Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods
Cops: Public & Private

America's first "private eye" and founder of Pinkerton's Detective Agency

She connived her way into becoming a New Orleans cop, now she sits on death row for executing three people, including another cop.

Enterprising Jeanette Maier, along with her mom and daughter, run a New Orleans bordello for the rich and powerful which becomes the focus of FBI probe.

New York City's killer cop

Florida criminal case goes to U.S. Supreme Court & affects the entire legal system, including release of thousands of convicts.

Are much too common as spotlight focuses on techniques used by unscrupulous investigators. Some shocking examples.

Was he a manipulative psychopath who exploited the opportunity that Waco presented, as many FBI agents claim, or was he just a deluded religious leader whose private play was suddenly exposed on the world's stage?

First person account of the ATF raid at Waco by former ATF agent, Chuck Hustmyre.

The particulars of legendary D.B. Cooper's clever airborne crime and daredevil getaway have been pondered, picked over and recapitulated for over three decades now.

He hijacked and threatened to blow up an airliner, extorted $200,000 from Northwest Orient, then leaped from the airborne 727 with 21 pounds of $20 bills strapped to his torso and vanished. The crime was perfect if he lived, perfectly crazy if he didn't.

Either case, D.B. Cooper's nom de crime--no one knows his real name--may be the most recognized alias among western felons since Jack the Ripper.

Remarkable budding female Sherlock Holmes, Frances Glessner Lee, created engaging and shocking visual masterpieces in doll-sized crime scenes so that police could learn investigative techniques.

Lee was made an honorary captain in New Hampshire's state police and was the first woman member in the International Association of Chiefs of Police. She helped created the first Department of Legal Medicine at Harvard.

Her friend Erle Stanley Gardner wrote her obituary: "Captain Lee had a strong individuality, a unique, unforgettable character, was a fiercely competent fighter, and a practical idealist."

After murdering a man, brilliant American surgeon contributes to literary masterpiece from an insane asylum.

Forensic bite marks is the only evidence in this remarkable case.

The hero of the Untouchables and his tragic undoing.

The convict who turned into a master detective

The American traitor once said the best way to hide a lie is by wrapping it in layers of truth. It's a trick that not only serves spies, but also clever Hollywood scriptwriters. Such is the case with The Good Shepherd, a cloak-and-dagger thriller that purports to tell the story of the Central Intelligence Agency's early days as seen through the eyes and career of Edward Wilson, the movie's main character. Played by Matt Damon, Wilson is patterned after the legendary spy-catcher, James Jesus Angleton.

Decorated New Orleans cop orders a hit on a young mother of three.

World's most powerful lawman.

Who killed this tough, powerful man? And whatever happened to his body? Anthony Bruno looks at this perennial mystery and comes up with some answers.

The never before told personal stories of heroic rescues by New Orleans cops in the aftermath of Killer Katrina.

The Bandit Queen of India is eventually elected to Parliament.

Federal agents spent a fortune at Ruby Ridge to kill a mother of three children with a baby in her arms, her son and her Labrador dog for what amounted to minor crimes by her husband. The lawsuits after the fact cost the Feds another couple million. The whole sordid story of government agents run amok.

Who were the real-life models for this most brilliant fictional detective?

When this Tulia, Texas undercover drug agent busted 10% of the black population, his past & his methods were given a second look.

A special federal law enforcement team that just won't quit. From Butch Cassidy's gang to murderous motorcycle gangs, the Marshals span the history of America. A look at some of their most famous cases.

Fascinating Characters

The story of a world-class master thief

The intrigue behind the capture of the fugitive Nazi architect of the extermination of millions of Jews.

Quite by accident, federal agents learned of his terabytes of electronic files was Pellicano's work as Hollywood's wiretapper to the stars, illegally intercepted telephone conversations of the rich and famous. Some of these wiretaps were ordered by powerful attorneys and executives seeking an unfair advantage in legal disputes. Some of the intercepted conversations concerned personal matters, like divorce and child custody disputes. Much of it was business as usual, Hollywood-style. All of it was obtained illegally.

