True Crime Twofer Sunday, Sep 30 2012 

Kathryn Casey is the critically-acclaimed writer Ann Rule has called “one of the best in the true crime genre.” In Deadly Little Secrets, she’s written a meticulously researched account of a cold-blooded pastor in Texas who is convicted of killing the mother of his children. There is also lingering suspicion around the earlier death of his physically ill daughter.

After marrying Matt Baker, a charming and seemingly pious man, Kari Baker gives birth to two daughters, Kensi and Kassidy. Always upbeat and positive, Kari seems to take her husband’s frequent church relocations in stride, never questioning his stories of the reasons for their moves. Matt appears to be a devoted husband and father, but others tell stories of unwanted sexual approaches and inappropriate comments and behavior with young women that Kari refuses to believe.

When Kassidy becomes gravely ill and subsequently dies, to the surprise of her doctors, Kari falls into the very reasonable depression the death of a child would cause, but manages to pull herself up to have another child, Grace. She finishes school and begins teaching. Life was sorting itself out: until the day Kari’s parents receive the inexplicable phone call that their daughter has committed suicide. Just days later Matt is seen with a pretty blond companion who he brings into his daughter’s lives.

What happens next will unravel years of the elaborate show Matt Baker has put on for the public to cover his trail of sexual predator behavior. With only her parents to fight for justice for Kari, a relentless legal battle ensues over years, with the safety and futures of Kari’s two remaining daughters at the heart of her grandparents brave struggle.

This is the well-drawn portrait of a narcissistic individual who believes his own lies and chafes at his family responsibilities. How he is brought to justice by a dogged team of investigators prompted by Kari’s parents will show the dogged determination of a handful of people who became convinced that Kari Baker deserved the justice in death she was denied in life.

At the opposite end of the spectrum is a case of Imperfect Justice, prosecutor Jeff Ashton’s account, written with Lisa Pulizer, of the Casey Anthony trial.

With exhaustive detail, Ashton takes readers inside the evidence and trial that captured the nation’s attention when the body of missing two-year old Caylee Anthony was found.

Inside the prosecution team, evidence is sifted through and statements compared and contrasted. For most of the thirty-one days Caylee was missing, her mother partied with then-boyfriend Tony Lazzaro. Photos surface of Casey’s antics which as a parent, didn’t make any kind of sense to the prosecutor. He makes particular note that both before and after Casey’s arrest, she exhibited little behavior to suggest she was grieving for her daughter.

Detailed photos accompanying the text show the evidence and Ashton points out little things that were not public knowledge during the trial, like the closeness to the roadside of Kaylee’s remains, which indicated to him the laziness of their placement. He explains the team effort that went into building a case, at times literally sifting through garbage to counter a point made by a defense witness. He explains Casey’s conflicting testimony and contradictions. And he describes how the person he felt most sorry for was George Anthony, Casey’s father.

Everyone who could read a paper knows the stunning outcome of that trial, one that Ashton postponed his retirement for over six months to see to its end. He believes that ultimately little Caylee Anthony was lost sight of in the media circus and trial that followed. In giving this behind-the-scenes story of the complete investigation and trail, he reveals information why he remains convinced to this day of Casey Anthony’s guilt.

Tace Baker: Speaking of Murder Sunday, Sep 30 2012 

Please welcome Tace Baker, author of Speaking of Murder:

Imagine an attractive and brilliant older undergrad.

 

 

Add in his linguistics professor, a Quaker with an ear for accents.

Complicate the story with an addictive friend and a threatening departmental chairwoman.

In Speaking of Murder, murder at a small Massachusetts college, small-town intrigues, and academic blackmail present obstacles as Professor Lauren Rousseau uses her facility with languages to track down the killer. When Lauren puts aside conflicted feelings for her boyfriend, his expertise in video forensics helps her solve the murder. Her own experience in karate enables her to escape from the killer.

Speaking of Murder was first runner up for the Linda Howard Award for Excellence in March of 2012.

One of the key tools used to solve the crimes in Speaking of Murder is video forensics.

Zac, Lauren’s boyfriend, works as a civilian video forensics expert at the local police station. The tool he uses is dTective from Ocean Systems, developed by Grant Fredericks and others. It’s used by police departments around the country to clarify surveillance video and present video evidence in court.

