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USA TODAY Network and WGCU Public Media launch ’The Last Ride’ true crime podcast

Washington, D.C. – WEBWIRE
’The Last Ride’ follows the story of two young men of color who went missing in Naples, Florida, nearly two decades ago.
’The Last Ride’ follows the story of two young men of color who went missing in Naples, Florida, nearly two decades ago. USA TODAY Network

The USA TODAY Network’s Naples Daily News and The News-Press with WGCU Public Media, released the first two episodes of a new true crime podcast, ’The Last Ride’. The series distributed by the NPR Network is available wherever you listen to your favorite podcasts. ’The Last Ride’ follows the story of two young men of color who went missing in Naples, Florida, nearly two decades ago. Felipe Santos and Terrance Williams vanished three months apart, on the same road. They were last seen with the same, now-fired sheriff’s deputy, who said he gave them each a ride to a Circle K convenience store. He has never been arrested or charged.

Their disappearances haunt their families, police and journalists. Reported by USA TODAY Network journalists, the eight-episode podcast delves into this mystery that reveals painful truths about police accountability and media coverage of missing people. The series is hosted by USA TODAY Network – Florida award-winning investigative journalist Janine Zeitlin. Janine first covered this story early in her career and was the last journalist to interview the deputy, Steven Calkins, 16 years ago. She has remained close to the story through the years and her narration takes listeners on a journey to try to understand why these disappearances remain unsolved. “This is one of the eeriest and saddest mysteries in Southwest Florida. The podcast takes listeners deep into the case files. It’s our hope that the journalism will make a difference in solving the disappearances,” said Cindy McCurry-Ross, Executive Editor, The News-Press.

Episodes include details never heard before and exclusive interviews with media mogul Tyler Perry, famous civil rights attorney Ben Crump, the parents of Terrance Williams, lead investigators on the case and dramatic polygraph audio with deputy Calkins.

Episode 1: “One deputy. Two missing men” introduces listeners to the disappearances of Felipe Santos and Terrance Williams after last being seen with sheriff’s deputy Steven Calkins.

Episode 2: “The disappearance of Felipe Santos.” Felipe Santos, a 23-year-old Mexican immigrant and new father, vanishes after a minor traffic crash on October 14, 2003. Deputy Calkins is quickly cleared of wrongdoing despite allegations made by the Santos family.

“NPR is proud to partner with WGCU Public Media, Naples Daily News and The News-Press to bring The Last Ride to a national podcast audience. It tells an important story from a local community that will resonate broadly. We expect our distribution to reach new audiences for all of the partners and generate revenue that will help to fund greater locally produced content like it,” said Dan McCoy, NPR’s Senior Director of Network Growth.

’The Last Ride’ will release a new episode of the eight-episode series every Tuesday with the final episode dropping May 15, 2023. Learn more by visiting ’The Last Ride.’

About the USA TODAY Network

USA TODAY Network, part of Gannett Co, Inc. (NYSE: GCI), is the leading news media publisher in the U.S. in terms of circulation, powered by our award-winning newsrooms and digital marketing solutions business. With deep roots in local communities spanning the U.S. with more than 200 local media brands, plus USA TODAY, we engage more than 125 million people every month through a diverse portfolio of multi-platform content offerings and experiences. For more information, visit

About the NPR Network

The NPR Network is a local-national media network comprised of independent public media organizations in communities around the country, founded on a mission to create a more informed public. Through the Network, NPR and Member stations are working together to bring America closer through free and independent journalism, music, politics, culture, and more. This collaborative initiative aims to engage more audiences with public media content through all digital platforms. NPR Network content is available through local Member stations (, and NPR One, and wherever podcasts are found.

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