Zodiac Speaking Podcast

This is the spot to listen to the podcast, Zodiac Speaking co-hosted by Mike Morford and Richard Grinell



Episode 1 Lake Herman Road (Released March 13,2021)

On December 20th, 1968, a young couple out on their first date; 17 year-old David Faraday and 16 year old Betty Lou Jensen, were shot to death along Lake Herman Road on the outskirts of Vallejo, CA. Police looked at people that may have been jealous of the young couple, or may have had a gripe with David, but those avenues of investigation led nowhere. The double murders of the teenagers shocked the community, and it wouldn’t be until eight months later when another Vallejo couple was attacked, that the city realized that they had a maniac on the loose. Soon the SF Bay area would come to know this maniac as the Zodiac Killer.

Episode 2 Blue Rock Springs (Released March 13, 2021)

Just over six months after a double murder rocked the city of Vallejo, CA, another attack only 2 miles away from the first would spoil Independence Day celebrations. 22 Year-old Darlene Ferrin, and 19 Year-Old Michael Mageau were shot without warning as they sat in their car at Blue Rock Springs Park on the outskirts of Vallejo. Before police realized what happened, they received a call from someone claiming to be the killer. Less than a month later, they would receive a 3 part cipher, and letters in the mail from the killer; a killer that would give himself the moniker, ‘Zodiac’

Episode 3 Lake Berryessa (Released March 27, 2021)

On September 27th, 1969, college students Bryan Hartnell, 20, and Cecelia Shepard, 22 made a spur of the moment decision to head to peaceful, and private Lake Berryessa in Napa County. They made their way down to the edge of the lake and spread out a blanket to relax on. But their get away was soon interrupted by a hooded attacker who brutally stabbed the young couple before making his escape. Bryan was able to survive his injuries but unfortunately, Cecelia died two days later. It didn’t take authorities long to determine that the pair had been attacked by the Zodiac, who had moved on from the Vallejo area.

Episode 4 Presidio Heights (Released April 10, 2021)

In early October 1969, the city of San Francisco remained untouched by the Zodiac Killer’s attacks to the North East of them in Solano and Napa Counties. That would all change on October 11th of that year when a cab driver named Paul Stine was murdered in his cab in the prestigious Presidio Heights section of the city. At first glance, it appears as if the dead cabbie found at the corner of Washington & Cherry Streets, was the victim of a robbery gone wrong. It wouldn’t take long for the Zodiac to take responsibility for the murder going as far as to provide proof of his involvement, and sending the residents of San Francisco into a panic.

Episode 5 A Bus Bomb and Poison (Released April 24, 2021)

Following Zodiac’s last confirmed murder of Paul Stine, he promised to terrorize the SF Bay area using various methods and making the crimes he committed seem random. He threated to use a bomb, but never carried out his threat. However, other possible crimes in the Bay area may have been the work of Zodiac, such as the stalking and attempted poisoning of school teacher Daniel Williams in Contra Costa County.

Episode 6 ‘December 1969’ (Released May 8, 2021)

In December, 1969, a flurry of confirmed and unconfirmed Zodiac correspondences, in both California, and beyond, came in. Some of them seemed to link to the mysterious death of 16 year-old Leona Roberts. 50+ years later, we are still trying to figure out if all of these correspondences in December, 1969, can be directly attributed to the Zodiac Killer.

Episode 7 The Spring of 1970 (Released May 22, 2021)

The Spring of 1970 was a busy one for Zodiac, or at least it may have been. With the possible March abduction of a young Mother named Kathleen Johns and her daughter in Stanislaus County, as well as the sadistic April murder of lamp designer Robert Salem in San Francisco, the police were kept busy. Capping it off was a 13 character cipher from Zodiac that has yet to be solved to this day.

Episode 8 Mount Diablo, The Mikado, and more Mysterious Mailings (Released June 5, 2021)

Throughout 1970, the Zodiac continued to mail taunting letters, notes, and codes- some of it referenced Mount Diablo, and the Gilbert & Sullivan production, The Mikado. Meanwhile, in the SF Bay area and beyond, multiple letters and threats, though unconfirmed to be Zodiac, were quickly attributed to him.

Episode 9 The Mystery of the Missing Nurse (Released June 19, 2021)

On September 6th, 1970, well over 100 miles North East of Zodiac’s stomping grounds, 25 year old South Lake Tahoe nurse, Donna Lass went to work her shift at the Sahara Hotel-Casino just a few miles away. During her overnight shift at the casino, Donna Lass vanished. The next day, an unidentified man called Donna’s landlord, and her employer to let them know that Donna had gone home to SD for a family emergency, but the call turned out to be a hoax, and Donna Lass has never been seen again. It wasn’t long before a possible Zodiac correspondence was mailed hinting at responsibility for Donna’s disappearance. In this episode, we discuss the Donna Lass case, as well as other suspicious, and possible Zodiac activity around the same timeframe.

