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 "offenses" ...

  • WEWS-TV: Evading Justice

    The Ohio sex offender registry is supposed to help keep the public safe by providing access to information about convicts who have committed serious sexual offenses. But our extensive six-month-long investigation uncovered a loophole used by prosecutors and judges in one of the largest counties in the state that results in many accused rapists evading the registry. We found oftentimes the justice system allows suspects charged with rape to plead down to lesser and even completely unrelated charges – in a three-year period, there were more than 100 accused rapists who pleaded guilty to abduction, assault and endangering children, which allowed them to avoid registering as sex offenders. We also found many of those same defendants went on to be charged with another sexual offense after they evaded the registry, showing how this practice can put the public at risk.
  • BuzzFeed News: The NYPD’s Secret Files

    BuzzFeed News reporters Kendall Taggart and Mike Hayes broke open one of the most closely guarded secrets in US policing: how the NYPD, the largest department in the country, allows officers who commit serious offenses to keep their jobs, their pensions, and their immense power over New Yorkers’ lives.
  • California Prosecution Fees

    The Desert Sun uncovered how residents of three cities in the Coachella Valley were being billed massive fees that paid for private attorneys the city had contracted to go after the residents' for minor city code violations. Petty offenses, like having a messy yard or hanging a Halloween decoration on a street light, led to thousands or tens of thousands of dollars being demanded of the residents. If they couldn't pay, liens were assessed. Following the reporting, the cities stopped the practice, state lawmakers made it illegal in California and a class-action lawsuit led to at least one city refunding the residents.
  • LAPD underreported serious assaults, skewing crime stats for 8 years

    A Los Angeles Times machine-learning analysis found that the Los Angeles Police Department misclassified an estimated 14,000 serious assaults as minor offenses in an eight-year period, artificially lowering the city's crime levels. Reporters used an algorithm to learn key words in crime report narratives that identified offenses as serious of minor, and then used it to review nearly eight years of data in search of classification errors.
  • State police vague on internal misconduct despite reforms

    The Pennsylvania State Police investigate its own troopers for officer-involved shootings. Only once since 2008 was a shooting deemed improper. All others were justified, though almost no public information on investigations has been released. The police declined to even say how many residents were killed. Relatedly, we investigated the lack of transparency in internal discipline and how officers are rarely fired, despite dozens of potentially fireable offenses outlined in internal reports.
  • The Hidden Victims of Campus Sexual assault: Students with Disabilities

    Reporter Azmat Khan spent more than six months investigating the challenges students with disabilities can face when it comes to sexual assault at Gallaudet University, the country’s most renowned school for students with disabilities. It also happens to have the highest rate of “forcible sex offenses” — crime statistics required by the federal Clery Act — of any federally funded university in 2012.
  • Violent Madison gang offenses show nearly 200 percent increase over last decade

    At the base of Madison’s erupting violence, police records show a dramatic increase over the last decade in known gang members charged with committing crimes. https://vimeo.com/matthewsimonjournalist/review/133320664/7874f195ad
  • Public Disservice

    This series examined Arizona government workers’ discrimination and harassment claims, and found that agencies rarely disciplined the accused despite allegations of egregious behavior, repeated offenses and substantial payout costs to taxpayers. http://www.publicdisservice.azcentral.com/
  • One Year Later: CNNMoney Investigates Ferguson

    After a scathing report from the Department of Justice finding rampant policing for profit in Ferguson, the city touted changes to the police department and court system, while lawmakers heralded a new state law aimed at limiting the use of court fines as revenue generators. But we didn’t want to take the city’s word for it, and in an exclusive analysis eventually discovered that even after the DOJ report, the city continued to issue thousands of warrants over the same kinds of minor offenses the DOJ had highlighted. We also found that the problem goes far beyond Ferguson. Policing for profit has raged on in Ferguson’s neighboring towns -- keeping many of the area’s low-income residents stuck in a cycle of court debt and jail stints. Like a pastor who was jailed countless times for minor traffic tickets, a 27-year-old who has spent more than a decade trying to pay off tickets she got as a teenager, or a young mom who was arrested over not having a residency sticker on her car.
  • ChiMag: Crime Stats

    Written by National Magazine Award finalists David Bernstein and Noah Isackson, this ambitious two-part investigative series, which took the better part of a year to report, exposed how the Chicago Police Department underreported homicides and improperly downgraded scores more serious felonies to lesser offenses in order to bolster the department's crime statistics and make the city appear safer.