Unsolved: A Murdered Teen, a 40-Year Mystery-logo

Unsolved: A Murdered Teen, a 40-Year Mystery

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14-year-old John Zera was a freshman at Franklin High School when he was killed in 1976. In a seven-part podcast, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Gina Barton traces the case through decades of dead ends and false starts to find the present and a new hope for finding a killer.

14-year-old John Zera was a freshman at Franklin High School when he was killed in 1976. In a seven-part podcast, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Gina Barton traces the case through decades of dead ends and false starts to find the present and a new hope for finding a killer.
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United States

Description:

14-year-old John Zera was a freshman at Franklin High School when he was killed in 1976. In a seven-part podcast, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Gina Barton traces the case through decades of dead ends and false starts to find the present and a new hope for finding a killer.

Language:

English


Episodes

11: Bonus episode: Unsolved Live

4/24/2019
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Still have questions about the murder of Father Alfred Kunz? Want to hear more about what was going on behind the scenes of the podcast and of the investigation? Kunz's good friend Peter Kelly and retired detective Dawn Johnson joined host Gina Barton at a live event, where they provided some answers.

Duration:00:29:03

10: 'Forgive offenses'

3/27/2019
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Twenty years after Kunz’s murder, members of his former parish gathered at Mass to pray for his soul. Police, who had launched a social media campaign in connection with the anniversary, scanned the crowd for their suspects.

Duration:00:36:51

9: 'Bear Wrongs Patiently'

3/20/2019
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Detective Wayne Honer was among those who did not believe teacher Brian Jackson killed Father Kunz. While Detective Kevin Hughes was chasing Jackson, Honer focused on a different suspect.

Duration:00:28:28

8: 'Comfort the Sorrowful'

3/13/2019
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Immediately after Father Alfred Kunz’s death, St. Michael teacher Brian Jackson moved in with Kunz’s best friend, Father Charles Fiore. Detective Kevin Hughes was convinced Jackson was the killer. Support for this episode comes from Audible. Go to audible.com/un to listen to your favorite books.

Duration:00:32:44

Introducing: Case Closed

3/8/2019
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Here is another true crime podcast you might like. Season one of Case Closed tells the story of Erin Corwin, a young military wife who was murdered in 2014\. She was living with her husband, Jon, a Marine corporal, when she left to scout hiking trails in Joshua Tree National Park. She never came back.

Duration:00:25:29

7: 'Shelter the Homeless'

3/6/2019
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A Dane County sheriff’s deputy came to believe his nephew, Joe Cavanaugh, was Father Kunz’s killer. The attack on Kunz was similar to one Cavanaugh was believed to have committed against his grandfather.

Duration:00:25:52

6: 'Counsel the Doubtful'

2/27/2019
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St. Michael had been robbed in the months before Father Alfred Kunz’s death, and police believed the robbery and Kunz’s murder may have been connected.

Duration:00:26:19

5: 'Pray for the Living and the Dead '

2/20/2019
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Police have evidence that Father Alfred Kunz had performed exorcisms without the support of the church hierarchy, which official Catholic exorcists characterize as risky and foolish. Support for this episode comes from Care/Of. For 50% off your first month of personalized Care/Of vitamins, visit takecareof.com and use promo code MJS50.

Duration:00:26:24

4: 'Admonish the Sinner'

2/13/2019
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Father Alfred Kunz and Father Charles Fiore had reportedly been investigating sexual misconduct by priests without authorization from church leadership. Their efforts crossed the state line into Illinois.

Duration:00:25:35

3: 'Feed the Hungry'

2/6/2019
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Father Alfred Kunz met Mora Smith at Brian’s Diner, where she often served him breakfast. The two became close, with him helping her spiritually and financially. After Kunz’s death, police interrogated her and her two young sons. Support for this episode comes from Audible. Go to audible.com/un to listen to your favorite books.

