From Hell and Gone to Serial: True Crime Podcasts | Crime Obsession with Traci Stumpf

From Hell and Gone to Serial: True Crime Podcasts | Crime Obsession with Traci Stumpf


[MUSIC PLAYING] Welcome to “Crime Obsession,”
your true crime talk show. I’m your host Traci Stumpf. And this episode, we’re taking
a look at what makes true crime podcasts so addictive. I’m going to be talking
with Catherine Townsend, the host and producer of the
mesmerizing podcast “Hell And Gone.” And then I’m heading to
the streets to talk to you, the true crime junkies. Join the conversation
on the “Crime Obsession” Facebook group. I want to know your thoughts
on the stories we’re covering and the cases you’re tracking. Now let’s take a look
at some crime headlines that caught my attention. It’s Crime Time. Joining me to
discuss these stories is a voice you probably
recognize from her hit podcast “White Wine True
Crime,” Caitlin Cutt. Hello. Hello. Thank you so much
for being here. I really appreciate it. Thank you for having me. All right. So our first story is
the case of the murdered mother Kelsey Berreth. Details continue to emerge. And they are getting
darker and darker. Here’s a quick summary. Kelsey went missing
last Thanksgiving. And police eventually arrested
her fiancee for alleged murder. Now, I’m purposely
not using his name, because honestly screw him. He doesn’t deserve to be named. You, I’m sure, are all over
this one, as a mom yourself. Yeah. And I– I think what’s been
interesting about this case is the way it’s
unfolded, especially through the mistress. She knew a lot more
in the beginning than she was letting on. TRACI STUMPF: She was definitely
an accomplice in this story. CAITLIN CUTT: Oh, yeah. There’s no question. TRACI STUMPF: Because she
helped clean up the crime scene. He called her and
was like, there’s a mess for you to come clean. And she came down,
drove overnight from Idaho to, you know,
literally clean the walls. Well, what do you
think about the fact that she, in this plea
deal, says that she left DNA evidence behind– Right. –to help the investigation? I mean, (SARCASTICALLY)
thank you. Thank you so much. It’s so helpful. Also helpful– calling the cops! All right. A bit of good news for
you guys, which I know we could all use after that. The Newport Beach
police department have finally made an
arrest in the cold case of 11-year-old Linda Ann O’Keefe
after more than 45 years. Actually, it was
unique what they did. It was on the anniversary
of her disappearance. But they live tweeted– TRACI STUMPF: The day– CAITLIN CUTT: –timeline. TRACI STUMPF: Yeah. CAITLIN CUTT: Almost, like,
taking creative license to this experience. And the cool
thing is they used the internet and ancestral DNA. And I think this
is going to change the way we approach cold cases. I completely agree. [MUSIC PLAYING] And now it’s a
Mug Shot of the Week time, where I scour the
internet for the best mug shot. And without further ado,
let me introduce to you Jonathan Washburn, who
allegedly hit a man in the head with a skateboard
after he took a picture of his unique hairstyle. Wow! Hair style? Styles. And the irony of it all
is that he hit a guy over the head with
his skateboard for taking his photo,
and then he ends up– [LAUGHING] –getting his photo
taken by the cops. CAITLIN CUTT: Yeah. But honestly, it’s a
nice professional shot. And I think he could
use it on Tinder. Mm-hmm. Caitlin Cutt, thank you
so much for being here. Thank you.
– Thanks, girl. You’re so great. Podcast subscriptions have
become a badge of honor for true crime fans. One podcast that I just
binged was “Hell And Gone.” It’s the story of
22-year-old Rebecca Gould, who was brutally murdered
in Arkansas 14 years ago. Now, although many signs
point to her boyfriend Casey, the police ruled him
out as a suspect. The case went cold– that is until my next guest
began hunting for answers. And let me tell you
there were no shortages of targets for this case. Here to talk about
her hit podcast is the journalist and
private investigator Catherine Townsend.
All right. Catherine Townsend,
before we dive into talking about this podcast
that has the world just shook, let’s talk about your
journey into true crime. OK. Well, god, where do I start? OK. Since I was a little girl in– I grew up in Arkansas– I really was obsessed
with solving mysteries. Later, I moved to Los
Angeles and decided that I was going to get a
private investigator license. So three years, 6,000 hours– did that, but always kept
