Document-Driven FOI Stories

Six months in the life of FOI

What are FOI laws used for, anyway? Well, one of the most important uses is to generate stories, large and small, on issues of national and local importance. NFOIC researcher Emily Coleman, a second-year student at Missouri, kept an eye out for FOI use in stories across the country, and the result is the list below. We think you’ll be inspired by the depth and breadth of the topics that FOI helped to generate.

Council asked to draft placard use ordinance

By Tom Spalding and Heather Gillers

September 23, 2008

The Indianapolis Star used FOI to uncover a lack of oversight concerning parking permits for city workers though lists of city- and sheriff-issued parking permits and ordinances related to the permits.

States’ Actions to Block Voters Appear Illegal

By Ian Urbina

October 8, 2008

The New York Times used FOI to show at least six swing states have been removing eligible voters from the rolls or stopping them from registering to vote in possibly illegal ways through state records and Social Security data.

Behavior issues: the battle over Cascade High’s student newspaper

By Eric Stevick and Scott North

September 28, 2008

Everett, Wash.’s Daily Herald used FOI by obtaining public records using attorney’s’ invoices, emails, memos, letters, sworn deposition and minutes from closed-door meetings to show the secretive events surrounding the legal actions between a teacher and the school district.


Federal workers owe billions in unpaid taxes

By Mark Segraves

September 15, 2008

WTOP Radio used FOI to obtain IRS records that prove thousands of federal workers have not paid their 2007 federal income taxes.

Board adviser racks up travel, phone bills

By Jorge Fitz-Gibbon and Gerald McKinstry

September 14, 2008

The Journal News used FOI to prove an unpaid adviser to the Westchester County board had expenses being paid by taxpayers that amounted to $13,270 over four years.

Sonics fight cost city $2.9 million

By Greg Johns

August 28, 2008

The Seattle Post Intelligencer used FOI to show the costs of the lawsuit against the group that owns the Sonics.

One in three recent Atlanta Police Academy graduates have criminal records

By Tim Eberly

October 12, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution used FOI to obtain the job applications for the graduates of the Atlanta Police Academy and to show that more than a third of graduates have criminal records, a relatively new trend across the country.

Follow the Money: How the feds spend billions right here

By Dan Stockman

October 5, 2008

Fort Wayne’s Journal Gazette used FOI to trace over $5 billion in federal funds to northeast Indiana in purchases, tax credits and grants.

Law lets DHS stall

By John C. Williams

August 28, 2008

The Arkansas Times used FOI to find out that four Arkansas foster children have died within a couple of months in 2008. No foster children have died since 2003. The Department of Human Services has refused to release other information related to the deaths however.

Editorial: Families need access to information

July 27, 2008

Milwaukee’s Journal Sentinel used FOI to show that many nursing homes in Wisconsin are failing to properly care for their residents. The paper assembled a database of more than 20,000 pages of nursing home regulatory records and inspection records.

Urbana mayor, city clerk join those getting bonuses from city

By Mike Monson

July 23, 2008

Employees of the city of Urbana receive bonuses when overall worker compensation payments are lower than usual. The News-Gazette of Urbana-Champaign, Ill., used FOI to obtain the pay records for the mayor and city clerk who also received the bonuses.

Analysis: What are your kids eating: A sample of 10 LI districts

October 26, 2008

Newsday used FOI to obtain the menus of 47 schools in 10 Long Island school districts. They had a registered dietician analyze the contents.,0,2230718.story

Claims of medals amount to stolen valor

By John Crewdson

October 26, 2008

The Chicago Tribune obtained official military records through FOI to prove that more than half of the medals claimed to have been earned in obituaries or profiles on Who’s Who that were examined by the newspaper were not actually given.,0,4301227.story

Attorney general’s private trips have cost taxpayers

By Marisa Taylor

October 31, 2008

McClatchy Newspapers obtained the Justice Department and Federal Aviation Administration travel records to show the personal trips of U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey have cost taxpayers more than $155,800 in less than a year.

15 UNT football players fail drug test

By Brett Vito

October 28, 2008

The Denton Record-Chronicle of Denton, Texas, used FOI to discover that 15 football players out of 86 tested at the University of North Texas failed a drug test conducted at the request of the head coach.