Episode 10 The Year 1971 (Released July 3, 2021)

1971 was a change of pace for the Zodiac case as the Bay area’s confirmed letters wound down in the SF Bay area, opening up the possibility that he was lying low, or perhaps had moved on to another area.


Episode 11 1974 (Released July 24, 2021)

In January, 1974, the Zodiac Killer broke his silence of almost 3 years mailing several new letters in the SF Bay area before his last known confirmed letter in July of that year. During his absence, people wondered and theorized about what might have happened to the bay area killer to make him go silent. Once he returned, it wasn’t long before other bay area crimes were pinned on him.



Episode 12 1978 to 2001 (Released August 7, 2021)

Although the Zodiac’s last official confirmed letter was mailed in 1974, from 1978-2001, a steady flow of unconfirmed, and possibly hoaxed letters continued to come in. Crimes that bore a similar MO to the serial killer were often blamed on him.



Episode 13 Cheri Jo Bates Part 1 (Released August 21, 2021)

On November 16th, 1970, SF Chronicle reporter Paul Avery ran an article in the newspaper linking the Zodiac to the October 30, 1966 murder of 18 year-old Cheri Jo Bates in Riverside, CA over 400 miles South. Although he stayed silent at first, the Bay area serial killer finally admitted to being responsible for Cheri’s murder and credited police for stumbling onto his ‘Riverside Activity’. But was the Zodiac actually involved in Cheri’s murder? We explore the Bates case and possible Zodiac connection in this first of two parts.



Episode 14 Cheri Jo Bates Part 2 (Released September 11, 2021)

In this episode, we wrap up our examination of the Riverside, California murder of Cheri Jo Bates on October 30, 1966.



Episode 15 Q&A Episode Part 1 (Released September 25, 2021)

In this episode, the first of two parts, Morf & Rich respond to Zodiac related questions presented by listeners and followers on social media.



Episode 16 Q&A Part 2 (Released October 9, 2021)

In this episode, the second of two parts, Morf & Rich respond to Zodiac related questions presented by listeners and followers on social media.



Episode 17 The Early 1960’s (Released October 23, 2021)

In this episode, Morf and Rich examine a series of unsolved ealry 1960’s murders in Southern California that have strong similaritities to the later Zodiac murders in the SF Bay area. Are the crimes related? The crimes include, the April 1962 murder of cab driver Ray Davis in Oceanside, the June 1963 murders of high school students Robert Domingos and Linda Edwards in Santa Barbara County, and the February 1964 murders of newlyweds Joyce and Johnny Swindle in San Diego.



Episode 18 The ‘Poste’ Mortem (Released November 6, 2021)

Mike & Rich break down and discuss the shortcomings of the newest Zodiac suspect to make waves in the media, Gary Francis Poste. Learn how and why the ‘The Case Breakers’, the team that presented Poste as a suspect is flawed in their findings.


Episode 19 Geographic Profiling (Released November 20, 2021)

In this episode, Rich & Mike discuss geographic profiling in the Zodiac case, and whether or not it may be a useful tool in determining where the Zodiac may have resided.



Episode 20 The Search for DNA (Released December 4, 2021)

In this episode, Mike and Rich give a brief overview of how DNA has helped answer questions in older cases and whether it can help solve the Zodiac Killer mystery. We also explore what investigators may now be doing behind the scenes in the Zodiac case to identify the killer using his DNA



Episode 21 Deep dive into the Donna Lass case (Released December 18, 2021)

In this episode, we hear from Joanne Goettsche, the roommate of possible Zodiac victim, Donna Lass. She clears up some of the murky details regarding the time around when Donna vanished, and helps us get to know Donna a bit better. We also discuss a report that was created by a private investigator hired by Donna’s family. Both the interview with Joanne, and the report help to clear some things up, but they also don’t always line up with each other, leading to more questions.



Episode 22 Zodiac’s Origins (Released January 15, 2022)

In the first episode of 2022, Mike & Rich explore the possibility that Zodiac can be identified if his true origins can be discovered, including letters that Zodiac may have written before and after his Zodiac letters. as well as letters from other states. We also touch on the possiblilty that any of Zodiac’s letters include DNA which could also lead to him being identified.



