Pursuit Magazine
What Big Data Misses
Wed, 13 Sep 2023 14:46:38 +0000
I still like Big Data! But there are big gaps in what it sees. It’s your job to know that. Ø  FRAUD LAWSUIT Ø  TIME SHARE CONDOMINIUM Ø  VACATION RENTAL IN THE CARIBBEAN Ø  4 BUSINESS AFFILIATIONS These were all key findings in a recent research assignment. I didn’t find them in any of the global or comprehensive reports I obtained at the outset of my research, or what I call “Big Data.” Nonetheless, I still like Big Data. Way […]
Searching Online Public Records: What You Need to Know
Thu, 17 Aug 2023 20:53:23 +0000
Marcy Phelps shares intel about how to tackle investigations that require online public records research. As professional investigators, we do many things, including surveillance, locates, criminal defense work, due diligence, and much, much more. We work online and in the field, and we all have our areas of specialization. No matter what we do, though, to some extent, we all rely on public records. We rely on them for information about people, places, and companies. We look at court records, […]
Human Drama: Q&A with Novelist Chris Offutt
Fri, 21 Jul 2023 13:56:31 +0000
By Bradley Sides and Chapter16.org Chris Offutt on small towns, homesickness, and whether “bad guys” exist Code of the Hills By Chris Offutt. Grove Press. 288 pages. $27. Chris Offutt introduced readers to Army CID investigator Mick Hardin and his rural Kentucky community in 2021 with The Killing Hills, the first of a series of thrillers balancing murder and crime with loyalty and humor. Shifty’s Boys followed in 2022, and 2023 brings a third novel, Code of the Hills, taking Mick […]
As a PI, You Will Fail, and You Will Also Succeed.
Wed, 14 Jun 2023 14:32:40 +0000
For a solid career in the investigative major leagues, expect to strike out a lot, get on base sometimes, and hit the occasional grand slam. As private investigators, we sometimes forget that we will not always go undefeated. The average baseball Hall-of-Famer bats a little better than 300. Ted Williams’s lifetime batting average was .344. Ty Cobb’s average, at .366, has never been topped. Ted Williams famously said, “A .300 hitter, that rarest of breeds these days, goes through life […]
Review: “I’ll Stop the World”
Tue, 13 Jun 2023 13:27:25 +0000
Time’s Bridge: Teens work against the clock to save lives in a time-twisty murder mystery. by Tina Chambers & Chapter16.org I’ll Stop the World By Lauren Thoman. Mindy’s Book Studio. 446 pages. $28.99. Justin Warren, the protagonist of Nashville writer Lauren Thoman’s debut novel, I’ll Stop the World, finds himself in a bit of a pickle. It seems he has suddenly time-traveled, through no fault of his own, back to the 1985 version of his hometown: I slept in Rose’s car […]
Excerpt: “The Alaskan Blonde: Sex, Secrets, and the Hollywood Story That Shocked America”
Tue, 23 May 2023 16:33:10 +0000
A British journalist reexamines a cold-case murder from Fairbanks, Alaska in 1953 and uncovers new evidence about the crime. The Alaskan Blonde: Sex, Secrets, and the Hollywood Story That Shocked America By James T. Bartlett. Territory Books. 250 pages. $19.99. A few years ago, James T. Bartlett, a British journalist and historian living in Los Angeles, read about a 70-year-old murder case in the L.A. Times archive: Diane Wells, a beautiful blonde, had been attacked in a home invasion that […]
Review: “He Called Me Sister”
Thu, 18 May 2023 19:55:59 +0000
Ministering to the Least of These: A family learns about grace from a death row prisoner. by Jim Patterson & Chapter16.org He Called Me Sister: A True Story of Finding Humanity on Death Row By Suzanne Craig Robertson. Morehouse Publishing. 240 pages. $29.95. It took Suzanne Craig Robertson about a decade to write He Called Me Sister, which documents the relationship between death row inmate Cecil Johnson and the Robertson family as Johnson’s case winds its way to his execution by […]
5 Questions for a P.I. – Whitney Joy Smith
Tue, 16 May 2023 14:58:48 +0000
An occasional series in which we ask P.I.s around the globe the same 5 questions and get a multitude of different answers. Q1: Who are you? My name is Whitney Joy Smith. I was born in Orilla, Ontario, and hail from three generations of entrepreneurs. I studied business at Northwest Florida State College and emergency management at George Brown College, started my career as a repo specialist, and then got my P.I. license about 20 years ago. I’ve since become […]
Review & Interview: “Junk Science and the American Criminal Justice System”
Wed, 03 May 2023 16:58:11 +0000
M. Chris Fabricant, an Innocence Project attorney, has written a damning indictment of how bite mark evidence and other debunked forensic techniques persist in American courts. Junk Science and the American Criminal Justice System By M. Chris Fabricant. Akashic Books. 368 pages. Hardcover $29.95. In the opening pages of Junk Science and the American Criminal Justice System, M. Chris Fabricant sets a scene of horror: In Newport News, Virginia, on a summer night in 1982, Teresa Perron tucked her children […]
Review: “It’s One of Us,” by J.T. Ellison
Thu, 20 Apr 2023 13:16:12 +0000
Heartbreak and Betrayal: J.T. Ellison pens a deeply personal, compelling thriller with It’s One of Us. by G. Robert Frazier & Chapter16.org It’s One of Us By J.T. Ellison. Mira, 400 pages. $27.99. Nashville author J.T. Ellison has written her most personal and deeply moving novel with It’s One of Us but, like the master storyteller she is, still manages to weave a heart-pounding mystery thriller for her legion of readers. Ellison immediately evokes sympathy for her main character, home designer […]