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This is exactly right. On the murder squad, we discuss details of crimes that are often violent in nature. Listener discretion is advised.
I'm Billy Jensen. I'm Paul Hols. This is the murder squad. Two women killed six years apart. Both women were found murdered in their homes. Both women were found hogtied and both women knew the same man. But only one case has seen justice served so far. The similarities of the murders will make you take notice. And investigators believe the killer may have other victims as well. Our job to identify other murders that Matthew Croll may be responsible for.
This is the murder squad.
So what's going on over there?
So just reading through all of our tips and forwarding them to different places and we got a tip, actually, which I wasn't really expecting from the unsolved murder episode of Carrie Brown, which was that episode that we did, the Alienist inspired episode of a murder from the 90s. And we received an email from a man who runs a Jack the Ripper forum, and he's really dug into the case. And he offered a different possible suspect. And he wrote to us, I firmly believe that the, quote, Danish farmhand was the murderer.
I located an article which featured an old sailor describing a deckhand who left the Aged Mariner with the impression that he was the killer. The seaman went to Ali's defense team with his information, but it appears no one seriously looked into the matter. The old sailor told the press reporter that the Danish fellow had sailed to the Orient. This may be the reason that a decade later, after Dayman came forward with the key, that it was known that the Danish man had died and had left for the Orient after the murder.
So that's pretty interesting that we got a we got a tip from something that was 130 years old. Yeah, no, that's that's amazing. Yeah. I'm kind of kind of curious as to how much information they're able to determine about this Danish farmhand. Yeah, yeah. It's crazy.
So also, another thing that I wanted to do before we get into this case is we've talked before, but I wanted to reiterate this again.
If you're at all attached to law enforcement and you have an unidentified murder victim and you don't have the money or you don't know where to go or what to do in terms of identifying that person, contact us. We will pay for the DNA extraction, will pay for the genetic genealogy. There really are no excuses. And I also wanted to put an assignment at the top here. Everyone look at your hometown, look through your hometown newspapers. If there are still victims that are unidentified, you know, look through names as well.
If there still are victims that are unidentified and the police are just sitting on their hands, write to them about the specific case. Send them the Jensen Hills murder squad, contact info, tweet at them, do whatever. Because we are we are just we've put this call out there and we really, really we see how many unidentified murder victims there still are. And we just want to be able to help. And there really are no excuses anymore.
You know, and I would say at this point in time, any coroner's office or medical examiner's office across the nation, they should be pursuing identifying all their dogs, using the geneology for any any unidentified remains that they've recovered over the decades. They really need to be going after this, this technology, because they will be able to possibly ID many of these doughs and get families answers as to what happened to their loved ones. They may not be murder victims.
They just may be somebody who died after wandering off.
But we need to repatriate those remains back to the families. And geneology can do that in this day and age. Absolutely.
So you have that assignment, first assignment at the top of the show that we've ever done. But now let's go to Antioch, California. And, Paul, this is a case that you worked on, right?
You know, and I initially got involved in this case. It happened in 2003. And I was a supervisor over the criminalistics unit, a crime scene unit. But I ended up doing some Hands-On work early on in the case, as well as doling out the technical assignments for forensic testing. But as more information came in about the case and about the offender, I became much more interested and continued to talk to the investigators because now. As I always do, I kind of inserted myself and it's like, oh, we have a predator here, and so it turns out to be very interesting.
Yeah. So let's start with the details on May 1st. Twenty three. Thirty two year old Heidi Newman woke up and spent the early morning with her boyfriend, Martin, before he left for work at six a.m.. She and Martin had been together. Their home was cozy and safe, and it was safe because they made it that way. The two had been robbed before, so they had an alarm installed and they also had two dogs and the alarm was always armed and the dogs always followed red haired and green eyed, Heidi.
Wherever she went in the house, they were constant companions. Around five 30 a.m., Martin's co-worker, who he commutes to work with, arrived at the house along with another friend. The other friend hadn't shown up for years, but recently he had started dropping by unannounced in the last month and a half, and this day was no different. The three men did methamphetamines and Heidi didn't use drugs. She had a heart condition. And according to Martin, Heidi stayed in the kitchen to do other things and just not be around the drugs.
Martin finished getting ready to work. Then Heidi walked him to the door. And she was wearing her brown sweatpants, white shirt and white slippers, and he and his coworker left in their work truck, but that other friend, the guy that had started coming around, was sitting at the dining room table with the dining room light on. And Martin didn't think his friend would stay long because Heidi had to get ready for a job interview in Walnut Creek at 3:00 that afternoon and was also planning to take the cat to the vet.
Martin had expected Heidi to call during the day like she usually does. But he didn't hear from her, Martin says he arrived home to the two hundred East 16th Street house at three four p.m. He walked inside and set down his lunch pail. Then he went back to the master bedroom once he opened the door. He said he found Heidi. He could see she had been tied up and no longer alive. She was face down and you could see a cord around her neck.
