Amber Hunt is part of the Pulitzer Prize-winning team at The Cincinnati Enquirer, where she works as reporter and host of the podcast “Accused,” an award-winning true crime serial whose third season is under way. Each season, Accused adopts a cold case to reinvestigate, finding and exploring investigative paths that original detectives failed to pursue, for one reason or another.
In season 1, Hunt and her reporting partner, Amanda Rossmann, reinvestigated the 1978 stabbing death of Elizabeth Andes, a 23- year-old recent college graduate whose boyfriend found her in the apartment they shared. Despite the boyfriend being acquitted and found not liable for the death by two separate juries, police and prosecutors refused to look at anyone else as potentially culpable for the crime. Hunt and Rossmann found three people who warranted further investigation. Season 2 focused on the 1987 stabbing death of Retha Welch. A man convicted in that case was ultimately released after 23 years when DNA testing failed to tie him to the crime scene. In Season 3, Hunt and Rossmann are tackling their most complicated case to date: The mysterious 1984 death of a man working inside a uranium processing plant. Police quickly ruled his death a suicide, but the duo’s year-long investigation suggests that decision was made in haste. Accused has been featured in O magazine, The Daily Beast, Wired magazine, and on RollingStone.com, among others. It also was named one of the top podcasts of 2016 by Esquire, iTunes and Mental Floss.
Amber’s written six books, including the New York Times bestseller “The Kennedy Wives,” and is a past Knight-Wallace Fellow at the University of Michigan, where her studies focused on forensics and juvenile justice. She is a past recipient of the Al Nakkula Award for Police Reporting and has taught multimedia journalism at the University of Cincinnati. Amber has also appeared on multiple crime-focused TV Shows, including NBC’s Dateline and A&E’s Crime Stories. She lives in Ohio with her artist husband and too-smart-for-his-own-good kindergartener.
Questions now closed.
Hi Amber, it’s a privilege to have you on. There’s so much to unpack with what you do, but I’d love to start with one around your research process. It’s clearly your strong point, but can you go into more detail about what that process looks like with a brand new case or topic?
Hiya Amber, how often do you get to write and do you have a ritual? I am trying to write more but I find it hard to fold it into my lifestyle sometimes. Thanks!
Hi Amber, thanks for coming on! Do you think you could do the podcast without the resources and support offered by the newspaper? I guess I’m asking if you think indie podcasters could achieve something similar or if you really need the resources to do it well.
There are a lot of new podcasts in true crime who don’t do anywhere near enough research (some even plagiarise) and just seem to be riding the wave of the genre. What’s your take on this, given how much effort you put into crafting such high-quality, well-researched stuff?
what was most interesting to you when researching the Kennedy wives book? Seems like a very fasinating topic!