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Criminology

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  1. 10.6 hrs • 6/7/2016 • Unabridged

    American policing is in crisis. The last decade witnessed a vast increase in police aggression, misconduct, and militarization, along with a corresponding reduction in transparency and accountability. Nowhere is this more noticeable and painful than in African American and other ethnic minority communities. Racism—from raw, individualized versions to insidious systemic examples—appears to be on the rise in our police departments. Overall, our police officers have grown more and more alienated from the people they’ve been hired to serve. In To Protect and Serve, Norm Stamper offers new insights into the conditions that have created this crisis, reminding us that police in a democratic society belong to the people—and not the other way around. To Protect and Serve also delivers a revolutionary new model for American law enforcement: the community-based police department. It calls for citizen participation in all aspects of police operations: policymaking, program development, crime fighting and service delivery, entry-level and ongoing education and training, oversight of police conduct, and, especially relevant to today’s challenges, joint community-police crisis management. Nothing will ever change until the system itself is radically restructured, and here Norm Stamper shows us how.

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    To Protect and Serve

    10.6 hrs • 6/7/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 0 reviews 0 5 2 2 out of 5 stars 2/5
    7.9 hrs • 4/19/2016 • Unabridged

    Encompassing nearly 2,000 years of heists and tunnel jobs, break-ins and escapes, A Burglar’s Guide to the City offers an unexpected blueprint to the criminal possibilities in the world all around us. You’ll never see the city the same way again. At the core of A Burglar’s Guide to the City is an unexpected and thrilling insight: how any building transforms when seen through the eyes of someone hoping to break into it. Studying architecture the way a burglar would, Geoff Manaugh takes readers through walls, down elevator shafts, into panic rooms, up to the buried vaults of banks, and out across the rooftops of an unsuspecting city. With the help of FBI special agents, reformed bank robbers, private security consultants, the LAPD Air Support Division, and architects past and present, the book dissects the built environment from both sides of the law. Whether picking padlocks or climbing the walls of high-rise apartments, finding gaps in a museum’s surveillance routine or discussing home invasions in ancient Rome, A Burglar’s Guide to the City has the tools, the tales, and the x-ray vision you need to see architecture as nothing more than an obstacle that can be outwitted and undercut. Full of real-life heists—both spectacular and absurd—A Burglar’s Guide to the City ensures readers will never enter a bank again without imagining how to loot the vault or walk down the street without planning the perfect getaway.

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    A Burglar’s Guide to the City

    7.9 hrs • 4/19/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 6.7 hrs • 3/8/2016 • Unabridged

    In 1991, Shaka Senghor was sent to prison for second-degree murder. Today, he is a lecturer at the University of Michigan, a leading voice on criminal justice reform, and an inspiration to thousands. In life, it’s not how you start that matters. It’s how you finish. Shaka Senghor was raised in a middle-class neighborhood on Detroit’s eastside during the height of the 1980s’ crack epidemic. An honor-roll student and a natural leader, he dreamed of becoming a doctor—but at age eleven, his parents’ marriage began to unravel and the beatings from his mother worsened, sending him on a downward spiral that saw him run away from home, turn to drug dealing to survive, and end up in prison for murder at the age of nineteen, fuming with anger and despair. Writing My Wrongs is the story of what came next. During his nineteen-year incarceration, seven of which were spent in solitary confinement, Senghor discovered literature, meditation, and self-examination, tools that he used to confront the demons of his past, forgive the people who hurt him, and begin atoning for the wrongs he had committed. Upon his release at age thirty-eight, Senghor became an activist and mentor to young men and women facing circumstances like his. His work in the community and the courage to share his story led him to fellowships at the MIT Media Lab and the Kellogg Foundation and invitations to speak at events like TED and the Aspen Ideas Festival. Writing My Wrongs is a redemption story told through a stunningly human portrait of what it’s like to grow up in the gravitational pull of poverty, violence, fear, and hopelessness. It’s an unforgettable tale of forgiveness and hope, one that reminds us that our worst deeds don’t define who we are or what we can contribute to the world. And it’s a lasting testament to the power of compassion, prayer, and unconditional love, for reaching those whom society has forgotten.