He called the police and waited outside. When law enforcement arrived, they noted no signs of forced entry. They found, Heidi, two dogs and put them outside cause less contamination of the scene. Law enforcement continue to clear the scene. Nothing was out of place in the kitchen, the garage or the rec room. But once they entered the master bedroom, the house was no longer in order, Hyde's body was at the foot of the bed, face down on the water bed.
As Martin had described, she was still wearing her brown sweatpants and white shirt, meaning she had never gotten dressed to leave the house. Her hands were bound behind her back with an appliance cord and plastic fasteners. Her legs bound with plastic fasteners or zip ties. On the ground was an empty gun holster and a bundle of zip ties. Also on the ground was a white portable heater. The cord was wrapped around her hands, ran up her back to her neck.
It was then wrapped around her neck. She had been strangled with a cord, acting as a ligature. There was bruising present on her shoulders and a contusion on her head. Her body showed no definitive signs of sexual assault and no semen was present on the bed. Next to hide his right hip was a roll of brown masking tape. The orange telephone in the room was disconnected and off the hook inside the bindings, around how hands was a piece of yellow rubber glove.
So now, Paul, you were the supervisor here, did you go to the crime scene initially? I did not go to the original crime scene. I ended up evaluating the scene through photographs once. I got much more interested in this case. All right. So just looking at this from somebody that's never seen the photographs before, we see the plastic fasteners or zip ties, which would imply planning, but then you see the use of this heater cord.
What's going on here? What is this telling you about the offender? You know, and I've seen this on other occasions where the offender brings in some type of Bindy. So there is that preplanning element, but then also augments that binding with additional material that is found within the scene itself. So this offender didn't seem to think that the the zip ties were going to be sufficient. And and I actually think as we get further into the story, that there's other aspects to what the offender was trying to replicate in terms of how he wanted to position hide his body.
And as far as sexual assault goes, was this sort of what are you looking at here? I mean, typically what you would find in a situation with a woman that is found bound in her home and murdered, there would be some sort of sexual aspect to this. Just because there wasn't sexual assault doesn't mean it wasn't sexually motivated. Right. And that's when walking into a scene like this initially, it's very tough to determine what the offender's motive is.
You know, this could be a robbery homicide where now he has interest in something of value inside the house and killed, Heidi, in order to be able to get what he wanted.
However, as we learn more details about what is going on with this offender, we will see that there is a sexually motivated aspect to what he is doing, OK?
Law enforcement began to interview the people in his life, starting with Martin. And by all accounts, the two seem to have a happy relationship. He mentioned having a gun, which is a 38 caliber sport arms pistol in the house that was hidden behind items on the bed. But there was no sign of it when police searched the home. Also, when police asked about the zip ties, he admitted that they could have been his. He usually kept them in the garage and held them together with tape.
But at times he would bind them with another tie. And he said he used them for work. When the know he's the one that called the police, were they looking at Martin, obviously, as a suspect right in the beginning, not just at the beginning.
They're getting his statements to figure out did he have motive of opportunity? Now Martin leaves and he ends up getting a solid alibi. So he very quickly is eliminated as the one responsible for killing Heidi. Martin and Heidi weren't the only people who live there. Martin's brother had been living with the two after Martin called police, he called his brother and his brother had been staying with his girlfriend for the last week, but he had spoken to Heidi the day before she was killed.
He said she sounded upset but didn't talk about what was bothering her. Police checked his alibi and he was cleared. So while they're running down other alibis and leads, a murder from six years earlier came into focus with its own person of interest. In 1997, Linda Lincoln had been having problems with a strange boyfriend. Linda had gotten a restraining order for a domestic violence incident in which she described him choking her. She had found support or through one of the boyfriends friends whose name was Matthew Croal.
Matthew would helped her change the locks to her home to make her feel safer. But in March of nineteen ninety seven, someone got past those new locks. On March 5th at three twenty five p.m., police visited her home after her father hadn't been able to reach her for several days. Linda's body was located in her bedroom. She had been hogtied with nylon stockings. One was wrapped around her neck. Her cause of death was manual strangulation. Linda was also completely dressed and showed no signs of sexual assault.
The original investigator, Leonard Aumann, is joining us today. Hey, Len, how's it going?
It's going well. How are you guys doing? Great.
So, you know, I was thinking back and, you know, we've known each other for close to twenty five years. Yes, definitely. That's it's gone by fast for sure. That's right. That's right. And so you ended up I mean, you did your entire career with with Antioch PD working a variety of assignments, including spending a significant amount of time working homicide, as well as even managing the homicide program there, right? That's correct.
Yes. And you retired right around the same time, maybe a year before I retired, I think. Yeah, I think about a year. All right.
And then that nineteen ninety seven case when when you first heard about Heidi's case at the station, your mind went to that ninety seven case.
