Resource Center


The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 26,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364573-882-3364  or where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "crime lab" ...

  • The Meth Menace

    Following a significant increase in meth lab seizures in West Virginia, Charleston Gazette reporters revealed that drugstores were selling massive quantities of cold medications that were being diverted to make illegal methamphetamine in clandestine labs. Gazette reporters also found that meth lab cleanup claims were draining the West Virginia Crime Victims Compensation Fund -- a fund initially set up to pay medical and funeral expenses for victims of violent crime. The series sparked a federal investigation.

    Tags: meth; drugs

    By Eric Eyre; David Gutman; Rob Byers; Rachel Malenda; Victoria Zigadlo

    Charleston Gazette


  • Army slow to act as crime-lab worker falsified, botched tests

    The reporters undertook a year-long inquiry into every facet of the often-opaque military justice system. Through more than two dozen stories, the series closely examined military criminal investigations, lab testing, trials, sentences and appeals.

    Tags: military justice system; fabricated results; investigation; falsified tests;

    By Michael Doyle; Marisa Taylor; Chris Adams

    McClatchy Newspapers


  • Rape in America: Justice Denied

    The investigation reveals “over 200,000 rape kits” were being stored at police departments. These rape kits had never been sent to the crime lab. The second half of the investigation revealed that even when rape kits were sent to the lab, it sometimes took months or even years to be examined and processed. This backlog causes the rapist to run free and the victim to fear for their lives.

    Tags: crimes; law enforcement; arrest; suspect; major cities; results; tests; criminal justice system

    By Armen Keteyian; Laura Strickler; Keith Summa

    CBS News


  • "Losing 'Letta"

    A sloppy police investigation led to a mother waiting 27 painful years for her daughter's remains to be identified. The girl was 12 when she disappeared from her Little Rock home. A girl's remains were located in 1991, but DNA testing did not reveal a match. In 2009, a retest was done after "prodding" from reporters. This time, the test revealed a match and the child's case was ruled a homicide.

    Tags: Little Rock; DNA test; Arkansas Crime Lab; FBI

    By C.S. Murphy; Amy Upshaw

    Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (Little Rock, Ark.)


  • Reasonable Doubt

    This documentary exposes a lack of oversight and integrity at forensic crime labs across the country. It uncovers negligent work, nonexistent standards and even crooked lab employees. The story casts doubt on the reliability of forensic science techniques ranging from fingerprinting to hair analysis to DNA testing.

    Tags: crime labs; forensics; science; DNA; law enforcement; crime

    By Ken Shiffman;Robin Mejia;Scott McGee;Kathy Slobogin

    CNN (Atlanta)


  • Shadow of Doubt/ Error in Evidence

    Two series on investigating the Washington State Crime Lab. Forensic scientists produced results that led to jail time for many. But when their lab methods were questioned and their results discredited, prisoners who had been jailed as a result of tainted evidence or procedures stayed in jail. Teichroeb made these facts public, and soon cases were overturned and scientists were fired.

    Tags: forensic science; scientist; crime; lab; audit; evidence; DNA; drug; FBI; wrongful conviction

    By Ruth Teichroeb

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer


  • "Justice Delayed"

    The story discovers a problem which exists in Marion County's crime labs--backlogging. Reporters unveiled a number of cases that, due to a delay in DNA testing and analysis, remained unsolved while the criminals-one of which was a serial rapist- have time to continue to commit other crimes. There was also evidence that many more rape cases have been backlogged for up to a year awaiting processing.

    Tags: backlog; DNA testing

    By Roger Harvey;Bill Ditton;Gerry Lanosga

    WTHR-TV (Indianapolis)


  • Science Casts Doubt on FBI Bullet Evidence

    This story investigated the validity of a forensics technique, comparative lead bullet analysis, that has been used by the FBI crime laboratory since the late 1960's. FBI scientists determine the trace metal profile of a lead slug and then compare bullet profiles. They found there was not a solid scientific backing for this technique and that new research indicates that the conclusions the FBI examiners drew about relationships between were, at best, unwarranted. There was never evidence to conclude that the fact that two bullets share similar trace element profiles means they are in some way connected, and there is now evidence against that conclusion. This is important because the technique is commonly used in murder cases where traditional ballistics cannot be used and, often where there is little evidence.

    Tags: forensics; FBI; crime lab; lead bullet analysis; FBI scientists; lead slug; FBI examiners; American Chemical Society; National Academy of Sciences; bullet lead; fingerprint analysis; Iowa State University; National Research Council; Middlesex County Superior Court; crime scene; FBI testimony; National Research Council; rifling-mark analysis

    By Charles Piller;Robin Mejia

    Center for Investigative Reporting (San Francisco)


  • Evidence of Errors

    KHOU-TV found that the Houston Police Department crime lab was making egregious mistakes, that had put innocent people in prison and the guilty free or undetected. As a result of this investigation, all DNA testing at the lab was stopped and more than 600 cases are being reexamined.

    Tags: police crime lab; Houston Police Department; DNA; experts reports; TAPE; TV; TRANSCRIPT

    By David Raziq;Anna Werner;and Chris Henao

    KHOU-TV (Houston)


  • The Death of Jim Lankford

    An investigation by KTHV-TV of the death of Jim Lankford "led to reinvestigation and exhumation in a case that was rule a suicide." It brought to light major problems with the local sheriff's office investigation and, in turn, the Arkansas state crime lab and the state's coroner system.

    Tags: Arkansas; Jim Lankford; death; suicide; murder investigation; TAPE; TRANSCRIPT

    By Andy Pearson;Kenny Reynolds

    KTHV-TV (Little Rock, AR)