don't meet up…. but, he doesn't call her, or page her, or email her, to find out what's up?

NOTE: Interestingly, during all of Adcock's interviews, nobody makes even a single mention of the supposed wrestling match the State claimed Hae was planning to attend that night.

Thursday January 14:

An ice storm moves in around 3 or 4 am, making road travel conditions very hazardous, and causing schools to shut down for the day.

Did Jay Lie About Adnan Killing Hae, Purely To Save His Own Ass?

Baltimore PD contacts Hae's family to follow up, and they say they still haven't heard from Hae, and they still don't know where she is.

NOTE: This is also the day, according to Jen, that she gets off work and goes to pick up Jay, before helping him dispose of the clothes he was wearing the day before, when he had buried Hae (Jay testified to it being the day before). Jen also claims in her police statement that she remembers it was raining on that day…. which is weird, as there was actually a big winter storm.

Regardless of that, January 14, definitely WAS one of the last days of Ramadan—and, according to three different witnesses, Adnan gave a talk and led prayers at the Mosque that night.

Undisclosed Breaks Down Hae's Last Day, Casts More Doubt On Adnan Syed's Guilt

One of the witnesses even tells cops that he remembers going over notes relating to the presentation, with Adnan, at the Mosque, the night before on Jan 13, the day of Hae's murder—but, he never got to testify to this at trial, so the jury had no idea.

Adnan's father also vividly remembers Adnan's presentation and talk at the Mosque that day, because, he told cops, it was “a very proud moment" for him.

Friday January 15:

School is canceled again, road travel is still hazardous, and the power is out in many places. It's also the 18th birthday of Krista…..Adnan and Hae's friend.

Serial—Bowe Bergdahl, Cowardly Deserter Or Brave Whistleblower?

Krista's parents throw her a party, and a lot of Woodlawn students attend—including Jay, Adnan and Stephanie, who arrive together in the same car.

NOTE: This totally throws into dispute what Jay testified to at trial (GASP!! Noooo! Jay lied about something else? Say it isn't so!!)—that he had only seen Adnan twice since January 13—the first of those times being a couple of days after Hae's murder, when Adnan dropped Stephanie off from school—but, they weren't back in school again until the following Tuesday, for Stephanie, and Wednesday for Adnan), and Jay makes no mention—in any of his seven different accounts of events—of them all going to a party together.

And, let's face it, Jay and Jen going to a party with Adnan, of their own free, happy will, really sort of throws out the whole “Jay was terrified of Adnan" prosecution claim…. along with the “Adnan was threatening Stephanie" bullshit.

Tuesday January 19:

It's MLK Day, and the first day back at school post snow storm. Adnan is not at school however, as it is a religious holiday. People are noticing that Hae is missing, but nobody is really thinking it's a big deal, and the general consensus is that she's probably just run off to be with Don.

Wednesday January 20:

The first day Adnan is back at school since the 13th, and exactly one week since Hae vanished. But, nobody seems particularly bothered still. It's exam time and a half day at school, so the students are not really noticing Hae's absence.

Friday January 22:

It's semester break, and there's no school. Detective O'Shea has taken over the case, and he talks to Don—likely over the phone, but, not one hundred percent certain, as his notes are ambiguous.

Don repeats the testimony he gave to Adcock—that he last saw Hae on January 12—and that she seemed to be happy, but that she was fighting with her mom over phone privileges and breaking curfew.

NOTE: This is also the date the social work seminar occurred, that Cathy-not-her-real-name-actual-name-Kristy referred to in her testimony—so, it's speculated, the actual, real, date that Jay and Adnan went to Cathy-not-her-real-name-actual-name-Kristy's apartment, rather than January 13, as the State claims.

So, it's further possible, the Adnan phone call that Cathy-not-her-real-name-actual-name-Kristy testified to, actually also happened on January 22, and was from O'Shea, ringing around and introducing himself to people involved with the case.

Saturday January 23:

Jay, Adnan and Stephanie all attend another party together, according to Yaser, a family friend of Adnan's, who is also close to a pal of Jay's.

