Alta Live: Crater Lake Murder Mystery

In 1952, a vicious double murder at Crater Lake stunned the nation. Will this crime remain a mystery forever? Maybe not.

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In 1952, a vicious double murder at Crater Lake stunned the nation. The FBI and the Oregon State Police came up empty-handed. Then, 26 years ago, the granddaughter of one of the victims picked up the case. Alta contributor Julian Smith dove deep into this mystery to explore the details of the terrifying murder and find out how this 69-year-old cold case is heating up. He sits down with Best Evidence's Eve Batey and Alta Live to discuss his feature on the murders, “The Search of a Lifetime,” and explain how one victim’s family is still seeking the truth.

About the guests:

Julian Smith is an award-winning nonfiction journalist specializing in history, science, and travel. His work appears in Smithsonian, Wired, Outside, National Geographic Traveler, and the Washington Post. His most recent book, Aloha Rodeo: Three Hawaiian Cowboys, the World’s Greatest Rodeo, and a Hidden History of the American West, won the 2020 Oregon Book Award. He lives in Portland, Oregon, with his family.

Eve Batey is a co-founding writer at, a former Deputy Managing Editor at the San Francisco Chronicle, and has been yelled at by spokespeople from at least eight police departments and three regional FBI offices. She’s been writing about crime at the local, state, and national level since 2004, and publishes the true crime newsletter, Best Evidence.

Check out these links to some of the articles and cold cases Smith and Batey touched on:

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