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Yeah, I was thinking I should write like fan fiction about like Hermione starting a Wizarding Innocence Project and ever being a dick to her the way they were about her how self liberation project. Welcome to You're Wrong about the True Crime podcast that tries to focus on the true part more than the crime part.


That I would say that we are a true crime podcast focused on the impossibility of ever knowing the truth about anything.


And then that determines how we look at the crime part. But we each have our own approach to this.


Well, I was trying to say something that sounded pithy and cute, but it didn't have to be accurate. I think you're taking the opposite approach. Oh, no.


Well, this episode is all about that. So strap in.


I am Michael Hobbs. I'm a reporter for the Huffington Post.


I'm Sarah Marshall. I'm working on a book about the satanic panic.


And you can support the show on Patreon and on paper, or you can buy a T-shirt or you can not do any of those things and donate to other stuff.


We still love you. Yes. And today we're talking about Nancy Grace.


I'm nervous. Yeah. First of all, I don't want to be wrong about Nancy Grace. I think it's Grace has done harm to the country, and I'm not ready to give that up. And I'm afraid that you're going to make me feel complicated about her.


I don't know. That's not really my goal here to try and facilitate empathy for Nancy Grace. And I feel like my approach to whatever subject we have is dictated by, like the kind of run they've had to this point. And like Nancy Grace has been in charge of her own narrative in a way that very few women are because she has been on TV for hours every week. Yeah, for years she has helped define what her crime media is in this country.


Yes. And her view of things has found a lot of purchase in American media. She has not been heard or listened to and to her, she isn't able to make her point of view extremely clear. And so it is not my job to help her do that.


Right. Thank God I had other jobs today.


But yeah, we're talking about her book, one of her books.


So she has a few books. But the one that we are talking about is called Objection Exclamation Point, which I don't know about you, but when a title has an exclamation point in it, I assume it's a musical. I know. Or like a Flash Gordon serials. Objection.


How high priced defense attorneys, celebrity defendants and a 24/7 media have hijacked our criminal justice system?


Oh, no. To me, the most interesting thing about that title is that it implies correctly that Nancy Grace is throughout this book in a way she doesn't seem to notice arguing against her own job.


I would like to know from you, like, what is your mental image of Nancy Grace?


So my understanding of Nancy Grace, which is probably totally wrong, is that she is a former prosecutor who rose to prominence during, I think, the O.J. Simpson trial.


And then she has parlayed that into a journalistic true crime entertainment swirling smoothie of a career where over I mean, I don't know if she was always like this where if this happened to her over time.


But I'm most familiar with her as someone who, like, goes after this sort of, you know, criminals getting away with it.


Yeah, that's what I associate with her as she's always wanting harsher punishments, more police powers.


She's very skeptical of criminals in a way that she is not skeptical of the criminal justice system.


What's interesting, actually, is that I would dispute what you're saying, because I think that she sees herself and others see her as like this great defender of the legal system. But she's really not because she does not give a shit about due process. Right.


So this book objection like not to spoil too much, but we're going to get into many moments and many arguments where she's basically she's like and then this defense lawyer defended their client like, yeah, that's an adversarial system.


Like, you know perfectly well as a former prosecutor that both sides have to be working. And like, she's actually kind of anti legal system. She's a nihilist.


She's technically antifa. Hmm.


I don't know, Mike, but I don't actually know of her commenting on the O.J. Simpson trial.


Oh, see, I could have completely made that up. I thought that that's where she came from. But she she that that I might be mixing her up with somebody else.


But yeah, she has been on TV since nineteen ninety six. She is on TV still.


She has a daily true crime radio show daily and she has a new book coming out in September called Don't Be a Victim. Colen Fighting Back Against America's Crime Wave, which is. Fascinating title because America's crime rates have been steadily falling for 30 years. Yeah, that's really shameless. And so, I mean, do you know which case is kind of like her, her big case, you know, Casey Anthony?


Oh, this is one that we need to do because I've been sitting completely spoiler free. I literally know nothing about this case.


This was a case where a young woman in Florida was accused of killing her daughter, who was a toddler and was in the end found not guilty. And the verdict that I think the majority of the American public disagreed with, like she like she really looked bad. The trial made her look bad. OK, but ultimately, the jury found her not guilty. And it's just rare that that happens in a high profile trial. Yeah. And so Nancy Grace had been kind of leading the charge and the media's crusade of Casey Anthony is a monster and she called her tot mom.