coming back to this case– the Rebecca Gould case that
I did the podcast about. And it was one of
the things that really inspired me to
become an investigator in the first place. It’s a case that
hooks you immediately. I think so. What drew you to it? Well, Rebecca
Gould, the victim– her sister was very good
friends with my sister. And so every time I would
come home over the years, I would hear a little
bit about the case. And everyone in town
seemed to have a theory about who did it, right? And everyone was so
certain about their theory. And, you know, over the
years, I start to wonder– and I’ve said this
a million times– but if everyone
knows who did it, then why hasn’t the
case been solved? And so I started
asking questions. And, you know, there are a lot
of challenges with this case because no one’s been
arrested or charged; it’s a remote area which
literally parts of it are– it’s like
being in a horror movie because it’s so
remote, and there’s no cell reception, stuff like that. Yeah. So here’s– here’s
a question for you. How do you keep yourself
safe in those situations? Because just as a listener,
I was terrified for you. I think a lot of it
comes down to common sense. If I’m meeting
someone I don’t know, I would always try to meet
them in a public place. I would take someone
with me often. Always let people
know where I’m going. Honestly, a lot of
it was sort of just a lot of investigative
experience and knowing what
I could get into. And some– some
was actually luck. What do you say
to people who think that nobody but law enforcement
is capable of investigating a case? [SIGH] Well, a couple of things. First of all, I would say, you
know, when someone tells you, you should not ask a
question, you definitely should ask the question. You know, look, I really respect
people in law enforcement. They have a really tough job. I work with a lot of them. With these particular– some
of these particular, you know, police officers, I felt
like we were in a situation where they were
trying to discourage me from asking questions. And so I think any
investigator is– can fall victim to, uh, instead
of following the evidence, they– they make the evidence
fit their theory instead of the other way around. And that’s, like, the cardinal
rule of investigation. And that’s why a
fresh pair of eyes can be really good
for these cases. Now, you’re the daughter
of a police officer, right? Well, he’s a– he’s actually
a reserve deputy sheriff. Do you feel like that changed
your perspective on this case? Not in the beginning. It was always– I mean, he was sort
of in the background. He’s very smart. So I’d bounce ideas off him. But he didn’t get involved
at all really until– until I found myself
in a situation where I had this
witness who was giving me this– what I considered
crucial information about the case. A couple of days later,
I’m talking to my dad. And– and we’re having
a beer, you know. And, uh, I said,
Dad, are you allowed to take witness statements? And he’s like, I don’t know. I think so. I’ll ask the sheriff. And so, literally, he then
became part of the case. Then he’s helping take
witness statements. And, I mean, we were willing
to do whatever it took. So Catherine, where in
the world are you right now? I’m back in Mountain View. I’m at my dad’s house. And we’re working on season
two of “Hell And Gone.” Ooh, season two. I will say we are starting
to work on a new case. I can’t say too much about it. It’s in the same area
as Rebecca’s case. And just today, we interviewed– OK. I’m not going to cry. We interviewed the victim’s mom. Oh. CATHERINE TOWNSEND: Of course,
this is a 30-year-old case. 16-year-old girl. The victim’s father
had been carrying the torch for a long time. And, uh, he passed away. And the mom, you know,
looked at us and said, he spent his entire life–
like, this is his life’s work. And she put it in a big box. And she gave it to us. And she’s like, we’re
counting on you two. And that makes it all worth it. That makes it all worth it. It really does. Are you allowed
to say what case you’re going to be following? I am not quite allowed to yet. I can’t, but I will say
it’s– its season 2. It’s going to be coming
out probably in May-June. OK. CATHERINE TOWNSEND: It looks
like it’s going to be soon. It’s also the Arkansas
State Police case. So I’m sure they’re
thrilled to see me back. [LAUGHTER] What about the
Rebecca Gould case? Is that on hold? CATHERINE TOWNSEND: No,