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    Writing My Wrongs

    6.7 hrs • 3/8/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 9.8 hrs • 2/2/2016 • Unabridged

    A Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter’s gripping account of one young man’s path to murder—and a wake-up call for mental health care in America On a summer night in 2009, three lives intersected in one American neighborhood. Two people newly in love—Teresa Butz and Jennifer Hopper, who spent many years trying to find themselves and who eventually found each other—and a young man on a dangerous psychological descent: Isaiah Kalebu, age twenty-three, the son of a distant, authoritarian father and a mother with a family history of mental illness. All three paths forever altered by a violent crime, all three stories a wake-up call to the system that failed to see the signs. In this riveting, probing, compassionate account of a murder in Seattle, Eli Sanders, who won a Pulitzer Prize for his newspaper coverage of the crime, offers a deeply reported portrait in microcosm of the state of mental health care in this country—as well as an inspiring story of love and forgiveness. Culminating in Kalebu’s dangerous slide toward violence—observed by family members, police, mental health workers, lawyers, and judges, but stopped by no one—While the City Slept is the story of a crime of opportunity and of the string of missed opportunities that made it possible. It shows what can happen when a disturbed member of society repeatedly falls through the cracks, and in the tradition of The Other Wes Moore and The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace, is an indelible, human-level story, brilliantly told, with the potential to inspire social change.

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    While the City Slept

    9.8 hrs • 2/2/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    11.3 hrs • 7/7/2015 • Unabridged

    The dead talk—to the right listener. They can tell us all about themselves: where they came from, how they lived, how they died, and, of course, who killed them. Forensic scientists can unlock the mysteries of the past and help serve justice using the messages left by a corpse, a crime scene, or the faintest of human traces. Forensics draws on interviews with some of these top-level professionals, groundbreaking research, and Val McDermid’s own original interviews and firsthand experience on scene with top forensic scientists. Along the way, McDermid discovers how maggots collected from a corpse can help determine one’s time of death; how a DNA trace a millionth the size of a grain of salt can be used to convict a killer; and how a team of young Argentine scientists led by a maverick American anthropologist were able to uncover the victims of a genocide. It’s a journey that will take McDermid to war zones, fire scenes, and autopsy suites, and bring her into contact with both extraordinary bravery and wickedness, as she traces the history of forensics from its earliest beginnings to the cutting-edge science of the modern day.

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    Forensics

    11.3 hrs • 7/7/15 • Unabridged
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  6. 10.1 hrs • 6/16/2015 • Unabridged

    Weaving together historical examples, scientific studies, and compelling court cases—from the border collie put on trial in Kentucky to the five teenagers who falsely confessed in the Central Park jogger case—Benforado shows how our judicial processes fail to uphold our values and protect society’s weakest members. With clarity and passion, he lays out the scope of the problem and proposes a wealth of reforms that could prevent injustice and help us achieve true fairness and equality before the law.

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    Unfair

    10.1 hrs • 6/16/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 12.7 hrs • 11/4/2014 • Unabridged

    In 1984 this groundbreaking book presented a chilling profile of the criminal mind that shattered long-held myths about the sources of and cures for crime. Now, with the benefit of twenty years’ worth of additional knowledge and insight, Stanton Samenow offers a completely updated edition of his classic work, including fresh perceptions into crimes in the spotlight today, from stalking and domestic violence to white-collar crime and political terrorism.  Dr. Samenow’s three decades of working with criminals have reaffirmed his argument that factors such as poverty, divorce, and media violence do not cause criminality. Rather, as Samenow documents here, all criminals share a particular mind-set—often evident in childhood—that is disturbingly different from that of a responsible citizen.  While new types of crime have grown more prevalent, or at least more visible to the public eye—from spousal abuse to school shootings—little has changed in terms of our approach to dealing with crime. Rehabilitation programs based on the assumption that society is more to blame for crime than the criminal, an assumption for which a causal link has yet to be established, have proved to be grossly inadequate. Crime continues to invade every aspect of our lives, criminal court dockets and prisons are oppressively overcrowded and expensive, and recidivism rates continue to escalate. To embark on a truly corrective program, we must begin with the clear understanding that the criminal chooses crime; he chooses to reject society long before society rejects him. The criminal values people only to the extent that he can use them for his own self-serving ends; he does not justify his actions to himself. Only by “habilitating” the criminal, so that he sees himself realistically and develops responsible patterns of thought, can we change his behavior.  It is vital that we know who the criminal is and how and why he acts differently from responsible citizens. From that understanding can come reasonable, compassionate, and effective solutions.

