J. Warner Wallace

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J. Warner Wallace
BornJames Warner Wallace
(1961-06-16) June 16, 1961 (age 59)
Torrance, California, U.S.
OccupationHomicide detective, Christian apologist, author, pastor
NationalityUnited States
Alma materCalifornia State University at Long Beach
University of California, Los Angeles
Los Angeles Sheriff's Academy
Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary
SubjectChristian apologetics

James Warner Wallace (born June 16, 1961) is an American homicide detective and Christian apologist. Wallace is a Senior Fellow at the Colson Center for Christian Worldview and an Adjunct Professor of Apologetics at Biola University in La Mirada, California. He has authored several books, including Cold-Case Christianity, God’s Crime Scene, and Forensic Faith, in which he applies principles of cold case homicide investigation to apologetic concerns such as the existence of God and the reliability of the Gospels. He has been featured as a cold case homicide expert on Fox 11 Los Angeles, truTV (formerly Court TV), and NBC.

Life and work[edit]

Wallace was born in Torrance, California. He graduated from the Los Angeles Sheriff's Explorer Academy in 1978. From there he went on to pursue a career in the arts, earning a bachelor's degree in design from California State University at Long Beach and a master's degree in architecture from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).[1] In 1988, Wallace returned to law enforcement, attending the Los Angeles Sheriff's Academy as a recruit for the Torrance (CA) Police Department. During his law enforcement career, Wallace served on a number of assignments, including SWAT, Gang Detail, and Robbery Homicide. He was also one of the founding members of the Torrance Police Department's Cold-Case Homicide Unit.

Investigative work[edit]

As a homicide detective, Wallace has investigated a number of high-profile cold-case murders. His cases have been featured on Dateline (NBC)[2] and North Mission Road (truTV). As a founding member of the Torrance Police Department Cold-Case Homicide Unit, Wallace earned the Sustained Superiority Award from the South Bay Police and Fire Medal of Valor committee.[3] He also won the 2015 California Peace Officer Association COPSWEST Award for best solved cold case.[4]

Conversion to Christianity[edit]

In 1996, Wallace became a Christian at the age of 35, after investigating the gospels as potential eyewitness accounts to the life of Jesus.[5] Wallace joined the staff of Saddleback Church, while continuing to serve as a cold-case homicide detective. He later enrolled in Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, earning a master's degree in theological studies.[1]

Christian apologetics[edit]

Wallace began applying the principles of cold-case homicide investigation to Christian apologetics. He has written four books addressing the evidence for Christianity: Cold-Case Christianity, Alive, God's Crime Scene, and Forensic Faith. Wallace has been a guest on a number of television programs, including The 700 Club (CBN),[6] Praise The Lord (TBN),[7] 100 Huntley Street (Crossroads),[8] and The Leon Show (TBN/The Miracle Channel).[9] He has spoken on several radio broadcasts, including The Laura Ingraham Show, The Eric Metaxes Show, The Janet Mefferd Show, and In the Market with Janet Parshall.


Cold-Case Christianity[edit]

Wallace's first book is Cold Case Christianity; A Homicide Detective Investigates the Claims of the Gospels (David C. Cook, 2013), presenting ten principles of cold-case homicide cases and using them to investigate the claims of the New Testament gospels.[10]

God's Crime Scene[edit]

In God's Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detective Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe (David C. Cook, 2015), Wallace utilizes a simple investigative template to examine eight lines of evidence in what he calls the “crime scene of the universe,” arguing they point to the existence of God.[11]

Forensic Faith[edit]

In Forensic Faith: A Homicide Detective Makes the Case for a More Reasonable, Evidential Christian Faith (David C. Cook, 2017), Wallace examines the rich evidential history of Christianity and calls Christians to accept their duty as "Case Makers," teaching them to accept their duty, begin training, learn how to investigate and communicate the Christian worldview.[12]


In Alive: A Cold-Case Approach to the Resurrection (David C. Cook, 2014), Wallace provides an excerpt from Cold Case Christianity; A Homicide Detective Investigates the Claims of the Gospels that is designed to be used as a tract or Easter church give-a-way. Wallace investigates the accounts of the resurrection of Christ and argues that there is compelling evidence to believe them.[13][14][15]

Cold-Case Christianity for Kids[edit]

