Extra Extra

GET THE EXTRA EXTRA RSS FEED

Stay up on the latest examples of in-depth projects, enterprise and breaking news with impact and use of public documents or data from all media. Chrome users should download this extension.

 

 

After report, prosecutors charge man in connection with real estate fraud scheme

Prosecutors have charged a man in connection with a widespread real estate fraud scheme detailed in reports by KSHB-Kansas City.

Willis L. Watson, 35, faces nine different counts of felony forgery and theft, according to KSHB’s latest report.

Reporter Ryan Kath found that someone had been stealing homes by forging signature of both the living and the dead. Often, he found, the homeowners had no idea.

Kath discussed the investigation as part of IRE’s "Behind the Story" and "Story Shorts" series. 

911 location data severely lacking in some areas

In an era when your mobile phone can tell Facebook, Uber or even video games where you're located – with amazing accuracy – 911 operators are often left in the dark. Your chance of 911 getting a quick fix on location ranges from as low as 10% to as high as 95%, according to hundreds of pages of local, state and federal documents obtained and reviewed by USA TODAY and more than 40 Gannett newspapers and television stations across the country.

High-profile San Diego lawyer investigated for questionable real estate transactions

Cory Briggs, a San Diego-based lawyer, may have been involved in fraudulent land deals, according to an inewsource investigation.

The most notable transactions include two $1.5 million dollar deeds of trust - liens against a property - that were nearly three times more than the actual value of the homes, according to the investigation.

When confronted about the allegations, Briggs threatened to call the police if reporters didn't leave his office.

Aaron Schock's ethics under scrutiny

The list of questionable practices keeps growing for Illinois Rep. Aaron Schock. In 2013, the House Ethics Committee revealed that Schock may have violated House rules by soliciting campaign contributions for a committee that supported fellow Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger. 
 
Recently, the Associated Press has reported that Schock has spent taxpayer and campaign funds on flights aboard private planes owned by some of his key donors. The AP has discovered at least a dozen of these flights, totaling more than $40,000. 
 
In addition, Schock has remodeled his office after the popular television program "Downtown Abbey" and even used funds ...

Read more ...

Sex crime suspects rarely sent to prison in Southern Illinois

The Belleville News-Democrat has revealed in a three-part series that from 2005 to 2013, 70 percent of sex crimes reported to police in Southern Illinois were never even brought to a courtroom. Overall, in a 32-county area, only 1 in ten felony sex crimes suspects were convicted and sent to prison.

Perhaps even more disturbing, cases involving sexually assaulted children often go nowhere.

Click here for parts two and three.

Despite new laws, North Carolina hospital system continues aggressive collection practices

On Sunday, The Charlotte Observer published a package of stories showing that North Carolina's largest hospital system continues to file hundreds of lawsuits against patients, despite new state and federal laws aimed at reining in aggressive collection practices. The Observer's review found that a number of the lawsuits by Carolinas HealthCare System were filed against low-income patients who lacked health insurance. That appears to defy the intent of new laws aimed at protecting vulnerable patients.

Government hired collectors to go after debtors

Debt collection horror stories are nothing new. But there's a whole other side to the industry that no one’s talking about: collectors hired by government agencies to hunt down debtors.

CNNMoney spent months investigating this booming business and one of its biggest players, Linebarger Goggan Blair & Sampson. Hundreds of consumer complaints were analyzed from state attorneys general and the Federal Trade Commission, among other organizations, and dozens of attorneys and other experts were interviewed.

Chemical known for lung destruction still unregulated

For nearly two decades, federal regulators tasked with overseeing worker safety in the United States have been well aware of the lung destruction tied to diacetyl. But the federal government failed to regulate exposure to the chemical. An investigation by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel found the chemical is now a problem for those working in the coffee industry and diacetyl has quietly seeped into other products, this time being inhaled straight into the lungs of a growing number of consumers as they smoke or "vape" e-cigarettes. Inhaling the chemical can quickly destroy the lungs, according to more than a dozen ...

Read more ...

New Mexico Secretary of State's Office collect few fines

Missing the deadline to file campaign finance reports is supposed to result in a fine. However, during the 2012 and 2014 primary and general election only 4% of New Mexico fines for missing reports were collected under current secretary of state, Dianna Duran, according to the Daily Times.

Under New Mexico's Campaign Reporting Act, all candidates running for office are required to submit a full report to the state government, detailing their campaign finances.