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 "public records" ...

  • Toxic Safety

    A child’s car seat is the only consumer product that is required by law in all 50 states and it is crucial to keep a child safe in the car. However, this investigation revealed false advertising, legal loopholes and outdated federal regulations are exposing millions of children to concerning, even known-cancer-causing chemicals, in their car seats with no apparent safety benefit. Over the course of a year, KPIX lit car seats on fire, commissioned lab tests on car seats and the kids who use them, searched public records, mined social media, analyzed national car fire data and interviewed experts from every applicable industry. The resulting series sparked action by lawmakers, industry groups, consumer advocates, federal regulators and car seat
  • Injustice in the Valley

    WJHL's review of abuse cases at Greene Valley Developmental Center, Tennessee's last state-run facility for people with intellectual disabilities, uncovered underreporting by the Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and a lack of proper investigation by police. The original investigation took five months and relied on hundreds of pages of public records and continued in the months after. Their findings prompted two criminal investigations, the arrest of a former employee for abuse (pending trial), a police chief's apology and a change in state abuse and neglect reporting protocol in Tennessee's Third Judicial District.
  • Undisclosed police misconduct in Springfield, Mass.

    These stories document a series of misconduct allegations against Springfield, Mass. police officers which remained undisclosed by authorities until uncovered by reporters with MassLive/The Republican. Drawing on public records requests, interviews with alleged victims and tips from confidential sources, the series centers on three incidents: the death of a prisoner in Springfield Police headquarters, the suspension of a detective who threatened to kill a juvenile suspect and an investigation into allegations that off-duty officers beat a group of men after an argument at a bar. The series has led to changes in how the city reports police misconduct allegations, an effort by city councilors to reinstate a civilian police commission and an external review of the department’s internal investigations unit.
  • Psychiatric Hospital-Escapes

    After two dangerous patients at Washington state’s largest psychiatric hospital escaped, Martha Bellisle used public records to discover that the event was not an isolated incident, as officials claimed, but in fact, about 185 patients had gone missing from the 800-bed facility in less than three years, and the hospital’s security was dramatically lacking, even though one of the escaped patients had previously planned to blow up a government building and kill a federal judge.
  • 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/
  • Battle to preserve access to open records

    An investigation that exposed who was behind a last-minute measure that would have gutted Wisconsin's open meetings law, as well as later attempts to limit access to electronic records.
  • 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.
  • Lawmakers & Private Emails

    Emails generated by the Colorado legislature are subject to open records, however 9NEWS exposed how each lawmaker uses a private email account to conduct state business. This two-part report exposes why private email accounts make transparency in government even more difficult for the public through a public records test. The system is designed to treat elected officials differently than other state employees. https://vimeo.com/151932804
  • Exposing Waste, Fraud And Corruption

    The Better Government Association is a nonpartisan, nonprofit government watchdog that's been around for more than 90 years exposing waste, fraud and corruption in Chicago and throughout Illinois. The Illinois Freedom of Information Act is a key component of our work, not only for our investigations team, which regularly enlists FOIA to access and analyze public records, but also for the BGA's legal and policy units.
  • The Gatekeeper to Tampa’s Political Machine

    A multi-platform investigation exposing how Tampa Bay’s top politicians empowered a political consultant to act as “gatekeeper” to city hall and prioritized their personal interests above the taxpayers’. Using public records as a roadmap, WTSP prompted widespread changes that improved tracnsparency and accountability in Tampa Bay.