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 "witness testimony" ...

  • Taken: The Coldest Case Ever Solved

    CNN looked into the 1957 kidnapping and murder of Maria Ridulph, which went unsolved for half a century. The five-part series found that the suspect was interviewed and discounted during the early days of the investigation, as the FBI took over the case. His parents helped him establish an alibi, and his mother supposedly exposed his secret on her death bed. A sister launched the investigation that resulted in the arrest and conviction of Jack McCullough, who maintains his innocence to this day. McCullough was convicted after a four-day trial on what appeared to be thin evidence resulting from questionable legal rulings by an inexperienced judge. The most compelling evidence is the testimony of the eyewitness, who was 8 years old at the time and is now in her 60s. She says she is certain, and she appears to be a credible witness.

    Tags: Kidnapping; murder; Maria Ridulph

    By Ann O’Neill, Jan Winburn, Brandon Ancil, Jessica Koscielniak, Manav Tanneeru, Curt Merrill, Sean O’Key

    CNN

    2013

  • Pakistan's Bin Laden Dossier

    Pakistan’s Bin Laden Dossier is until now the most important publicly available official document about an event that ended an era - the killing of Osama Bin Laden—and it was not made released by any government or pursuant to a FOIA request. Al Jazeera obtained it through sensitive, on the ground sourcing in Pakistan, and through its Investigative Unit, exclusively published the 336-page file on July 8, 2013. The Bin Laden files detail how a man sought for over a decade, the leader of Al Qaeda, eluded both his American pursuers and the Pakistani government itself. The leaked report revealed dozens of new details, based on previously unseen testimony of 201 witnesses, including Bin Laden's wives, Pakistani intelligence leaders, senior ministers, bureaucrats and military, intelligence and security commanders.

    Tags: Bin Laden; Pakistan; Al Qaeda

    By Clayton Swisher

    Al Jazeera America

    2013

  • Over the Line

    Fatal shootings by U.S. Border Patrol agents were once a rarity. Only a handful were recorded before 2009. Unheard of were incidents of Border Patrol agents shooting Mexicans on their own side of the border. But a joint investigation by the Washington Monthly, The Investigative Fund at The Nation Institute, and the television network Fusion has found that over the past five years U.S. border agents have shot across the border at least ten times, killing a total of six Mexicans on Mexican soil. A former Clinton administration official who worked on border security issues couldn’t recall a single cross-border shooting during his tenure. “Agents would go out of their way not to harm anyone and certainly not shoot across the border,” he said. But following a near doubling of the number of Border Patrol agents between 2006 and 2009, a disturbing pattern of excessive use of force emerged. For “Over the Line,” we traveled to several Mexican border towns, tracking down family members of victims, eye-witnesses to the shootings, amateur video, Mexican police reports, audiotapes, and autopsies to recreate the circumstances surrounding these cross-border killings. We recount the stories of several of them, including 16-year-old José Antonio Elena Rodriguez, a studious Mexican teen who dreamed of becoming a soldier to fight the violence that plagued his hometown of Nogales, Sonora, and who was shot and killed by U.S. border agents as he walked to pick his brother up after work. The first two shots were to the boy’s head; he was shot eight more times as he lay, prone and bleeding, on the sidewalk. Although Border Patrol protocols and international treaties between Mexico and the United States appear to have been violated by these cross border shootings, none of the agents involved have yet been prosecuted. If any agents have been relieved of their duties for their role in the incidents, that information has not been made available to the public, and our queries to Customs and Border Protection on this issue have been denied. The Washington Monthly story was accompanied by two broadcasts that aired at the launch of the news network Fusion, a joint project of ABC News and Univision. These reports delve into two of the more troubling incidents in greater depth. “Investigation Shows Mexican Teen Was Shot 8 Times on the Ground” tells the story of Rodriguez, the teenager killed in Nogales; “U.S. Border Patrol Shoots and Kills Mexican Man in Park with Family” uses amateur video and eyewitness testimony to tell the even more shocking story of Arevalo Pedroza, shot and killed by US border agents who fired into a crowd of picnickers on the Mexico side of the Rio Grande in September 2012.

    Tags: immigration; border patrol

    By John Carlos Frey; Esther Kaplan; Phil Longman

    Investigative Fund at the Nation Institute

    2013

  • What Killed Arafat?

