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CLEWS is a weblog devoted to the discovery and dissemination of the fascinating stories to be found where murder, history, and journalism overlap. It is written by Laura James, former news reporter turned trial lawyer and devotee of forgotten true crime stories and the fascinating people who wrote them.


I earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and history from the Journalism School at Central Michigan University, courtesy of a full-ride scholarship from the Lapeer County Press, one of the most respected, two-fisted country weeklies in the nation while under its famous publisher, the late Robert Myers.

I went on to law school at the University of Detroit Mercy, where I graduated first in my class of 222 in 1994. After a years-long trial by fire in the courtrooms of southern Michigan, I took an early retirement from the practice of law in favor of family life in an old farmhouse in suburban Detroit.

I am also an avid gardener, backpacker and amateur archaeologist. I have been on archaeological digs throughout North and Central America. Though with two baby boys at home (Roger Edison, born 2003, and Andrew Franklin, born 2006), I think there are more Boy Scout outings than Third World treks in my future.


history, journalism, true crime