The Thing About Helen & Olga

NBC News

Helen and Olga are kindly old ladies who open their hearts and wallets to down-and-out men in Los Angeles. In a city named for angels, the two women seem heaven-sent. After one of the men is killed by a hit-and-run driver -- and then another suffers the same fate -- investigators uncover a horrifying and twisted plot that stuns even the most seasoned detectives. Listen to all episodes of The Thing About Helen & Olga now completely free, or subscribe to Dateline Premium to listen ad-free: read less

Our Editor's Take

On the surface, Helen and Olga appeared to be typical grandmas with a love of philanthropy. But a different story lurked behind the homey façades of the two women. The Thing About Helen & Olga podcast recalls how they hatched an insurance scam no one saw coming. This 2021 limited-run series explains the true crime story.

The Thing About Helen & Olga podcast tells the story of Helen Golay and Olga Rutterschmidt. They were two female con artists.One drove a Mercedes and was once a dentist's wife. The other was outgoing and drove a Honda. One was born in Texas, the other in Budapest. Somehow, they met at a Los Angeles gym in the 1980s. The rest is true crime history. Who would doubt the intentions of two kindly old ladies? Not the unfortunate homeless men whom they targeted.

The two hatched a plot that seemed straight out of a movie and got away with it. At least, as host Keith Morrison says, they did for a while. The podcast is an installment of the popular NBC magazine program Dateline. The six-part documentary-styled podcast examines how an insurance investigation led to something bigger. The Thing About Helen & Olga listeners will hear the shocking story of greed, envy, and cold-blooded murder.

Morrison, an award-winning Dateline veteran, has a strong background. His past interviews include everyone from presidents to criminals. On The Thing About Helen & Olga, he uncovers Helen and Olga's scheme. He reports on the men they targeted and lured and the ensuing investigation. Listeners will hear the accounts of survivors, detectives, and reporters. Also, exclusive audio recordings capture the grandma villains in their own words. This is a good listen for true crime fans.

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