The dTective software works with Avid Media Composer, an award-winning video- and film-editing software for which I wrote technical documentation for 14 years. I knew I wanted to feature this software in my books. Write what you know, right? I was fortunate to be able to consult with the Raynham, Massachusetts police department, and also the Bristol County District Attorney’s office. They each use this software in their daily crime-fighting and each spent a half day with me, demonstrating the software and talking about how they use it.

It was a fascinating look into some of the inner workings of the criminal justice system. I hope I’ve done justice to their expertise. I learned how much this software can do with surveillance video. For example, you can:

* Apply a standard to see how tall someone is

* Lighten a dark image of a license plate

* Zoom in on a tattoo or other unique physical characteristic

* Compare a fingerprint left on a counter to one taken after arrest

 

It’s very cool stuff.

What about you? Do you know of other software programs that help solve crimes? Or have any questions about linguistics?

 

Tace Baker is the author of Speaking of Murder (Barking Rain Press, September 2012, ), which features Quaker linguistics professor Lauren Rousseau.

Tace Baker is a pseudonym for Edith Maxwell. Edith holds a PhD in linguistics and has been a member of Amesbury Monthly Meeting of Friends for several decades.

Edith also writes the Local Foods Mysteries.  A Tine to Live, a Tine to Die introduces organic farmer Cam Flaherty and a colorful Locavore Club (Kensington Publishing, June, 2013). Edith once owned and operated the smallest certified organic farm in Essex County, Massachusetts.

A technical writer and fourth-generation Californian, Edith also writes short crime fiction and lives north of Boston in an antique house with her beau and three cats. She’s active in Sisters in Crime and serves on the board of the New England chapter. She can be found at www.tacebaker.com, @tacebaker, and www.facebook.com/tacebaker, as well as at www.edithmaxwell.com, @edithmaxwell, and http://www.facebook.com/edithmaxwellauthor.

Pamela J Castrucci

Navigating self-publishing without a net.

Lee Lofland

The Graveyard Shift

Being Author

Book promotion & authors BLOG

S L Hollister, author

Welcome to Leeward

Liz Loves Books

The Wonderful World of Reading

The Life of Guppy

the care and feeding of our little fish

dru's book musings

Reading is a wonderful adventure!

JoHanna Massey

"I tramp the perpetual journey." Walt Whitman

MiddleSisterReviews.com

(mid'-l sis'-tǝr) n. the reader's favorite sister

My train of thoughts on...

Smile! Don't look back in anger.

K.R. Morrison, Author

My author site--news and other stuff about books and things

The Wickeds

Wicked Good Mysteries

John Bainbridge Writer

Indie Writer and Publisher

Some Days You Do ...

Writers & Writing, my own & other people's; movies, art, music & the search for a perfect flat white - the bits & pieces of a writing life.

Gaslight Crime

Authors and reviewers of historical crime fiction

Crimezine

#1 for Crime

Mellotone70Up

John Harvey on Books & Writing - his own & other people 's - Art, Music, Movies, & the elusive search for the perfect Flat White.

A thrilling Murder-Mystery...

...now being made into a radio drama

Past Offences: Classic crime, thrillers and mystery book reviews

The best mystery and crime fiction (up to 1987): Book and movie reviews

Pamela J Castrucci

Navigating self-publishing without a net.

Lee Lofland

The Graveyard Shift

Being Author

Book promotion & authors BLOG

S L Hollister, author

Welcome to Leeward

Liz Loves Books

The Wonderful World of Reading

The Life of Guppy

the care and feeding of our little fish

dru's book musings

Reading is a wonderful adventure!

JoHanna Massey

"I tramp the perpetual journey." Walt Whitman

MiddleSisterReviews.com

(mid'-l sis'-tǝr) n. the reader's favorite sister

My train of thoughts on...

Smile! Don't look back in anger.

K.R. Morrison, Author

My author site--news and other stuff about books and things

The Wickeds

Wicked Good Mysteries

John Bainbridge Writer

Indie Writer and Publisher

Some Days You Do ...

Writers & Writing, my own & other people's; movies, art, music & the search for a perfect flat white - the bits & pieces of a writing life.

Gaslight Crime

Authors and reviewers of historical crime fiction

Crimezine

#1 for Crime

Mellotone70Up

John Harvey on Books & Writing - his own & other people 's - Art, Music, Movies, & the elusive search for the perfect Flat White.

A thrilling Murder-Mystery...

...now being made into a radio drama