Police officers laid off while taxpayers paid for keys

By Gabe Gutierrez

October 30, 2008

Mid-Michigan’s ABC12 used FOI to discover that the city of Flint has bought at least 200 ceremonial keys to the city in the past year at $30 apiece from a pawnshop owned by the mayor’s family. This happened amid a budget problem where nearly 50 police officers were laid off.

Isiah Thomas was not breathing when police arrived at home

By Wayne Coffey and Michael O’Keeffe

October 30, 2008

New York’s Daily News used the police incident report to provide an account of what happened when the police discovered former Knicks coach and president Isiah Thomas on his kitchen floor.

Board knew of nurses’ criminal records but took years to act

By Tracy Weber and Charles Ornstein

November 2, 2008

The Los Angeles Times used FOI to provide a timeline of California’s action concerning nurses with criminal records. Through an example of a sex offender who molested two patients in one night, the paper showed it took two years after first being alerted to the problem, the California Bureau of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians took the first formal steps to revoke his license.,0,5441571.story

Top state university leaders often go without written performance evaluations

November 5, 2008

The Associated Press used a survey of documents obtained by journalism students at three Texas state universities through FOI and found out that administrators are evaluated unevenly and often out of the public eye.

Report: FBI kept file on writer David Halberstam

November 6, 2008

The Associated Press used FBI documents acquired by New York journalism graduate students to report that the FBI tracked journalist and author David Halberstam for more than two decades.

DWI cases can end in paper chase

By Nancy West

October 27, 2008

New Hampshire’s Union Leader used redacted reports from 2006 to 2008 about DWI cases from the New Hampshire attorney general’s office to provide reasons why DWI charges are being dropped or reduced and to show that some reports aren’t being filed at all.

SPIA professor quits: Documents detail ‘alcohol problem’

By Melissa Weinman

March 24, 2008

The Red & Black, the University of Georgia student newspaper, used FOI to obtain documents that show a professor, who resigned earlier that month, admitted to having an alcohol problem and was under investigation for “inappropriate contact with a student.”

Government Probes at Least 7 Defense Contracts for Charities

By Robert O’Harrow Jr.

June 7, 2008

The Washington Post obtained documents through FOI that show the Pentagon had deals with a couple tax-exempt defense firms in Pennsylvania involved more money than previously known.

Records show foreign students who come to America to work still owed pay

April 4, 2008

The Associated Press used Labor Department documents obtained through New York’s FOIA show that businesses owe foreign students money.

Currie linked to mall plan

By Laura Smitherman and Gadi Dechter

July 3, 2008

The Baltimore Sun used records to show that Maryland State Sen. Ulysses Currie intervened several times in recent years on behalf of Shoppers Food and Pharmacy when the company sought public financing and other concessions in the redevelopment of a mall in West Baltimore.

Special prosecutors have earned $180,000 since 2005

By Jose Borjon

March 22, 2008

The Brownsville Herald obtained copies of the contracts and records of payment from the Cameron county auditor to show how much the county has had to pay for special prosecutors to handle cases the district attorney cannot due to conflict from his former role as a public defender.

DA to review voting case

By Peggy Heinkel-Wolfe

July 27, 2008

The Denton Record-Chronicle obtained documents concerning election officials’ investigation of a Bartonville couple illegally voting in May by using a commercial address for their residential address.

Hart grand jury indicts man and woman days before woman was killed

By Pearce Adams

March 5, 2008

The Independent Mail of Anderson, South Carolina, obtained records from the Hart County Sheriff and the County Clerk of Court’s Office to show a couple indicted for identity fraud and theft are now being charged in connection with a homicide.

Major’s travels draw criticism

By Terri Hardy

February 24, 2008

The Sacramento Bee analyzed hundreds of documents, most obtained through FOI, to put together a list of where Heather Fargo, the major of Sacramento, goes and what those trips have contributed to the city.

New storm hits ousted Oakland official

By Chip Johnson

July 11, 2008

The San Francisco Chronicle used FOI documents to show former Oakland City Administrator Deborah Edgerly got summer jobs with the city for her own children, who were paid even when they didn’t show up for work.