This is like one of the things she became notorious for is like, yeah, she's like a walking, talking tabloid headline and so called Casey Anthony tot mom man. So here's what Nancy Grace said about where tot mom came from. This is a quote from an interview she did with Bill O'Reilly. She says, When I was in law school, I would often give cases that I would have to memorize hundreds and hundreds, sometimes thousands of pages of legal documents for class.


And it was easier for me to remember a case by the content of the case, not the name. So I would name a case by the content. In this case, I needed content that would fit at the bottom of the screen so our viewers would know what we were talking about. And tot mom said it was nothing personal. Sure. To me, the point of the legal system and the way the media works around it is that the public is already going to be pretty poisoned by the presumption of guilt.


Yes. So it seems really counter to the ideals of justice to have a media that enthusiastically encourages them to travel even farther in that direction. Right. Especially if that particular media person is a former prosecutor like that is what the goals of the system are supposed to be. So I guess, you know, what I find most interesting about Nancy Grace is that I started researching her a couple of years ago, and I remember suggesting her as a show.


And you're like, is there really a story there?


She's like, no, but there is a book. And so now we're going to go for it like a few minutes before we started recording.


Today, I had this moment of realization. I was like, oh, I get it now. Nancy Grace is my shadow self.


Oh, God, great.


Because you contain always a little bit of your opposite. And I feel like inevitably I understand her like I understand why someone would want so badly to be a crusader for good and for just a small part of me wants that to. Of course, I feel that of course I want that I have gone about it in a different way and tried to go on too many ego trips, but I still have them. So like Nancy Grace is like my Kylo Ren, right?


It's like Sarah Marshall anti matter. This is great. Yeah.


So that's kind of my interest. And Nancy Grace at this moment. And maybe let's jump into her book. Let's dive in.


I'm so excited. Yeah, so does she in the book. Does she go through it case by case or is it a memoir or like what is this actual book?


It has some memoir stuff in it, but it's really kind of it's a polemic and it's a polemic on the subject of the title, which once again is objection, how high priced defense attorneys, celebrity defendants and a 24/7 media have hijacked our criminal justice system by Nancy Grace with Diane Lane.


So the criminal justice system has been hijacked. It's been taken away and turned into this thing that is not working, I guess. Yeah.


And and Nancy Grace is standing up and saying, objection, I love these book clubs. You're like, I'll pick a nice book that people will enjoy. And I'm like, I'm going to pick a terrible book.


This is kind of a long opening scene, but this is really her whole Genesis story. I love this. I remember as it four yesterday sitting on the steps of my family's home in Georgia that August. It was so still and hot and soundless, nothing moved. Not a breeze, not the song of a bird, not a single movement to be heard or felt. The heat was so intense, it seemed as if I could actually hear it rising up off the dirt, invisible waves.


This makes me feel like Nancy Grace wants her life story to be made into like a To Kill a Mockingbird type movie. But about a little girl in the Deep South who grows up wanting to convict everyone.


A few weeks before my fiancee had been murdered. Holy shit, Keith was shot five times and his beautiful face and back. Oh, my. It was only a few months until our wedding, but the gunman couldn't wait. Violence doesn't acknowledge weddings and anniversaries, birthdays and celebrations. Random violence entered my world, the world I grew up and didn't know violence or hatred or chimes in. The Methodist church steeple literally called. Everyone home at six o'clock with him is like, God will take care of you and his eyes on the sparrow.


My only encounters with violence and evil came through fleeting glimpses on the evening news at supper time. All the horror seem so far, far away in my world. There was nothing as far as the eye could see but tall pine trees and soybean fields, orchards and rows and rows of corn and cotton. Oh my God. I hear murmurings. Tell me about that.


I mean, I'm like struggling not to interrupt you because, like, it's all this stuff that we always talk about of like this fake juxtaposition between sort of the criminal element outside of her life and then this beautiful, crystal, fragile, perfect life inside. Yes.


You can really feel the ghost writing in this, can't you? Like you can feel the professional writer who knows how to start with, like a strong image and a strong contrast before you were innocent and you lived in a world of peaches and God and now your fiancee has been gunned down. Right. I mean, that that makes me think about that. Plus, the kind of prosecutor she became is like, why do we have someone who becomes a prosecutor?


