CounterClock is a true crime podcast hosted by investigative journalist Delia D’Ambra. The podcast is split into different seasons. In each season, Delia revisits an unsolved murder case and tries to uncover new clues to find out the truth. CounterClock means to turn the clock back in time, which is exactly what the investigative journalist turned podcast host does in this show; she goes back in time to solve crimes that have been long buried.
The podcast has gained a lot of popularity among true crime enthusiasts because of the amount of research Delia does in trying to uncover the truth and the way in which she narrates the story.
Delia D’Ambra is an American investigative journalist who majored in Broadcast and Electronic Journalism with a minor in Creative Writing. She used to work as a general assignment and investigative reporter for NBC2 WBBH news in Fort Myers, Florida.
Delia used to binge on true crime stories, which is where her interest stems from. Her interest in true crime and journalism, coupled with the need to uncover the secrets of unsolved murders in her hometown in North Carolina, led her towards starting this podcast. Currently, she works as a producer and on-air host for podcasts under Audiochuck. Apart from CounterClock, she has also hosted other true crime podcasts such as Park Predators, Dark Arenas, and Crime Junkies.
Themes and Topics Covered in CounterClock
The CounterClock podcast has four seasons so far, with each season covering one murder. To solve the crimes, Delia turns back the clock and goes to the very beginning – the moment when the clocks of the victims stopped ticking.
These murders are decades old, so the odds are already stacked against her. But Delia doesn’t let that stop her. She goes through police case files, court transcripts, photographs, and any evidence collected with a fine-toothed comb.
Not only that, but she also looks for clues on her own. This includes tracking down and interviewing family members, neighbors, friends, witnesses, possible suspects, and so on. With each episode, we become privy to more and more of the story, leading us closer to the truth: who is actually the killer?
Season 1: Denise Johnson
For the first season, Delia takes us back to her hometown of North Carolina. 22 years ago, Denise Johnson was found murdered inside of a burning home. This combined case of murder and arson has marred the image of her hometown for as long as she can remember, so in this season, she is hell bent on finally uncovering the truth and putting the whole thing to rest, once and for all.
Season 2: Stacey Stanton
This season once again takes us back to Delia’s hometown. It has been three decades since 28-year old Stacey Stanton was stabbed and killed inside her second-storey apartment. A man was already arrested by the local police and convicted by the DA. So, for all intents and purposes, this case is closed.
However, for those who actually knew the victim, it is a different story. For them, the case still remains unsolved. The man who was sentenced to prison? Innocent, according to them. So, what is really the truth?
Season 3: The Pelley Family Murders
Season 3 takes us to Indiana where Delia investigates the infamous 1989 Pelley family massacre, also known as the Prom murders. Reverend Pelley, along with his wife, and two kids, were found murdered in their own home. Jeff Pelley, Reverend Pelley’s son and the only surviving family member, was suspected of the murders. It was rumored that he went to prom right after killing his family. But is he really the killer? Delia finds out in this season!
Season 4: John Welles
In the fourth season, Delia goes all the way to rural Florida to look into the murder of 17-year old John Welles who was killed in 2003. He was found face down in a watery ditch. What appeared to be a simple drowning turned into a homicide case when police discovered a bullet in his skull. As she begins to uncover clues, she encounters a lot of twists and turns, making this one of her most dangerous investigations so far!
Reach of The CounterClock Podcast
The CounterClock podcast host, Delia D’Ambra, has 46.5k followers on Instagram and 9.6k followers on Twitter.
As of January 2023, CounterClock was ranked #40 on the Apple Podcasts chart.
Based on this analysis, we estimated that CounterClock receives 50k -75k listens each time an episode goes out across Apple, Google, YouTube, and Spotify podcast networks.
The Format of The CounterClock Podcast
Each season of the CounterClock podcast follows the same structure, more or less. It begins with Delia letting us in on the murder case that she is going to be investigating. We find out how the body of the victim(s) were found, and what clues led to the conclusion that this was a homicide.
Slowly, she uncovers new evidence and re-examines old ones, all the while narrating to us how it ties back to the murder. Next comes tracking down eyewitnesses and suspects and interviewing them in order to find new leads, even if it takes years. She also talks to the detectives and police officers who worked on the case and encourages them to come forward about gaps and mistakes in the investigation.
Finally, after presenting all the evidence she has gathered so far, she encourages viewers to keep the momentum going and reach out with any new information that might help the case. And she does not hesitate to go toe to toe with government officials for the sake of the case.
The “guests” on this podcast include former law enforcement officers who worked on the case, eyewitnesses, and the family members whom she interviews.
Reception and Impact
The CounterClock podcast has been received very well by true crime lovers all over the globe. Delia has been commended for her commitment to finding the truth by leaving no stone unturned, as well as her amazing storytelling ability. She has a way of breaking down the incidents for the audience.
Delia knows how to combine facts with her own well-found suspicions and theories to keep the listeners engaged. The fact that she does everything she can in her power to track down witnesses and suspects is a testament to her dedication. And, no matter who she is interviewing, she is always respectful and professional. This is definitely a binge-worthy podcast, and many listeners certainly seem to think so, too!