Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Chris Hansen returns to crime reporting on Investigation Discovery with his "Killer Instinct" series, starting with case of Anthony Sowell in Cleveland; he should followup his earlier "TCAP"

Chris Hansen is back on crime investigation documentary television, now on cable, the Investigation Discovery Channel, with a series called “Killer Instinct”.  The link for the series is here
The first episode aired Monday night Aug. 17, 2015, and traced the case of Anthony Sowell, who captured and killed eleven women in his home on Imperial Ave. in east Cleveland Ohio.  At least two women “escaped” and testified at trial.  Police were slow to catch on to the fact that women were vanishing, as the first two victims were reluctant to report.

Sowell was eventually sentenced to death and is on death row now.

Hansen mentioned the more recent case in Cleveland of Ariel Castro.

Hansen’s series seems to suggest the idea that serial criminality is specific to the perpetrators, and may involve genetic and background factors more than general economic hardship or inequality.
Hansen looked a little older than he did on NBC ten years ago with the series “To Catch a Predator”, which had covered the work of a “vigilante” group called Perverted Justice, which posed as minors in online Internet chatrooms to lure men into meetings in many states to set illegal underage sex, about 90% of it heterosexual.  The series was followed with a brief sequel called “Predator Raw” on MSNBC

Hansen ought to report on how some of the cases turned out.  One of the most disturbing was Rabbi David Kaye (Virginia, whose prosecution was delayed and went federal), and another was an oncologist in San Francisco. What happened to these men in prison and what is their life like on “supervised probation”?  Although this is not a pleasant topic, Hansen should do a followup on what happened in some of these cases over the years.  NBC Dateline has some material ("Where are they now?") on what has happened here.  Chris Hansen’s book is covered on the books blog March 17, 2007.

The picture is downtown Cleveland in August 2012, my visit.  

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