Hell and Gone

iHeartPodcasts

Hell And Gone is a true crime podcast from iHeartPodcasts and School of Humans that follows journalist and private investigator Catherine Townsend as she investigates unsolved deaths.  Now in its fifth season, Hell and Gone is going weekly.  Over the past five years of making true crime podcast Hell and Gone, host Catherine Townsend has received hundreds of messages from people all around the country asking for help with an unsolved murder that’s affected them, their families and their communities.  In past seasons of the show, she’s only been able to focus on one case. But now, she’s hosting a new weekly show called Hell and Gone Murder Line. Every Thursday, Catherine features a new case, adds updates to old ones, and helps as much as she can to get the word out about unsolved murders.  If you have a case you’d like Catherine and her team to look into, you can call the Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145. 

  • 25 minutes 56 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Elaine Nix Part 3

    On September 20, 1999, in Gainesville, Georgia, 18 year old Elaine Nix disappeared from Zack’s food rack gas station and convenience store, the Candler Highway, where she had gone to talk to her boyfriend Billy Millwood. 

    They spoke for an hour on that payphone between around 1110 pm and just after midnight - phone records confirmed this - and then Elaine hung up with Billy and according to him, she was heading back home. 

    She never arrived. 

    Nine days after she disappeared, her body was found.

    Twenty five years later, her case is still unsolved. 

    Last week we were able to get access to Elaine’s autopsy report - we went to CrimeCon this week so this episode will be a bit shorter than usual but I wanted to update you all on what’s going on with this confession letter supposedly written by a local businessman named James A. Walters - aka Big Jim Walters - and what we’re doing to track down the origins of that mysterious letter.  

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    5 June 2024, 7:01 am
  • 32 minutes 16 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Elaine Nix Part 2

    On September 20, 1999, in Gainesville, Georgia, 18 year old Elaine Nix pulled into a roadside convenience store off highway 60 south - the Candler Highway - called Zack’s Food Rack. 

    Elaine had been arguing with her boyfriend Billy Millwood and she was at Zach’s so that she could make a thirty five cent phone call to Billy without relying on her family’s long distance plan, because back then long distance cost money. 

    Nine days later, she was found dead. 

    Twenty five years later, Elaine Nix’s case is still unsolved. 

    We’ve had some major breakthroughs since last week. We were able to help Elaine’s parents get access to her autopsy report - so we are going to see what we can learn from that report - plus  we have letters from potential witnesses - and a confession letter supposedly written by a local businessman that has never been revealed - until now.  

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    30 May 2024, 7:01 am
  • 39 minutes 42 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Elaine Nix Part 1

    On September 20, 1999, in Gainesville, Georgia, 18-year-old Elaine Nix pulled into Zack’s Food Rack, a gas station and convenience store, just after 11 pm.

    Zack’s was located just off highway sixty south, also known as Candler Highway and had two booths on the side of the building, where Elaine parked her 1986 blue Toyota Celica. Elaine was there to place a late night phone call to her boyfriend, Billy Millwood. 

    Elaine’s mom Becky remembers that Elaine left home to go to the gas station to call Billy at around 11 pm. Becky said that her daughter had been fighting. He would later tell the police that he believed that she was lying about using birth control. 

    But, Elaine didn’t come home. At first her mom wasn’t overly worried because she assumed that she and Billy had made up and that Elaine had stayed at his house. 

    But she never came home. And Becky never heard from her daughter again.  

    Twenty five years later, her case is still unsolved.

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    23 May 2024, 7:29 am
  • 39 minutes 26 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Tyler Smith Part 2

    On September 14, 2018, in Galesburg, Illinois, a 23-year-old graduate of Western Illinois University named Tyler Smith headed out to party with some friends. The next day, he was due to report for drills. But he never showed up. And twelve hours later, his body was found in the Cedar Fork Creek area, just two blocks from where he was last seen the night before. Since then, Tyler's family has been trying to find out what happened to him: did he fall, did he drown, or was he murdered? And after lingering questions about his autopsy, Tyler Smith's body was exhumed for a second opinion. 

    If you have a case you’d like the Hell and Gone team to look into, you can reach out to us at our Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145. 

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    16 May 2024, 7:00 am
  • 41 minutes 54 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Tyler Smith Part 1

    On September 14, 2018, in Galesburg, Illinois, a 23-year-old graduate of Western Illinois University named Tyler Smith headed out to party with some friends. 

    Tyler had dreams of becoming a police officer. He was super athletic, played football in high school, and after graduating from Western Illinois University, he applied to and was accepted into the police academy in San Jose, California.

    Tyler hoped to eventually possibly become a DEA agent or working with a K9 unit. He was starting his life and chasing his dream and it was happening. But Tyler also had been in the Army National Guard since 2013 and came back to Illinois to fulfill his commitment. 

    Tyler and his friends went out drinking that night, and the next day, he was due to report for drills. But he never showed up. And twelve hours later, his body was found in the Cedar Fork Creek area, just two blocks from where he was last seen the night before. Since then, Tyler's family has been trying to find out what happened to him: did he fall, did he drown, or was he murdered?

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    9 May 2024, 3:59 pm
  • 36 minutes 54 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Pauline Storment

    It was April 12, 1971, a 27-year-old woman named Pauline Storment was walking down South Duncan Avenue in Fayetteville, Arkansas, just a few blocks from her apartment. She didn't know someone was following her in the darkness. 