Father, son fall from grace breaking law they once served

By Tim Eberly

April 13, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution used FOI to obtain the personnel file from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation of James Garmon, a former special agent who pleaded guilty to taking bribes.

Guantanamo and the betrayal of American values

By Almerindo Ojeda

June 17, 2008

The San Francisco Chronicle used reports and documents from the U.S. Defense Department to describe conditions at Guantanamo Bay and the prisons therein.

Milwaukee man faces foreclosure because he didn’t pay parking fine

By Raquel Rutledge

August 3, 2008

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel acquired documents from the Social Security Administration that detail the psychological disorders of a man who failed to pay a parking fine and subsequently had his house foreclosed.

Mo. House member indicted on sex assault charge

By Tony Messenger

August 7, 2008

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch used police reports, court documents and other documents from the Missouri Children’s Services division to piece together the claims that Rep. Scott Muschany, R-Frontenac, sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl.

Complaining about illegal dumping – and then waiting

By Robert J. Lopez

June 26, 2008

The Los Angeles Times used city records to show that it sometimes take months for the Department of Public Works to clear garbage from alleys.

‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Hits Women Much Moe

By Thom Shanker

June 23, 2008

The New York Times used information gathered by the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network to show that the U.S. army and air force discharged a disproportionate number of women in 2007.

Curry’s Georgia State salary: $350K per year

By Jenna Marina

June 18, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution used FOI to find out that Georgia State has offered their new football coach Bill Curry an annual salary of $350,000.

Few Details on Immigrants Who Died in Custody

By Nina Bernstein

May 5, 2008

The New York Times used a list of people who have died in custody from 2004 to 2007 from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to show what happens for some of those on the list.

Public agency, private benefit

By Brian Joseph

May 22, 2008

The Orange County Register used records like campaign finance records and documents from the League of California Cities to show that an obscure California agency is financing its members’ special interests.

Air Marshals: Undercover and Under Arrest

By Michael Grabell

November 13, 2008

In an examination of police reports, court records, government reports, memos and e-mails, ProPublica discovered 18 air marshals have been charged with felonies, including three who were hired despite prior criminal records or being fired from law enforcement jobs.

Jet-setting Kilpatrick charged $286,000 to city credit card

By Christine MacDonald, Paul Egan, Darren A Nichols and Steve Pardo

October 24, 2008

The Detroit News used FOI to obtain records that show Detroit’s former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick spent at least $286,000 on things like trips to the Bahamas, South Africa and France was charged to the mayor’s city card since 2002.

High crash rate troubles road in City of Pewaukee

By Mike Johnson and Jacqueline Seibel

July 15, 2008

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel related a recent crash that killed a 6-year-old boy to at least 280 collisions on the same road using records from the state and Waukesha County highway records.

Support staff lacked all facts

By Brian Landman

February 20, 2008

The St. Petersburg Times of Florida used public records to supplement an article about Florida State where a majority of student-athletes are receiving an A in a music class, which is not “representative” of many of their grades in other classes.

Obama has ties to lobbyists despite boats of not taking their money; Some at their law firms raising millions for him

By Ken Dilanian

April 16, 2008

USA Today used records from the Senate Office of Public Records and other public records to show then Democratic nominee for president Obama’s fundraising team includes 38 members of law firms that were paid $138 million last year to lobby the federal government.

FOIAs Reveal How Bush Administration Made Complete Immunity for Negligent Corporations a Top Priority

By American Association for Justice

October 31, 2008

In a Drug Week article prepared by its editors and staff, the American Association for Justice used FOI to obtain documents that show federal agencies were repeatedly ordered to bypass state laws and undermine consumer protections to help corporations escape accountability for dangerous products.

State was warned on securities But individual investors surprised by failure of auction-rate market

By Beth Healy

July 3, 2008

The Boston Globe obtained state documents that prove at least five major Wall Street firms warned the Massachusetts treasurer’s office that the auction-rate market was faltering while they did not warn individual investors of the same thing.

