Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

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Search results for "DUI" ...

  • Driving with suspended license top crime in Menlo Park, many lose cars

    The story shows that the majority of drivers cited for driving with a suspended license in Menlo Park, California are Latino or African American. Most of these citations resulted in the driver's vehicle being impounded for the statutory 30 day period. Many of the drivers affected had their licenses suspended not because of safety concerns such as DUIs, but because of other reasons, such as not paying for two minor traffic tickets and failing to show up in court. More than half of the drivers, according to towers, never retrieve their cars from impound lots, which is very likely due to the steep cost of retrieving the vehicles, which sometimes is worth more than the car. The story explores whether the punishment of losing a car fits the original violation.
  • Judge Minaldi arrest

    In January of 2014, an anonymous tip was called in to KPLC-TV about a U.S. District Judge who refused to stop her vehicle for officers in Lake Charles, Louisiana. The officers were called out on a complaint about an erratic driver. The judge was eventually stopped and given a ticket for an open container. The caller claimed there was more to the story and a cover-up was underway. After multiple requests to the Lake Charles Police Dept., a press release was issued stating that Judge Patricia Minaldi was cited for having an open container in her vehicle. Initial open records requests were denied, claiming an open investigation. Once Minaldi paid a fine in Lake Charles City Court, KPLC-TV journalists requested a recording of the 911 call that led to the traffic stop. Later, KPLC-TV was able to obtain dash cam video of the judge arguing with officers and resisting their demands to get out of her vehicle. Once KPLC-TV's reports aired, Judge Minaldi was charged with DUI First Offense and was sentenced to probation. They believe the added charges were the result of public pressure after these reports aired.
  • Mixed Signals on Substance Abuse at San Diego State

    Following the repercussions of an undercover police drug raid in 2008, San Diego State crime statistics took an interesting turn. After the peak six years ago, the amount of alcohol-related incidents (DUI, Drunk and Disorderly, MIP, and more) steadily dropped, while the amount of students requiring medical transports for alcohol- or drug-related conditions skyrocketed. Madison Hopkins and Leonardo Castaneda, two editors at San Diego State's independent student newspaper, The Daily Aztec, investigated the reasoning behind this trend and what it meant for students.
  • 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.
  • King County DUI suspects often not charged for months

    After a number of high-profile fatal crashes involving alcohol, the Times examined how the court system in King County takes much longer -- months in some cases -- just to charge offenders in drunk driving cases. Analyzing DUI charges throughout the state, we found that the local district court was an outlier in how long it took to file the case after an initial arrest. Allowing so much time between the arrest and the filing of charges can endanger public safety by keeping repeat offenders on the road.
  • DUI Pilots: Warning Signs Ignored

    KIRO-TV found that only a small fraction of the pilots caught for abusing alcohol or drugs were actually being monitored by federal regulators. The reporter discovered with computed assisted reporting how easy it is for these pilots to manipulate the system and avoid detection.
  • Car seizures at DUI checkpoints prove profitable for cities, raise legal questions

    California law enforcement officials running sobriety checkpoints are more likely to seize cars from unlicensed sober drivers than from drunk drivers. Most of the drivers losing their cars are illegal immigrants.
  • RGJ Special Report: DUI in Nevada

    The reporter found that licenses were being granted too soon to DUI offenders whose accidents had caused death or substantial bodily harm. Offenders were not serving their full two years behind bars and instead were allowed to get out on a house arrest program.
  • "Dodging DWIs"

    The criminal justice system in St. Louis "has failed to punish drunken drivers." After multiple people were killed in drunk driving related accidents, reporters revealed that in St. Louis County, felony charges were not often issued to repeat offenders. Few people accused of a DWI actually have it placed on their record. Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has called for an examination of the broken system.
  • Nevada DUI

    This investigation found a number of frightening facts, which could change many lives. One of the first findings is “judges have not been following a 1997 law that requires them to order the installation of interlock devices for all offenders convicted of DUIs causing death or substantial bodily harm.” Also, many previous offenders were convicted of a second DUI and had blood alcohol levels (BACs) considered of those with an alcohol abuse problem. Further, found that DUI offenders released from prison didn’t have their licenses restricted for three years after the conviction.