Cheer up, Cleveland. You may have lost the World Series, but you may be gaining the next season of the popular podcast "Serial."
According to a report on Cleveland.com, "Serial" host (and Baltimore Sun alum) Sarah Koenig and the show's producer, Dana Chivitz, have been seen scouting a Cleveland-area trial recently, "listening to and recording testimony." Douglas Shine, according to Cleveland.com reporter Cory Shaffer, is accused in the February 2015 killing of three people at a barbershop in the suburban Cleveland community of Warrensville Heights.
"The trial," Shaffer writes, "raises several issues currently dominating the national conversation over the criminal justice system. Gang violence, retaliatory shootings, witness intimidation, the continued use of the death penalty, and the reliability of eyewitness identification are all at play in the trial which began in early September."
Koenig would not confirm to cleveland.com that they were gathering material for a third season of "Serial," saying only, "We're here, and we're working." Reached via email by The Baltimore Sun, she was even more cryptic, saying only that it would be "premature" to comment.
The first season of "Serial" delved into the murder of Woodlawn High School student Hae Min Lee and the murder conviction of her former boyfriend, Adnan Syed. A good portion of the state's case against Syed, listeners may recall, rested on cellphone data.
Now that his murder conviction has been overturned, Adnan Syed, subject of the "Serial" podcast, is asking to be released from prison. (Emma Patti Harris/Baltimore Sun video)
According to Shaffer's report concerning the Cleveland case, "investigators here say cellphone data puts Shine's cellphone in the area of the barbershop pn the night of the slayings."
The story on Cleveland.com acknowledges that the folks behind "Serial" have been "scouting several stories around the country," and that neither a subject nor a release date for Season 3 has been announced.
The first season of "Serial" continues to resonate here in Baltimore, as Syed continues to proclaim his innocence and the judicial system continues to reconsider the case against him. His conviction was overturned and a new trial granted in June, although state prosecutors have appealed that decision. Syed remains in jail, though his attorneys filed a petition asking for his release while he awaits trial.
A second season of "Serial" looked at the case of Bowe Bergdahl, a soldier captured after going AWOL while serving in Afghanistan. He was released after the U.S. government agreed to turn over five high-ranking Taliban fighters to officials in Qatar.