we’re still working on it. In fact, we’ve recorded
a couple of updates. Oh, nice. And we have some
very good information, that there was someone
else at the home that day. And we’re sort of– we’re–
we’re digging deep into that. And it’s– it’s complicated
because this person and many people in
this case tangentially work in law enforcement. So we’re– we’re literally
getting into the hornet’s nest with this. God bless. What podcast are
you listening to? Well, um, so I have a few. I love “Teacher’s Pet.” I’ve listened to a little
bit of “Bear Brook.” I’ve listened to, obviously,
“Up And Vanished,” both seasons. I just started
listening to “Monster.” I like– I like a mix. I also really love
podcasts like– like “My Favorite
Murder” that are– you know, that have a sense of
humor about, you know, crime. And I know sometimes people
get funny about that. But the truth is, I mean,
sometimes you’ve gotta laugh or cry in these situations. And, like, after a
day like we had today, I literally just said
to the producer– I’m like, we need to
crack open a beer, and just like sit, and chill. It’s, you know– it’s
very heavy emotionally. Catherine Townsend, thank
you so much for being here. Thank you for all the
work that you’re doing. Thank you for bringing
us a season two. I know we’re all very
excited about it. And make sure you
keep us posted– Thank you. –in the Facebook group with
any Rebecca updates you have. I promise I will.
TRACI STUMPF: OK. Good. Thank you so much
for all your support. Thank you. Now, I’m always looking to
step up my podcast game. So I decided to get
recommendations directly from the true crime fans. Watch. [MUSIC PLAYING] So you are a podcast fan? Yeah, I guess. What’s your favorite
true crime podcast? “Serial” was good. “Serial.” What’s your favorite podcast? “My Favorite Murder.”
[GASPS] – The best.
– Yeah. Have you listened
to “Bear Brook?” I have not. It’s about these kids who
found a body in a barrel out in the woods. What would you do
if you found a body? If I found a body, I want
to say that I would report it to the police right away. I know I’d be the
first suspect so. That makes me question
what I actually would do. Do you have any true
crime podcast that you think I should listen to? Great answer. [CHUCKLING] Oh, I loved “S-Town.”
[LAUGHS] Yeah. It was really engaging
and really good, right? And it was surprising. Yeah. And it was like, you thought
it was going one way. Yeah.
And took a left turn. Yes.
– The definition of surprise. [LAUGHTER]
– Yeah. Can I ask you a couple
questions for our show? You’re so beautiful! I want to talk to you
so much, but I’m running. I know. Do you like true crime? I love true crime. What’s your favorite
podcast in true crime? The one where they talk. It’s going well. “My Favorite Murder” podcast. It’s always just so interesting
how people can either get away with it, or they get caught,
or the mistakes that they make after you kind
of see what you would have done differently. What you would’ve
done different. [LAUGHTER]
[SOFT MUSIC PLAYING] All right. Until next time, my friends. Thank you to Catherine. Make sure you stay tuned for
season two of “Hell And Gone.” Thank you to Caitlin. Check out “White
Wine True Crime.” And thank you to you for
joining us once again. And remember, my
friends, the conversation doesn’t have to end here. Did we miss a podcast
that you love? Do you have a theory
on Rebecca’s murder? Let us know in the Facebook
“Crime Obsession” group using the hashtag #MyCrimeObsession. We’ll see you later. Bye.

8 thoughts on “From Hell and Gone to Serial: True Crime Podcasts | Crime Obsession with Traci Stumpf

  1. I’m excited to check these out. It’s a relief when cases finally get solved. This is happening more and more lately, thanks to genealogy matches.

  2. I sort of understand where your coming from (like he's such a creep why waste my breath on him) BUT Why not name this guy? Get his name out there shame him. Quite often the press's fight hard to get the names of criminals made public.

  3. Que es ESTO? ID it’s 2019. It’s time to get a host that’s not only a crime intellectual but multicultural as well! Geez, don’t you know putting some hot spices on everything makes it soooo much better. This chic is so bland it hurts how boring she is. She is completely out of touch and a tad bit annoying. You will probably save a lot of money at the end and get higher ratings. She is a WASTE OF PAYROLL🙄

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