Why don't you tell us a little bit about what. What similarities that you saw between Heidi's case in the ninety seven case, some of the real obvious similarities was the victim in the nineteen ninety seven case, which is a woman named Linda Lincoln, was found face down on her bed in her bedroom.
And she was also bound very similarly, except it was with nylons that were tied around her. And then again, she had been there for quite a while, so it wasn't quite as obvious. But in all likelihood, again, some kind of strangulation or fixation was the cause of death.
When we saw her at the scene, there were obviously the type of material used was a little different, but the way she was tied and bound was very similar letter.
Could you describe the way she was bound in in this case? In the nineteen ninety seven case, the nylons were around her neck very tightly, they had been brought down to her back, either up from her hands or down to her back from her neck, and then her hands were tied behind her back together again. In this case, she was fully clothed. So the obvious assumption is there's probably not a significant sexual assault involved in this. And there's no in both these cases, there was no forced entry.
Little both petite women be how I describe both victims in these cases. So there were some some striking similarities.
Now, were there were there signs of we know in Heidi's case, there were signs of admittedly drug use on the property that morning. Was there anything like that with Linda's case?
Yes, there was. They in the nineteen ninety seven case, through our investigation, we were able to determine that that victim was also involved in methamphetamine use. Had some. I think she was challenged with some mental health issues would be probably the best way to describe it may have been self medicating with methamphetamine, which is pretty common. And yeah, so the very, very similar in Heidi's case, I don't think she was at that point in her life a methamphetamine user, but she was around other people that were right.
And the reality is taking a look at the crime scenes from both of these cases, just the only variance really is material used to bind these two victims. So these cases look identical to my eyes in terms of what the offender did in each case.
Absolutely. Very, very close. And what would draw your attention to the estranged boyfriend?
In the ninety seven case, the estranged boyfriend immediately became a suspect due to the fact that the victim in our case had applied for a restraining order against him shortly before her death that involved strangulation.
It didn't involve ligatures or being tied up or anything like that. But she had made some allegations against the boyfriend, which obviously were domestic violence related and did involve strangulation.
But back in 2003, you ended up getting involved in the Heidi Newman homicide. That's correct. Yes. And what was your role with that homicide at the time? I was actually working as a internal affairs sergeant and happened to hear about the homicide and walked over to the investigations bureau. Having heard that, it was very similar to a nineteen ninety seven case we had now. So that's initially how I became involved in it.
OK, and with with Heidi Newman's case, it kind of give us a little bit of a background in terms of what you saw.
Did you actually go out to the crime scene? I did, yes. OK, why don't you just kind of give us a brief walk through in terms of what you saw there?
Essentially, it was kind of an average type home and the very clean, which was much different than my ninety seven case. That's similar. And essentially you work your way to the master bedroom. There was a young lady who ended up being Heidi Newman, who was found in somewhat of an unusual fashion face down on a bed and was clothed and obviously deceased there.
And when when you say bounded it somewhat of an unusual fashion, why don't you give me the kind of paint a picture of what you were seeing?
So she was bound with flex ties, the plastic flex ties you see a lot in hardware stores and what have you and her wrists were bound together behind her back. And then there was a length of flex tire that went up her back towards her neck, and then there was flex tires around her neck.
Then everything was done very tightly. And that appeared to be, at least at that point, the obvious cause of death was, in all likelihood, some kind of strangulation. Yeah. And then she was fully clothed. That's correct.
OK, for a brief moment in Heidi's case, law enforcement turned their attention to Linda's estranged boyfriend. And he spoke candidly with them, but he didn't know Heidi, he didn't know Martin, there was someone mentioned in Heidi's case. He did know, though, the last person in the house with Heidi, the unexpected visitor who lingered after Martin left. His name was Matthew Croll. He was the friend left sitting at the dining room table when Martin and his coworker left for work before investigators spoke with him.
They ran a background check through the Antioch Police Department. Matthew Croll was listed as other in Linda Lincoln's murder. So, Paul, what does that mean when someone's listed as other when they're listed as other? It just means that they are not being suspected as having committed the crime. They weren't a witness. They have no information to provide a lead in the investigation, but their name has come up and that other designation can change as more information comes in about that person.
OK, so investigators also got a little bit of background from Martin. He said Croal seemed like a nice guy and was a little quiet. He mentioned that Croal would sometimes flirt with Heidi, but she never mentioned that bothering her at all. And multiple times during the interview, Martin made it clear that Matthew Croll had never been in their bedroom. During the interview, investigators had Martin call Matthew, but his mother answered the phone at the house they shared and she said he wasn't home and she wasn't sure how to get in contact with him.
