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True Crime Stories

A remarkable discovery has emerged in astrophysics: key properties of the universe have just the right values to make life possible. Most scientists prefer to explain away this uniqueness, insisting that a number of unseen universes must therefore exist, each randomly different. Astrophysicist Bernard Haisch joined George Knapp in the first half of the show to propose the alternative—that the special properties of our universe reflect an underlying intelligent consciousness.

In the second half of the program, veteran journalist Chris Taylor talked about how the Star Wars franchise has conquered our culture with a sense of lightness and exuberance, while remaining serious enough to influence politics, and spread a spirituality that appeals to religious groups and atheists alike.

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True Crime Stories

Show Archive
Date: Wednesday - August 20, 2014
Host: George Noory
Guests: Dawna Kaufmann, Bill Murphy

Author and researcher Dawna Kaufmann, who writes true crime books with Dr. Cyril H. Wecht, the well-known medical examiner, discussed some of the most high profile crimes, criminals, and deaths of the past decade including OJ Simpson, Jon-Benet Ramsey, and Anna Nicole Smith. She also shared several mysteries presented in their new book, Final Exams. One of them concerned "the Willing Victim," a one-of-a-kind case in which a successful Manhattan motivational speaker named Jeffrey Locker induced an inner-city stranger to kill him. Another, she titled "the Girl in the Pink Hat," a sad account of a nine-year old girl who was kidnapped from her Florida home. While police focused their suspicions on the father and grandfather, it turned out that a sex predator who lived nearby committed the crime, and had buried the girl alive.

Kaufman also recounted the case of a Pittsburgh-area doctor, Andrew Bagby, whose bullet-ridden body was found in a park. When Dr. Wecht performed his autopsy on the young man, he assumed that there would be an arrest-- Bagby's former girlfriend, another physician, was the likely suspect. But she fled to Canada to avoid arrest, and Dr. Bagby's parents were forced to partner up with her in order to see their grandchild.

Anna Nicole Smith idolized Marilyn Monroe, and they both had the dangerous drug chloral hydrate in their systems when they died, even though the drug is no longer prescribed in the US, Kaufman noted. Regarding the O.J. Simpson case, she reported that the testimony of Jill Shively (who saw O.J. driving away from the crime scene) was not admissible in court because she had sold her story to the tabloids. In the Jon-Benet Ramsey murder, she and Wecht concluded that it was an inside job, but a judge found there wasn't enough evidence to arrest the parents.

Death of Frank's Box Creator

First hour guest, paranormal investigator Bill Murphy talked about the work of Frank Sumption, who recently passed away. Sumption was known for creating "Frank's Box," an electronic contraption said to communicate with spirits from the Other Side. He built around 180 of the boxes in different variations. The concept was that by sweeping over different radio signals, a supposed entity or spirit would form messages and predictions through the various radio fragments. He mentioned that there is a Go Fund Me campaign to raise money for Sumption's funeral expenses. Murphy also talked about his 2007 "Pearl Experiment" which attempted to create a thought-form manifestation.

News segment guest: Lauren Weinstein

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Wednesday August 20, 2014

  • Moms
    A Tribe Called Quest