In Cold-Case Christianity for Kids (David C. Cook, 2016), J. Warner and Susie Wallace draw readers into the thrill of high-stakes investigation by showing them how to think rather than telling them what to think. In this children's companion to Cold-Case Christianity, Wallace gets kids excited about testing witnesses, examining the evidence, and investigating the case for Christianity. The book is supplemented by an interactive online academy at www.CaseMakersAcademy.com.[16]

God's Crime Scene for Kids[edit]

In God's Crime Scene for Kids (David C. Cook, 2017), J. Warner and Susie Wallace provide an interactive book for kids ages 8–12. Readers will follow along with a mystery and explore evidence in creation that points to God's existence. The book is supplemented by an interactive online academy at www.CaseMakersAcademy.com.[17]

So the Next Generation Will Know: Preparing Young Christians for a Challenging World[edit]

In So the Next Generation Will Know (David C. Cook, 2019), Wallace and Sean McDowell provide strategies and practical tactics from their own personal experiences to help parents, youth leaders, and Christian teachers train the next generation with a Christian worldview. Each chapter of So the Next Generation Will Know features information that speaks directly to the various adults in a student's life; interviews with pastors, apologists, teachers, and cultural experts; and examples of people and ministries who are pushing Generation Z towards Christianity.

Television and Movies[edit]

Wallace has appeared in several television productions and news broadcasts. His cold cases have been featured on Dateline(NBC)[2] more than any other detective in the country, and he has also been featured on North Mission Road (TruTV, formerly CourtTV).[18] He's appeared several times as a homicide consultant on Behind the Screams (Reelz Network).[19] Wallace also hosts a weekly television show, Cold-Case Christianity (NRBtv),[20] and appeared in God's Not Dead 2 (PureFlix).[21]

Personal life[edit]

Wallace is married to Susie (co-author of their kids’ books). They have four children and live in southern California.[1]


  1. ^ a b c About the Author – J. Warner Wallace. "About the Author - J. Warner Wallace". Cold Case Christianity. Retrieved April 7, 2016.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^ a b "Jim Wallace", Nbc.news, Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  3. ^ "Resolution No. 2012-42", City Council, City of Torrance, California. Retrieved 2015-11-02.
  4. ^ "2015 Best of COPSWEST Winners." Archived November 17, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Cpoa.org, Retrieved 2015-11-02.
  5. ^ "'Cold-Case Christianity': The Gospel Through a Homicide Detective's Lens", Christian Post, May 7, 2013. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  6. ^ "Investigating the Truth of the Gospel", CBN. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  7. ^ "J. Warner Wallace on TBN With Rice Brooks", YouTube, April 7, 2015. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  8. ^ "Investigating the Supernatural", 100 Huntley Street. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  9. ^ "The Leon Show", TBN, June 25, 2014. Retrieved 2015-11-03.
  10. ^ J. Warner Wallace. Cold-Case Christianity, January 1, 2013, David C. Cook, ISBN 1-434-70469-6
  11. ^ J. Warner Wallace. God's Crime Scene, August 1, 2015, David C. Cook, ISBN 1-434-70784-9
  12. ^ J. Warner Wallace, Forensic Faith, May 1, 2017, David C. Cook, ISBN 1434709884
  13. ^ ALIVE by J. Warner Wallace. "ALIVE by J. Warner Wallace". Cold Case Christianity. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  14. ^ "Alive: A Cold-Case Approach to the Resurrection - Kindle edition by J. Warner Wallace. Religion & Spirituality". Amazon.com. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  15. ^ J. Warner Wallace. Alive, March 1, 2014, David C. Cook, ISBN 143470744X
  16. ^ J. Warner Wallace, Cold-Case Christianity for Kids, October 1, 2016, David C. Cook, ISBN 0781414571
  17. ^ J. Warner Wallace, God's Crime Scene for Kids, September 1, 2017, David C. Cook, ISBN 1434710327
  18. ^ Fatal Alibi, North Mission Road IMDB, Retrieved 2017-11-13.
  19. ^ A Real Psycho, Handsome Devil and The Real Clown Killer, Behind the Scenes IMDB, retrieved 2017-11-13
  20. ^ "Homicide Detective Brings Cold-Case Christianity to NRB" The New York Times, Retrieved on 2015-11-05.
  21. ^ God's Not Dead 2, God's Not Dead 2 IMDB, retrieved 2017-11-13

External links[edit]