Meanwhile, another officer located him on his bicycle near his home. And when he was located, he had a crucial piece of evidence on him. It was the 38 caliber sports arm pistol that was missing from Heidi and Martin's bedroom, so Matthew Carroll was brought in for questioning. The interview started around 1:00 p.m. on May 2nd. He said he'd woken up early around four thirty a.m. the day before to go fishing while he was buying bait for his trip. He decided to visit Martin and he had parked his schnuck truck across the street when he arrived.
Carol was very cooperative during the interview, he told police he had never seen a problem between Heidi and Martin after Martin left, he said Heidi was sitting on the loveseat watching TV and reading the newspaper. The two chatted briefly. At some point during their conversation, Heidi had to use the restroom. Matthew Croll saw this as an opportunity, but according to a statement, it was an opportunity to search for Martin's gun. Nothing more sinister. He'd seen the gun when he'd help Martin move into the house years ago.
The last time he saw it, it was in a dresser. So he opened the French doors to the bedroom and began his search. Carol said he noticed it on the headboard, a description that contradicted what Martin had told officers. Crowe gave details about the gun being in the nylon holster. For him, the holster was too bulky and the gun would be easier to conceal without it. So we removed it, crawled and placed the gun in his waistband, covered it with a shirt and left the room without taking anything else.
But he did say that he had touched a cup on the headboard, adding he could have knocked something over and picked it up. According to Matthew Croal, his entire lingering visit only lasted maybe five to 10 minutes after Martin left and Heidi was very much alive when he left. All right, so let's break down these statements. He knows that that they can place him at the scene, so he creates this story. Yes, he has to fabricate why why is this evidence potentially going to be in there?
His fingerprints is trace his DNA. Why does he have the gun that was in the bedroom? So now he's come up with a story in order to cover for what he really did in that bedroom.
Police were purposely not confrontational during Carol's first interview. After all, he was cooperating and he even agreed to a polygraph. The polygraph began later that afternoon. The examiner asked multiple questions. The following questions were important to the investigation. And here's what they were. Did you inflict the wounds that caused Heidi Newman's death? Did Heidi Newman die because you wounded her? Do you know for sure how Heidi Newman died and he answered no to all of these questions?
The examiner concluded the croal lied during the exam, and when confronted with the lie, he made the excuse that he was tired and reiterated he didn't know who killed Heidi. Croal said he was sorry Heidi lost her life. That's a quote. And perhaps he should talk to a lawyer by then. The interview is over and he was moved down to booking. Paul, when we're looking at polygraph's for a minute, the these questions, I always wonder about this.
I've interviewed polygraph guys before. The questions that they ask and they ask sort of the same question in the different ways, why the variation? Especially because it's it's yes or no questions. Right.
A lot of the the polygraph, actually, the substance of the polygraph is actually in the pre poly interview where the the person giving the polygraph is getting a feel for the the the person that they're interviewing and how that person is answering questions, the details that that person is willing to discuss about the case. These questions are specifically designed by the investigators and the person giving the polygraph in order to determine how that person who's being interviewed is going to respond.
And the reason for that variance is in the suspect's mind.
The way that one question is worded, he may say that that doesn't bite Mike and I can lie to that because that's really what I believe happened. But by switching it around, did Heidi Newman die because you wounded her? Do you know it's opening it's opening up the door to, you know for sure how Heidi Newman died.
Now, in in his mind and Kroll's mind, there is room for the the lie to be picked up and it's going to make him uncomfortable.
And that's what the polygraph examiner wants to read, is that if there anything else, he's opening these questions up in Carol's mind, is there anything that at a certain point, Croll starts to trip the instrument, throw some ink, and now it's like, OK, I need to kind of see if I can narrow that back down to a point to where, you know, we know what's going on with with why he's lying. OK, so over the next several days, police continue to investigate Matthew Croal, but he was released a few days later, he went on a fishing trip with a friend at Lake Shabat.
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Subscribe and follow fake priest. Now to find out the shocking secret to listen to the show, just search for smoke screen, fake priest and Apple podcast stitcher and wherever you listen. The hunt continued and so did the evidence gathering and items from Haiti's crime scene were sent to the crime lab. At autopsy, Paul, you took fingernail clippings and swabs from all pertinent areas and samples from, Heidi, part of the evidence collected from DNA present, from the ties that bound Heidi's hands, and that DNA came back as a match to the DNA from the zip ties matched Matthew Croll.
So at this point, we know the zip ties were placed on Heidi by the offender. She's bound with these zip ties. And Matthew Croal had no reason to have his DNA on those zip ties inside Martin and in Heidi's house. So this became a significant bit of information in this case.
Now we know what's going on.
Now, then, do you take this information? And when you're working with the DA's office, are they saying, OK, well, what are what are our how are we place? He's already placed himself at the scene. How we placing him at the actual murder scene. Is this the number one thing that you put at the top?
