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 [email protected] where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "California" ...

  • The Wet Prince of Bel Air

    During a time of severe drought, Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting wanted to learn more about the users of the most water in California. Reporters found that one homeowner in Los Angeles’ posh Bel Air neighborhood had used 11.8 million gallons of water in a single year during a drought emergency and that 4 of the top 10 known mega water users were also in Bel Air. But city officials wouldn’t reveal who those customers were. So in a follow-up story, Reveal used satellite analysis and public records to identify the seven most likely culprits. https://www.revealnews.org/article/the-wet-prince-of-bel-air-who-is-californias-biggest-water-guzzler/
  • How the Government Put Tens of Thousands of People at Risk of a Deadly Disease

    An in-depth investigation into valley fever in California prisons and how the state put tens of thousands of people at risk of a deadly disease. Major findings include evidence that the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation did little to mitigate the problem, ignored data and internal reports suggesting the disease affected people of color more seriously and quashed a federal study of the epidemic within state prisons.
  • Hazardous Waste Regulation Challenges in California

    Despite a number of organizations overseeing the metal shredding industry, regulators have struggled to be effective in their efforts, possibly jeopardizing environmental and societal health. A deep dive into the Sims Recycling Plant in Silicon Valley uncovered decades of violations and millions of dollars of fines. And the failure to effectively police these plants are hurting local residents: in late 2013, the San Francisco Peninsula was engulfed in noxious black smoke when fires broke out at the facility.
  • Driving with suspended license top crime in Menlo Park, many lose cars

    Over 4.4 million Californians have suspended driver’s licenses simply because they can’t afford to pay a traffic ticket. We chronicled the impact on everyday people and showed how minorities are affected disproportionately, focusing on the Silicon Valley city of Menlo Park, with populations representing the very affluent and the very poor.
  • Cal Fire Scandals

    Samples from a 10-month investigation into shocking misbehavior and deep cultural dysfunction inside California's state fire department. http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article17577701.html
  • Criminalizing Kids

    With disturbing national data findings, our multiplatform “Criminalizing Kids” report revealed that Virginia leads the nation in sending students into the criminal justice system for misbehavior as insignificant as kicking a trash can—and as trumped up as a 12-year-old accused of obstruction of justice. Our multiple follow stories revealed more examples of how disabled and black students are arrested in disproportionate numbers, and how Virginia’s governor and local cities reacted to our findings by instituting reforms. Our second in-depth investigation, “An Epidemic of Questionable Arrests,” took us in partnership with KQED public radio to San Bernardino, Calif., where harsh policies have led to deputies hogtying and arresting a Down syndrome student; an officer beating a student who hugged his girlfriend; and school police in one medium-sized district arresting more kids annually than municipal cops arrest in some of California’s biggest cities. http://www.publicintegrity.org/2015/04/10/17074/state-state-look-students-referred-law-enforcement
  • Campaign Contributions and the California State Board of Equalization

    Taxpayers with complex tax dispute cases before the State Board of Equalization were more likely to win their cases if they or their representatives made campaign contributions to the elected board members, either directly or through political action committees.
  • Subversives

    "Subversives" reveals the FBI's covert operations at the University of California during the Cold War through the bureau's involvement with three iconic figures who clashed at Berkeley in the sixties: Governor Ronald Reagan; UC President Clark Kerr; and student leader Mario Savio. By tracing these narratives, "Subversives" tells a dramatic story of FBI illegal break-ins, infiltrations, planted news stories, poison pen letters, and secret detention lists.
  • No Body's Fault: An anatomy of a suicide in the county jail

    When James Lee Peters killed himself in the Humboldt County jail, this very act suggested a failing of the mental health and criminal justice system. The North Coast Journal wanted to explore the possible failings of those systems.
  • Busted! Breast Cancer, Money and the Media

    On Nov. 5, 2015, the Point Reyes Light launched an investigative series on a breast cancer scare that never should have happened. “Busted! Breast cancer, money and the media” dives into the question of who is most at risk of breast cancer. Hint: Contrary to popular belief, it is not wealthy white women. Focused on Marin County, Calif. and similarly affluent communities, the weekly series demystifies how breast cancer risk is calculated and explains how researchers and the media exaggerate risk factors, spreading unwarranted fear of the disease. In the 10-part serial, reporter Peter Byrne explains how scientific data have been manipulated to promote non-scientific agendas to the detriment of women in underserved populations. “Busted!” reveals internal audits showing that data in the California Cancer Registry is not of research quality. The series details how cancer registry officials attempted to derail the investigation. Busted! is changing the conversation about breast cancer risk and policy in the San Francisco Bay Area, and, hopefully, around the nation.