Because they're shocked by the existence of violence relatively late in life and then decide to stop it by finding the people who do violence and putting them away for as long as possible. Like that's not really a reasonable approach to violence. It doesn't seem to decrease it. It doesn't make anyone's life better in the long run.


And this feeling of like criminals took my life from me, which is like a very vengeful way of framing this.


Yeah. And, you know, and people are entitled to their feelings of revenge, but like maybe not once they become public servants.


Yes. Oh, OK. Cheats world had ended and mine had exploded. I remember trying to go back to classes I couldn't the thought of sitting inside the four walls of a quiet college classroom studying Shakespearean literature. Once my joy was now like a heavy noose around my neck. I knew I could never go back to the world as I knew it. Wife, mother and school teacher. It was not meant to be. I love. But Nancy Grace once wanted to teach Shakespeare.


Yeah, she would have been a great college lecturer, actually. Like, imagine Nancy Grace teaching a class on King Lear how to say what you want with the lady.


She's a good talker.


And Nancy Grace continues. I escaped the vacuum the only way I could. I did eventually go back to school, to law school. I knew the law would be my sword and my shield. I had to be ready when the time came and it did. Seven years after Keith's murder, I tried my first jury trial at that moment and that Atlanta courtroom I took to the fight like a fish to water and trying to cure the injustice heaped on other victims of violent crime.


I was cured. Well, for the next ten years I fought in the pit and felony courtrooms. And what was then the murder capital of the country, inner city Atlanta. The battle consumed me. Every case was a cause I could take up because every case represented a victim. Oh, God, that's my that's the end of my opening excerpt.


I mean, she's really describing, like, what she considers to be a crusade. Yes.


Due to her extremely understandable emotional distress at the murder of her partner, she's now sort of using that as like a quilt to put over all of the other cases that she looks at, like she's taking her sense of vengeance and trying to apply it to criminality as a whole.




What Nancy Grace most certainly appears to want is some form of retribution.


Do we know anything about the circumstances of her husband's death, her fiancee's fiance? And yes, we do. Let me jump to a place in the book where she talks about that. OK, so this is from Chapter one. Defense attorneys and other wily characters I have known and Nancy writes, My deep seated ethical problem with defense attorney is likely traces back to my being a witness in Keith's murder trial. The whole thing has always been a big blur to me, but I do distinctly remember going to the courthouse as a witness.


The cavernous courtroom reminded me of the one in To Kill a Mockingbird. The witness stand with several feet high, directly below and in front of me, said the defendant and his lawyer. The defendant never looked at me in the face. He never could bring his eyes up to meet mine. I didn't know it at the time, but that must have been when I began to formulate my theory on the importance of what I call behavioral evidence behavior that is so odd or disturbing, so abnormal or curious.


It logically points to either guilt or pangs of conscience. No, if I had been on trial for the murder of another loved one, I would scream out. I didn't do it, I didn't do it. Please believe me, I will never hurt you. But the defendant did nothing remotely like that. He slipped away, avoiding my eyes. Oh, my God. Because he knew he had murdered someone. And looking at me and the rest of Keith's family, he had to realize the incredible pain he had caused all over a wallet with thirty five dollars in it.


There was no cross-examination that I recall. It was over. I just slowly stood up and made my way down the steps and out of the courtroom. No one said a word. And as I passed the defense table, I slowed down and looked at him. He never looked at me. Even the defense attorney looked away from me.


This is like the logic of a child. I mean, look, this guy probably did it. It's completely understandable for her to have this deep, infinite sense of anger at the person who took her fiance away from her.


That is completely understandable. But what's frustrating is like she's literally channeling this into the worst kind of evidentiary analysis, because this is something you hear all the time.


Like Nancy Grace is not by any means alone here and being like he wouldn't look at me or he just seemed guilty. Right. Behaved in a way that made it clear he was guilty of this very specific crime like you hear about all the time. Right.


This is the logic of like fucking Sandy Hook conspiracy theory videos where they show footage of these grieving parents and they're like, oh, they must be actors because like they told a joke, the fact that he couldn't look at her is interesting.


But like, I can imagine somebody being innocent and also not looking at the person.