Yeah. So it's always going to be weighing the physical evidence versus the the case circumstances versus the suspect's statements. So with this type of new information, oftentimes if the person hasn't lawyered up, then that person would be reinterviewed to get them to give them an opportunity, not not explicitly, but to give them an opportunity to come up with an excuse for why their DNA would be on those zip ties. But in essence, what the investigators are doing is they're trying to get to that that statement of no, I never touched those is something along those lines to where now the DNA is refuting what the suspect is saying.
But taking any value, you're always evaluating the physical evidence relative to the case circumstances. And this is where will crawl is inside this house. His DNA could be in select areas based on his just casual interactions inside that environment. But the fact that his DNA is on the very bindings that we know the offender touched, that becomes huge and that that is something that can be put in front of a jury to weigh guilt.
Did he then try to say, oh, in the same way that he said I was stealing the gun? That's the reason why I had the gun. Did he try to say, oh, yeah, I remember being in the garage and touching the zip ties at one point?
You know, I think at the time that we found his DNA on the zip ties, he had already lawyered up. So there was no follow up interview to figure out if he could even offer up an excuse. Right. OK, as you're digging into Heidi's case. A name comes up in Heidi's case that starts ringing some bells in your head about the Linda Lincoln case, very big Bill.
Yes, yes. A gentleman by the name of Matthew Carol.
And did you prior to Heidi's case, had you had any interactions with Matthew Girl?
I had I had interviewed him twice at his home, OK, that time he was in Hayward, I believe. And you interviewed him for Linda Lincoln? That's correct. Yeah. This was well before this this goes both those interviews would have occurred in nineteen ninety seven.
OK, and how was he during those interviews? Very calm. Not very emotional at all. In the first interview when we notified him that his friend Linda had been killed and just very deadpan. And he was. And then I was in the first interview, I was there with the detective that I was working homicides with. And in the second interview, I went with another detective and he was really kind of had the same outlook in both interviews. Yeah.
And in ninety seven, you are a fairly seasoned homicide investigator at that point. Did you have any inkling based on those interviews that Kroll could be involved with Linda Lincoln?
You know, he was kind of our number two suspect at that point, Linda Lincoln, because of her, the same lifestyle that made her kind of a high risk victim.
Also, she had associations with a lot of folks that were involved in methamphetamine and other things, some of which weren't illegal. But it's kind of hard to compartmentalize life. So there were a lot of people that, you know, might have been capable of something like this that she was associated with.
But really what drew us to, Carol, was the fact that he had changed the door locks on her home and shortly before sometime before her death. And this was to keep the estranged boyfriend away and there was no forced entry into the house and things like that. So it was and there were some other things that really made us kind of key on that fact. So that that made him. A good suspect in this case at that time and just his reactions and things like that, and and Matthew Crowell's is not a small guy.
No, no, he's he's a you know, at the time I was dealing with him, he's a big, big, strong guy, kind of a construction past in his employment. I think I saw six, three, two, 30, at least at one point. Yeah. So exactly.
It's a very physically capable man. Did he have any significant criminal history at the time of the Linda Leakin case?
Nothing violent. He had a little bit of I think he had one or two arrests that had to do with methamphetamine and methamphetamine paraphernalia, a misdemeanor kind of stuff. Nothing serious at all.
OK. And then his name pops up as having been left alone with Heidi Newman and is the last person to have seen her alive. That's that's correct. Yes.
Which fortunately, he was left there when you walked into the the the highest crime scene and you saw how she was positioned. You saw how she was tied. Did your mind immediately go to Matthew Carroll?
My mind was already there before I ever went out there just hearing what it happened. Yeah, it was definitely the first and only person I thought of at that point. So he's still on the run. Law enforcement continue to call Carroll's family and friends searching for him. And for weeks, there was no news beyond that. KOLD was decided to stay at the lake for a bit, but they were still looking for him. And a bulletin went out with picture in the caption, wanted for murder.
But then almost a month later, someone saw Croll. On June 6th, a tip came in that Croal was spotted in Hayward, California. At two three a.m., officers caught up with Croal. He was sleeping in a sleeping bag under an overpass of Highway Ninety two there, Jackson Street. The thirty eight year old Crowell gave officers his name and he was told he was under arrest. Once in custody, Croal continued to plead his innocence. He wrote letters to his mother from jail, apologizing for the trouble he caused, and he was promising to see her soon.
But with all the evidence, like Paul was saying stacked against him, it was a promise that he couldn't keep looking at Carroll.
And he takes a no contest plea right in hides in Heidi's murder. So what was what was holding the DEA back for charging him with Linda's murder?
In part, I think it's something that we've continue to look at over the years.
We have not forgot about him by any means. And in fact, both these cases are on my desk as we speak.
Well, before I realized I was going to be talking to you folks about this, but the I think one of the big issues is we have unidentified DNA in this case that may or may not be the killers. We we have some identified DNA in the linking case, which isn't Mr. Crowell's. And I can't really go on the hard line specifics, but it definitely creates some issues for us as far as charging. And we are continuing to work on the DNA in this case.