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    Inside the Criminal Mind

    12.7 hrs • 11/4/14 • Unabridged
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  8. 17.4 hrs • 8/6/2013 • Unabridged

    More than forty years ago ,Charles Manson and his mostly female commune killed nine people, among them the pregnant actress Sharon Tate. It was the culmination of a criminal career that author Jeff Guinn traces back to Manson’s childhood. Guinn interviewed Manson’s sister and cousin, neither of whom had ever previously cooperated with an author. Childhood friends, cellmates, and even some members of the Manson Family have provided new information about Manson’s life. Guinn has made discoveries about the night of the Tate murders, answering unresolved questions, such as why one person on the property where the murders occurred was spared. Manson puts the killer in the context of his times, the turbulent late sixties, an era of race riots and street protests when authority in all its forms was under siege. Guinn shows us how Manson created and refined his message to fit the times, persuading confused young women and a few men that he had the solutions to their problems. At the same time, he used them to pursue his long-standing musical ambitions, relocating to Los Angeles in search of a recording contract. His frustrated ambitions, combined with his bizarre race-war obsession, would have lethal consequences as he convinced his followers to commit heinous murders on successive nights.

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    Manson

    17.4 hrs • 8/6/13 • Unabridged
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  9. 10.6 hrs • 8/1/2013 • Unabridged

    On November 3, 1870, on a San Francisco ferry, Laura Fair shot and killed her married lover, A. P. Crittenden. Throughout her two murder trials, Fair’s lawyers, supported by expert testimony from physicians, claimed that the shooting was the result of temporary insanity caused by a severely painful menstrual cycle. The first jury disregarded such testimony, choosing instead to focus on Fair’s disreputable character. In the second trial, however, an effective defense built on contemporary medical beliefs and gendered stereotypes led to a verdict that shocked Americans across the country. In this rousing history, Carole Haber probes changing ideas about morality and immorality, masculinity and femininity, love and marriage, health and disease, and mental illness to show that all these concepts were reinvented in the Victorian West. Haber’s book examines the era’s most controversial issues, including suffrage, the gendered courts, women’s physiology, and free love. This notorious story enriches our understanding of Victorian society, opening the door to a discussion about the ways in which reputation—especially female reputation—is shaped.

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    The Trials of Laura Fair by Carole Haber

    The Trials of Laura Fair

    10.6 hrs • 8/1/13 • Unabridged
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  10. 1 reviews 0 5 4.5 4 out of 5 stars 4.5/5 (1)
    13.2 hrs • 7/9/2013 • Unabridged

    The American approach to law enforcement was forged by the experience of revolution. Emerging as they did from the shadow of British rule, the country’s founders would likely have viewed police as they exist today as a standing army and therefore a threat to liberty. Even so, excessive force and disregard for the Bill of Rights have become epidemic in America today. According to civil liberties reporter Radley Balko, these are all symptoms of a generation-long shift to increasingly aggressive, militaristic, and arguably unconstitutional policing—one that would have shocked the conscience of America’s founders. Rise of the Warrior Cop traces the arc of US law enforcement from the constables and private justice of colonial times to present-day SWAT teams and riot cops. Today relentless “war on drugs” and “war on terror” pronouncements from politicians, along with battle-clad police forces with tanks and machine guns, have dangerously blurred the distinction between cop and soldier. Balko’s fascinating, frightening narrative shows how martial rhetoric and reactionary policies have put modern law enforcement on a collision course with the values of a free society.