    And then, while she was walking and just a few blocks from her apartment, her attacker came out of the darkness and attacked her, stabbing her eight times in a frenzied attack that lasted several minutes. 

    It was a hot night so at 9:45 pm when Pauline started screaming a lot of people in the area heard her, and there were several witnesses. But her killer escaped into the night - and despite the police questioning tons of people, lots of theories being explored over the years an arrest, Pauline’s killer has never been found. 

    If you have a case you’d like the Hell and Gone team to look into, you can reach out to us at our Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145. 

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    2 May 2024, 7:00 am
  • 32 minutes 21 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Heidi Planck

    On Sunday October 17, 2021 in Los Angeles, a 39-year-old mother of one named Heidi Planck went to watch her 11-year-old son Bond play football. When Heidi left the game, she said that she would call her son later, but even though she ALWAYS talked to him every day she never called him. In fact  Bond never talked to his mother again. Because that day, Heidi Planck vanished. 

    If you have a case you’d like the Hell and Gone team to look into, you can reach out to us at our Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145. 

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    25 April 2024, 7:00 am
  • 34 minutes 48 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Interview with Crime Scene Expert

    Over the past few weeks, we’ve been covering two cases in Arkansas: the murder of Gail Vaught, whose body was found on March 17, 1980, and Dennis Flowers.

    Police believe that Dennis was responsible for the execution style murders of Lee Dickson, a pharmacist who had become addicted to cocaine and started dealing it with Dennis, and Lee’s wife Karen Dickson who was eight months pregnant. A few days after the brutal double homicide, Dennis’ body was found under extremely mysterious circumstances, cause of death was listed as drowning in less than three feet of water and his manner death was ruled suicide.  

    One of the questions that have come up in these cases and so many others is were these crime scenes as they appeared to be, or could they have been staged?

    This week Catherine Townsend speaks with investigator Arthur Steve Chancellor. who runs a company called Second Look Training and Forensic Consulting that provides investigative and forensic case consultation and training.You can find the company online at secondlooktraining.com or reach them at 919 360 3518. 

    If you have a case you’d like Catherine Townsend to look into, you can reach out to us at our Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145.

     

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    18 April 2024, 7:00 am
  • 47 minutes 26 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Lee Dickson, Karen Dickson, and Dennis Flowers

    On the morning of March 22, 1984, at around 6:30 am, police came to the one-story nondescript home in Fayetteville, Arkansas that belonged to a quiet unassuming 33-year-old pharmacist named Lee Dickson and his wife Karen. 

    When police came to the Dickson home, they knocked, but Lee and Karen didn’t answer. Finally, their young son came to the door. He told the police that his mother was sleeping and that daddy went out. 

    Police entered the home looking for his parents, and it didn’t take long to find their bodies. Lee was in the garage, lying face down. He had been shot point blank.

    Then the killer came for Karen. Police found her in the living room Police later discovered that she had also been shot multiple times, execution style. Karen was pregnant. 

    What started as a family massacre turned out to have ties to another mysterious death of a man who drowned in under three feet of water. Later there would be allegations that Lee, this quiet local pharmacist, had been making backdoor deals with local criminals to provide the power players of Fayetteville with pharmaceutical grade cocaine.

    If you have a case you’d like Catherine Townsend to look into, you can reach out to the Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145. 

    Here is the link to the Coroner Talk podcast episode

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    11 April 2024, 7:00 am
  • 28 minutes 22 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Gail Vaught Part 2

    Catherine Townsend continues her investigation into the death of Gail Vaught. 

    On the morning of Friday, October 17, 1980, a man was on his way to work, driving his truck down Highway 16 that runs between Siloam Springs, Arkansas near the Oklahoma border through the Ozark National Forest near Searcy when he saw something out of the corner of his eye down a small dirt road.

    It looked like a person lying in the road. The driver doubled back and saw to his horror that it was the body of a young woman, lying rolled over on her right side with her head and shoulders face down. She was very tall and had a flannel shirt on and a blue Michelin jacket that had been pulled over her face, her legs were slightly open, and she was naked from the waist down except for a pair of torn and filthy white socks.  

    She started out being a Jane Doe. But soon, police ID’d the victim as 21-year-old Gail Vaught.    

    Was she sexually assaulted? Could that crime scene have been staged? Could her death have connections to drug dealing or domestic violence or something else?

    If you have a case you’d like Catherine Townsend to look into, you can reach out to us at our Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145.

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    4 April 2024, 7:00 am
  • 46 minutes 23 seconds
    Hell and Gone Murder Line: Gail Vaught Part 1

    On the morning of Friday, October 17, 1980, a man was on his way to work, driving his truck down Highway 16 that runs between Siloam Springs, Arkansas near the Oklahoma border through the Ozark National Forest near Searcy when he saw something out of the corner of his eye down a small dirt road.

    It looked like a person lying in the road. The driver doubled back and saw to his horror that it was the body of a young woman, lying rolled over on her right side with her head and shoulders face down. She was very tall and had a flannel shirt on and a blue Michelin jacket that had been pulled over her face, her legs were slightly open, and she was naked from the waist down except for a pair of torn and filthy white socks.  

    She started out being a Jane Doe. But soon, police ID’d the victim as 21-year-old Gail Vaught.    

    Was she sexually assaulted? Could that crime scene have been staged? Could her death have connections to drug dealing or domestic violence or something else?

    If you have a case you’d like Catherine Townsend to look into, you can reach out to us at our Hell and Gone Murder Line at 678-744-6145.

    See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    28 March 2024, 7:00 am
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