Every good podcast has a niche; anymore, it’s hard to compete in the general “true crime” category as there are so many great podcasts in that niche. For that reason, smart podcast hosts have begun to “niche down” further in the true crime space: some cover only cold cases, cults, or serial killers, whereas others choose a geographic region and only cover crimes from that area. Today, I’m focusing on the best regional true crime podcasts.
Each of these true crime podcasts focuses on a specific multi-state region in the U.S. From Appalachia to the American West, you’ll learn about podcasts that dive deep into a specific region – and the crimes committed there.
1. Appalachian Mysteria
As the podcast name suggests, Appalachian Mysteria is focused on the Appalachian region (which officially includes parts of Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia, and all of West Virginia, for the record!).
As a multi-serial show, they focus on a different case each season; so far they’ve covered the West Virginia Coed Murders and the death of Alexander Stevens in western Maryland. If you love multi-host shows of this type it’s a good one to add to your binge-worthy list.
2. Appalachian Unsolved
Maybe it’s the fog in the trees and the rolling hills of the mountains – there’s something about Appalachia that creates mysterious circumstances and daws podcasters to explore the stories there. That’s why there are two podcasts on my list of regional podcasts focused on this one area (admittedly, it’s also a big region, as I mentioned above).
Appalachian Unsolved looks at unsolved and cold cases in the area. They only publish new episodes very intermittently, with one in 2021, and a few in 2020; that said, they do have a nice production quality and explore lesser-known cases you may not have heard before.
3. Dark Downeast
Originally started as a true crime podcast focused on Maine, Dark Downeast has expanded to explore crimes throughout the New England region (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont).
A single host casefile with commentary, this quickly became one of my favorite weekly podcasts as the host does a great job of sharing lesser-known cases and humanizing them even when they date back decades.
4. Death in the West
I want on the fence about including Death in the West on this list as they are currently a single serial show that hasn’t produced new episodes in a while. However, the first (and currently only) season is very well produced and their website says they plan on producing future seasons. They also bill themselves as a history and true crime podcast, which I love.
This podcast has multiple hosts that work together to cover the story; the first season examines the brutal killing of a man named Frank Little in 1917.
5. Four Corners Crime Cast
In case you’re not familiar with the Four Corners, all you need to do is look at the cover art for Four Corners Crime Cast. This show covers true crime in the states of Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arizona (which meet at a point called the Four Corners).
In each episode, the hosts cover the casefile sprinkled with commentary to humanize and honor the victims.
6. Great Lakes True Crime
At this point, we’ve covered many of the country’s biggest regions: New England, Appalachia, the Southwest Four Corners area… and here’s another: the Great Lakes! Encompassing parts of Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indian, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York, the Great Lakes is a huge area to cover, but Great Lakes True Crime does it all.
This single host casefile with commentary podcast is published intermittently but offers a great chnce to learn about cases in a different part of the country.
Bonus: I’m pretty sure this podcast is recorded where I live – Cleveland, Ohio!
7. Murder in the Rain
We can’t forget the Pacific Northwest! Home to many serial killers who seem drawn to the gloomy, mysterious weather in the upper left part of the U.S., the Pacific Northwest is the regional focus of Murder in the Rain.
Produced in the style of Crime Junkie and My Favorite Murder, this two-host casefile with commentary show has great production value and shows how the PNW rivals Appalachia for most murdery region in America.
8. Southern Fried True Crime
If you love all things southern culture in the U.S., you should definitely give Southern Fried True Crime a listen. This show focuses on crimes committed in the large American South region (including parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, West Virginia, and Virginia, so overlapping some with the Appalachian shows above).
Best of all, the host’s delightful southern drawl makes it an aurally immersive experience – you really get a sense that this podcast is all-South, all the time.
9. True Crime Cat Lawyer
Though you’d never guess it from the show name, True Crime Cat Lawyer also focuses exclusively on crimes committed in the Pacific Northwest. This show is often more bite-sized than others on this list – some shows clock in under 30 minutes if you’re only looking for a short listen.
The single host (and her cat, Winston) examine a new case in each episode, with commentary (and perhaps the occasional meow? I’m still waiting to hear one!).
Do you know of any otherr great regional true crime podcasts? Let me know in the comments!