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How Hugh Dancy's Real Life Family Was Involved in a Chilling True Crime Murder Case

His great-grandmother's death is the subject of a successful 2023 podcast.

By Elizabeth Logan

As ADA Nolan Price on Law & Order, Hugh Dancy is used to putting the bad guys away after they've been caught. But when it comes to his real life, he had to tap into his detective side when his brother-in-law, a journalist, decided to investigate a tragic incident from the Dancy family's past.

Hugh Dancy's 1930's family murder documented on the Ghost Story podcast

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The incident in question is the murder of Dr. Naomi Dancy in 1937. The pioneering doctor was shot twice in the face, and police ascribed the killing to Naomi's troubled brother, a war veteran, who was said to have taken his own life after committing the crime.

Dr. Naomi Dancy is the great-grandmother of actor Hugh Dancy and his sister Kate Dancy, who married journalist Tristan Redman. Redman, coincidentally, grew up in the house next to the one where the murder occurred, and eerie incidents in his childhood made him suspect that one of the homes could be haunted. But the twist? Redman's findings questioned whether or not Naomi's husband John "Feyther" Dancy — the family's revered and eccentric patriarch — had something to do with her tragic murder.

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Redman investigated all possible explanations in the hit Wondery/Pineapple Street Media podcast "Ghost Stories," which played out over eight episodes in the latter half of 2023. Dancy is one of the family members interviewed, and he even lent his voice as a narrator.

Hugh Dancy on the red carpet for NBC's "Law & Order" Season Premiere

“I’ve spent two years reporting this story and I’m excited for people to hear it. It’s about ghosts, it’s about a forgotten murder and it’s about how we deal with uncomfortable things from the past," Redman said in a statement as the first episode premiered.

Hugh Dancy found the investigative process fascinating

"It was surprising and interesting that it took my brother-in-law, my sister’s husband, to kind of delve into this and want to learn more about it," the Hannibal star told Entertainment Tonight.

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"Before, it was just something that had happened, that was set in stone, and that was it," he said. "In the distant past. [The podcast] caused me to start thinking about the ways that we have our family stories and our histories set like that. We need to, we need to have a sense of who we are and where we come from. It’s complicated when that stuff gets challenged. And maybe altered. It’s a crazy story."