New scandal shows flaws in screening

By: Kathleen Lucadamo

April 18, 2008

New York’s Daily News used a documents request to show a gap in New York City’s vendor exchange system. The gap allowed a group with city employees to receive funding from the city without disclosing those ties. They simply left the question blank, which signals “no.” The article also includes a list of council members and their sponsored or co-sponsored “discretionary funds.”

Feds: Vick Personally Killed 7 Dogs By Hanging, Drowning

November 24, 2008

WSB-TV received records from federal investigators that reveal Michael Vick personally killed at least seven of his fight dogs.  He also failed a polygraph test and started his dog-fighting ring a few days after being drafted to the Atlanta Falcons in 2001.

Like FBI, CIA Has Used Secret ‘Letters’

By Joby Warrick

January 25, 2008

The Washington Post used documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act by the American Civil Liberties Union that show the CIA also issued warrant-like request used to obtain financial information about U.S. residents.

Execution nurse had criminal past

By Jeremy Kohler

January 12, 2008

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch used FOI to obtain memos and other documents from the Missouri Corrections Department that prove an execution nurse had a criminal record that officials knew about.

Navajo travel tally could top $1 million

By Cory Frolik

January 13, 2008

The New Mexico Daily Times submitted almost 150 FOI requests to various federal, Navajo and education agencies. They found out the Navajo Nation Department of Diné Education spent at least $70,820 to send 27 people to a Hawaii conference.  This is in addition to as many as 400 other tribal representatives that were sent on taxpayer money.

University of Michigan athletes steered to professor

By Jim Carty, John Heuser and Nathan Fenno

March 16, 2008

The Ann Arbor News of Michigan used internal university documents and interviews to discover athletes were being steered toward independent courses with professor John Hagen. In some of these classes, students earned three or four credits for meeting with Hagen for as little as 15 minutes every two weeks.

Cities rarely release water test results

March 10, 2008

The Associated Press used FOI to obtain the results of water tests in 24 major metropolitan areas that tested positive for trace amounts of pharmaceuticals.

Behind TV Analysts, Pentagon’s Hidden Hand

By David Barstow

April 20, 2008

The New York Times obtained documents that show most “military analysts” used by many TV news networks have business ties to military contractors and are given carefully controlled information by the Pentagon.

Smithsonian Official Resigned In Wake of Ethics Probe

By James V Grimaldi and Jacqueline Trescott

April 15, 2008

The Washington Post made a FOI request that resulted in an investigation by the Smithsonian Institution into the expense account, contracting and soliciting free tickets to a variety of non-work related functions of the head of the Smithsonian Latino Center. She ended up resigning due to the probe.

At One University, Tobacco Money Is a Secret

By Alan Finder

May 22, 2008

The New York Times used Virginia’s FOIA to obtain a copy of a contract between the tobacco company Philip Morris USA and Virginia Commonwealth University, a public college. The contract has very restrictive terms and bars professors from publishing or even talking about their results without Phillip Morris’s permission.

The FBI Files

Fox 5 in Washington D.C. complied the FBI files of local activists, politicians and celebrities. They also provided instructions on how to procure your own FBI file, to obtain one of someone else and to decode what it means.

Perry bypassed business people for transit post

By Kelley Shannon

June 29, 2008

The Associated Press obtained records through the Texas Public Information Act that show Gov. Rick Perry picked his former political aide to head the Texas Transportation Commission, overlooking other qualified individuals.

Kalamazoo Public Safety releases video showing officer injuring handcuffed teen

By Kathy Jessup

June 18, 2008

The Kalamazoo Gazette obtained the video of the struggle between a handcuffed teenager and a Public Safety officer, in which the officer shoves the teenager into a wall, injuring his face.

How to Get Away With Torture

By Dan Froomkin

July 25, 2008

The Washington Post used documents, such as memos, obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union through FOI, in a story showing the official policy on torture, which pretty much boils down to a guide of how to torture and get away with it.

Terrorism Funds May Let Brass Fly in Style

By R Jeffrey Smith

July 18, 2008

The Washington Post obtained internal Air Force e-mails and budget documents that show the Air Force’s top leadership wanted to spend counterterrorism funds on “comfort capsules.”

Police Spied on Activists In Md.

