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 "court documents" ...

  • The final days of Laura and Walton

    Laura Connell believed she was going to lose custody of her only child, Walton, despite years of abuse at the hands of her child’s father. After coming to Delaware to escape the abuse and appealing to the Delaware courts, it appeared she was still going to have to turn over her son to his father. She never did – instead killing first him and then herself on the morning of her family court hearing. Hundreds of pages of court documents, medical records and other records provided both by Laura herself and the courts detail the abuse and claims Laura said never reached a judge or were taken seriously. The story explains why mothers kill their children and what can drive parents to commit murder- suicide in a world in which we often lack those answers.
  • North Bay Bohemian: Sonoma Trifecta

    The three interlocking stories uncovered a real estate investor-banking-media network that illuminates the shape of Sonoma County’s “shadow” government. A development partnership angling for a county contract includes a county official who partners with a banker who flaunts ethics regulations in a fire disaster rebuild area. An owner of a major local newspaper is a board member of the bank which receives favorable press coverage in the newspaper for its fire deals that do not disclose the ownership connection. Another owner of the newspaper, a real estate investor and political consultant, is found to have defrauded a local Indian tribe in a real estate deal and in cahoots with the son of a U.S. Senator. As we go to press, the newspaper fails to report on the fraud when confronted with the relevant court documents, publishing only a 900 word story on a “dispute” that our 3,500 story unveils as fraud and breach of contract. The need for surviving alt-weeklies to keep publishing hard-hitting LOCAL investigative journalism is reaffirmed.
  • Hate in America

    Hate in America,” an investigation examining intolerance, racism and hate crimes, is the 2018 project of the Carnegie-Knight News21 program, a national multimedia reporting project produced by the nation’s top journalism students and graduates. Journalism students from 19 universities traveled to 36 states, conducted hundreds of interviews, and reviewed thousands of pages of federal-court documents, FBI data and state and federal statutes.
  • The death of Korryn Gaines

    These stories explored the death of Korryn Gaines after a six-hour standoff with Baltimore County police. Baltimore Sun reporters were able to shed light on the incident with stories about Gaines’ past encounters with police and social media postings, an exclusive interview with the neighbor who allowed police to drill holes in the wall he shared with Gaines’ apartment so they could monitor her movements, and another exclusive on court documents showing that police sought Gaines’ private Facebook messages and other account information. Reporters also explored other angles, such as the role social media is playing in encounters with police across the country. Finally, reporters gained exclusive access to the investigative file that provided a trove of information on how the standoff went down.
  • The Final Days of Michael Kerr

    The death of inmate Michael Kerr by dehydration in 2014 ignited a barrage of activity in the state's corrections system and raised questions about prisoner treatment that reached the chambers of the North Carolina General Assembly more than a year later. Hundreds of pages of court documents pieced together the mentally ill veteran’s last hours in solitary confinement at a remote state prison, ignored and dismissed by an overworked corrections staff. http://www.wral.com/one-year-later-inmate-s-death-looms-over-prison-mental-health-debate/14506834/ http://www.wral.com/news/state/asset_gallery/14731191/
  • Bad Medicine Behind Bars

    The death of inmate Mario Martinez in Alameda County’s jail led 2 Investigates to uncover a web of medical negligence, gaps in oversight, and cozy connections to public officials accepting money. We analyzed hundreds of pages of medical records, coroner’s reports, and court documents, which showed that despite multiple court orders the jail’s medical provider, Corizon Healthcare, repeatedly denied surgery to Martinez before his death.
  • Electric Boondoggle

    A $2.5 million prize from the prestigious taxpayer-backed X Prize competition wound up rewarding a troubled company that's been accused of running penny-stock scams. A two-month Greenwire investigation uncovered a cascade of suspicious transactions and dubious claims by Li-Ion Motors Corporation Court documents, interviews and the company's own filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission found that the company has plowed through $50 million in investors' money with little to show for it other than millions of dollars of debt, a $250,000 IRS lien, angry customers and allegations that it was involved in "pump and dump" stock schemes.
  • Guardianship - The Grey Prison

    They're among the most vulnerable members of society. Often elderly, sometimes disabled, those conscripted into guardianship as "wards" are supposed to be protected and safeguarded. But in a first-of-its-kind, in-depth investigation, our team uncovered a system plagued by abuses. Families torn apart. Wards isolated. Estates raided. Judges rubber-stamping wrongdoing and turning a blind eye to the exploitation of private, for-profit guardians. We overcame tremendous resistance from court leaders who tried to dismiss all concerns and put us off this story before we even got started. As we waded through thousands of pages of court documents and other records, we uncovered a system so corrupt that the state was forced to initiate sweeping change. That change started at the Nevada Supreme Court and continues today. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P31Zu-wUDWI https://youtu.be/_URbZLLgj6o
  • The Kindness of Strangers: Inside Elder Guardianship in Florida

    With an estimated 50 percent of Americans 85 and older experiencing cognitive impairment, the longevity boom has generated an increase in the number of elders who are deemed too frail or mentally compromised to handle their affairs. Most states, including Florida, have cobbled together an efficient way to identify and care for helpless elders, using the probate court system to place them under guardianship. But critics say this system – easily set in motion, notoriously difficult to stop – often ignores basic civil rights. They describe a ruthless determination to take elders from their homes and make them conform to a process by which their belongings can be sold, and their family and friends shut out—until eventually they are locked away in institutions to decline and die. The critics call this process “liquidate, isolate, medicate.” Through case studies, examining court documents and talking to those working for elder justice reform, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune found consistent patterns of a lack of due process, an unwillingness to inform and involve family members, a one-size-fits-all approach to elders with diverse levels of capacity, substandard care for wards who lack assets, and high legal and professional fees for wards who have considerable assets. Fundamentally, the system treats elders as second-class citizens, before stripping them of citizenship altogether and rendering them as non-persons.
  • Tacoma police secretly using controversial cellphone surveillance device

    When police seek a suspect by tracking his or her cellphone signal, ordinary citizens who also have cellphones nearby are often caught in the surveillance web. The (Tacoma) News Tribune spent four months investigating the Tacoma Police Department’s use of this highly technical and secretive device — a decoy cell tower commonly known as a Stingray. After the newspaper confronted the department, Tacoma police became the first in the state to admit they had the device. The News Tribune spent thousands of dollars to unseal court documents that proved police hadn’t been telling judges — who sign off on orders to find suspects by tracking their cellphones — that the police use cell site simulators to find their quarry.