Oh, yeah. Well, listen, one of the things that our friend of the show, Laura Bazelon, has told me is that if you are defending someone who is accused of committing some terrible crime and if a victim or presumably a victim's relative is testifying, the last thing you want them to do is look at the victim or the relative. Yeah, because if they think that you are not looking at them means that you feel guilty, then they will think that you are looking at them, means that you are gloating, that you are trying to intimidate them.


And it's interesting, too, because like most defendants don't testify at their own trials because that makes them vulnerable to cross-examination. So you get, you know, these trials where everyone is articulate but the person who is accused of the crime, it's very weird. Yeah.


It's also not an argument against defense lawyers because it sounds like the defense lawyer didn't cross-examine her. Like it doesn't sound like the defense lawyer did anything bad there. So it's weird that this is like bolstering the defense lawyer, I guess, was sitting there.


Yeah, yeah. It's very interesting. She's like my enmity for the defense attorneys goes back to my experience, having won in my sightline. Right. My favorite part of this, however, is the part where Nancy writes, If I had been on trial for the murder of another loved one, I would scream out.


I didn't do it. I didn't do it. Please believe me, I would never hurt you. Oh, my God. So I know this is like the most ridiculous question, but like, why am I like why not do that?


First of all, that can also make somebody look guilty because doth protest too much.


And also like this is why we have representatives of the justice system like this is literally the purpose of the justice system is that we don't just have whoever screams the loudest we believe or whoever seems the realist gets the verdict that they want.


Like how can a lawyer possibly say this, although Nancy Grace's career is based on being the loudest. So that's true. Yes.


So are the circumstances of Keith's death that it was just like a botched robbery kind of thing.


So I'm going to read you a bit from another source. And this was an article that came out and The Observer, like 15 years ago by Rebecca Dana. That's called the Nancy Grace TV crime buster Mudie Hermia. Oh, every crime fighting superhero has a creation story. Nancy Grace, the prosecutor turned breakout star at CNN Headline News, has a particularly moving one, as she tells it, in the summer of nineteen eighty. She was a 19 year old college student in small town Georgia, engaged to Keith Griffin.


Then one August morning, a stranger, a twenty four year old thug with a history of being on the wrong side of the law accosted Griffin outside a convenience store. He shot him five times in the head and back, stole thirty five dollars from his wallet and left him dead. Police soon tracked down the killer and a new phase of suffering began from his grace. The suspect brazenly denied any involvement at trial. Miss Grace testified, then waited as deliberations dragged on for three days.


The district attorney asked her if she wanted the death penalty. And in a moment of youthful weakness, she said no. The verdict came back guilty. Life in prison and a string of appeals ensued because of what happened in Georgia. Miss Grace has said over and over she knows firsthand how the system favors hardened criminals over victims. It is the foundation of her judicial philosophy, her motivation in life, her casus belli. And much of it isn't true.


Nancy Grace was engaged to a man named Keith Griffin who was murdered in Georgia and the man who killed. Is serving a life sentence in that Miss Grace's version lines up with the official records from the Georgia Bureau of Investigations, newspaper articles from the time of the murder and interviews with many of those involved in the case. But those same sources contradict Miss Grace when it comes to other salient facts of the crime and the trial. And then here's the contradictions.


Griffin was shot not by a random robber, but by a former co-worker. The killer, Tommy McCoy, was 19, not twenty four, and had no prior convictions. Mr. McCoy confessed to the crime the evening he was arrested. The jury convicted him in a matter of hours, not days. Prosecutors asked for the death penalty, but didn't get it because Mr. McCoy was mildly intellectually disabled. Oh, my God. Mr. McCoy never had an appeal.


He filed a habeas application five years ago, and after hearing it was rejected. The justice system, in other words, apparently worked the way it was supposed to. And an emotional phone interview ranging over the inconsistencies in her account. Miss Grace said, I have not researched the defendant. I have tried not to think about it.


I mean, this is one of those things that under any other circumstances would just be like a sad human story, just like this awful thing happened to her and in her mind over time, she ends up kind of telling the story in various different ways and kind of twisting it to suit opinions that she holds about the justice system, which is something we all do.


Like it happens. It's a human thing, especially in something that's just this like earthquake of emotion that comes along with losing a loved one.


So that's completely like everything that's happening with her is understandable until you start making it like a foundation for actual policy changes and actual sort of twisting other people's opinions about the criminal justice system. I mean, the fact that she's casting as some sort of injustice a man who killed another person and did a life sentence.


