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A true crime podcast series, Runaway Joe, from the Irish public service broadcaster, RTÉ, has just made an incredible breakthrough and closed what has been one of the longest unresolved cases on the books of the FBI.

Runaway Joe, freely available to listen on all major podcast platforms, tells the story of Rochester man Joseph Maloney (b.1935) – who in 1967 was charged with the first-degree murder of his wife June Fisk in upstate New York. Whilst awaiting trial, Maloney escaped from the authorities before going on the run. A massive manhunt followed – but drew a complete blank.

For much of the last six decades, the fate of Joseph Maloney – and his whereabouts – has remained a mystery.

RTÉ’s Runaway Joe is now reporting that Joseph Maloney is in fact dead – having learned that Joseph Maloney’s third wife Sheila, who spent more than 20years on the run with him, informed her family in Dublin in 2005 that Joe Maloney had died.

Runaway Joe also reveals that Maloney fathered at least six children in the US at the time he was accused of murdering his wife. Through the help DNA testing via, the podcast series has also reunited these six children, almost none of whom knew about each other until now.

From their investigations, and since the podcast began, the RTÉ team behind Runaway Joe has come further than any of the authorities in discovering what really happened to Joe Maloney since he went on the run in 1967. He first fled to Ireland, where he lived for almost 20 years under the alias, Michael O’Shea. Eventually apprehended by the Irish authorities, they were forced to release him from custody when the extradition treaty between the US and Ireland dramatically collapsed. In 1986, Maloney walked out of an Irish prison, and has never been seen since.

Through extensive interviews and research, Runaway Joe has now uncovered that when Joe Maloney and his Irish wife Sheila fled Ireland in 1986, they first settled in Berlin, East Germany – before then moving to Northern Cyprus after the fall of the Berlin wall. Both destinations did not have extradition treaties with the US, which is why Maloney fled there. Whilst the FBI had engaged in extensive media campaigns both nationally and internationally during the 1990s (incl America’s Most Wanted, Unresolved Mysteries), all efforts drew a blank in finding any information about Joseph Maloney.

The former Assistant District Attorney Wendy Lehman who worked this case from the 1980s through to her retirement is viewing the news of Maloney’s death as a ‘pretty definitive closure’. And the makers of Runaway Joe agree. “Whilst we may have thought at one stage there was a chance we could find Joe alive, and help bring him to justice, what we’ve found over the last 18 months has amounted to overwhelming indications, from numerous sources, that Joe Maloney is dead – we’ve not found a single indicator that he’s alive – so for us, the case is now closed. And we hope this brings some sense of closure to the family of June Fisk – and a new future for all of these adult children who have now been reunited as a result of this podcast series”.


1 Comment

  1. Kristin on March 11, 2024 at 6:53 pm

    I don’t believe it. He is a spoofer he is probably faking his death

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