The true crime podcast where women aren’t just the victims. Every week, we examine the psychology, motivations, and atrocities of female felons. New episodes come out every Wednesday. Female Criminals is a production of Cutler Media and part of the Parcast Network.
On Monday, January 29th, 1979, 16-year-old Brenda Spencer shot 350 rounds at a San Diego Elementary School from her front window. Her family and neighbors were stunned by her violent actions. Brenda's response: "I don't like Mondays. This livens up the day."Sponsors!Upstart - Hurry to Upstart.com/CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is. Checking your rate only takes a few minutes—and won’t affect your credit!
Before Parkland, before Sandy Hook, was the 1979 mass shooting at Grover Cleveland Elementary School in San Diego. At 8:30AM on Monday, January 29th, 16-year-old Brenda Spencer lined up her .22 rifle and started firing at the schoolyard across the street from her house. Why would the shy teenager go on such a horrific rampage?Sponsors!Best Fiends - Download the 5-star rated mobile game app for FREE on the Apple App Store or Google Play. That’s FRIENDS without the R, Best Fiends!The Bouqs - Send the Mom’s Day flowers your mom deserves from The Bouqs. Order today and get an extra 20% off when you enter code FEMALE.Pair of Thieves - Get 20% off your first order when you go to PairOfThieves.com/CRIMINALS.
“Symbionese Liberation Army” Pt. 2 - Patricia Hearst
After two months in captivity, Patricia Hearst sided with her kidnappers, the Symbionese Liberation Army. By the end of 1974, the newspaper heiress turned full-blown urban guerrilla.Sponsors!The Bouqs - Get an extra 20% off when you go to Bouqs.com and enter code FEMALE. Upstart - Hurry to Upstart.com/CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is. Checking your rate only takes a few minutes—and won’t affect your credit! That’s Upstart dot com slash CRIMINALS!
In February of 1974, 19-year-old Patricia Hearst was kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army. Her captivity would become one of the most well-known cases of Stockholm Syndrome in history.Sponsors!Robinhood - Robinhood is giving listeners of Female Criminals a FREE stock like Apple, Ford, or Sprint to help you build your portfolio. Sign up at Criminals.Robinhood.com.
She climbed to the top of New York City’s real estate scene by bullying and blackmailing, earning her the moniker "The Queen of Mean." In the late 1980s, when Leona Helmsley was put on trial for fraud and tax evasion, all the little people she'd stepped on over the years lined up for their chance to take a swing at Leona. Sponsors!Best Fiends - Download Best Fiends for free on the Apple App Store or Google Play!Upstart - Hurry to Upstart.com/CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is. Checking your rate only takes 2 minutes—and won’t affect your credit!
Born in 1920 to poor, Jewish immigrants, Leona Helsley spent the first 30 years of her life doing whatever it took to rise above her humble origins. She changed her name, bullied her competitors, and, if necessary, skirted the corners of the law, engaging in blackmail and fraud.Parcasters - One of the greatest true crime cases in ever told is also one of the most impactful events in our nation’s history! Can you guess which one it is? Find out now at parcast.com/assassinations
In 1992, nearly a decade after the murder of Kent Leppink, Alaska's Cold Case Unit finally uncovered the evidence needed to charge Mechele Hughes Linehan and John Carlin for his death. But who should face the murder charges? The man who pulled the trigger? Or the woman he killed for? SPONSORS!Upstart - Hurry to Upstart dot com slash CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is. Checking your rate only takes 2 minutes—and won’t affect your credit!
In this special crossover episode with the host of Crimes of Passion, we explore one of Alaska's most notorious cold cases from 1994. Within a year and a half of moving to Alaska, Mechele Linehan was engaged to Kent Leppink. And Scott Hilke. And John Carlin. When one of her fiances was murdered, police weren't sure which player in the bizarre love triangle was responsible.Sponsors!Robinhood - Robinhood is giving listeners of Female Criminals a FREE stock like Apple, Ford, or Sprint to help you build your portfolio. Sign up at Criminals.Robinhood.com.Upstart - Hurry to Upstart.com/CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is.
