America’s Last Public Execution

Rainey Bethea, last American to die in public. Rainey Bethea probably isn’t an instantly familiar name, but he holds as unique a status in American crime as names like William Kemmler (the first man to be electrocuted) or Martha Place (Old Sparky’s first female victim). But his place in the annals of American crime isn’t secured by his...

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Killer Clown John Wayne Gacy

The Chicago, IL neighborhood of Norwood Park is called home by some of Chicago's finest. Teachers, police officers, firefighters, and other blue-collar workers flock to the community known for its immaculate lawns, lush trees, and churches. A typical middle class, Mid-Western neighborhood, that in 1974 would also be called home to another man. A...

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Andrés Escobar 0 – 1 Death

It was that time of the year when soccer lovers had their eyes wide open in front of a television watching the 1994 World Cup in the U.S. Also, it was that time of the year when mobsters had placed their bets on the games, and no one would mess with their plans. During the Soccer World Cup of 1994, Colombia was one of the teams that had proven...

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The Deadly Soap Maker

In your right palm I see a prison, in the left one a criminal asylum.” That's what a Roman furtune teller predicted when she read Leonarda's future. Her forecast would prove her right some years later. Leonarda Cianciulli Leonarda Cinciulli has been one of the most famous criminal minds in Italy. After committing only three murders, which...

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Killing Bobby

The thing about monsters is that, most of the times, they know how to deceive everyone and make them believe that they are normal, every-day people. Most of them do not think themselves as criminals or mad and they don't meet any difficulty playing their part since they don't believe that they have one. Bonnie Heady, however, was not one of them...

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The Horrific Case of Arsenic Incorporated

It’s time to reflect on one of the worst murder cases in Philadelphia history. This is the story of the counterfeiter (Herman Petrillo), the insurance guy (Paul Petrillo), and the fake doctor (Morris Bolber). It was the 1930s and the Depression era when the Petrillo cousins along with Dr. Bolber started their fraud and serial murders....

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The Original Night Stalker

Excitement's Crave All those mortal's surviving birth Upon facing maturity, Take inventory of their worth To prevailing society. Choosing values becomes a task; Oneself must seek satisfaction. The selected route will unmask Character when plans take action Accepting some work to perform At fixed pay, but promise for more, Is a...

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The Train Killer

Sylvestre Matuschka, the Hungarian Train Killer. As our regular readers know, I do like to bring you a mixture of the classic true crime stories and some that are distinctive, even singular. The case of former Hungarian Army officer, mass murderer and self-taught demolitions expert Sylvestre Matuschka has to rank as one of the strangest that...

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Operation Miranda

Leonard Lake Leonard Lake's sexually deviant behaviors can be traced all the way back into his childhood. Allegedly encouraged by family to take nude photos of his sisters, Lake's fascination with pornography soon spiraled into extorting his sisters and forcing them to perform sexual favors on him. It shouldn't come to much surprise that as...

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Killer Clowns

There's no reason to fear clowns, right? Coulrophobia, or the fear of clowns, is a common phobia among young children and it carries over into adulthood for at least 12 percent of the adult population. It's often puzzling to some people why clowns may be considered scary to others, after all it's the job of a clown to make people smile and...

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About Sword and Scale

Sword and Scale covers the underworld of criminal activity and the demented minds that perform the most despicable and unthinkable actions.

The Sword and Scale Podcast debuted in 2013 and is available on iTunes. Get to know more about Sword and Scale at our About Us page.