Yeah, it's like the system did everything it claimed to do. But I didn't get chopped nuts on my Sunday.


Right. It's interesting, too, that, like the jury deliberating for a long time is supposed to be bad for victims. You're like, Nancy, I realize. But like, if that had happened, which it didn't, but if it had that, that would have been difficult for you to live in that suspense. But like, if you are a defendant and a jury is deciding whether you're going to go to prison or not, it's like kind of ideal for them to talk about it for more than a couple of hours.


Yeah, like every one of these decisions can't be dictated by your emotional needs. Yeah.


I mean, people that turned they're sort of like they're real sense of aggrievement into anger at the justice system, like, you know, women who were sexually assaulted and who got treated like shit by the cops and then sort of go on this crusade about how, like there should be longer sentences for rapists.


That, to me, makes some sort of sense, because there really is an injustice at the heart of that, even if I think the response to it is disproportionate.


But in this one, it's like, what are you mad about, Nancy? Right. I mean, she's really like the patron saint of Karens.


I was just about to say the original Karen. Right.


It's like so it's like.


So, Nancy, you're telling me that like your fiance was murdered, the police swiftly identified and the legal system swiftly convicted the intellectually disabled guy, teenager who had done it and they convicted him and like less than a full day of deliberations and he never filed any appeals and it never looked like he was going to get out of prison.


What are you unhappy with? What did he want?


But Sarah, he didn't look at her, so he didn't stand up and shout about how he was innocent. I should have shown that she would have written a much longer anecdote in her book about how that made her look guilty.


It's like the guy data that used to yell at Uber drivers when we were stuck in traffic.


Oh, it's like I get that you're mad that like we're now going to be late to this thing, but, like, you can't blame this person for what Seattle is.


Yeah, exactly. Like you're mad at the situation, but you're applying that to, like, whatever person is nearby.


Yeah. And I guess according to Nancy Grace, like the defense becomes the problem. So it's interesting because she thinks she's presenting this like superhero origin story, which is like my planet was destroyed and I was raised by farmers.


And you look her and you're like, you're actually a super villain.


Yeah, this is actually a super villain origin story because it's a story about you responding with irrational, disproportionate ness to something that you experienced and then like basing your whole identity around avenging this perceived injustice.


So, yeah, the aspects of the crime that she changes are very interesting. And then the actual story of the crime to this to me is. Maybe the most interesting change that she makes, because evidently the 19 year old who killed her fiance say he did so because he had been fired and blamed Keith for it.


And so he came in and shot Keith. It's sort of I mean, it's sort of like what Nancy Grace is doing.


It's like a bad situation. All that he's been blaming on this one individual.


You went there, but. Right. Like something went terribly wrong and you take it out on one person. Hmm.


That's I mean, that's again, though.


I mean, the structural incentives are always toward emphasizing the stranger danger aspect of things rather than like the completely everyday thing of a dispute between two people escalates to this place. That is totally absurd, which is a much more common story.


Yeah. Or I guess like someone who you didn't even know you were potentially having a dispute with, like decides to develop a grudge about you and. Yeah. So like, the stuff that she changes makes it a crime that's like emblematic of the kind of crime that she's attempting to be tough on, where it's like put people in prison sooner and for less of a reason.


And also like the idea of like someone who's who's killing someone for the small amount of money in their wallet, like, you hear that rhetoric all the time. Yeah, that's true. It's like his victims life was only worth thirteen dollars for him.


And it's like, OK, it's not as if this person is sitting around, like thinking about how they value human life and how they're willing to murder someone for 13 dollars. It's like armed robberies that end in murder or escalate into murder are like not planned events.


Right. But anyway, so but so the fact that the Nancy Grace crime in her head kind of evolves into like my fiance was killed her thirty five dollars, which was all his life was worth, like McCoy apparently did take money out of his wallet, but it was less money than that. So I don't know why she passed up that as a storytelling opportunity. But it makes it into something where, like, it wasn't about this disproportionate sense of revenge or feeling personally wronged or something.


Right. I mean, it's interesting to me that she is shaping her own life, quite possibly not at all consciously to align with, like the kinds of crimes that it has become. Her job to prosecute totally and to talk loudly about. Right.