Episode 23 The 340 Cipher and Beyond (Released January 29, 2022)

In this episode, Mike & Rich discuss various aspects of the Zodiac’s codes, and what possibly inspired him when constructing them, and why there appear to be some differences between the construction of his ciphers



Episode 24 The Eureka Card (Released February 13, 2022)

n December, 1990, a greeting card with a snow man on the cover was mailed from Eureka, CA to the editor of the SF Chronicle. Inside was a photocopy of 2 keys attached to what appears to be a penlight. For some reason, the card was put on a shelf and forgotten for years until the 2007 movie, Zodiac was released. The movie prompted SF Chronicle staff to look at all of the stuff that they had received over the years that might be related to the case. That’s when they¬†discovered the 1990 Eureka card that had been stored away years earlier, and it turns out that they may have been in possession of a correspondence from the Zodiac Killer for years. The find led to many questions, a potential suspect, and debate as to whether the card was really from Zodiac. Mike & Rich discuss all of that in this episode




Episode 25 Three Outlier Letters (Released February 26, 2022)

Mike and Rich discuss 3 outlier letters mentioned over the years in relation to the Zodiac case, and examine if any of them may really be from Zodiac, and if so, might they point the way to other Zodiac victims?



Episode 26 The Sacramento Freeway Murders (Released March 12, 2022)

In this episode. we explore whether or not the April, 1986 murders of Koy Ien Saechao and Choy Fow Saelee in a hail of bullets along a Sacramento area freeway, and a subsequent letter,were the work of the Zodiac. Both the attack, and the letter came very soon after the release of Robert Graysmith’s best selling book, ‘Zodiac’




Episode 27 A Deep Dive into Lake Herman Road (Released March 26, 2022)

In this episode, Mike and Rich dive deep into the Zodiac’s first canonical crime; the 12/20/68 murders of David Faraday and Betty Lou Jensen on Lake Herman Road on the outskirts of Vallejo. They discuss some of the unanswered questions, and explore theories connected to the shooting and the crime scene.


Episode 28 The Sunol Park and Belmont Murders (Released April 9, 2022)

In this episode, Mike & Rich discuss two bay area murders with some similarities to confirmed Zodiac murders, but also with some key differences; the June 1967 murders of Enedine Molina and Fermin Rodriguez at Sunol Regional Park in Alameda County, and the November 1975 murder of Anthony Vincent Bruno Jr in Belmont, San Mateo County. All three victims died after a gunman attacked them on secluded lover’s lane type areas. Their cases remain unsolved.



Episode 29 Creating the Zodiac (Released April 23, 2022)

In this episode, Mike and Rich explore whether there is any possibility of the Zodiac’s backstory being tied to the Albany Pigeon Boy, the mysterious ‘Sandy’, or Big bad Zode from Pacific High School.




Episode 30 The Murder At Washington Street (Released May 21, 2022)

In this episode, Mike & Rich explore the Paul Stine murder and the area around the crime scene to get a better idea of what Zodiac was thinking when he killed cab driver Paul Stine in the Presidio Heights section of San Francisco on October 11, 1969.




Episode 31 Eyewitness Descriptions (Released June 4, 2022)

In 1969, a handful of people had confirmed or possible sightings of the Zodiac Killer, or heard his voice. In this episode, Rich and Mike discuss the various statements of witnesses in an effort to try and get a true sense of Zodiac’s physical description and approximate age.



Episode 32 The Murder of Robert Salem (Released June 18, 2022)

In April, 1970, 40 year old lamp designer Robert Salem was murdered and mutilated in his San Francisco home. Written in the wall were the words ‘Satan Saves’ and ‘Zodiac’. But was the Zodiac killer responsible for this murder, or was another killer hoping to steal some of the attention away from the real Zodiac? We discuss the Salem case as and how his murder may fit into the Zodiac mystery, as well as some other crimes that closely mirror the Salem murder including the Lipstick Killer.



Episode 33 Movies and Media (Released July 9, 2022)

In this episode, Mike and Rich discuss the various movies and media referenced by the Zodiac, or associated with him in an effort to determine if they can give us any clues to his identity.



Episode 34 The July 31st 1969 Letters (Released July 23, 2022)

In this episode, Mike and Rich examine the Zodiac’s July 31, 1969 communications for clues about the killer, his inspiration for the letters, and his M.O.



Episode 35 The Daniel Williams Attack and The Pines Card (Released August 6, 2022)

In this episode, we discuss two lingering but interesting cases in which the Zodiac may be involved, or at the very least, wanted people to think he was involved in; the November 1969 attempted poisoning of teacher Daniel Williams in Contra Costa County, and the September, 1970 disappearance of Donna Lass in Lake Tahoe. Threatening notes and calls may link the 2 cases, but was Zodiac responsible?


Episode 36 Zodiac Speaking Q&A (Released August 20, 2022)

As the show heads to hiatus, Mike and Rich discuss the questions, theories, and ideas submitted by listeners of the show covering many of the topics covered in the first 35 episodes of the podcast, and the Zodiac case overall. Although Zodiac Speaking is going on hiatus, be sure to stay subscribed for more Zodiac and true crime content. Mike will be releasing an in depth episode about his suspect ‘Mac’ and we will cover any new or breaking developments in the Zodiac case.



Episode 37 Parts 1 & 2 ‘My Suspect Mac’