Podcasts We’re Diggin’: Payne Lindsey Solves The Ultimate Cold Case

Remember when the podcast Serial was all the rage? Well I think this week’s podcast pick gives Serial a run for its money. Up and Vanished follows amateur filmmaker, Payne Lindsey, on his journey to reinvestigate a 12-year-old missing persons cold case that is juicy enough to make you want to join in on his crusade. This podcast just wrapped up earlier this year and his efforts actually resulted in two arrests; more movement on this case that has happened in the 12 years that the victim, Tara Grinstead, went missing.

Pretty insane that a dude that had a low-key film career in Atlanta, GA is now responsible for making a break in a case that seemed to be unsolvable. I’m about halfway through the podcast, but I can tell you that after listening to the first episode, I was instantly hooked. But don’t take only my word for it. Since the podcast first debuted in 2016, it has received over 100 million downloads. The host and crew are currently on tour discussing their efforts, details about the case, and answering questions from their loyal followers. Apparently, I’m not the only one who is dying to know more about what happened to Tara Grinstead.

Meet The Host

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Payne Lindsey

Payne Lindsey has been filming his whole life and eventually established himself as a local filmmaker in Atlanta, working on music videos and short films. He wanted to do a bigger project, and his interest in documenting a crime is what led him to embark on the Up and Vanished journey.

His first step was to hop on Google and search for open cases in the Atlanta area. He came across a missing persons case that had been cold for over a decade – the longest cold case in Georgia history. From there, he began using Websleuths.com to obtain any information he could about the Tara Grinstead’s case. To his surprise, a former P.I. on the case contacted him and provided a treasure trove of information Payne needed to truly begin an investigation into the case again. And if that wasn’t enough, Payne had another great resource, his grandma [who lives near Ocilla – the site of the Tara Grinstead disappearance] who disclosed information very few knew about the night of Tara’s disappearance.

Since then, Payne has documented his every move with this investigation and remarkably, his efforts forced the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to turn their attention to this missing persons case again. Payne is reportedly developing a second season centered around another crime…can’t wait to see what comes up in his Google search next!

Why You Should Listen

I have no other reason to tell you to listen other than that this podcast is just legit entertaining! The story of Tara Grinstead’s disappearance and concluded murder is truly horrifying. But at the same time, the case is very captivating because of the many twists and turns in the investigation. The reason this case went cold was partially due to the complicated web of people involved, but the main contributor was the less-than-professional forensics investigation of Tara’s home after the crime. Up and Vanished is a fantastic companion on your commute to work, but I can also tell you it’s going to spark your interest enough to listen in your free time as well. It’s nice to have a break from the monotonous day-to-day, and Up and Vanished is definitely the cure-all for any of your workday woes.

How To Find It

Find it in your podcast app or here

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Sam Schafer

Storyteller - Spotify peruser - Traveler Instagram: @sam_schafer27