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 "incarceration" ...

  • TX Observer: Prison by Any Other Name

    Since the 1990s, Texas has run a controversial, constitutionally dubious “civil commitment” program that keeps hundreds of sex offenders in intensive monitoring and treatment long after they’ve finished their prison sentences. In 2015, after the agency running the program nearly imploded amid mismanagement, Texas lawmakers essentially turned civil commitment over to a scandal-ridden private prison contractor eager to gobble up contracts at the intersection of incarceration and therapy. The result: non-existent treatment, shoddy medical care, and a new taxpayer-funded, privately operated lockup in middle-of-nowhere Texas, where men under civil commitment are now confined indefinitely. Since the facility opened, only five men have been released — four of them to medical facilities where they later died.
  • Did Texas Prison Guards Drive Marinda Griggs to Kill Herself?

    This is a story focusing on criminal justice, and attempts by defense lawyers to better devise protections for the most vulnerable. And they believe that because of changing law – namely the Texas adoption of its Tort Claims Act – that now the misdeeds of public institutions and their employees will not go unchallenged.
  • Sick and Imprisoned

    This entry chronicles an investigation into the healthcare of inmates at the Hampton Roads Regional Jail, including the treatment of the mentally ill. It starts with the death of Henry Stewart, who was vomiting blood and begging for help from officials in the days before he died. The investigation goes on to detail how the jail treated inmates such as Jamycheal Mitchell, who died a year before Stewart, as well as the larger problems with how Virginia cares for the incarcerated and mentally ill.
  • Justice is not Blind

    Despite Canada’s dropping crime rate, incarceration rates of Indigenous people have been on the rise. Racial profiling and police brutality claims have increased throughout the Prairies but are often dismissed as isolated incidents by police departments. There is very little available data or research to verify whether or not the complaints are symptomatic of a larger systemic issue. Discourse Media and Maclean’s magazine collaborated on a months long investigation looking into whether the experience of Indigenous university students mirrored racial profiling claims in the Prairies, and to better understand student perceptions of police. Discourse Media designed, administered and analyzed a survey that showed that for those surveyed, Indigenous students have greater odds of being stopped by police than non-Indigenous students — and they believe their race is a factor.
  • Life Without Parole

    An investigation by The Marshall Project found that in the national search for solutions to mass incarceration, parole boards have emerged as part of the problem: secretive, unaccountable, and so politically cautious that in many states they parole only a fraction of those eligible, even those who pose little danger and whom a judge clearly intended for eventual release.
  • Michigan prison food privatization gone wrong

    Free Press Lansing bureau chief Paul Egan produced a series of exclusive reports on Michigan’s attempt to privatize prison food service and kept the heat up throughout 2014. His headlines included such stomach-turners as maggots found on meal lines, sex between Aramark employees and inmates, inmates served rotten meat, marijuana smuggling by an Aramark employee, growing inmate unrest -- even an Aramark worker who was suspected of trying to hire an inmate to kill another inmate. The stories prompted widespread revulsion and criticism of the contractor from Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder – along with calls from Michigan lawmakers to cancel the three-year, $145 million Aramark contract.
  • Profiting from Prisoners: Time Is Money

    "Time Is Money" takes the audience inside prisons, vendors’ operations and families’ homes to reveal a growing structural inequity in society: As mass incarceration stretches corrections department budgets, prisons are cutting back on basic services like providing toilet paper, winter clothes and substance abuse counseling for inmates, forcing families to close the gap. They end up paying into a hidden pipeline of cash flowing directly from relatives’ pockets into a hidden, multi-billion dollar pipeline of cash -- facilitated by financial companies -- to the coffers of prisons and the vendors they employ.
  • Profiting from Prisoners

    "Profiting from Prisoners" is a multiplatform investigative project revealing how financial companies have become central players in a multi-billion dollar economy that shifts the costs of incarceration onto the families of prison inmates and helps private companies profit from these captive customers. The stories and documentary put human faces on a growing structural inequity in society: As mass incarceration stretches prison budgets, prisons are cutting back on basic services like providing toilet paper and winter clothes for inmates. Families are forced to close the gap by paying into a hidden, multi-billion dollar pipeline of cash – facilitated by financial companies – that flows directly from relatives’ pockets to the coffers of prisons and the vendors they employ. The series’ second major story, based on previously undisclosed government documents, detailed multi-year, no-bid contracts granted to Bank of America and JP Morgan to provide financial and other services in federal prisons.
  • 60 Dead Inmates

    Between 2007 and 2012, 60 inmates died in San Diego County jail facilities, resulting in the county having the highest inmate mortality rate in California. It's a trend that's only gotten worse since a Bureau of Justice Statistics report showing that between 2000 and 2007, San Diego had the second highest death rate of California’s large jail systems. Through an exhaustive review of documents, CityBeat uncovered death attributed to excessive force by deputies, poor supervision of mentally ill and drug dependent inmates and a department that doesn't adhere to its own policies when it comes to monitoring the most at-risk inmates. This has resulted in at least five lawsuits against the county. We followed up our initial series by tracking deaths in 2013, and found continued lapses in policy and continued poor oversight of vulnerable inmates.
  • Poor conditions in county jails persist as state inspections go unenforced

    The story looked at the shortcomings in the Illinois county jails after a review of hundreds of state inspection reports from the past five years by CU-CitizenAccess.org. The reports cover the state’s more than 90 jails that house as many as 19,000 inmates on any given day.