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 "prison sentences" ...

  • 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.
  • Korean CIA's Scandal- Spy Evidence Forgery

    From 2008 to 2014, the NIS (National Intelligence Service)has found and indicted 21 spies disguised as North Korean defectors, but the Korean Center for investigative Journalism’s investigation revealed there was no evidence of any spy activities for 2 of the spies indicted after 2012. This discovery led to exoneration of those two people. The KCIJ also discovered that the NIS had submitted fabricated evidence against Mr. Yoo Woo-sung to the court. After the KCIJ reported this discovery through an investigation in China, the Korean court contacted the Chinese government, which confirmed that the document was forged. The Korean prosecution indicted 4 NIS employees who were involved in the fabrication, who then, in turn, received prison sentences.
  • Sex Predators Unleashed

    A 1999 Florida law passed after a 9-year-old boy was raped and murdered is supposed to protect the public by keeping the most dangerous sex predators locked up after their prison sentences end. But a Sun Sentinel investigation found the state’s safeguards broke down at every stage, setting rapists and child molesters free to harm again. Investigative reporter Sally Kestin and database specialist Dana Williams mined multiple data sources, using the state’s own records to reveal a horrific picture of recurring tragedy. The failures they uncovered prompted lawmakers to initiate the most comprehensive overhaul of Florida’s sex offender laws in more than a decade.
  • Locked up

    A USA TODAY investigation found that the U.S. Justice Department was using its legal authority to decide who gets locked up for how long in ways that reward the guilty and punish the innocent. Our examination found that government lawyers were trying to keep dozens of men who they conceded were “legally innocent” imprisoned anyway. We found that the Justice Department had kept accused sexual predators locked up for years past the end of their prison sentences on the basis of faulty psychological assessments. And exposed a brazen pay-to-snitch enterprise that illustrated how the government rewards its informants — often hardened criminals — with shorter prison sentences.
  • Baltimore Crime Series

    Baltimore Sun reporter Julie Bykowicz examines crime in Baltimore for the calendar year 2006. Through a series of stories - including two co-written by other Sun reporters - issues such as Baltimore's flex squad - a group of officers free to chase down suspected criminals in violent neighborhoods; the exploitation of children; endangered witnesses testifying in trials and the overturning of a nearly 40-year-old life sentence.
  • Commutations and Pardons of Gov.Bill Janklow

    The Argus Leader discovered a slew of pardons and commutations that former Governor Bill Janklow had sealed from public view under a little-known state law. However, after appealing to the Attorney General, the records of Janklow's actions became public, and the scope of his pardons was brought to light. Apparently, Janklow commuted more prison sentences than any other governor in the nation during his last two terms.
  • Tarpon Springs Police Cover-Up

    WFTS-TV refutes the official version that Shawn McMillan accidentally shot himself, and found witnesses who said moments before McMillan was shot, Daniel Nordmark, a corrections officer, and Bernie Dillman, had been seen drunk firing a gun in a crowded parking lot. The story results in charges for Nordmark and Dillman, "leading to plea deals and prison sentences. "
  • Sexual Assault Prosecutions

    The Augusta Chronicle three-day series covers "almost every aspect of the prosecution of sexual assault cases in the local community." The stories reveals that in Richmond County police and prosecutors give a "dismal effort" to the prosecution of the sexual assault crimes, but few victims find justice in court. Most suspects are released on bond and then rape again and again. Few cases lead to prison sentences, the Chronicle reports. The investigation reveals that the vast majority of rapes are committed by acquaintances of the victims, and that victims often do not report the sexual assault crimes, because they do not believe in the effectiveness of the legal system. The series includes statistics of how judges have handled sex crimes cases in Richmond county and nationwide.
  • Doing the Crime But Not the Time

    A Charlotte Observer investigation delves into the problems of "crime and punishment in Mecklenburg County and North Carolina." The five-part series in March reveals that "criminals in Charlotte are getting away with robbery, rape., assault, and occasionally even murder." The analysis finds that "driven largely by a corps of repeat offenders, Mecklenburg's crime rate ... remains ... the state's highest," with "homicides and car theft on the rise." Amongst the key findings is that "if you commit a violent crime in Charlotte, you're only half as likely to go to prison as criminals across the rest of the state." A comparison with the practice of other cities shows that "nationally, many urban prosecutors imprison a larger state of suspects." The series also reveals that "poorest neighborhoods are among those with lowest punishment rates" and that "criminals who escape punishment often go on to victimize others." The investigation sheds light on staff shortages at the courts and prosecutors' offices, and "a funding squeeze [that] compromises judges." It also details the offenders' tactics to avoid punishment and the prosecutors' ways to counteract them.
  • Escapee Left Free Until 2 Die

    Connecticut Dept. of Corrections yields hundreds of "escapes" from the halfway houses where many prisoners are transferred to near the end of their prison sentences. Escaping is little more than walking away; There are more escapees from halfway houses or on home release than legitmate participants in the program. Story uncovered after Adrian Peeler, 9 months on the lam, murders two.