By Lisa Rein

July 18, 2008

The Washington Post used FOI to obtain detailed intelligence reports logged by at least two agents in the Maryland state police’s Homeland Security and Intelligence Division. They conducted surveillance on war protestors and death penalty opponents for more than a year.

UCA president’s $300,000 bonus not revealed for 2 months

By Debra Hale-Shelton

July 2, 2008

The Arkansas Democrat Gazette used FOI to discover University of Central Arkansas President received an extra $300,000 in private funds as an incentive to stay – during a year when professors had been told not to expect bonuses.

Mary Easley trips cost state $109,000

By Benjamin Niolet

July 1, 2008

The News and Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina obtained expense reports and other documents that show North Carolina’s first lady, Mary Easley, without her husband, the governor, traveled to France, Russia and Estonia on the taxpayers money.

Hospital death rates unveiled for first-time comparison

By Steve Sternberg and Anthony De Barros

August 21, 2008

USA Today used FOI to obtain a government analysis concerning hospitals’ death rates. In addition to an article relating the information, USA Today also provided an interactive graphic that allows users to compare hospitals in states across the country in death rates for heart attacks, heart failures and pneumonia.

US regulators acknowledge Obama plane ‘emergency’

August 15, 2008

ABC News obtained control tower tapes that show the pilot of Obama’s plane said he had less than 100 percent control of the plane before the aircraft made an unscheduled stop in St. Louis. The Federal Aviation Administration previously said there was no emergency.

Spy service files are secret no more

By Greg Miller

August 15, 2008

The Los Angeles Times acquired newly public documents from the Office of Strategic Services – the precursor to the CIA – that show Julia Child, Sterling Hayden and thousands of other Americans worked for the office.

‘Safe’ Pesticides Now First in Poisonings

By M.B. Pell and Jim Morris

July 30, 2008

The Center for Public Integrity used EPA data and lawsuit records to provide a series on pesticides. There are a series of additional and supplemental articles.

U.S. segregates violent Iraqi prisoners in crates

By Barbara Starr

August 7, 2008

CNN used photos obtained after a blogger filed a FOI request in 2005 that show “segregation boxes.” The wooden boxes, as small as 3 feet by 3 feet by 6 feet, were used to hold violent inmates.

Daniels treads fine line in state travel

By Niki Kelly

August 31, 2008

Fort Wayne’s Journal Gazette obtained Indiana state records that show Gov. Mitch Daniels used the state aircraft 61 times in 2007 and in 2008 – an election year – the first seven months are 48 percent higher than 2007. He used the aircrafts to perform official duties but mixed in were events more aimed at getting reelected.

Where does Gibbons work?  Apparently not at his desk

By David McGrath Schwartz and Cy Ryan

October 5, 2008

When the Nevada governor’s office would not provide Gov. Jim Gibbons’ full schedule, the Las Vegas Sun complied firsthand accounts of reporters and state employees and the official schedule of public appearances.  They discovered in nine weeks, Gibbons was at the Capitol office five days.

States’ Actions to Block Voters Appear Illegal

By Ian Urbina

October 8, 2008

The New York Times obtained state records and Social Security data and discovered tens of thousands of eligible voters in at least six swing states have been unregistered or blocked from registering.

Big business, lobbyists had Sarah Palin’s ear

By Stephen Braun, Tom Hamburger and Chuck Neubauer

October 11, 2008

The Los Angeles Times used Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s official calendar to show she had at least three dozen meetings with big business representatives while rarely meeting with those that presented alternative views, such as environmentalists or unions.,0,4359943.story

Detroit spends millions on outside legal help

November 7, 2008

The Associated Press used FOI to obtain records that show the city of Detroit has 81 lawyers already on its payroll but spent nearly $3 million on outside legal aid since 2002.

Calls for national infant formula recall spread

By Martha Mendoza and Justin Pritchard

November 26, 2008

The Associated Press obtained a spreadsheet from the Food and Drug Administration through FOI that state that a baby formula contained traces of melamine. This record opened up other formulas that had traces of other hazardous substances.

