The New Yorker celebrates Flowers podcast

Podcasts, especially the true crime variety, are coming into their own. And, in the opinion of this New Yorker review, In the Dark’s in-depth investigation of the Curtis Flowers case may be the best podcast in existence right now.

Readers of this blog will be familiar with the strange saga of Curtis Flowers and the prosecutor who is determined to put him to death. But with the story now gracing the pages of the New York Times and the New Yorker it is only a matter of time until Curtis is reunited with his devoted family. The case against Curtis is built on threats, lies and manipulation.

Ironically, a podcast may be a more effective remedy to this travesty than the legal process. Especially when journalists camp out in small town Mississippi for a full year and gradually win the trust of a fearful community.

Baran and her team moved to Mississippi for almost a year to report the Flowers story. We learn that his case is full of abuses of power, mostly by white officials against black people, from evidence-gathering to jury selection. Local opinion about Flowers’s guilt is largely divided by race. The state’s evidence doesn’t focus on a central incriminating piece of evidence—multiple details are meant to add up to a convincing narrative. Baran investigates those details—including the route that Flowers supposedly walked, the gun he supposedly used, and confessions he supposedly made in prison—and uses them to scrutinize the case as a whole. So far, she’s smashed it to smithereens.

If you have never listened to a podcast just download Stitcher and search for In the Dark, season two.

4 thoughts on “The New Yorker celebrates Flowers podcast

  1. Interesting about podcasts — they can cut both ways, perhaps freeing Curtis Flowers but doing damage to people who might be innocent.. Also, the acceleration of information plus a rush to judgement plus changing sexual mores are combining in a most sinister way to ruin people like Morgan Freeman and many others. Was it flirting or assault? Who defines the difference? How do you identify a credible witness as opposed to someone who wants their 15 minutes of fame? I cringe when I think of how I used to come on to women in the 1970s and early 80s before Bonnie and I got married (and I came on really strong to her in Italy mainly through the exercise of charm, because I sensed that she wouldn’t put up with any nonsense like the “pussy grabber”). And I was drunk when I came on very strong to a lovely and talented woman one night in her home when she had been kind enough to invite me to supper. I was mortified when I sobered up and phoned to apologize. She said, “Ah, it’s OK. You were just being a guy.” Well that doesn’t wash anymore — today she could charge me with attempted rape. I don’t like Roseanne Barr and that Bee woman who called Ivanka Trump the ‘c’ word are just careless with words that instantly go viral and the full weight of societal condemnation lands on them like an avalanche. Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty? Bill Cosby and Steve Wynne and the rest are different because there is credible proof from multiple victims. Senator Al Franken? He was engaging in stupid high jinks in that famous airplane photo probably after too much vodka, but bears no comparison to Cosby drugging womens’ drinks and sodomizing them. And Franken is ruined as a result? I was at my bank a couple of days ago and a lovely female executive named Ansoor had gone out of her way me to get a Mastercard (because of alcohol addiction my credit is really bad) so I can rebuild my credit. I was really thrilled, and like an idiot I said, “In times past I’d give you a hug, but men can’t do that anymore.” She kind of simpered but looked thoughtful. If you’ve got a dick you can’t be too careful these days.

  2. Justice delayed is justice defined, but better late than never. I hope a way can be found for Curtis Flowers to be adequately compensated financially for unspeakable cruelty to which he has been subjected.

  3. Wow Richard Sherbaniuk that was a very cringe inducing (and irrelevant) diatribe. You sound lost. The MRA forum is that way –>

    I just wanted to post that I recently listened to the In The Dark podcast and though I’m on the other side of the pond, it affected me deeply. I found myself shouting at my phone just now, listening to Dougs Evans in the ‘D.A’ episode. It’s devastating and infuriating. The disregard for someone’s life I just can’t understand, I can’t believe it. I came across this blog when I googled to find out more about Curtis – this is amazing work. I hope Curtis is vindicated and like the above poster said, that he is compensated for the appalling miscarriages of justice in his case.

  4. Thank you for your comment, Lynda. I have been getting a lot of attention from Britain lately. You can’t understand Evans apart from his cultural setting. The podcast followed my script very closely in this week’s episode, but they came up with fresh interviews and quantified and documented what anyone who has attended a trial in Winona already knows about racial imbalance in the jury selection process. And then we get this amazing interview in which Evans shares his belief that every juror who ever held out for acquittal in the Flowers case lied to get on the jury. Now, how can all these jaw-dropping revelations impact the judicial process?

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