After a successful first run, American Public Media and Westwood One have partnered to reach even more listeners for a second season of investigative podcast In the Dark.
The first season of the series focused on the kidnapping of an 11-year-old boy nearly three decades after the case went cold. The season boasted almost 12 million downloads, with thousands of additional downloads each month, the companies said.
Westwood One hopes to reach even more listeners this time around.
“We are incredibly impressed with APM’s award-winning and high-quality investigative content, and [we] have no doubt that this collaboration will be a huge success for both companies,” said Suzanne Grimes, evp corporate marketing, Cumulus Media and President, Westwood One.
The second season of In the Dark will launch on May 1 with two episodes. A new episode will be released every following week until June 26.
The second season will focus on Curtis Flowers, a black man from Winona, Mississippi. Flowers has been tried six times for the same crime and has been sentenced to death multiple times, said APM investigative reporter Madeleine Baran, who hosts the podcast. In a blog post on APM’s site, the team said they got a tip in February of last year from a woman in central Mississippi stating that she thinks Flowers is innocent. The woman called the evidence “iffy,” but added that “the man didn’t have a chance.”
Flowers is currently on death row after the majority-white jury convicted him of murdering four people in 1996. APM’s team of investigative reporters moved to Mississippi and conducted research for over a year, reading thousands of documents from the trials and interviewing hundreds of sources for the podcast. “What we found is a story about unexamined leads, questionable evidence, fear and race,” the team wrote in the blog post. “Most of all, though, it’s a story about a man fighting for his life and a prosecutor who has spent two decades trying to execute him.”
Baran added that the story is “an important [one] to tell.” “I’m very much looking forward to having people listen to it, having people talk about what is in the podcast and how they maybe question how they do certain things,” Baran said. “It was a big effort by the entire team.”