Hinckley crisis fuels lawsuit

By Bryon Ackerman

February 9, 2008

Through court documents, e-mails and other records, the Utica Observer-Dispatch of New York explained how the 2007 water crisis at Hinckley Reservoir is connected to a lawsuit over access to the water supply.

Dowe trip raises new spending questions

By Laurence Hammack

May 24, 2008

The Roanoke Times obtained the paperwork submitted with former councilman Alfred Dowe’s expense forms. The records point to a conference, which doesn’t appear to exist.

Texas A&M football assistants better paid under Sherman

By Brian Davis

January 30, 2008

The Dallas Morning News obtained the contract information of new Texas A&M football coach Mike Sherman and proved the coach did take less money than the previous coach and more money is slated to spend on assistant coaches.

Some Former Meth Houses Sold Without Being Cleaned

By Rick Sallinger

May 5, 2008

Denver’s CBS4 News used FOI to obtain governmental lists of properties that contained methamphetamine labs that were never cleaned and discovered governmental agencies never informed buyers of that fact.

Gun checks may violate federal law

By Lee Williams

November 30, 2008

The News Journal used Delaware FOIA to obtain the results of nearly 4,000 background checks conducted by the state Firearms Transaction Approval Program from 1998 to 2008. They found that 10 percent of background-check requests were made by state troopers, not by gun dealers.

Sean Taylor autopsy released; gunshot wound detailed

February 8, 2008

The Associated Press obtained through FOI the autopsy report and the Miami-Dade police report. Through the reports the story details the bullet wound and the possible gun that caused it.

System failure: Domestic abuse victims frustrated by gaps in safety net

By Rob Perez

December 14, 2008

The Honolulu Advertiser used FOI to obtain data, statistics and court reports and documents that supplements interviews that speak about the lack of trust in Hawaii’s domestic violence system.

St. Louis police chief wears $5,900 badge; Kansas City’s is $48.75

By Jeremy Kohler

December 21, 2008

St. Louis Post-Dispatch obtained records that show the Board of Police Commissioners approved the purchases of five $1,987 and two $5,900 badges.

AJC investigation: Many athletes lag far behind on SAT scores

By Mike Knobler

December 28, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution used the scores of athletes and non-athletes at public universities to show that football and men’s basketball players average hundreds of points lower than their peers.

Lottery’s burst of spending eats into aid for localities

By Donovan Slack

December 17, 2008

The Boston Globe reviewed Massachusetts’ records that show, while net profits from the lottery has grown in the past five years, administrative costs have risen more quickly. This limits how much money actually makes it to the cities and towns.

Kwame Kilpatrick’s jail stay: Long johns, granola and 32 visits

By George Hunter and David Josar

December 12, 2008

The Detroit News used FOI to obtain Wayne County documents concerning former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s stay in jail, including purchases, complaints and number of visitors.

Bernanke Talked to Obama Soon After Lehman Failure

By Scott Lanman

December 11, 2008

Bloomberg obtained the schedule and other records of Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke that show he spoke with Obama among others in September, the week the Lehman Brothers failed.

Petrino’s Contract Protects Against SEC West

By Alex Ambrams

December 8, 2008

The Morning News of Arkansas obtained a copy of Coach Bobby Petrino’s finalized contract, which shows that it would be difficult for Petrino to obtain another job, especially in the Southeastern Conference West Division.

U.S. Moves Ahead on Oil, Gas Leases on Public Land

By Juliet Eilperin

November 29, 2008

The Washington Post used FOI to complete an analysis on energy versus environmental needs in the U.S. concerning permits and drilling.

White House Blocked Rule Issued to Shield Whales

By Juliet Eilperin

May 1, 2008

The Washington Post obtained documents collected by the Union of Concerned Scientists via the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that show Bush administration officials have, for over a year, blocked a rule that serves to protect whales.

State budget gap could reach $41.8 billion by 2010

By Jordan Rau

December 11, 2008

The Los Angeles Times obtained documents that show some economists are projecting budget gaps as high as $41.8 billion by 2010 for California.,0,3411363.story

U.S. is investigating LAPD officer

By Richard Winton and Scott Glover

December 21, 2008

The Los Angeles Times obtained documents from the Los Angeles Police Department that show an officer is under federal investigation for buying guns through the Police Academy and sending them to Belize where he runs a security firm.,0,5001327.story

Spying risks Maryland police funds

By Tom LoBianco

August 8, 2008

The Washington Times obtained documents through the American Civil Liberties Union’s FOI request. The documents show Maryland state police spied on groups opposed to the death penalty and the Iraq war.