What became known, as "the Donnelly Massacre" was the culmination of a 30-odd years feud between one Irish immigrant family and their Irish immigrant neighbors. It reeks of obsessive pride and prejudice. It is a landmark example of an ancient and bitter religious opposition in one country spreading thousands of miles across an ocean to affect human lives in another.

Imagine that you could earn nearly a million dollars for every year you spent in prison with the understanding that you would likely get out in the prime of your life. Would you take that $15 million deal to make a movie of your life?

Suppose you could live like royalty behind bars, in almost total control, with guests free to come and go as they pleased, cellphones, TV, gourmet food and fine wine to eat and drink. Would that make the deal worth 20 years of your life?

Sobraj is a con man, jewel thief, drug dealer and murderer, but one who lived a life of adventure and intrigue that made him a media celebrity.

She fought the battle against illegal search and seizure and changed the U.S. forever.

Despite his denials, year after year, evidence piled up indicating that he enjoyed a very special relationship with the Mafia.

Small-time London crooks carry off one of the most audacious crimes in British history.

At 27 she was the talk of Hollywood. Some of LA's most beautiful women worked for her high-end prostitution service, specifically catering to the elite. One of the city's most prosperous madams, netting millions in just a couple years, suddenly found her business was under threat.

Now the intrepid Heidi has revealed plans for a stud farm, a brothel with 20 $250/hour male prostitutes that cater to women.

Successful but ethically-flawed author creates a literary furor with his fake autobiography of billionaire tycoon Howard Hughes.

Gentleman pirate of New Orleans

The life and adventures of America's most unique and successful bounty hunter, the leader of the Seekers, an elite Mission Impossible-style team

Assange, founder of, has proven to be at least as controversial as his site. While defending WikiLeaks from embarrassed governments, Assange is also defending himself against allegations of sex crimes in Sweden.

Two wealthy men born of privilege cook up a swashbuckling scheme to take over an oil-rich African country.

A psychopathic cab driver's bloody bank robbery scheme leads to a nearly two-decades long legal game of cat and mouse with prosecutors seeking the death penalty.

The downfall of the flamboyant super-celebrity reads like Greek tragedy. In his quest for forbidden love, his fall from grace was stunningly swift and complete.

The fascinating career of the agent of death for 387 people, including the most famous executions.

Charismatic, handsome and determined despite his youth, fights against the authority in Rome. His bandit deeds put him in the same category as Robin Hood, and his daring exploits against the establishment and the Sicilian mafia raise him up to local hero status. He even writes to President Truman to ask that Sicily be annexed by the United States.

Mother and son team were bold con artists and murderers, as well as lovers. Adrian Havill, author of the definitive book on the case, writes up the highlights of their audacious criminal career.

It could have been a scene from "The Sopranos" except it was real. Two members of the Mafia and an associate had met to discuss the shakedown of a Hollywood movie star. The actor was Steven Seagal, a martial artist who specialized in playing tough-guy heroes on the big screen.

It wasn't Seagal's first meeting with these men. In December 2000, the same group had showed up in Toronto on the set of Seagal's film, Exit Wounds. This time they brought along 350-pound Richard "the Lump" Bondi, an enforcer for the family, hoping to get their point across to the actor. Seagal had severed his relationship with Jules Nasso, having decided to stop making violent action films on the advice of his spiritual guru. But Ciccone and company weren't interested in Seagal's spiritual awakening. Nasso had already lined up four action-adventure projects for himGenghis Khan, Blood on the Moon, Smash and Grab, and Prince of Central Parkall of them in the slam-bang style that had made Seagal famous. The Gambino family wanted him to keep making action films, and they also wanted him to pay them $150,000 for each of his futures projects.

Several unusual men following one criminal mastermind choose a daring prison escape rather than face the rest of their lives behind bars. Planned so carefully, things ultimately go awry. Author Gary King gives us the highlights of his book on this recent case.

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