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    Rise of the Warrior Cop by Radley Balko

    Rise of the Warrior Cop

    13.2 hrs • 7/9/13 • Unabridged
    1 reviews 0 5 4.5 4 out of 5 stars 4.5/5 (1)
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  11. 16.4 hrs • 4/30/2013 • Unabridged

    Why do some innocent kids grow up to become cold-blooded serial killers? Is bad biology partly to blame? For more than three decades Adrian Raine has been researching the biological roots of violence and establishing neurocriminology, a new field that applies neuroscience techniques to investigate the causes and cures of crime. In The Anatomy of Violence, Raine dissects the criminal mind with a fascinating, readable, and far-reaching scientific journey into the body of evidence that reveals the brain to be a key culprit in crime causation. Raine documents from genetic research that the seeds of sin are sown early in life, giving rise to abnormal physiological functioning that cultivates crime. Drawing on classical case studies of well-known killers in history—including Richard Speck, Ted Kaczynski, and Henry Lee Lucas—Raine illustrates how impairments to brain areas controlling our ability to experience fear, make good decisions, and feel guilt predispose us to violence. He contends that killers can actually be coldhearted: something as simple as a low resting heart rate can give rise to violence. But arguing that biology is not destiny, he also sketches out provocative new biosocial treatment approaches that can change the brain and prevent violence. Finally, Raine tackles the thorny legal and ethical dilemmas posed by his research, visualizing a futuristic brave new world where our increasing ability to identify violent offenders early in life might shape crime-prevention policies, for good and bad. Will we sacrifice our notions of privacy and civil rights to identify children as potential killers in the hopes of helping both offenders and victims? How should we punish individuals with little to no control over their violent behavior? And should parenting require a license? The Anatomy of Violence offers a revolutionary appraisal of our understanding of criminal offending, while also raising provocative questions that challenge our core human values of free will, responsibility, and punishment.

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    The Anatomy of Violence

    16.4 hrs • 4/30/13 • Unabridged
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  12. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    8.7 hrs • 7/15/2012 • Unabridged

    The story of the young sociologist who studied a Chicago crack-dealing gang from the inside captured the world's attention when it was first described in Freakonomics. Gang Leader for a Day is the fascinating full story of how Sudhir Venkatesh managed to gain entrée into the gang, what he learned, and how his method revolutionized the academic establishment. When Venkatesh walked into an abandoned building in one of Chicago's most notorious housing projects, he was looking for people to take a multiple-choice survey on urban poverty. A first-year grad student, he would befriend a gang leader named JT and spend the better part of the next decade inside the projects under JT's protection, documenting what he saw there. Over the next seven years, Venkatesh observed JT and the rest of the gang as they operated their crack selling business, conducted PR within their community, and rose up or fell within the ranks of the gang's complex organizational structure. Gang Leader for a Day is an inside view into the morally ambiguous, highly intricate, often corrupt struggle to survive in an urban war zone. It is also the story of a complicated friendship between two young and ambitious men, a universe apart.

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    Gang Leader for a Day

    8.7 hrs • 7/15/12 • Unabridged
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  13. 12.4 hrs • 10/5/2010 • Unabridged

    A riveting true crime story that vividly recounts the birth of modern forensics At the end of the nineteenth century, serial murderer Joseph Vacher, known and feared as “The Killer of Little Shepherds,” terrorized the French countryside. He eluded authorities for years—until he ran up against prosecutor Emile Fourquet and Dr. Alexandre Lacassagne, the era’s most renowned criminologist. The two men—intelligent and bold—typified the Belle Époque, a period of immense scientific achievement and fascination with science’s promise to reveal the secrets of the human condition. With high drama and stunning detail, Douglas Starr revisits Vacher’s infamous crime wave, interweaving the story of how Lacassagne and his colleagues were developing forensic science as we know it. We see one of the earliest uses of criminal profiling, as Fourquet painstakingly collects eyewitness accounts and constructs a map of Vacher’s crimes. We follow the tense and exciting events leading to the murderer’s arrest. And we witness the twists and turns of the trial, celebrated in its day. In an attempt to disprove Vacher’s defense by reason of insanity, Fourquet recruits Lacassagne, who in the previous decades had revolutionized criminal science by refining the use of blood-spatter evidence, systematizing the autopsy, and doing groundbreaking research in psychology. Lacassagne’s efforts lead to a gripping courtroom denouement. The Killer of Little Shepherds is an important contribution to the history of criminal justice, impressively researched and thrillingly told.