There's obviously all the new avenues that we have with DNA, but also one of the hurdles, and I think Paul can speak to this pretty readily, is looking at old lab reports and then trying to get interpretations of what they really mean to be a real challenge.
No, no, there's no question about that.
And having and I've always said in myself, I've had success of just having the work redone by the lab, even though they may have done it 20 years ago, have it redone with current technology. And and sometimes you get something that was missed on the prior occasion.
And that's a process that we're going have been going through for a little while with this case. And I think we're going to make some strides here quickly as far as getting some work done that either couldn't be done before or because the technology didn't exist.
Sorry, Paul, in terms of his background, we know that he was he was adopted. He worked construction and he was fired often. And he had been most recently been fired for failing a urine sample.
Correct. He lived with his mom. He had admitted to hitting his sister in high school, but then claimed no violence against women since then. He had had relationships with women, his father had been arrested for molesting his sister. And it's still unknown if Matthew was involved at all or was a victim or participated in that.
And detectives during the interview made notes that they thought he hated women, but they didn't really give specific examples. So looking at this guy, looking at the coincidences, how similar odds are he did both of these murders. What? Are you also looking at other murders potentially locally or around the country that he might have done because do you really think he would have just stopped it to?
I don't think he started with the with Heidi Newman by any means. And I certainly don't think he did do the Linda Lincoln case. I really doubt that was his first either. The we have a pretty good handle on where he's been and most of his life has been that we've been able to determine has been in California between the Bay Area and Orvil County, which is a little farther north in northern California. But it's not a very long, hard drive.
So there are some Bay Area unsolved homicides that have been looked at. As you know, departments can be, you know, they don't want to share everything on these unsolved cases. And so where he stands with some of those, I'm really not sure at this point. I have been dealing with investigators in other counties that have been pretty open about their cases. And a lot of them are in a similar state as well. In the Lincoln case where you have known DNA, that could be the person that did it.
But you also have the issue of somebody like Matthew Croal is somehow associated with the victim or the area. So that's always in the back of their minds. And one of the things with Mr. Cruel is that we learned of the Newman case, which may explain. Why we don't have incriminating DNA on him yet, Linda Lincoln is clearly workload's during that Newman case, the yellow rubber kitchen dishwashing gloves, right?
Right. And that's one of the really great pieces of evidence against him is a piece of one of his gloves and the zip ties that she's tied with. And it's got his DNA on it.
You know, and I will say, you know, in looking at Linda Lincoln and Heidi Neun the the autopsy, Linda Lincoln had indicated that she had there was manual strangulation in her case.
And yet you have this ligature that's been applied around her neck as well as her hands are bound very in a very visually interesting manner.
And, of course, Heidi, is is that binding basically replicates what we see in Linda Lincoln. When you look at Linda Lincoln, the offender manually strangled her, yet he is still applying these ligature bindings in a interesting way. And I see that as an expression.
He is purposely wanting to leave her in a in a something that in his mind what he wants. This is showing a level of fantasy and he's replicating that with Heidi Newman. And so it's possible some of these other unsolved cases, one of his signatures is going to be this style of binding because that's what he gets off on. He's not sexually assaulting these women, at least not there inside the house. But what he's doing is he's setting up something that he visually likes and he's probably fantasizing about that when he gets back into his little schnuck truck.
Yes. The wonderful Schnuck. I absolutely agree with you. I mean, what he's doing is very ritualistic in my mind. That means something to him. And it is and it is a it's a signature to and it just what that is in him or in his mind you think about. But yeah, very, very, very interesting.
Now I've got I got a little story about that Chinook truck. That was the one thing that I remember where I actually went hands on in this case in terms of working the scene. And so I processed Curl's Schnuck truck. And, you know, it's kind of your typical truck that we would deal with. It has all sorts of crap in it. And at a certain point, I had taken all this crap out in order to to inventory it.
And there was like this five gallon bucket. And I don't know if you remember this at all or not, Leonard, but I'm sitting there in that five gallon bucket is just overflowing with trash. And on the very top was like a Big Gulp 7-Eleven soda cup with a lid on it. I go to move something and that soda cup ends up falling down onto the floor and the fluid inside of it splashes everywhere, including drops going into my mouth.
And I'm sitting there going, that wasn't seven up, that was urine.
So I can I can say that I have tasted serial killer urine and I like, oh, Paul.
So this is just part of the hazards of the job, right?
Yeah. Oh, all right. So, Leonard, are there any specific cases that you can tell us about that he that he might be connected to?
You know, there is I really don't feel comfortable at this point naming names per say, but definitely up in the county area, there's at least one case that is is similar. It's well before our nineteen ninety seven case. It's in the early 90s and there are some remarkable differences. But it also, you know, being earlier on, there might be some remarkable differences before somebody like Matthew Carroll progresses to where he was in ninety seven and then again in 03.