She was out of options and desperately searching for a way back to her home to America. In 1945, Iva Toguri, stepped forward and claimed to be the infamous Japanese war broadcaster “Tokyo Rose”. Her bold decision landed her a trip back home, but it came with a steep price.Parcasters - If you haven’t checked out our new show, Crimes of Passion, you’re missing out! Listen to our newest episodes on the Jodi Arias trial at parcast.com/passion
A Japanese American found herself stranded in Japan after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, unable to return to the United States. To make ends meet, she started working for Radio Tokyo in the early 1940s, broadcasting to American GIs. But did working for the Japanese turn her into a traitor?Sponsors!BetterHelp - Female Criminals listeners get 10% off your first month with discount code CRIMINALS. Go to BetterHelp.com/Criminals.Robinhood - Robinhood is giving listeners of Female Criminals a FREE stock like Apple, Ford, or Sprint to help you build your portfolio. Sign up at Criminals.Robinhood.com.
In 1983, she was accused of shooting her three children in a twisted attempt to prove her love to her boyfriend. The Oregon district attorney feared that Diane Downs would walk free, due to a lack of evidence. All his hopes rested on a star witness: 8-year-old Christie Downs, Diane's oldest daughter.Parcasters - To learn about an iconic event in American history, check out our our new episode on John McCain on HOSTAGE, wherever you get your shows. Listen now at parcast.com/hostageSponsors!BetterHelp - Go to BetterHelp.com/Criminals to get 10% off your first month with discount code CRIMINALS. Native - For 20% off your first purchase, visit NativeDeodorant.com and use promo code CRIMINALS during checkout!SugarBearHair - Go to SugarBearHair.com/CRIMINALS for amazing hair and a healthier you.
She was a mother from Oregon who felt like she never received the love she deserved. In 1983, when Diane Downs finally met a man who gave her the attention she craved, she was willing to sacrifice anything to keep them together. Including her own children.Sponsors! SugarBearHair - Go to SugarBearHair.com/CRIMINALS for amazing hair and a healthier you!Swap.com - Get free shipping on your first purchase when you go to Swap.com/Criminals!Upstart - Hurry to Upstart.com/CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is!
Known for stealing from the rich, and giving to the poor, newspapers called her "The Bandit Queen." But was Wild West anti-hero Belle Starr actually guilty of being a thief, or was she simply married to one? In 1889, her notorious reputation would result in a bloody ending only reserved for an American outlaw. Parcasters - Love may have brought Belle Starr to her grave, but she isn’t alone! Learn about more criminal couples on our new podcast CRIMES OF PASSION. Listen today at parcast.com/passionSponsors!Shudder - To try Shudder free for 30 days, go to Shudder.com and use promo code CRIMINALS.SugarBearHair - Go to SugarBearHair.com/CRIMINALS for amazing hair and a healthier you.Swap.com - Go to Swap.com/Criminals and sign up to get free shipping on your first purchase.
She grew up during the Civil War and supported the Confederacy. When Belle Starr married her first husband, a notorious horse thief, she was plunged into a world of outlaws in the postwar era of the 1870s and 80s. Was she a bystander to her husband's crimes? Or complicit in his reign of terror in the Wild West?Sponsors!BetterHelp - Female Criminals listeners get 10% off your first month with discount code CRIMINALS when you go to BetterHelp.com/Criminals.Proven Innocent - Proven Innocent Premieres Friday, February 15th at 9/8c, only on Fox.Torrid - Go to Torrid.com and use Promo Code CRIMINALS15 for $15 off every $50 you spend! That means you can get up to $150 off a $500 order!
After months of torment and abuse in the summer of 1965, Sylvia Likens stopped fighting back. No one would find out what was happening in Gertrude Baniszweski's house of horrors until it was far too late. By the time it’s over, Baniszweski wouldn’t be the only person convicted of manslaughter and murder. Sponsors!BetterHelp - Female Criminals listeners get 10% off the first month with discount code CRIMINALS.Proven Innocent - Proven Innocent Premieres Friday, February 15th at 9/8c, only on Fox.
In the summer of 1965 in Indiana, teenagers Sylvia and Jenny Likens were invited to stay in the home of their friend's mother, Gertrude Baniszewski. Only one of them would leave the house alive.Parcasters - After this episode of Female Criminals, go check out our new show Extraterrestrial and learn about the abduction of Barney and Betty Hill. Listen at parcast.com/extraterrestrial
Mobster Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel was perhaps the only man Virginia Hill ever loved. He also brought her closer than ever to a bloody downfall at the hands of the Mafia. Shortly before Bugsy’s assassination in 1947, Hill fled to Paris, leading to questions about her knowledge of his impending death.Sponsors!Upstart - Hurry to Upstart.com/CRIMINALS to find out HOW LOW your Upstart rate is! Checking your rate only takes 2 minutes—and won’t affect your credit!