Monday January 25:

The first day of the third school trimester—so everyone is back in school. O'Shea visits Adnan's house and talks to his mom, Adnan is at school, but, according to O'Shea, Adnan calls him later that afternoon. Adnan tells him he was in class, with Hae, up until about 2.15 pm…but he didn't see Hae out of class, till after school, and thereafter he went to track practice

People don't seem too concerned about Hae's disappearance still…One teacher, Mr. Terry, notes Hae wasn't at school on the 25th—and, on the 27th, when she is still absent, Terry writes a note to the attendance office and calls Hae' parents; no-one seems to be treating it like a serious matter though at this point, and the general consensus still, amongst students, is that Hae's run off to be with Don, or to see family in California. Teachers note in records that Hae didn't attend school, but, as one teacher noted, she had a high GPA, so could afford to skip a few days of school without having her grades affected. Students were, in the words of Hae and Adnan's English teacher, Miss Effron, “remarkably unconcerned" about Hae's disappearance—an observation echoed by two other teachers in their police interviews.

In fact, it wasn't until three weeks after Hae's disappearance that a faculty meeting was called to discuss it.

NOTE: There's no cell phone record of Adnan actually making that call to O'Shea, on that date…so, perhaps it happened on another day?

An important part of Adnan's appeal request is ineffective counsel at trial, as nobody contacted Asia McClain, a potential alibi witness, to talk about her claim that she saw Adnan in the library, at the exact time he was supposedly strangling his ex-girlfriend to death.

The State has always shot this down, insisting Asia's claim is incorrect—citing O'Shea's report that Adnan told him he had stayed in school until track practice, so there's no way he could be at the library.

But, hey…. actually READ the report dudes!!! Adnan doesn't actually say that he stayed on the school campus, just that he saw Haw after school.

Oh, and, according to O'Shea's report, he doesn't bother to ask Adnan if he he had asked Hae for a ride after school….. a kinda important part of the investigation, one would think.

Wednesday January 27:

Aisha speaks to O'Shea about January 13—the first record of anyone, aside from Adnan and Don, being officially interviewed by cops.

O'Shea's notes on the interview are glaringly short and concise in detail—noting just two things: Aisha said Hae had told her she was in trouble with her mom, but nothing so significant as to make her want to skip town. And, Aisha said she last saw Hae at the end of class, at 2.15pm, that she was in good spirits, and didn't mention any problems.

Oh, BTW...O'Shea's notes on the interview aren't actually written up until February 14.

NOTE: So, one HUGE question here, what did Aisha tell O'Shea that didn't show up in the February 14 note version of the interview?

Well, you may remember that during the first Undisclosed podcast, Krista said that Aisha told her she had heard from Hae's brother and they couldn't find Hae. Krista asked if anyone had spoken to Adnan, as she had heard him ask Hae for a ride during first period class…. and Aisha said, no, because Hae told her during psychology class, last period of school, that something had come up so she couldn't give Adnan a ride anymore, and therefore she didn't think it actually happened.

Chaudhry shares, “Something that's bothered me about the files from the Baltimore PD, is that almost all the files are dated February 14, that's after Hae was found, and after Adnan was identified as the suspect. Which means, all of this is written in hindsight, meaning the police think they know who the culprit is—you can see the notes kind of reflect that. They are so terse, so devoid of any details…. they basically just say, 'yep, Hae was happy, she wasn't running away, nothing of note to see here.'

“There had to be more than she seemed happy, wasn't planning to run away to California…..there had to be more that would be important to the investigation.. but it's never included in the report."

Thursday January 28:

O'Shea talks to Debbie, who becomes the first major witness in the case—before later being written out of the prosecution's case due to her testimony not fitting with the State's time line of events.

Debbie says she saw Hae at school around 3pm on Jan 13—a claim that cops initially circulate as being factual, and the time that all news reports run with as a fact.

NOTE: This could be why Adnan initially overlooked the importance of Asia McClain as an alibi witness—because he knew Debbie claimed to have seen Hae, still alive, at 3—whilst the State claimed she was dead sometime before 2.40 pm.

On a side note, Debbie seemed to think Don knew where Hae was—and, in some bizarre Nancy Drew attempted maneuver, set up a secret email account to contact him anonymously, and ask if he knew anything about Hae's disappearance. Debbie claims this eventually led to a seven hour long phone conversation between her and Don—during which, they discussed Hae and where she may be. However, by the end of the alleged call, Debbie says that she was convinced Don didn't know where Hae was…and that Don thought maybe Adnan had been responsible for her disappearance.

And, that's when students start to rethink the theory that Hae's probably just hiding out with Don.

