Resource Center

Stories

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 rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.



Search results for "information" ...

  • Recruit Death

    More than a year after a sheriff’s office recruit died during his first days on the job, information WSBTV uncovered led DeKalb County’s Medical Examiner to change his cause of death, state agents to conduct an independent investigation and DeKalb County’s District Attorney to consider whether current and former Sheriff’s Office employees should face criminal charges. Throughout the course of our investigation we discovered information the Medical Examiner, elected officials, law enforcement leaders and even the jail recruit’s family never knew existed.

    Tags: sheriff; criminal; medical; examiner

    By Erica Byfield; Terah Boyd; LeVar James; Matt Serafin

    WSB-TV (Atlanta)

    2014

  • West Virginia Water Crisis

    On Jan. 9, 2014, a chemical tank at Freedom Industries leaked on the Elk River, just north of the drinking water intake that serves 300,000 people in Charleston, the West Virginia state capital, and surrounding communities. Residents and businesses were ordered not to drink, bathe in or cook with tap water, a warning that remained in place for up to a week. Stories examined the lack of environmental enforcement, inadequate information about the toxic chemicals involved, and poorly planned water quality sampling that was used to decide when the water was again safe to use.

    Tags: chemical; water; spill; environment; drinking water; health;

    By Ken Ward Jr.; David Gutman; Charleston Gazette Staff

    Charleston Gazette

    2014

  • The Scajaquada is a crippled creek

    The story got started in 2013 when reporter Dan Telvock noticed raw sewage in a section of the creek that passes through Buffalo’s prized Delaware Park and a strong urine smell in a section of the creek that runs through Buffalo’s largest cemetery. In May 2013, the state enacted the Sewage Pollution Right to Know Act, which for the first time provided a public database of most sewage overflows by locality. This data shows that the most sewer overflows happen in Scajaquada Creek and the biggest offender is Cheektowaga’s sewer system. From there, Telvock used the state Freedom of Information Law to obtain hundreds of documents that detailed Cheektowaga’s sewer overflows, to include volumes and locations.

    Tags: buffalo; park; sewage; overflows

    By Dan Telvock; Jim Heaney; Andy Desantis; Franco Ardito; Athan Kompos

    Investigative Post

    2014

  • Failure to Recall: Investigating GM

    In this hour-long documentary CNBC investigated a deepening crisis at one of America's most iconic companies. Following the dark days of bankruptcy, General Motors fought its way back to health only to confront evidence of a deadly manufacturing defect and accusations of a corporate cover-up. After linking thirteen deaths and 31 accidents to a faulty ignition switch, the company recalled some 2.6 million cars. But as GM undertook the massive recall, questions mounted over why it hadn't acted sooner to inform the public about the flawed part.

    Tags: cars; gm; manufacturing; faulty; recall

    By Nik Deogun; Phil LeBeau; Mitch Weitzner; Wally Griffith; Mary Noonan Robichaux; Deborah Camiel; Rich Gardella; Meghan Lisson; Jeff Pohlman; Meghan Reeder; James Segelstein; Michael Beyman; Christie Gripenburg

    CNBC

    2014

  • Deadly Medicine

    The Wall Street Journal’s alarming revelations about a once common medical procedure had the powerful and lasting impact of saving lives. After nearly a year of Journal reporting, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration imposed strict limits on the device involved in the procedure. Doctors and hospitals curbed or abandoned the practice. Johnson & Johnson, the top manufacturer, pulled the device off the market. And women undergoing surgery were now armed with information that, for many, could determine life or death.