And so definitely those cases in that particular case is probably one of the ones that are closest to his M.O. and and I mean, quite frankly, there's just there is a lot of unsolved cases in the San Francisco Bay Area where we live, as you guys know. And you know, at this point, as late as yesterday, I've been making some attempts to network and get his name out there. Because the way this is, it's interesting how some of these cases play out.
Three pled guilty. It wasn't a big splash in the news. It wasn't a big deal. Right. And that's the last traction that I think Mr. Croal, other than today with you guys have as far as being put out there as a potential serial killer. So I think that's important. So I've been trying to do some work to get his name kind of back in the circles of if you're looking at something, here's what this guy did. Yeah, you may want to look at him.
So if if our listeners were going to go out and search newspaper articles, search police reports and things to dig into potential cases that that he might be connected to, what are some of the things that they should be looking for?
Know there's obviously the delegate ligature practice with him, I think is may not it may not have existed 10 years prior to nineteen ninety seven, but certainly probably that ninety seven. Casey did we know we did the three case. So anything with ligature around the neck and the wrists. One of the differences between Newman and Lincoln was Lincoln's feet weren't bound, but Newmans were separate of the tying to the neck. So that's again almost like a little progression there potentially.
And I would stay in the O3 case. He did come a little more prepared with the zip ties versus using something in the victim's house. So in all the cases we're looking at with him, there's no forced entry. So either knows the victim is able or presents himself in a way that they're willing to let him in their home. I did mention earlier that the ones that I'm looking at are all kind of pretty women. I don't know that we'd want to restrict ourselves to that when we're out there looking probably mainly a California based search.
I think I don't really have any information that he spent significant time outside California.
OK, good to know.
Good to know. All right. Well, Leonard, is there anything else that you wanted to share about these cases?
Know she did some more looking into that. Yes. So he was actually up for parole June 2nd this year. And I'm happy to say that the parole board in California denied parole for another four years or five years. Excuse me. So he'll be back up for parole in April of 20, 20. He was previously up, I believe, in twenty eighteen. So that's always been kind of a concern of mine that if he gets out, I believe he's going to kill again.
And then part of what we're hoping to be able to put another case together that against whomever. But if it is him and he needs to be kept in. Right.
Because because when he pled, he got he was sentenced 15 years to life with the possibility of parole. Right.
And that and so his next parole hearing, I think is in twenty twenty four then twenty twenty five point twenty five. OK, yeah. So that's going to put him right around fifty nine.
Sixty years old at that point.
Yeah. Yeah. And I mean we do have a lot, I mean looking at, you know, and he has made a lot of travels between the Bay Area and the Butte County area. So I mean realistically, I mean anything around really Northern California especially we'd certainly be interested in with him. It looks like he's been driving that Chinook, which is a pretty unusual vehicle since the early 90s. So there's a good chance that's what he would have been right and he liked to fish.
He was a fisherman, big fisherman, that was kind of his excuse for how he ends up over the house where Heidi Newman's living that day, says he's on his way, living over in Hayward at the time where lots of places the fish over there. But he's on his way out of the delta here to go fishing and just decides he's going to go by the house there to see Heidi's boyfriend at the time and really looking at the case. And I mean, I'm pretty well convinced he was going by there and hoping the boyfriend would be there.
And when he saw that, he was stopped anyway. Yeah. And just all worked out.
And this is one of those unusual cases where I. I agree with you. I think Matthew Croal is is a serial killer. He's a predator. Yet what he's doing, at least with these two cases, one that we know he did for sure, is he's killing victims that he knows that he can be associated with. And this this this shows that in my mind, this shows a kind of a lower level of sophistication in terms of his victim selection.
Imagine if he didn't know Linda Leakin at all.
You know, there's nothing right now that would be pointing at him in that particular case. Absolutely not. Yeah, it would be a yeah. We'd still be looking at all the other people she was associated with, which there was there was and is plenty of work to do there. And yeah. And he is in CODIS. But as far as you guys know, there's a lot of DNA profiles out there that don't qualify. To go into CODIS, you have to do manual comparisons.
So is DNA could be out there associated with another case and it's just not good enough to go in CODIS. OK. All right.
Well, Leonard, thank you so much for joining us today. And anything that that our listeners are able to find or dig up will send right over to you.
That's great. And it's great talking to you guys, which will be great. Talk to you again. Take care. All right. Bye bye. Bye bye. So that brings us to this week's assignment. Now, Leonard is still actively looking for Linda Lincoln's killer. If you have any information, please contact us so we can get him the information. But the bigger assignment is what we were just discussing, the possibility that Matthew Kroll has other victims.