Monday February 1:

O'Shea conducts a series of further interviews. He speaks to Hae's French teacher, Ms. Schab, who, according to O'Shea's report, had nothing of much significance to say.

NOTE: According to Schab, she then becomes a go-between for Woodlawn high and the cops, after O'Shea gives her a list of questions to ask students, including ones like, "do you know where Hae and Adnan used to hook-up?"

O'Shea also talks to another teacher, Inez Butler, who tells him Hae was NOT going to a wrestling match that day, and that when she talked to Hae on the 13th, she told her she was having problems at home, and wanted to contact her family in California.

O'Shea also talks to the manager at the Owings Mills Lenscrafters….. who confirms Don was working at the Hunt Valley store that day, but doesn't say how they know that.

NOTE: Is it possible it was just that Don told her that? Well, we'll never know, as cops didn't bother to interview anybody at the other store..and no attempts were made to verify Don's story that he was working there.

Most significantly, O'Shea also talks to Adnan on the phone, for the second time, officially. According to O'Shea's notes—which, once again weren't written up until February 14, after Hae's body had been discovered and Adnan had become a suspect—he quizzes Syed over Adcock's account of their conversation on Jan 13….during which, Adcock claims, Adnan told him Hae was supposed to give him a ride home after school, but he was running late, so, Hae probably left after waiting a short while.

Adnan corrects O'Shea, and says, 'nope didn't say that, I had my own car that day'….this is later used at trial to show Adnan was lying….

As Chaudry points out, “What's interesting is that O'Shea waited till February 1 [to ask about the ride]. O'Shea's report of his interviews with Adnan, were, like the rest of his records, written on February 14. So, again, they're written with hindsight.

"They're written after the body has been found, and after Adnan has been identified as a suspect in Hae's murder. And, this is the first time the ride has been mentioned since Adcock's report…. and, it does raise the question, why didn't he ask on the 25th about it, but, does ask on the 1st?

“Between those two interviews he talked to Aisha, and according to Krista, Aisha knew about the ride request… which raises the possibility that's where O'Shea learned about it."

Tuesday February 2:

O'Shea interviews Yoon Sin—Hae's mom's ex-boyfriend who lives in California. He tells O'Shea that he and Hae's mother were never married, but lived together for a time in 1996, along with Hae and her brother, and that he hasn't seen or heard from Hae since before her disappearance.

Wednesday February 3:

Three weeks since Hae disappeared and there's just one note in the police record for that date—a print out from the database cops use to pull criminal records on individuals. And, the only record they pull is Adnan's.

“What's startling to me about the fact that on Feb 3 they are only pulling Adnan's records," Simpson says, “is that this is before there's any anonymous call made, before [Adnan's] cell phone records are pulled—especially as they have a witness saying the last time she saw Hae, she said 'I'm going to go see Don.' It would make sense that at least Don's records would be pulled too… so, it's really odd that only Adnan's records would be pulled at this time."

Thursday February 4:

The Baltimore Sun issues a request for information on a missing woman—Hae Min Lee. Their subsequent report notes that according to cops, Hae was last seen around 3pm at Woodlawn High. She was supposed to pick up her 6-year-old niece and go to work, but she did not do either.

NOTE: Once again, no mention of the wrestling match….

Also, the date of the first TV report about Hae going missing, something Jen references remembering in her first official police interview on February 26—as, she bizarrely tells cops, Jay came up her whilst she was drinking with her friend Nicole in a bar and said “they just said Hae's body is missing, I just saw it on the TV."

The cops ask Jen what she means by this, and she quickly corrects herself, saying, “Oh, I mean, she's missing…"

Meanwhile, Jen goes on to tell cops that she told Nicole she knew who had murdered the girl they were taking about on TV….however, cops don't bother to talk to Nicole—at least, according to records.

Saturday February 6:

Cops use dogs to search the woods surrounding Woodlawn High. A map of the search area, included in police records, shows they suspected a possible link to the [at this time still unsolved] Lambert murder case from six months prior.

Monday February 8:

Adnan makes a cellphone call to O'Shea, but, no details of what that call was about are included in his records.

O'Shea seizes Hae's computer to examine it for evidence. Detective John Rau, of the Computer Crimes Unit, requests computer records from AOL in reference to Hae's email account. However, a week later Rau informs Detective MacGillivary that he was asked to cease his investigation after the case was turned from that of a missing person to homicide, and transferred from Baltimore County to Baltimore City.