    Tags: women; medical; procedure; FDA

    By Jennifer Levitz; Jon Kamp; Thomas R. Burton; Joseph Walker

    Wall Street Journal (New York)

    2014

  • Countdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the First Digital Weapon

    In 2010, computer security researchers discovered a mysterious virus/worm infecting computers in Iran. At first, they believed the malicious code was a simple, routine piece of malware. But as they and other experts around the world dug into the code, they found that it was a virus of unparalleled sophistication and complexity. They had, they soon learned, stumbled upon the world’s first digital weapon. Stuxnet, as it came to be known, was unlike other viruses and worms built before because rather than simply hijacking targeted computers or stealing information from them, it escaped the digital realm to physically destroy equipment the computers controlled. Stuxnet had been designed and launched to destroy centrifuges used in a uranium-enrichment plant in Iran in order to set back the Islamic Republic's nuclear program and prevent it from producing a nuclear weapon.

    Tags: computer virus; worm; code; stuxnet

    By Kim Zetter

    Random House

    2014

  • Diplomatic Drivers

    Driving more than 100 mph. Hit and runs. Multiple DUIs. They were all considered classified state secrets until Tisha Thompson spent six years successfully fighting for diplomatic driving records never before released to the public. You can’t drive anywhere in Washington, DC without spotting the distinctive red and blue tags of foreign diplomats. In 2008, Thompson filed a FOIA with the US Department of State requesting driving records of any diplomat pulled over for violating our local traffic laws. Several years later, she was told her FOIA had become “one of the oldest, if not the oldest” in the agency’s system because it could be a potential diplomatic relations problem. Thompson used a combination of traditional and creative ways to get FOIA information not just from the federal government but also from a long list of local and state jurisdictions. And the results were stunning.

    Tags: diplomats; traffic; violations; us department of state

    By Tisha Thompson; Steve Jones; Rick Yarborough; Mike Goldrick

    WRC-TV NBC4 Washington

    2014

  • Injured Heroes, Broken Promises

    This six-month-long investigation uncovered complaints from hundreds of injured, active duty soldiers who say they were mistreated, harassed and verbally abused by commanders of the U.S. Army’s Warrior Transition Units, or WTUs, which were created to improve care for injured soldiers after the 2007 Walter Reed scandal. Through interviews with wounded soldiers and hundreds of pages of Army records obtained in a Freedom of Information Act request, our reports showed how soldiers at three WTUs in Texas, particularly soldiers with mental wounds, were subjected to harsh treatment from unit leaders who were supposed to guide them through the healing process. Soldiers describe commanders using drill sergeant style threats, intimidation and demeaning language in an apparent attempt to motivate the injured. Video link: https://vimeo.com/116104924

    Tags: injured soldiers; abuse; harassment; military

    By Scott Friedman; Eva Parks; Peter Hull

    NBC 5/KXAS-TV

    2014

  • A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History

    The book describes the genetic basis of human race in the light of new information from the human genome project. It then asks whether genetics may help explain some long term features of human history. The book concludes that there is a biological basis to race (contrary to claims that race is just a social construct). It finds that races do not differ in their genes, or even in their alleles (the alternative forms of a gene) but only in the subtle quality of relative allele frequency. As to the second topic, the book explores the possibility that, although people as individuals are much the same the world over, races may differ slightly in their social behavior, and hence in social institutions based on that behavior, a difference that may explain salient features in history and in today’s world.

    Tags: biology; race; human genome project; genetics

    By Nicholas Wade

    Penguin Group (New York, N.Y.)

    2014

  • Campus Confidential Informants

    Student journalists in Professor Steve Fox's Investigative Journalism & The Web class uncovered that the University of Massachusetts Amherst police use confidential informants, potentially putting students' safety at risk. Officers were allowing students to avoid campus and criminal consequences for drug offenses in return for becoming police informers, allowing some students to conceal dangerous drug habits from their families. After months of investigation, student journalists Eric Bosco and Kayla Marchetti reported that a UMass student who agreed to become a confidential informant to avoid a drug arrest, died of a heroin overdose. Publication of the student's death lead prosecutors to reopen the investigation into the overdose death after the student's mother gave them the name of the student she believes provided him with the drug.

    Tags: University of Massachusetts; drugs; overdoses; informants

    By Steve Fox; Eric Bosco; Kayla Marchetti; Scott Allen

    Boston Globe

    2014