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Sunday, March 4

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Gold Coins: The Mystery of the Double Eagle

The hunt for rare 1933 Double Eagle coins:

The U.S. Secret Service, responsible for protecting the nation’s currency, has been pursuing them for nearly 70 years, through 13 Administrations and 12 different directors. The investigation has spanned three continents and involved some of the most famous coin collectors in the world, a confidential informant, a playboy king, and a sting operation at the Waldorf Astoria in Manhattan. It has inspired two novels, two nonfiction books, and a television documentary. And much of it has centered around a coin dealer, dead since 1990, whose shop is still open in South Philadelphia, run by his 82-year-old daughter.

Friday, March 2

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Broken Windows

The landmark article that changed the way communities were policed:

This wish to "decriminalize" disreputable behavior that "harms no one"- and thus remove the ultimate sanction the police can employ to maintain neighborhood order—is, we think, a mistake. Arresting a single drunk or a single vagrant who has harmed no identifiable person seems unjust, and in a sense it is. But failing to do anything about a score of drunks or a hundred vagrants may destroy an entire community. A particular rule that seems to make sense in the individual case makes no sense when it is made a universal rule and applied to all cases. It makes no sense because it fails to take into account the connection between one broken window left untended and a thousand broken windows.

Wednesday, February 29

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Life, With Dementia

On prisoners with Alzheimer’s disease and their incarcerated caretakers.

Tuesday, February 28

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Opium's Varied Dreams

"Opium does not deprive you of your senses. It does not make a madman of you. But drink does. See? Who ever heard of a man committing murder when full of hop. Get him full of whiskey and he might kill his father."

A journey into New York’s turn-of-the-century opium dens to find out who gets hooked and why.

Tuesday, February 21

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Mother’s Boys

In court and visiting prison with the parents of young Russian Nationalists who’ve killed.

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Mother’s Boys

In court and visiting prison with the parents of young Russian Nationalists who’ve killed.

Wednesday, February 15

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The Montauk Grifter: How One Con Man Used OkCupid for Fun, Fraud, and Profit

He has worked for Apple, Google, AOL, the Rainbow Room. He hangs out with Steve Case, Gordon Ramsey, Tim Armstrong. He's a world-class surfer, a AAA baseball legend, the founder of a seminal punk band. He's one of the more persistent and obsessive grifters to ply the streets of New York City—not to mention online dating sites—in recent decades.

Monday, February 6

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Three Trials for Murder

An unexplainable murder, double jeopardy, and military courts: the strange case of Tim Hennis.

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Three Trials for Murder

An unexplainable murder, double jeopardy, and military courts: the strange case of Tim Hennis.

Saturday, February 4

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The Last Prisoner

Pavel Galitsky, 100 years old, blogger and Skyper, survivor of 15 years in Stalin’s Siberian Kolyma mines.

Wednesday, February 1

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Death of a Deceiver

The story of Brandon Teena, a 21-year-old transgender man who was beaten, raped and murdered by two friends after they discovered he was anatomically female.

Tuesday, January 31

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Ballad of the Whiskey Robber

The story of Attila Ambrus, who was released from jail this morning in Hungary. Nicknamed the Whiskey Robber because witnesses always spotted him having a double across the street prior to his heists, Ambrus only stole from state-owned banks and post offices, becoming a Hungarian folk hero during his seven years on the lam. While on his spree he was also the goaltender for Budapest's best-known hockey team and was arguably the worst pro goalie ever to play the sport, once giving up 23 goals in a single game. Excerpted from Ballad of the Whiskey Robber: A True Story of Bank Heists, Ice Hockey, Transylvanian Pelt Smuggling, Moonlighting Detectives, and Broken Hearts.