From that point on, there is no mention of the computer, or Hae's email account and any other online records, being searched. And, that's also the time when Hae's computer, along with her floppy disc secret diary, mysteriously disappeared out of police evidence, forever, never to be found again.

Tuesday February 9:

We conclude with the discovery of Hae's body. Baltimore PD gets a call from the mysterious Mr. S, who claims that he was desperate to pee while driving through Leakin Park, so he pulled over, walked into a wooded area and discovered the partially buried body of a young Asian female. The PD thinks his story weird, and he quickly becomes a suspect. They pick him up from his work, drive him to the park, he takes them to the body and haul him off to be interviewed.

There's scant evidence available for examination when it comes to Hae's body and the crime scene, however—as, bizarrely, the on-scene coroners didn't make any written notes at the time, by order of the State.

Actually, scrap that… not quite so bizarrely, it turns out—because, if there's no written reports then the State doesn't have to turn them over to the defense during pre-trial discovery.

There is one brief note of the coroners findings though, which was written up at a later date by a third party.

It reads:

Body partially buried. Body partially exposed. Could not see from street. They found two pieces of trace evidence—bright orange fiber towards shoulder area and another fiber that was fluorescent blue. The orange fiber was synthetic and on top of body, the other was underneath. Fiber does not belong to the victim's clothing.
Rocks piled on her. Area had been dug out. Dirt over it. Large rocks on body, one on hand. Keep animals from dragging body off. Way body is exposed, animal activity.
Soil samples, typical of wooded area, highly organic. Collected plants, green plant material, couldn't tell if tool used.

Meanwhile, despite a ton of debris scattered all around the roadside, surrounding the area—only three items were actually taken into evidence—and, they were all found in the immediate proximity of Hae's body.

ONE: Feathers—or a feather (referred to in both singular and plural in reports)—found two feet away from Hae's body on a log. There are no pictures of the feathers however, no descriptions, nothing… so, no idea if they were bird feathers, or from a down jacket.

TWO: A rope—or a section of clothes line—or a section of insulated wire (depending on which report you are reading)—found 5 inches from Hae's body, which was never tested for DNA, and has since gone missing from evidence….. which is insane, when you think the victim was STRANGLED…. so, it's conceivable it could have actually been the murder weapon—and, as noted in the autopsy report, there were marks on Hae's neck that were consistent with the killer either wearing gloves or using a ROPE.

THREE: A brandy bottle—found 8 inches from Hae's body, that contained human skin cells which were successfully retrieved from the neck of the bottle—BUT, never tested for DNA!!!!

Hmmm….. wonder why?

Well, by that time, the cops had already quizzed all of Adnan's friends about whether he drank, to which the majority replied no, and a few said he had had a drink on New Year's Eve recently, but that's it. So, it's highly unlikely Adnan would have been suddenly chugging down bottles of brandy in the woods as he's burying his ex-girlfriend's body….

So, hey, let's NOT test it, just in case somebody else's DNA shows up, and just confuses our nicely put together case, yeah?

According to reports around that time, this was pretty standard practice for Baltimore PD—don't send for DNA testing if you think the results will “complicate" the investigation…. i.e.: let the suspect you've fingered for the crime off the hook.

One piece of evidence that was tested for DNA though in September/October of 1999, was a shirt with a blood stain that was discovered in Hae's car—it came back as a match only for Hae's blood.

Oh, and get this…. the examiner noted in their report that the seal on the container that held Jay's blood sample was intact upon arrival at his office, but the seals on both Adnan's and Hae's had been broken…. So, had DNA testing actually been carried out on other evidence previous to the shirt, but was subsequently buried and never disclosed?

So, here's a summary of murder case fabrication 101, Baltimore PD style:

Pick your suspect, totally fabricate a time line to fit with your theory of how the murder went down, coerce witnesses into giving testimony backing that up, coach them into giving details that fit, get them to change their testimony time and time again as the pesky facts of what actually happened start contradicting your fabricated time line, remove any witness accounts or statements that conflict with your theory from public record, don't interview any witnesses you suspect may back up your suspect's testimony, don't bother interviewing any witnesses that could potentially provide an alibi for your suspect, and, pick and chose what evidence to DNA test (or which test results to disclose) in order to seal your fabricated murder case tightly closed.

Nice work guys!