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    The Killer of Little Shepherds

    12.4 hrs • 10/5/10 • Unabridged
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  14. 7.8 hrs • 7/16/2009 • Unabridged

    Most Americans think of the Taliban and al-Qaeda as a bunch of bearded fanatics fighting an Islamic crusade from caves in Afghanistan. But that doesn’t explain their astonishing comeback along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. Why is it eight years after we invaded Afghanistan, the CIA says that these groups are better armed and better funded than ever? Seeds of Terror will reshape the way you think about America’s enemies, revealing them less as ideologues and more as criminals who earn half a billion dollars every year off the opium trade. With the breakneck pace of a thriller, author Gretchen Peters traces their illicit activities from vast poppy fields in southern Afghanistan to heroin labs run by Taliban commanders, from drug convoys armed with Stinger missiles to the money launderers of Karachi and Dubai. This isn’t a fanciful conspiracy theory. Seeds of Terror is based on hundreds of interviews with Taliban fighters, smugglers, and law enforcement and intelligence agents. Their information is matched by intelligence reports shown to the author by frustrated US officials who fear the next 9/11 will be far deadlier than the first—and paid for with drug profits. Seeds of Terror makes the case that we must cut terrorists off from their drug earnings if we ever hope to beat them. This war isn’t about ideology or religion. It’s about creating a new economy for Afghanistan—and breaking the cycle of violence and extremism that has gripped the region for decades.

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    Seeds of Terror

    7.8 hrs • 7/16/09 • Unabridged
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  15. 8.5 hrs • 5/29/2007 • Unabridged

    Over forty million Americans have seen Dateline NBC’s ongoing “To Catch a Predator” segment series, with an average of eleven million viewers per episode. So far the Dateline series has led to the arrest of over two hundred men and has shown that child predators can be anyone—even those who are the most trusted in the community, including rabbis and teachers. In To Catch a Predator, Chris Hansen, the on-air correspondent for one of Dateline’s most successful series, looks deeper into the world of child predators. The book expands beyond the Dateline series to include more commentary from psychological and criminal experts about the origins and methods of child predators, and includes substantive advice for both parents and children on how to protect kids who use the Internet from predators. Hansen also looks at the current methods for treating child predators. To Catch a Predator presents a strong analysis of what some feel is a child predator epidemic and a startling look at the shortcomings of our systems and society.

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    To Catch a Predator

    8.5 hrs • 5/29/07 • Unabridged
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  16. 11.3 hrs • 11/20/2005 • Unabridged

    As host of Closing Arguments on Court TV and Nancy Grace on CNN Headline News, Nancy Grace has won legions of devoted fans with her intelligent, plainspoken approach to the law. A passionate advocate of victims’ rights and outspoken critic of the often circus-like atmosphere surrounding high-profile cases, Grace addresses the critical issues at the heart of the criminal justice system. In Objection!, she takes on a host of controversial topics, including the all-too-common “blame-the-victim” defense, the imperiled jury system, the inescapable effect of celebrity factor on trials, and the debate surrounding the death penalty. Grace also offers a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at some of the country’s most explosive trials, including those of Scott Peterson, Robert Blake, Michael Jackson, and Martha Stewart.

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    Objection! by Nancy Grace

    Objection!

    By Nancy Grace with Diane Clehane
    11.3 hrs • 11/20/05 • Unabridged
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