Because the purpose of stranger danger killings is making you feel scared because it could happen to you. This is one of the reasons why, you know, human trafficking, every single human trafficking poster you've ever seen says it happens everywhere. It could happen to anyone. It's all around us. It's this idea that, like, you're a potential victim.




And so this is why you don't ever want to emphasize the interpersonal nature of these kinds of crimes of like it was a really messy divorce.


And this person had a history of mental illness. And so they kidnapped their own children and crossed state lines. You never want to tell that story because then it's like, well, then there's like people at higher risk of this and there's actually things we can do for those populations.


No, you want to emphasize the total randomness of it, because then there's nothing we can do other than punish.


Yeah. And also, by definition, her audience are people who she can presume to share her fear, which is to be like the sudden victim of stranger danger. And. Yes, and what doesn't occur to her, I don't think, is that there are a lot of other people who far more reasonably are afraid of at any moment becoming a victim of the legal system. Right, right. Yeah. Do you want to hear some more Nancy Grace book?




OK, this is back to her introduction and her description of her time as a prosecutor. She says, Guilty pleas caused me great personal turmoil. How was I to discern if today's shoplifter would become tomorrow's armed robber? Nice. I quickly gained a reputation for being unreasonable when negotiating pleas and vicious a trial. I don't care. The battle was all that mattered. It is of those years that I am the proudest I made next to nothing. But the reward to my heart and soul was priceless.


I had the opportunity to be the voice of those who have no voice, most often women, children and minorities. Oh my gosh. Overlooked and never heard in our system. I learned what they don't teach you in law school, that the Constitution protects the accused, blanketing them and safeguarding their, quote, rights victims have no voice, no face and no recourse.


Super good sign when people put the word rights in air quotes know.


Yes. And that the Constitution blankets and safeguards the rights of defendants. I love that she uses the word blanketing. It makes me think that her mental image, which I think this is accurate, is that the Constitution is like it takes all the criminals and puts a big blanket around big Afghan around their shoulders.


It's like cuddle up, sweetie.


I don't think it does them, although it's pretty incredible to, like, look about the. Try and be like the criminal justice system is way too easy on people, and we're and this book is kind of a long form, that argument. And one of the things that I find both dismaying and heartening is that it is like really cherry picking stuff, like in the arguments that are like defense attorneys are bad. It's like this one defense attorney was sort of jocular with the media one time.


And it's like, OK, it's all right.


It's like I mean, it has the same structure as every single like campus free speech policing is out of control.


A story where it's like, did you know that a 19 year old at Oberlin said something stupid about a sandwich?


And you're like, right, OK. Yeah.


And you're like, so your point is that we shouldn't have liberal arts right. In colleges anymore.


What it's also interesting because like the position that the criminal justice system is too soft on, criminals will always be able to be robust even as long as we don't have the death penalty in every single state, because there are really a lot of people in this country whose views of how the system should function are so punitive. But like, you know, that's that's going to be a significant part of the population. I don't know what my point was with that, except that it makes me sad.


But you're right. I agree. Yes. Also me.


Oh, so I have a clip for you. Oh, this is a where are you going to watch a couple of minutes of this. This is a news story. Her when she was still a prosecutor with her 90s hair, and it talks about her as a lawyer and her nickname, Amazing Grace. That's actually a pretty good nickname, to be fair. It is. And also Grace is her actual last name, which I was very surprised by.


She should have changed to Nancy Vengeance.


A bit more on Brand. OK, I guess. Sent that to you. You one go when you're ready.


Three to one go. Oh, there she is. Wow, first shot, she's put in some hair spray on. Oh, she looks so different. Yeah. What's she doing? She's like shouting in court and, like, throwing things around. Killers, rapist pimps, punks. She's put them all away. Wow.


She sounds like a beauty queen or something. She has this great southern accent and voice. She sounds much less flinty than she does now.


She was much more soft spoken back then, used in the media.


We found from forensics to hear her say, I believe in redemption. I'm just not concerned with that. Nice.


A new breed of women tackling America's crime wave, avenging angels who'd rather bust bad guys than earn big fees defending them. Oh, no.


Look at that bow she has got. Go on.


Oh, so she's prosecuting a guy who killed his wife or may have killed his wife? Allegedly, Mike, allegedly. Look at that hair. I guess I love this look. Amazing.


