Annal: 2002 Edgar Allan Poe Award® for Best Fact Crime

Results of the Edgar Allan Poe Award® in the year 2002.

Book:Son of a Grifter

Son of a Grifter: The Twisted Tale of Sante and Kenny Kimes, the Most Notorious Con Artists in America

Kent Walker, Mark Schone

In 1998 a troubled young man and his flamboyant mother were arrested for murdering a wealthy widow in her New York City mansion. Suddenly, America was transfixed by a pair of real-life film noir characters, an Oedipal team of scam artists who left a trail of blood, lies, and larceny from coast to coast. The media couldn’t get enough of the twisted relationship between Sante Kimes and her twenty-three-year-old son Kenny.

But the most chilling story of all was never told—until now. Kent Walker, Sante’s elder son, reveals how he survived forty years of “the Dragon Lady’s” very special brand of motherly love and still managed to get away.

As a child Kent watched his mother destroy his hardworking father, Ed Walker, and then—with Kent’s painful collusion—snare what Sante called “my millionaire.” When she married seemingly respectable real-estate developer Ken Kimes, it was…[more]

Book:Base Instincts: What Makes Killers Kill?

Base Instincts: What Makes Killers Kill?

Jonathan H. Pincus, M.D.

A groundbreaking exploration of the origins of violent behavior. Jeffrey Dahmer, Ted Bundy, Andrew Cunnanen—these notorious killers shocked the world with horrifying stories of rampant murder and abuse. Neurologist Jonathan Pincus probed the lives of numerous serial killers and other violent criminals to find out what triggers the violent instinct. Working with psychiatrist Dorothy Lewis, he investigated their family backgrounds and medical history, discovering that virtually all the murderers themselves suffered severe abuse as children, which permanently damaged their developing brains. In these gripping, terrifying stories, Dr. Pincus finds that violent criminal behavior cannot be attributed solely to genetics—rather, it is the catastrophic product of a brain that may be predisposed to violence by neurologic damage and mental illness coupled with an abusive environment. Focusing on these critical factors, how can we identify potentially violent persons from a young age before the damage becomes irrevocable? How can we rehabilitate violent criminals and at the same time safeguard against their committing future crimes?

Book:Dark Dreams

Dark Dreams: Sexual Violence, Homicide and the Criminal Mind

Roy Hazelwood, Stephen G. Michaud

The Evil That Men Do introduced readers to the lifework and the techniques of FBI profiler Roy Hazelwood.

Now, in Dark Dreams, Hazelwood— writing with bestselling author Stephen G. Michaud— will take then deep into the minds of his prey, the world’s most dangerous sexual criminals, and reveal the extent to which these individuals permeate our society.

Profiler Roy Hazelwood is one of the world’s leading experts on the strangest and most dangerous of all aberrant offenders— the sexual criminal. In Dark Dreams he reveals the twisted motive and thinking that go into the most reprehensible crimes. He also catalogs the innovative and remarkably effective techniques— investigative approaches that he helped pioneer at the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit— that allow law enforcement agents to construct psychological profiles of the offenders who…[more]

Book:Leavenworth Train

Leavenworth Train: A Fugitive's Search for Justice in the Vanishing West

Joe Jackson

This gripping book brings alive a daring prison escape and a relentless twenty-four-year manhunt that pitted desperate inmates against their keepers, the citizenry of Canada against the American brand of justice, and one man against his pursuers and the demons of his past. It is 1910, the waning days of the Old West. The Pinkertons and the hard hand of federal law enforcement have corralled most of the region’s fabled outlaws. Into this world steps Frank Grigware, who at age twenty sets out to find gold in Idaho. Yet, he chooses his friends poorly, and is convicted of a train robbery he had no hand in. Sentenced to life in the first federal penitentiary, Leavenworth, he joins five other prisoners in hijacking a supply train and ramming it through the joint’s west gate. Joe Jackson retraces Grigware’s flight through the American prairie, across the Canadian frontier, and into a new life where he became a husband, father, and mayor of a small town. The FBI tracked Grigware through the 1920s and ‘30s, finally…[more]

Book:The Wrong Man

The Wrong Man

James Neff

The real-life murder that became known as “The Fugitive” case began before dawn on July 4, 1954, in a Cleveland suburb, when Marilyn Sheppard was viciously beaten to death in her bed. After an inadequate investigation, her husband, Dr. Sam Sheppard, was charged with the crime, and a chain of events was set in motion that has caused more speculation, more publicity, and more cultural myth than any other American murder.

James Neff is an award-winning investigative journalist who, over the past ten years, has assembled the most compete set of Sheppard records in existence, including DNA analyses and interviews with every living person central to the case. He has also gained unprecedented access to crime-scene evidence that shows conclusively that Sham Sheppard did not murder his wife–and points to the man who did. Peeling away the layers of fiction surrounding the case, Neff uncovers the factual events and the key players in a story that until now has been shrouded in mystery. The Wrong Man is a landmark work, a gripping narrative, and indeed the final verdict on America’s most famous unsolved murder.

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