Prisons and jails (Sponsored by Criminal Justice Journalists)

  • Event: 2017 IRE Conference
  • Speakers: Amy Brittain of The Washington Post; Paige St. John of Los Angeles Times; Ted Gest of Criminal Justice Journalists; Magnus Lofstrom of Public Policy Institute of California
  • Date/Time: Thursday, Jun. 22 at 9:00am
  • Location: Grand Canyon 4-5
  • Audio file: Only members can listen to conference audio

**Moderated by Ted Gest, Criminal Justice Journalists

An expert and journalists who cover prison issues will tell you how to evaluate criminal justice "reforms." How can you obtain usable data and find information on a range of cases to interest readers and viewers? And how can you tell your audience whether a fix to the system is effective and protecting the public? We’ll talk about examples across the country, from California's answer to prison crowding to Washington, D.C.'s "second chance" law for youth.


Speaker Bios

  • Amy Brittain teamed up with reporter Irin Carmon last fall to break the news of sexual harassment by television host Charlie Rose. In 2016, she was part of a team of Post reporters awarded the Pulitzer Prize for chronicling fatal shootings by police officers. Before joining The Post, she was the winner of the George Polk Award for exposing rampant use of anabolic steroids by police officers in New Jersey. 

  • Ted Gest is president of Criminal Justice Journalists and Washington bureau chief of, which publishes a daily news digest on criminal justice. He formerly covered criminal justice for U.S. News & World Report and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He is the co-author of the latest edition of IRE's "Understanding Crime and Justice Statistics: A Reporter's Guide." 

  • Magnus Lofstrom is a senior research fellow at PPIC. His recent work examines the role of California’s criminal justice reforms on crime trends, recidivism, and California’s state and local correctional systems. Prior to joining PPIC, he was an assistant professor of economics at the University of Texas at Dallas. He received his PhD in economics from the University of California, San Diego.

  • Paige is a roaming investigative reporter for the LA Times based in northern California. Between projects, she covers wildfires and other breaking news. Her 2011 Pulitzer and other national awards arose from exposing the hidden wealth and public threats of disaster insurance. She combines gumshoe reporting with data analysis and thinks you should too.

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