    This 50-minute film was the result of a nine month long cold case investigation into the suspicious death of Yasser Arafat, Palestine's iconic, revolutionary leader. After obtaining Arafat's entire original medical files, Al Jazeera's Investigative Unit, led by producer and reporter Clayton Swisher, crossed continents to track down and interview the French, Jordanian, Egyptian, and Palestinian doctors who had worked to save Arafat's life. Part I of "What Killed Arafat?" was able to easily shatter popular myths about what caused Arafat's precipitous decline from the onset of his illness on October 12, 2004 until his death on November 11th. Testimony from Arafat's doctors conclusively ruled out liver cirrhosis, cancer, even rumors of HIV. The scientific, evidence-based discoveries made in the Part II result from the work performed by a team of forensic pathologists, toxicologists, and radiation physicists from the University Center for Legal Medicine and Institute for Radiation Physics in Lausanne, Switzerland. Working without payment, they agreed to run a battery of sophisticated tests on a large gym bag containing Arafat’s last personal effects. The scientists discovered significant levels of reactor-made Polonium 210 contaminating areas of Arafat's personal effects that came into contact with his biological fluids. When the final results came back in late June, Al Jazeera hosted Mrs. Arafat in Doha to watch the Swiss explain the results on set. Upon witnessing their testimony, Ms. Arafat made a resolute, unanticipated surprise announcement, calling on the Palestinian Authority to exhume her husband's body for testing. Yasser Arafat’s body was exhumed on November 27, 2012 so that the final samples could be retrieved. Whether the causes of Arafat's death are determined to be natural, inconclusive—or even murder—suffice it to say that Al Jazeera’s "What Killed Arafat?" and the resulting investigations and exhumation will have inched the world closer to understanding what did not, and possibly for the first time, what did claim the life of this historic and controversial personality.

    Tags: Science; death; biology; investigation; exhumation; testing

    By Directors: Adrian Billing; Clayton Swisher; Writer: Clayton Swisher; Talent: Clayton Swisher; Videographers: Adrian Billing; Nick Porter; Karsten Sondergaard; Editors: Adrian Billing; Gautam Singh

    Al Jazeera English

    2012

  • Firefighters' Explosion

    There weren't any eye witnesses or physical evidence against five Kansas City residents sentenced to life in prison after six firefighters died in arson fires ten years earlier. Concerns from local journalists and some prosecutors questioned the convictions, sparking the Star to exam the case.

    Tags: criminal investigation; testimony; Emanuel Cleaver; alibi; Bryan Sheppard; ATF;

    By Mike McGraw

    Star (Kansas City, Mo.)

    2009

  • Fatal Boat Crash: Wrong man charged?

    When the Chief Deputy Sheriff of the Lake County Sheriff's Office was driving a speed boat it collided into a sailboat, killing a woman. However, it was the man driving the sailboat that was charged with manslaughter. ABC 7's investigation found that investigators were not taking statements from witnesses critical of the deputy and judges were not excusing themselves from the case, despite personal relationship with him.

    Tags: police department; manslaughter; criminal justice; judge; witness testimony;

    By Dan Noyes; Steve Fyffe; Beth Rimbey; Cathy Cavey; Harvey Weiman

    ABC 7 (San Francisco, CA)

    2007

  • Final Justice

    For five years, the investigative team from WEWS reviewed trial testimonies, interviewed witnesses and jurors and uncovered police records obtained through the Ohio Open Records Act in order to prove that Darrell Houston, serving time in prison for murder, was innocent. Their two part report found sufficient evidence for a new trial.

    Tags: innocent; trial testimonies; police records; time in prison; suspect; convicted; justice

    By Ron Regan; Dorian Thompson; Dave Arnold; Dave Hatala

    WEWS-TV (Cleveland)

    2007

  • Firefighter's Explosion

    The Star reinvestigated "the case of five Kansas Citians convicted in 1997 of setting arson fires ten years earlier that sparked an explosion killing six Kansas City firefighters." The Star found that many of the witnesses who testified stood to gain from their claims and that the jurors misunderstood their instructions.

    Tags: arson; trial; jury; evidence; testimony; witness; firefighters;

    By Mike McGraw; Mike Mansur

    Star (Kansas City, Mo.)

    2007

  • An American Family

    This year-long series describes parolee Luis Aguilar and his family through his reentry period. Just as the first "chapter" was about to be published, the Aguilar household was raided by the police and Luis was arrested for selling drugs. The reporter found that Luis was wrongly charged and that police had coaxed testimonies from witnesses at the trial. This story describes how the family goes through ups and downs in their effort to rebuild their lives.

    Tags: Luis Aguilar; drugs; wrongful conviction; threatening witnesses; parolee; Aguilar; wrong witness testimony

    By Celeste Fremon

    LA Weekly

    2004

  • Experts: Jurors erred in murder case

    In the final trial of the controversial 1997 John Hartman murder case, this story reveals how the jury broke long standing legal traditions to conduct a street experiment for verifying the validity of the testimony of a key witness. This leads to the jury's handing over two sentences of 33 and 79 years each to two young men. The ruling, which one of the judges later acknowledge will strike many as unfair, is now on appeal.

    Tags: George Frese; Eugene Vent; Marvin Roberts; Kevin Pease; Anchorage; Howard Luke Academy; Gary Montini

    By Brian O' Donoghue

    Daily News-Miner (Fairbanks, Alaska)

    2003