The Poison Pastor


A special edition of Yesterday’s News exploring the criminal justice system at its most extreme: Inflicting the Death Penalty.

Crimes of the Scoundrel Clarence V.T. Richeson

This episode explores the tawdry case of Clarence Virgil Thompson Richeson, who was apparently an eloquent preacher and a rising star in the Baptist community as well as a notorious scoundrel.

The tangled web of deceit he wove between three women finally ended in the mysterious death of the unmarried mother of his expected child.

Richeson would later confess that he gave her poison, telling her that it was medicine to induce an abortion.

This case is historically significant in that it was reportedly the first time in America that a man was sentenced to death without a trial, but solely on a confession.

Musical direction by Dave Sams

Incidental music by Chuck Wiggins


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