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The Starved Rock Murders with Andy Hale

In the winter of 1960 three women were found brutally murdered in a cave at the Starved Rock State Park. After months of dead ends, a manhunt ensued that ultimately pinned the crime on a 21-year-old dishwasher at the Starved Rock State Park Lodge, Chester Weger. In spite of contradictory physical evidence and under immense pressure from the police, Chester confessed to the crime. He has spent the last 60 years in prison, maintaining his innocence to this day. Join Andy Hale, a civil rights attorney who specializes in investigating wrongful convictions, as he dives deep into parts of the case that have been left out of previous coverage. As Chester Weger’s attorney, he is actively investigating the case and has won the right to test DNA from the crime scene for the first time in 60 years. If Chester is innocent, this will become the longest wrongful conviction case in United States history. This limited series podcast will re-examine the story you think you know, provide real-time case updates, including DNA testing, and access to documents and photos previously unreleased to the public, to uncover the truth of what really happened in Starved Rock State Park over half a century ago. ... More...

EP 13: More on the Palmatier Brothers (and our Top 25 list)

May 19, 202253:09

In a criminal trial in the United States, the courts require that the jury find the accused to be guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. It is the highest standard in the courts for evidence. In the case of Chester Weger, can anyone who knows the facts of the case, in good conscience, say that they believe he committed these murders beyond all reasonable doubt? Can any reasonable person who is presented with the fact that -- the tree branch was not the murder weapon, that the twine found on the women didn’t match the twine found in the kitchen at the Starved Rock Lodge where Chester worked, that a phone call was intercepted a week after the murders indicating other high-ranking people had knowledge of a “kid” with bloody overalls in the trunk of his car, and a thousand more details that contradict Chester Weger’s confession – possibly say that they believe, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Chester Weger is responsible for this brutal crime? The false narrative surrounding Chester Weger, constructed around a coerced confession, has been laid bare. This case, like a jigsaw puzzle, is made up of a thousand interlocking pieces. But when it comes to the State’s official case against Chester Weger, every piece is so obviously jammed into place and forced to fit. And when a piece couldn’t be forced to fit, it was fabricated to fit. The result wasn’t a puzzle solved but a grotesque mosaic, built on lies, manipulation and decades of deceit. The time has come, over sixty years later, to expose those lies and to prove, finally, the truth about the Starved Rock murders. In this episode we discuss the Palmatier Brothers in more detail, and give our top 25 list. For more information, documents, photos, and other assets associated with and referenced in episode 6’s coverage of the case, visit andyhalepodcast.com.