Stories

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

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

Search results for "The Record" ...

  • Tarnished Brass

    In the name of protecting men and women in uniform, states across the country have made it nearly impossible to identify dangerous law enforcement officers with a track record of violence and other misdeeds. Records detailing their misconduct often are filed away, rarely seen by anyone outside of the department. Police unions and their political allies have worked to put special protections in place ensuring some records are shielded from public view, or even destroyed. A national tracking system for backgrounding officers is incomplete and not available to the public. More than two years ago, USA TODAY and its network of newsrooms across the nation set out to change that. More than two dozen reporters began collecting public records from the communities they covered and beyond. Also contributing substantially to the record-gathering was the Invisible Institute, a nonprofit journalism organization in Chicago that focuses on issues around policing tactics and criminal justice. We pieced together lists of decertified officers in more than 40 states. We collected logs and paper records related to 110,000 internal affairs investigations. We gathered information on 14,000 lawsuits against departments and fought to obtain so-called Brady lists, documenting officers flagged for lying and other misdeeds. Then we scoured story archives from our newsrooms and others to piece together the most comprehensive list of police misconduct cases ever built.
  • Unchecked Power

    After losing hard-fought reelection campaigns, Alabama’s sheriffs often turn their attention to undermining their successors in ways that abuse the public trust. On his way out the door, one sheriff drilled holes in government-issued cell phones, while another pocketed public money intended to feed inmates. The ousted leaders dumped jail food down the drain and burned through tens of thousands of sheriff's office dollars by purchasing thousands of rolls of toilet paper. These are among the findings of my six-month investigation into these practices for AL.com and the ProPublica Local Reporting Network. In June 2019, I chronicled the actions of nine defeated Alabama sheriffs, seven of whom allegedly destroyed public property, stole public funds and/or wasted taxpayer money after their electoral defeats. These stories were made possible by my realization that incoming sheriffs were often more willing to talk on the record about the bad behavior and criminality of predecessors who had taken advantage of them than they would be under other circumstances.
  • The Record / NorthJersey.com: Toxic Secrets

    Record reporters explore a DuPont site's history to uncover why a plume of toxic groundwater remains under more than 400 Pompton Lakes, N.J., homes almost 30 years after the chemical company agreed to clean it up.
  • The Daily News: The 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund

    During the course of reporting on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center, Daily News reporter Thomas Tracy spoke with an official on the record who said that the 9/11 Victims Compensation Fund was running out of money. Tracy broke the news exclusively that the fund would not have enough money to help all survivors sickened at Ground Zero.
  • ProPublica: The Child Abuse Contrarians

    Judges and juries hearing cases of alleged physical abuse of babies rely on expert witnesses to illuminate the medical evidence based on an impartial examination of the record and the victims. But in two fascinating investigative profiles co-published by ProPublica and The New Yorker, ProPublica Senior Reporter David Armstrong exposed a pair of sought-after expert witnesses who fall far short of this standard. Both work exclusively for accused child abusers and use dubious scientific arguments to make their case, potentially undermining justice and endangering children. Their success underscores the susceptibility of the U.S. judicial system to junk science, as well as the growing suspicion of mainstream medicine in an era when misinformation quickly spreads online.
  • Comfort Women: Ep1. War Crime, Ep2.The Nation Gave Them Up

    For the 73rd anniversary of the National Liberation Day of Korea, this program aims to report the Japanese government’s denial of forced recruitment comfort women and operation of comfort station by the Japanese military during the Japanese ruling of Korea. This program also traces the whereabouts of the 20 Korean comfort women found in Myitkyina, Myanmar, to suggest how to solve the current comfort women issues. Through the recorded voice files of the interrogations of 4 Japanese officers and soldiers, this program analyses their views on comfort women. The program also found out that Japanese military was solely responsible for forced recruitment and control of comfort women, and the establishment and operation of comfort stations through 783 interrogation reports about 1105 Japanese POW during the three years from 1942. Also, the program offers plans on how to solve the comfort women issue such as international solidarity measures by tracing the 20 Korean comfort women that were dragged to Myitkyina, Myanmar, by the Japanese military to find out whether they are still alive or where they have died, and what our government has done for them.
  • Analyzing police use-of-force data

    After a yearlong open records battle, the San Antonio Express-News obtained and analyzed a use-of-force database from the San Antonio Police Department. The records showed that officers used force against black and Hispanic suspects at a rate that was up to 78 percent higher than white suspects, yet less than one percent of 5,300 force incidents resulted in any kind of policy violation. The newspaper brought those stunning numbers to life with police suspension records, video, DocumentCloud and interviews with victims -- including an innocent man who was paralyzed after he underwent surgery to treat injuries from a police beating.
  • Inside the Shady Industry that Profits off Mugshot Photos

    “Mugged,” which premiered on Fusion on March 6, 2016 as part of the network’s monthly investigative “The Naked Truth” series, explores the multi-million dollar extortion industry of mugshot websites, which is wreaking havoc on the lives and reputations of tens of millions of Americans, especially minorities. In a completely legal process, operators of these websites collect public arrest records and photographs from online police databases and post the records on their own websites, often making the content more prominent via search engine optimization. These mugshot websites then charge the arrested individuals hundreds of dollars to remove their records and photos, despite the fact that many of these individuals have been falsely arrested, found innocent, or have yet to stand trial.
  • Baseball player promoted to varsity after sexually abusing child

    After receiving a tip, WJHL asked a juvenile court judge in Virginia to release court records related to a sex abuse case. They knew they had a shot securing the records after conferring with an open records expert. After all, the records involved serious felonies. The judge released the records after discussing the issue with the Virginia Supreme Court. The records confirmed exactly what we suspected. In the end, the investigation uncovered a legal and school system failure that allowed two baseball players to remain on the team and at school after sexually abusing their 11-year-old neighbor during an off-campus campout. The investigation prompted the court clerk to apologize and the school to take action against the boys.
  • Transparency

    A four-month KHOU investigation reveals how Houston’s $8 million police body camera program is falling short of its promises. Police and politicos touted it as the blueprint for transparency and accountability, but six months into the program, KHOU discovered that “transparency” has become more of a city hall buzzword than benchmark for the truth. The Houston Police Department violates its own policies. The public can’t readily access video footage. And officers don’t always press the record button when it counts. https://youtu.be/7qbf_rgt__s http://www.khou.com/local/investigative/bodycamtransparency