Stories

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

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Search results for "WBNS" ...

  • Ohio Parole System Problems

    Over the course of 18 months, three young women were killed in separate murders by violent ex-felons who were supposed to be closely monitored by Ohio’s Adult Parole Authority. They weren’t. Time and time again, WBNS-TV’s investigative unit, 10 Investigates, found lapses in judgment and failures by the state’s parole system to closely monitor these ex-felons. In one case, a Georgia judge’s order to place a GPS ankle monitor on a twice convicted rapist was ignored. The reason: Ohio’s Adult Parole Authority believed it would be too expensive. Six months later, the man was arrested for the rape and murder of a young woman. We also uncovered data showing part of the problem might be many of these parole officers are overwhelmed. State corrections records show there are 450 parole officers in Ohio tasked with monitoring 37,000 ex-prisoners who are under some type of post-release supervision. Given that workload, it’s hard for anyone to understand why these parole officers would be assigned to watch an empty parking lot. But that’s where we found some of them sitting every day, for nearly a month. Our reporting on this issue has already changed state law and led to the ire of some state lawmakers who are calling for additional changes.
  • Out-of-Bounds Overtime: Illegal Payments

    Despite Ohio state law forbidding overtime payment to state administrators, this investigation found it was rampant. In fact, WBNS-TV uncovered two million dollars in unlawful payments.
  • "A License To Lose"

    This investigative report reveals weaknesses in security in the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, as well as in the BMVs of two nearby states. WBNS-TV found that hundreds of social security and registration papers were being discarded in unsecured trash receptacles. The report also reveals that the BMV was aware of the security breach two years prior to the occurrence, but failed to do anything about the issue.
  • School Poison: Lead in Drinking Water

    WBNS-TV exposed the unhealthy levels of lead in the drinking water at several public schools and revealed the breakdowns in the state government system that is supposed to monitor the water's quality.
  • Ohio Attorney General: Price of Corruption

    WBNS-TV (Columbus, Ohio) revealed a pattern of corruption inside the state's highest law enforcement office including cronyism, misuse of state funds and property, improper use of campaign funds, ethics violations and cover-up. The reporters found that the Attorney General had used campaign funds to rent a condominium for two of his friends/employees that was later tied to sexual harassment,alleged crimes involving state vehicles and the hub for cronyism. Their reporting revealed that the Attorney General created a "transition fund" as an unregulated 501 c4 non-profit account. Through law enforcement, the station learned that this fund funneled at least $2,000 in inappropriate payments to the Attorney General's friend/employee/condo-mate.
  • Lead in Dental Work

    "WBNS-TV spent the past year probing into the presence of toxic lead in dental work such as crown, bridges and dentures. The team discovered a lack of state and federal regulation in the dental laboratory industry, an industry largely overlooked and unknown to the consumer until WBNS-TV broke the story in February 2008. An increasing number of laboratories outsource dental work to other companies. The FDA doesn't track the materials in foreign or domestic dental work. The lack of oversight results in patient risk.
  • COTA: A Ticket to Ride

    WBNS-TV conducted a one year investigation and a series of open records requets to look into allegations of corruption by Ron Barnes, president of Central Ohio's Transit Authority (COTA). Through their investigation, they uncovered a series of e-mails between Barnes and former transit authority board member Ernie Sullivan, who negotiated a high-priced consultants job for himself in clear violation of Ohio's Ehtics Law. The Ethics Commission found violations of the state ethics law, ordered the resignation of former transit authority board member and current consultant Ernie Sullivan. The Commission also ordered Sullivan and COTA president Ron Barnes to refund taxpayers $18,000.
  • Better to Give than to Deceive

    The National Kidney Foundation of Ohio sends trucks into Central Ohio neighborhoods to collect used clothes and household items. People who donate their belongings belived that they were going directly to the Kidney Foundation. But the WBNS-TV investigation found that the entire operation was run by a for-profit thrift store operation, and it turns out the Kidney Foundation charity only received 90 cents for the entire donation from each household pickup.
  • Ohio School Fire Drills: Safety Under Fire

    In order to create a safe environment for K-12 students, Ohio enacted a strict state law, which required "all schools with an average daily attendance of 50 or more, public or private, to conduct at least 10 fire drills each school year." The law also required that the first two drills be scheduled within the first weeks of school, when students would be less likely to be familar with the building. According to WBNS-TV's 10 Investigates, more than 45 percent of 401 schools were not performing the drills in accordance with the law, nor were they fined. In some cases, administrators did not keep records of when drills were performed, and therefore had to estimate when the drills did occur.
  • Police Dispatchers' Overtime

    An investigation by WBNS-TV found that taxpayers in Columbus paid $17 in overtime for 2000. Three of the top ten overtime employees worked in the dispatch room of the police department. Because of a shortage of police dispatchers, many employees were signing up for as many as 16 overtime hours a week, one dispatcher made more in overtime than she did with her regular salary. City officials and officials inside the police department are worried about the safety of the city's officers and issue of stress on the dispatcher on which the officers rely.