I, like many others, was first introduced to podcasts through Serial. Before that, I liked true crime and similar stories, but Serial and its subsidiaries really turned me onto podcasts about justice–about jury selection, wrongful convictions, Alford pleas, you name it. Podcasts have exploded since Serial, and it seriously feels like everyone with an opinion has started one. Some of the best ones out there, the most reliable and well produced, are the ones about the justice system.
Here are four of my favorites that you can learn from just by tuning in.
This podcast by the Atlanta Journal Constitution focuses on Atlanta cases, but packs a punch. Each season takes a journalist’s look at an on-going case with the jury’s verdict closing it out. There’s murder, police shootings, parents leaving kids in hot cars. There’s everything you could want from a justice podcast, honestly.
I really recommend this podcast if you’re interested in hearing how both sides prepare for trial, how jury deliberations shake out, and how the court system handles cases of major press.
If you like Serial, you’ll love Undisclosed, which looks deeply at the Adnan Syed case and also other potential wrongful convictions. Each season takes on a different case and dives deep.
While the hosts are pretty liberal, they’re extremely well-informed and do a lot of great research on each case. Plus, they’ve been around for awhile so you can move on to a different season if one doesn’t resonate with you. I definitely recommend you start with their deep dive into Adnan Syed’s case if you love Serial.
This podcast, which also tackles a new case each season, will leave your jaw on the ground. It’s hardcore journalism on the justice system and looks at cases as they happen, keeps you updated, and answers so many questions about how things happen in the court room.
Some of the cases this show has followed have left me on a late-night Google binge, but others have actually made me wonder what the outcome would be. I like this podcast because the outcome isn’t always clear cut and the “suspect” part is very true–you’re not immediately on one side or the other, you’re trying to suss out all the information you can just like a juror would.