Murder

Ed Ates at his Cedar Hill home on June 1, 2019.
Crowdsourcing Justice

Jul 23, 2019 By Michael Hall

How does a man wrongly convicted of murder get released twenty years later? It helps to have a wife who loves you, a podcaster who believes in you, and an army of amateur sleuths who won’t stop digging for the truth.

Joe Exotic: A Dark Journey Into the World of a Man Gone Wild

May 13, 2019 By Leif Reigstad

He called himself the Tiger King and plastered his face on highway billboards in Texas and Oklahoma. He bred big cats, bears, baboons, and more. He lived, with a parade of partners, on the grounds of his private zoo. He threatened a rival with murder—repeatedly, on YouTube—and tried to hire a hit man to do the deed.

Waco Murders Collage
The Murders at the Lake

Jul 13, 2016 By Michael Hall

In 1982 three teenagers were killed near the shores of Lake Waco in a seemingly inexplicable crime. More than three decades later, the tragic and disturbing case still casts a long, dark shadow.

A Question of Mercy

Feb 11, 2014 By Pamela Colloff

In 1998 famously tough Montague County district attorney Tim Cole sent a teenager to prison for life for his part in a brutal murder. The punishment haunts him to this day.

The Unresolved Murders of Texas Prosecutors

Apr 1, 2013 By Ross Dubois

A Texas district attorney and his wife were found dead at their home, gunned down by unknown assailants, less than two months after an Assistant DA in the same office was shot outside the courthouse. There are no conclusive suspects, but the signs are pointing towards gang violence.

Free Richard Lafuente!

Jan 21, 2013 By Michael Hall

They say he ran over Eddie Peltier with his El Camino on a North Dakota Indian reservation in 1983. He says he didn’t do it, and the evidence is overwhelmingly on his side—yet the Plainview native has languished in federal prison for twenty years. It’s long past time for justice to be done.

Who Killed Mary Eula Sears?

Jan 21, 2013 By Michael Hall

In 1982 a man named Wayne East was convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of one of Abilene’s most prominent citizens. To this day, he maintains his innocence. And one member of the victim’s family believes him.

Free to Kill

Jan 20, 2013 By Gary Cartwright

Once, the State of Texas was going to put Kenneth McDuff to death as payment for his crimes. Instead, it set him free to murder again.

Blood Will Sell

Jan 20, 2013 By Skip Hollandsworth

The richest man ever tried for murder has found the Lord, along with a new career peddling hand cream. Are you buying the latest incarnation of Cullen Davis?

Innocence Found

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

Anthony Graves had been behind bars for eighteen years when the prosecutors in his case abruptly dropped all charges and set him free. How did it happen? What happens next?

Innocence Lost

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

Anthony Graves has spent the past eighteen years behind bars—twelve of them on death row—for a grisly 1992 murder. There was no plausible motive nor any physical evidence to connect him to the crime, and the only witness against him repeatedly recanted his testimony. Yet he remains locked up. Did the system fail?

Flesh and Blood

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

The most shocking thing about the murder of the Caffey family in East Texas last year was not how gruesome or inexplicable the crime was. It was that it was masterminded by sixteen-year-old Erin Caffey, a pretty girl who worked at the Sonic, sang in her church, and loved her parents.

Honor Thy Father

Jan 20, 2013 By Skip Hollandsworth

In suburban Fort Worth the frail psyche of a football prodigy collided with the crazed ambition of his dad, who himself had been a high school football star way back when. The consequences were deadly.

Unholy Act

Jan 20, 2013 By Pamela Colloff

No one in McAllen saw Irene Garza leave Sacred Heart that night in 1960. The next morning, her car was still parked down the street from the church. She never came home.

The Science of Murder

Jan 1, 2009 By Michael Hall

Someone killed Melissa Trotter and dumped her body in the Sam Houston National Forest. But according to six forensic experts, that someone was not Larry Swearingen.

A Kiss Before Dying

Feb 1, 2006 By Pamela Colloff

Forty-five years after Betty Williams was shot to death by the handsome football player she had been secretly seeing, her murder haunts her Odessa high school—literally.

Unhappy Trails

Feb 1, 2000 By Ellise Pierce

Although they hate to let anyone get away with murder, Harris County detectives Harry Fikaris and Roger Wedgeworth are finding that cracking unsolved cases is no easy task.

Evil

Jul 31, 1999 By Michael Hall

How serial killer Rafael Resendez-Ramirez struck fear in the hearts of the men and women of Weimar, a tiny Texas town that will never be the same.

Case Open

May 31, 1999 By Joe Holley

Nearly three years after attorney Steve Davis’ body was found, his family still doesn’t know how he died. Thanks to an out-of-court settlement with Comanche County, they probably never will.

Good Fella

Feb 1, 1997 By Gary Cartwright

Now that Joe Chagra is dead, it’s time to clear his name in the 1979 assassination of San Antonio federal judge John Wood.

The Killer Cadets

Dec 1, 1996 By Skip Hollandsworth

David Graham and Diane Zamora were intelligent, young, and in love. And they shared a secret: They had brutally murdered Adreianne Jones.

Thrill Killers

Nov 1, 1996 By Jim Atkinson

Now that the crack epidemic has leveled off and gang violence is down, urban Texas is being terrorized by a new type of criminal: the superpredator. He murders without motive, feels no remorse, and worst of all, seldom gets caught.