Presenting 15 famous cases from Fresno, California, set in the first part of the 20th century, a long-time detective in the sheriff's office introduces key figures such as a bootlegger, an unfortunate local dubbed Alligator Jack, and a perpetrator known as the Fig Garden Fiend. Featuring local landmarks such as Mussel Slough - the setting for Frank Norris's "The Octopus" - and offering additional commentary that compares these sensational past cases to current high-profile criminal cases. A consideration of the changing face of crime, this history reveals a modern upswing in child abuse, multiple murders, and kidnapping cases and highlights the extended nature of the current legal process as compared to the open-and-shut character of the early 1900s.
Scott Morrison is a former detective with the Fresno County Sheriff's Office who served in the homicide, sex crimes, and intelligence units. He lives in Fresno, California.