T he rise of podcasts, YouTube channels, and even TikTok accounts has forever changed the way we consume news. Some of these accounts have completely dedicated themselves to becoming a major source of true crime information. From unsolved mysteries of past decades to keeping us up to date with current missing persons, true crime storytellers can be found on every media platform. One example, Texas True Crime , is a podcast dedicated to shining a light on everything crime-related that takes place in the state of Texas. Its producer and host, Jessica Moore, is a Texas native who has always been interested in true crime podcasts. Moore began releasing episodes in January of this year and puts out a new episode every other week. “I think true crime has become more popular recently because we have access to media and information from around the world at our fingertips. You can easily go online and read about almost any case that interests you,” Moore said. “Before the internet, people really only knew about what was happening in their community or the few things that were reported on news broadcasts. You were limited. That’s not the case anymore.” In the past, local and national news stations did a relatively good job at reporting basic facts, but today’s average podcast can bring the story closer to home. It’s not uncommon while listening to today’s true-crime storytellers to be struck with a moment of heartbreaking clarity. These were not mere stories. There was no music, no suspense, and the people involved were not just characters. The depth of the details available through today’s podcasts remind us that these were real individuals who experienced laughter and tears and had families who loved them, like anyone else. “I think it’s very important to remind others that these are real people and that their lives were changed forever by these events,” Moore said. In her podcast, she is determined to show the human side of tragic characters. “I give information about a person’s background and life to show that they were real-life, living, breathing people. Not just characters in a story.” It is that type of connection that draws today’s average listener. For Karl Richter and Mallory Wyatt of the Texarkana Gazette , and the minds behind local podcast True Crime Texarkana , understanding the audience was key. “Based on our web graphics, crime stories are our most-read stories. So that’s partly where this [ True Crime Texarkana ] came from, being aware of what our audience wants,” said Richter. “I had been doing the interview podcast On the Line for about a year, so I felt it was a good time to get another one started.” The podcast premiered in late June of this year and has three released episodes, with more coming in the following months. True Crime Texarkana is currently covering an unsolved tragedy that took place in Texarkana, Arkansas, in 1981, known as “The Alexander Children Murders” that continues to captivate listeners. Collaboration with Calvin Seward, a retired police captain from the Texarkana Arkansas Police Department—who was already working the unsolved case—created a clear path for the subject of the new podcast. The Alexander children’s murders were a tragedy involving 14-year-old Karen Alexander and her younger brother, 13-year- old Gordon Alexander, who were attacked in their own home.
(L-R) Chrismtas photo of 14-year-old Karen Alexander and 13-year-old Gordon Alexander who were attacked in their home in 1981.
April 8, 1981, Texarkana Arkansas Police Department officers at the Alexander crime scene located at 501 Baden Street.
The True Crime Texarkana podcast is currently covering the unsolved tragedy of the Alexander children’s murders.
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