The First Degree

The true crime podcast that you might just end up on.

Join Jac Vanek, Alexis Linkletter, and expert correspondent Billy Jensen on a chilling ride into the darkest corners of your worst nightmares.  We’re talking murder, serial killers, cults, conspiracy theories and beyond, all told through the eyes of a guest who is one degree of separation from the story itself.  From Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dahmer to an unknown heinous murder in your very own hometown, The First Degree will bring a new and refreshing perspective to the true crime phenomenon.  And who knows...you may be our next guest.

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Jac Vanek

Jac Vanek is a business owner, entrepreneur, podcaster, and one of the most influential lifestyle “it girls” of her generation.  At the turn of this millennium and before “blogging” went mainstream, Jac shared an intimate look into her young adult life on the original blogging platform: LiveJournal. Sharing her poetry, photography, and life experiences of growing up in the music scene, she quickly drew interest from her peers around the country. Jac’s journal gained a massive online following and transformed her identity into one of the original “bloggers”, and used this following to create her own brand. She turned the idea of a single bracelet into a multi-million dollar business when she was in her early twenties, and has been expanding and developing new brands since then. She started the podcast, The LadyGang with Keltie Knight and Becca Tobin in 2015, and it has grown to be one of the most popular female-driven podcasts available.  Jac is a true-crime junkie and armchair detective, binging documentaries, series, podcasts, and books on serial killers, unsolved mysteries, and conspiracy theories on a daily basis.  She spends her free time lurking around the internet for the latest stranger than fiction stories.

 
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Alexis Linkletter

Alexis Linkletter is a New York raised and Los Angeles based true crime documentary producer and investigative journalist, with a focused interest in serial killers and cases of police corruption. Alexis has been a regular contributing writer for VICE for three years, and has produced articles with topics ranging from murder & matricide to the death industry to public policy reform. She has produced hundreds of hours of true crime television, working on such shows as: Snapped, Killer Couples, Killer Post, Snapped: Notorious- the Menendez Brothers,  She Made Me Do It, Three Days To Live, CBS’ Pink Collar Crimes, as well as CNN’s Unmasking A Killer, a five-part documentary for CNN that focuses on the Golden State Killer. The focus of Linkletter's writing has recently shifted from news articles to the pursuit of completing her first non fiction true crime memoir. The book focuses on a murder spree on Long Island, police corruption, and her organic personal connections to the key players involved.

 

Along with expert...

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Billy Jensen

Billy Jensen was a true crime journalist focused squarely on unsolved murders and missing persons. But after 17 years of writing hundreds of stories without endings, he was fed up--and decided to solve the murders and find the missing himself. Combining the shoe leather investigative tenacity and skills he learned reporting crime with radical techniques honed from his day job as a digital executive, Jensen has solved more than a half dozen homicides and helped find seven missing persons. Law enforcement agencies now reach out to Jensen to help in cases that have them stumped, using him as a “consulting detective.”  He has written crime feature stories for Rolling Stone, Los Angeles Magazine, Boston Magazine, and Miami New Times, was managing editor of the Long Island Press and a crime stringer for the New York Times. His current day job is as supervising producer, digital for the Warner Bros. show Crime Watch Daily with Chris Hansen, where he also acts as an investigator. He has been on-camera talent for cases from murders in woods of New Hampshire to a fugitive search in Utah. His investigation into the wrongful conviction of Kimberly Long helped earn her release from prison last year.