A trusted operative, she ascended to the highest ranks of the Chicago Outfit in the 1930s and made millions of the dollars for the mob, and herself. By the time Virginia Hill was 30, her cutthroat mentality would land her at the top of the FBI’s Most Wanted list. Sponsors!Torrid - Go to Torrid.com and use Promo Code CRIMINALS15 for $15 off every $50 you spend! That means you can get up to $150 off a $500 order!
After one fateful day in 1976, the New York City Queenpin lost her faith in the mob and turned her back on them forever. Brickman was able to bring the mob to its knees and take down kingpins as a police informant from the inside.Sponsors!Candid - Head to CandidCo.com/CRIMINALS to save 25% on your modeling kit.Sun Basket - Go to SunBasket.com/CRIMINALS today to learn more and get $35 off your first order!
Associated with some of New York City’s most infamous criminals, Brickman was involved in the drug empire from the mid-1950s until the 1980s. She served as a courier, sold drugs, and ran her own bookmaking operation. Brickman not only used her family's mob connections, but also climbed the mob hierarchy, searching for the next powerful man she could seduce. Sponsors!Sun Basket - Go to SunBasket.com/CRIMINALS today to learn more and get $35 off your first order!
Today, Lizzie Borden's name is forever associated with the brutal axe murder of her parents. But when she stood trial in 1892, she was known only as a polite, educated society woman. Even with all the evidence pointing towards Lizzie, convincing a jury that a well-mannered woman was a murderer was going to be a difficult task.Sponsors!Caffé Monster - Available in Mocha, Vanilla, and Salted Caramel. Caffé Monster: Chill it down, Shake it up, Enjoy!Candid - Save 25% on your modeling kit when you go to CandidCo.com/CRIMINALS.
Andrew and Abby Borden were found gruesomely slaughtered with a hatchet in their Massachusetts home in 1892. The main suspect was Lizzie Borden, a reserved Sunday school teacher who had been nothing but a loving daughter. Which begs the question - was she capable of killing her father and stepmother? Sponsors!Audible - Get 3 months of Audible for just $6.95 a month by going to Audible.com/CRIMINALS or text CRIMINALS to 500 500.Caffe Monster - Caffé Monster - Available in Mocha, Vanilla and Salted Caramel. Caffé Monster: Chill it down, Shake it up, Enjoy!Kopari - Go to KopariBeauty.com/CRIMINALS to save $5 off your first order when you subscribe! Living Proof - Visit LivingProof.com/CRIMINALS and use promo code CRIMINALS to get a free sample of their award-winning dry shampoo with your purchase.
Between 1960 and 1964, numerous children began disappearing across Manchester, England. The sadistic rapist and torture duo behind the murders? Ian Brady and Myra Hindley. After getting away with murdering four children they wanted to push the limit. They decided they wanted to murder their next victim in front of a live audience. The trial would prove Myra Hindley to be “the most evil woman in Britain.”Sponsors!StoryWorth - For $20 off, visit StoryWorth.com/CRIMINALS when you subscribe!
Myra Hindley would do anything for her boyfriend, Ian Brady. She would even go as far as to murder someone for him. Both from troubled homes in Manchester, England, Hindley and Brady had abusive alcoholic parents. Their relationship would eventually cause Hindley to brutally murder five children between July 1963 and October 1965. Sponsors!Candid - Go to CandidCo.com/CRIMINALS to save 25% on your modeling kit.
From the team behind hit podcasts Serial Killers and Cults, Female Criminals gets into the minds of women who live outside the law. Every Wednesday, we examine the psychology, motivations, and atrocities of female felons. Female Criminals premieres March 21st and new episodes will release every Wednesday.
Find Full Archive of Female Criminals on Stitcher Premium
We now offer our complete AD-FREE archives of episodes six months or older on Stitcher Premium! To get a free month of Stitcher Premium, go to StitcherPremium.com/PARCAST and use the promo code PARCAST.