I got to admit, she's very likeable. Right. All right. Going through the details of this case where it, like, it looks pretty clear that the dude did it. His wife is about to leave him. His wife had a thump on the head when they found the body.


It feels like whacking Dixie Carter on designing women.


Yes, the defendant left a track a mile wide. There's the guy in court.


Do you think the state's heart is stone?


She is like Blanche Dubois in community theater level, you know. Yeah, yeah, yeah.


And see something. Even with my naked, untrained eyes, he noticed that her accent really fluctuates.


It's really interesting, actually.


Yeah, she has a sure accent and I'm talking to CNN accent. All right.


And she's now she's getting emotional, talking about how the victim had been punched and slapped by this guy. It does seem like the guy sucks. I mean, she's pretty convincing.


Yes. Based on the literally forty five seconds of evidence. And finally, think about it, it seems like a strong case for the prosecution.


I have doubt that this segment is manipulating me in exactly the way that she is manipulating the jury. It's working. Oh, now they're doing her origin story about Keith getting killed.


Oh, it's as Keith was gunned down by a criminal on parole, which it sounds like isn't true, which we know is not true.


If he had still been in jail, this never would have happened.


She's saying this with total conviction. Like, I think this. She believes this. Wow. I think she you know, she maybe was told that he had been in trouble, just kind of in town in some general way. And over time, that grows into something else in your brain. And it feels true.


It's where they're doing this segment. Why is this newsworthy? It's just like a lady prosecutor. That's the news. They're like lady prosecutors. Yeah, they like.


Did you know that when there is a place for women and lawyering right now, I got the guilty verdict of the dude for Atlanta's star deputy district attorney.


It's another big win. Wow.


OK, so now you've had kind of a dose of her charisma, like. Tell me about your experience as a prime time Nancy Grace.


Yeah, I had assumed that she had kind of always been a talking head or like the way that she came to be known by us.


Joe and Janine Q. Driveway was commenting on the O.J. Simpson trial, but it sounds like she actually was a media darling as a prosecutor, not necessarily as a commentator.


And so CNN or whoever plucked her out of obscurity and started doing these stories, unlike the lady prosecutor.


And then she rose to prominence that way as this moral crusade that she was on and then somebody eventually offer her a TV deal.


Yeah, well, I mean, I don't know how well she was known as a prosecutor, but I do think that, like telegenic lady, prosecutors were a sought after media commodity in the 90s. Yeah, and she's very charming. Like, can you can you talk about her charm and this a little bit?


I mean, she's got the whole like Clarence Darrow, like now I'm I'm not some fancy lawyers standing, Anfernee and kind of like snapping your suspenders a little bit.


I'm just a deputy district attorney, you know, I'm just someone who does this for a living.


I just. Yeah, but like and making yourself personable, making it kind of a personal appeal. A personal appeal to the juries decency. Yeah. But I would say before we get back into our book, but like what I find compelling about her in this footage and what I feel kind of like less of as she's gotten like more and more angry and sort of like focused on a larger audience on her shows. Now, which I really relate to in this early footage especially, is just the fact that, like, she is clearly so sure of her conclusions.


Yeah. And there's just something charismatic about that. We're drawn to that as people. And I think that's because we're noticing in ourselves and noticing just the charisma of people who are sure of what they're doing with their lives. Right. Or who act that way. Right.


There's a reason why, con man, the full word of that is confidence, man.


And what I learned when I was interviewing investee. Gaiters of white collar crimes, is it one thing that links a lot of white collar crime? Is this like braze in confidence of just describing a straight up pyramid scheme with this incredible one hundred percent certainty that it's going to work out? And that's a really good way to deceive people, is to have this overconfidence. It's a great way to get on TV, too.


Might be the best way. Yeah. And speaking of that, here's the next thing. Nancy talks about her, about my transition from a courtroom in Atlanta to a New York City television studio was by happenstance while serving as a special prosecutor in Atlanta. I was called to sit on a panel of legal experts and the Hall of Justice in New York City while still prosecuting in Atlanta. I happened to be seated between two renowned defense attorneys, Johnnie Cochran, straight off the O.J. Simpson case, and Roy Black straight off a victory in the William Kennedy Smith rape case.


