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Robert Kolker

13 articles

The Boy Who Ran

On the life and death of Avonte Oquendo, a 14-year-old autistic boy who disappeared in October after walking out of his New York City school.

Previously: Robert Kolker on the Longform Podcast.


A Dangerous Mind

The case of Gilberto Valle, “The Cannibal Cop,” and the line between criminal thoughts and action.


First Lost, Then Murdered

The story of Melissa Barthelemy, a prostitute killed in a string of murders on Long Island in December 2010.


Manhattan Fold ’Em

How a high-stakes poker game that started at Tobey Maguire’s house became part of a $100 million gambling and money-laundering operation orchestrated by the Russian mob.


Mercenary for Justice

How an informant helped authorities nab a notorious anti-abortion activist.



Aaron Greene and Morgan Gliedman were young and in love and pregnant and partial to heroin and living in a Village apartment with a lot of heavy weaponry lying about. Then they were arrested, and their stories started to change.


Cheating Upwards

Why so many smart kids are cheating on tests.


Death of a Broker

The case of the murdered real-estate legend and her enraged assistant.


A Daughter's Revenge

The complicated case of Brigitte Harris, who, after years of abuse, accidentally killed her father by cutting off his penis.


Kidnapped at Birth

One day Nejdra Nance realized the woman she had called Mom for 23 years may have been at the center of one of the most harrowing kidnappings in decades—hers.

This Is the Part Where the Superhero Discovers He Is Mortal

What happened to Wesley Autrey after he jumped in front of a New York City subway train to save a man’s life.


A Serial Killer in Common

Five prostitutes disappear. Bodies turn up on a Long Island beach. On the women lost, and the families left behind.


"I Did It"

In 1991, Frank Sterling confessed to a crime he didn’t commit. His story highlights a common – and controversial – method of police interrogation.