If your students love Serial, wait until they hear In the Dark! Season two explores how Curtis Flowers has been tried for the same murder case six different times over a 21 year period. As the host says, it's about “a black man from a small town in Mississippi who’s spent the past 21 years fighting for his life, and a white prosecutor who’s spent that same time trying just as hard to execute him.”
***This is for episode two - check out my resources for episode one here***
This lesson is for episode 2: "The Route." Students will hear all about the route Curtis allegedly took the morning of the murders and they'll hear from the witnesses who testified to seeing Curtis along the route that day.
The QR code on the worksheet links to the website with the podcast. The website also has a detailed map of Curtis's route including various buildings and witnesses along the way. Students use the map as a guide while listening to the podcast's host walk the route and discuss the case. Afterward, students reflect on how they would feel about this if they were on the jury and if it would help to convince them of Curtis's guilt.
Students also hear witnesses discuss the case and the investigation and take specific notes on each witness and their testimony. Finally, students need to rank the different witnesses according to how credible they are. Witnesses' credibility comes into play when you consider how many months before they spoke with police, if they went to the police or if the police went to them, substance abuse during testimony, and changing stories. Students need to decide which variables cause a loss of credibility and how much the variable affects the witnesses' credibility.
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