Naturally, we got into a huge fight. Several months later, the elected district attorney in Atlanta, my boss, decided to retire. I was devastated. Not only had Mr. Slayton given me the chance to become a trial lawyer at a time when very few women in the South were litigating in courtrooms, he was like a grandfather to me. I didn't know what I would do. I hadn't gone to law school to handle slip and falls, argue whiplash, car accidents or haggle over contracts.


I wanted justice for crime victims. I considered public service with a battered women's center. But then the founder of Courtroom Television Network, Steve Brill, flew to Atlanta and asked me face to face to join his new experiment co anchoring a legal talk show with Johnnie Cochran. Oh, I deeply disagreed with the Simpson defense and with the option of high priced defense work looming. I wanted to take Cochran on. I took off from New York shortly after Mr. Slayton served out his office.


In 1997, I arrived in New York City with two boxes of clothes, a curling iron and two hundred dollars in my saving account.


Even now, all these years later, while sitting in a dark suit staring into a camera lens, I wonder if I should go back to the courtroom to battle adversaries who trick lady justice. What? But I accepted it just as I was led to the airwaves. I know God will lead me to my next battle.


I mean, whatever, Nancy. Why? I don't. I don't know why she's pretending that, like when she moved to New York to be a television personality, it was like arriving at Ellis Island with, like, nothing in my pockets.


I find this moment really funny because, like, that's the standard. Like I started from nothing. I'm scrappy thing, but it's like she's thirty seven years old. So she's been a prosecutor for years.


And so it's like, Nancy, she's been like a middle class professional. It's fine.


It seems irresponsible that you have so little savings that's like no spending it on.


Like why build up this myth? And also she's also doing the thing that I think women are like conditioned to do is like this like huge leap upward in my career was like just a coincidence. And it had nothing to do with my ambition. And I think probably she's pretty ambitious and that's fine.


Yes. Well, this is a classic thing. Whenever women are called to account for their achievements, like, yeah, you have to somehow, in order to remain likeable, suggests that you didn't get where you are by working really hard and being strategic about it. And you have to blame your success on someone else like God.


Yeah, she probably like was getting more media attention and she thought, like, this could be a second or a better or more lucrative who cares career for me. And like, yes, people do this all the time.


Or maybe I want to get out a lawyer. Yes. And she probably like whatever, sold her house in Atlanta and like bought a new house when she moved. It's probably like she didn't show up there like Rose getting off the Titanic. I don't know why we need this myth. No, Mike, she had two hundred dollars and it was nineteen ninety seven and like, it's fine, Nancy.


She says her savings account, she wants to see what was in her checking account. It's so obviously fake. It's like Nancy, like you can make stuff up that seems reasonable.


That makes up. It's like, it's like the part and the autobiography of Benjamin Franklin where he's like, I don't drink beer because it's expensive for very little nutrition and it serves no real purpose. And it's like, OK, Ben Franklin. Right. There's like lots of stuff you can lie about, but like draw a line somewhere.


Not everything has to match up with, like the myth that you're trying to build here.


OK, let's get through this. We have one more page. Oh, isn't this fun? Oh, my God. So fun. This is what I know. There is a very real struggle going on in our world today. The age old struggle between good and evil. Maybe it sounds simplistic, but it is true. Nevertheless, man, I find my sharpest sword to be the truth and I use it whenever I can. This is a very funny statement.


You we'll get much more into this later. But one of her main functions apparently is to inject half truths and confusion. Yeah. Into the record as the story is developing, which then makes them harder to remove. Right. I think she's speaking sincerely here. I think that her own emotional truth is the story that she is. We'll think. Yeah, yeah. When the sorrow, the frustration, the moments with Keith forever lost resurface myristic. Answers to fight, herein is the truth as I see it, I'm on the inside of the struggle for justice, calling out to all who will listen.


This is what I see and what I know, regardless of whether it is politically incorrect or disturbing or tastes better, going down the battle of good against evil is real and palpable and is being waged in your local courthouse. And what's funny is that I totally agree with that last paragraph. It's just that we are on different sides.


Oh yes. Meeting Miss Anti matter.


So, yes, I am very excited to continue this book and basically to go through the arguments that Nancy is putting forth in it and just meet them on their own terms and explore the charisma of the crusader role. Yes, I think that's a very important theme. And in our world today.


Yeah, and I am looking forward to the next episode when you will be wearing a bow and speaking with an accent.


I'm telling you truths I can hear with my own neck of the year.