You heard Leonard and Paul say what some of those cases could include. So we want you to dig into the archives, dig into the police reports and see if there are cases with Crowell's earmarks, women murdered inside. Strangulation, found bound, they don't have to have all of them, but were just some of them that are up there and like Leonard was saying, we're really looking at California, specifically northern California. Also, despite knowing some of Carl's background, we need to talk to people who may have known him to help us build a more thorough timeline to link him to some other cases just because, you know, Leonard, who has been actively working on this case, doesn't have any reason to believe that he that he was outside of California.
He could have taken a truck. We don't know.
That's right. And and if there are people out there listening that knew Croll, there may be unsolved cases in which Croal is a person that was associated with the victim and that agency, those investigators have not associated him to the case at all. So we need to get that kind of information.
We need to flesh out not only his whereabouts, but who he knew, who he was friends with, where was he hanging out. If he's buying dope, where is he going to buy the dope?
Absolutely. OK. So, again, with the rules, obviously, we have been talking about a a a suspect, but we tell you with everything, don't name names, don't do side by sides, don't dock's each other and be nice. And Paul, that's gets us to the weekly distraction.
What has been distracting you this week in this time of lockdown? Partial lockdown. But, you know, right now, I think what I found, as you know, I've been doing a lot of this this mountain biking, and I'm getting more adventurous. And as much as, you know, screaming downhill is is fun. I'm finding that I'm really enjoying going on these really rocky trails and the challenge of trying to get up and down the rocks. But it is somewhat perilous.
I seem to come back with a little less skin, as with what I'm calling boulder rash, as I, you know, kind of crash into these these big boulders along the trail.
But, you know, it's it's fun and it's a challenge. And it's it's a hell of a workout.
In fact, right now, my left hamstring, just literally while we were talking, just cramped up because I went on one of these Boulder runs this morning and I did this before I almost screamed out like a little girl while we were talking.
It cramped up so bad, you know, so I'm distracted again in this episode. So, yes, that's the age. The Age is catching up with me here, your partner.
So, yeah. So for me, I've been doing the opposite of what you're doing.
I've been bingeing a show and I've been doing a show that's on Netflix called Grand Designs and I can't get enough of it. It is a British show about these people that find an old building and they want to renovate it and do like really crazy things with it.
And it's hosted by this guy named Kevin McCloud who who kind of brings this sort of British kind of dry humor and skepticism to the whole thing, like you really want to do that, that kind of thing. And it's a people that took a you know, they used to make these like beautiful water towers and somebody took the water tower that was filled with pigeon crap and everything. And they turned it into like a lovely giant apartment building. And but just the having worked in television, the amount of time it takes because we're talking like they'll go and shoot something and then come back every six months and then it might take five years, but they stay on it, which you just don't see in American television.
I was like very it was very, very cool. Yeah. And it's still on. And for some reason, Netflix has given us season 10 and 15. And I'm trying to search for the other seasons if anybody can tell me where to find the other seasons, because I'm I'm getting close to running out between that and watching Parks and Rec. That's what I've been doing. But I do work out and I watch Parks and Rec. So I'm actually kind of shocked because that what was it called?
Grand design. Grand Designs. Yeah, that actually sounds like something I would watch and it definitely will compare notes. I'll send you the watertower one is really interesting. I love when they're taking old buildings and they just they, they want to keep it but they want to repurpose it and make it modern, which, which is just always a big even if it's just the facade. I just love the old architecture. So and obviously when you're dealing with things in London, there's so much of it and so much in America, you see people just tearing stuff down as opposed to just trying to say it.
Yeah, no, that's really cool. Yeah. Awesome.
I just want to give everybody an update on these fake Instagram accounts that are impersonating me. And we've talked about how these accounts have been attempting to scam money. But I did hear from one woman that it appeared that the fake account and the person behind it was trying to hit on her through direct message with an Instagram. And her response was, this doesn't sound like Paul. She knew me from working with me years ago with the sheriff's office.
And when she brought that up, the impersonator immediately stopped communicating.
But it dawns on me that other women may have been approached in this manner. And it's possible that the individual or individuals behind this may be trying to lure a woman to meet with them. And obviously that is a bad situation.
If you've been approached that way, please, if you still have that communication, grab a screenshot of the user name and any dialogue that was going on and send it to me either at my Instagram account at Paul Dipoles or to the Gensen and Hols email address. And I am communicating with federal authorities. We'll see what we can do with this to in order to identify the people behind this. And those screenshots can be huge for that. In addition, if there is any prosecution down the road, it could be helpful.
So thank you for. Or listening to this and I apologize that this is going on, but hopefully we can kind of beat this down and stop it.
OK, thank you, everyone, for joining us. Please subscribe. Join us on Instagram. We are getting dangerously close to one hundred thousand followers.
Order some merch. And until then, keep digging. Don't be an irony. Jensen and holds the murder squad is produced by Exactly Right Media and Bench Clearing Productions senior producer Polly Kotowski, engineer Steven Rae Morris, music Tom Bribable executive producers. Karen Kilgariff, Georgia. Hard Stark. Danielle Cramer.