Duration:00:31:04

2: Instruct the Ignorant

1/30/2019
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On the last night of his life, Father Alfred Kunz taped a radio show with co-host Peter Kelly and best friend Father Charles Fiore. Sometime after 10 p.m., Kunz was involved a struggle, which ended with an unknown assailant cutting his throat.

Duration:00:31:12

1: Bury the Dead

1/23/2019
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Father Alfred Kunz was murdered on the night of March 3, 1998\. His throat was slit and his body was found in a hallway at St. Michael School in Dane the next morning. Kunz clung to the Latin Mass and the old ways of the Catholic church. His murder remains unsolved.

Duration:00:25:47

Season Three: The Devil You Know

12/13/2018
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The body of Fr. Alfred Kunz was found on the floor of St. Michael School in Dane on March 4, 1998\. Twenty years later, his murder remains unsolved.

Duration:00:03:49

7: 'I'll see her in heaven'

10/18/2017
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Police investigate Edward Wayne Edwards in connection with Jefferson County’s unsolved deaths. Edwards once worked at the Concord House, where Timothy Hack and Kelly Drew disappeared from while attending a wedding reception. Edwards, a con man who wrote a book in the 1970s about his transformation from criminal to upstanding citizen, ultimately confesses to killing Hack, Drew and three other people. He denies killing Michelle. Jan comes to accept that she will never know what really happened...

Duration:00:26:12

7: A troubled history

10/11/2017
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Police investigate Teri Mueller’s husband, Joe, who has a long criminal record and whom police suspect may have been involved in the death of his son from his first marriage. His account of the events surrounding Michelle’s death don’t match Jan’s and the results of his polygraph are inconclusive, but police can never find the evidence to tie him to the crime.

Duration:00:30:03

6: Cults and witchcraft

10/4/2017
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Tipster Sharon Blasing gives police some of her ex-husband James Dunn’s books, which discuss black magic and the practice of baptizing Satanists with water in which un-baptized children have drowned. Police eliminate Dunn as a suspect in Michelle’s death when they realize he was in jail at the time of her disappearance, but wonder if he was involved in the deaths of 19-year-old high school sweethearts Timothy Hack and Kelly Drew, who disappeared the year before Michelle. Flashback to a point...

Duration:00:25:27

5: The girl in the café

9/27/2017
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Private investigator Norbert Kurczewski hires a police artist to come up with a sketch of the couple who was with the little girl in the Black Earth Café. One of the waitresses is hypnotized, but she can’t come up with any additional information about them. Teri Mueller tells Kurczewski that shortly after she opened the door for Michelle, she saw the little girl in the back seat of a white car. A woman named Sharon Blasing tells police the man in the sketch resembles her ex-husband.

Duration:00:24:57

4: Missing mom

9/20/2017
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Jan Manders can’t accept the finding that her daughter’s death was an accident. She walks away on her daughter Jennifer’s fifth birthday and declines into substance abuse and mental illness. Jennifer and her older brother, Christopher, are pretty much left to raise themselves. Jan hires a private detective, Norbert Kurczewski, to investigate Michelle’s disappearance. Kurczewski tracks down a waitress and several patrons at a restaurant in Black Earth, about 70 miles away, who say they saw...

Duration:00:35:00

3: Where's Michelle?

9/13/2017
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A couple of months before Michelle Manders disappeared, her mother Jan befriended a woman named Teri Mueller. Teri stayed at the Manders’ house one night when her husband failed to pick her up at 10 p.m. The next morning, both she and Michelle were gone. Two and a half weeks after Michelle disappeared, Teri tells police she opened the door for Michelle that night. They base their classification of accidental death largely on her statement, even though she has an intellectual disability and...

Duration:00:27:35

2: The shadow man

9/6/2017
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Watertown police investigate Michelle’s death on their own for 24 hours and find her mother’s purse about a block away. Police and her family search for the free-spirited little girl. Meanwhile, Michelle’s 4-year-old sister Jennifer tells them that on the night Michelle disappeared, a man came into their bedroom.

Duration:00:21:09