Shady past no deal-breaker in student loan market

By Tom Marshall and Thomas Lake

May 18, 2008

The St. Petersburg Times obtained documents through FOI to show a serial debtor and convicted felon were still allowed to selling student loans backed by the federal government.

First AME pastor’s spending examined

By Teresa Watanabe

November 30, 2008

The Los Angeles Times obtained documents related the taxes and audits of the pastor of the First African Methodist Episcopal Church who had been using church credits to pay for personal expenses over a three-year period.,0,1716697.story

A Good Name Dragged Down; Consumers Get Tangled In Terrorist Watchlist

By Ellen Nakashima

March 19, 2008

The Washington Post obtained e-mails to document the interaction between U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control and individuals who have had their names put on terrorist watch lists.

McCain Finds A Thorny Path in Ethics Effort

By Barry Meier and Kate Zernike

May 20, 2008

The New York Times obtained documents that show some of the campaign advisors to GOP presidential candidate John McCain are former lobbyists.  One aide told companies back in 2005 that he could ease the way for companies seeking federal contracts if he could partner.

Huckabee office had a special events fund

By Seth Blomeley

January 23, 2008

The Arkansas Democrat Gazette obtained documents from the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration that indicated then-Gov. Mike Huckabee’s office had a “special-events fund” financed by undisclosed donors that helped to pay his official portrait among other things.

Crandall Canyon bombshell: Months before deadly cave-ins, owners knew of structural woes

By Robert Gehrke

January 17, 2008

The Salt Lake Tribune obtained the minutes of four betweens in South Jordan, Utah, between the mine’s co-owners since the Los Angeles Division of Water and Power is a co-owner of the mine. The minutes reveal the co-owners were already dealing with serious structural problems almost four whole months before the cave-ins.

NASA lists hundreds of risky flights in air study

By Rita Beamish

January 1, 2008

The Associated Press obtained the results of a study conducted by NASA, although the data is scrambled and cumbersome. The data reflects cases where pilots flew too close to each, plunged from altitude or landed without clearance.

Quick and quiet: Speaker Richardson gets divorced

By Alan Judd

February 10, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained the order sealing the case file concerning the divorce of Georgia House Speaker Glenn Richardson who got divorced from his wife and sealed the records all in one afternoon.

Failure to Report

By Brendan Smith

April 9, 2008

The Washington City Paper obtained D.C. Department of Corrections reports that state two inmates committed suicide in their cells while security checks and official counts should have occurred, preventing the success of the suicides.

Toxic Neighbors: The hidden dangers in your back yard

By Michael Grabell

June 2, 2008

The Dallas Morning News obtained documents to show where sites are that hold hazardous chemicals and found dozens are near residential areas.

Information from county available—if the price is right

By Michael Smith and Katie Powell

July 10, 2008

The Horry Independent filed FOI requests to see what different agencies are charging to fulfill FOI requests.

Once Elected, Palin Hired Friends and Lashed Foes

By Jo Becker, Peter S. Goodman and Michael Powell

September 13, 2008

The New York Times obtained e-mails and other documents that show that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin during her stints as mayor and governor valued secrecy, – often blantly lying about facts that disagreed with her policy – hired her friends and firing people who disagree with her.

Trains, bloggers are threats in U.S. drill

By Ted Bridis

January 31, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents from the Homeland Security Department concerning its “Cyber Storm” war game. The instigators of potential crises, in the government’s eyes, are going to be hackers, bloggers and reporters.

City denies data on workers’ take-home cars

By Len Maniace

September 15, 2008

The Journal News obtained a list of cars issued to Yonkers city officials. The city would not provide the amounts of gasoline used and the miles driven by employees.

Advocates want information on detainees

By Karen Lee Ziner

July 20, 2008

The Providence Journal obtained documents concerning the arrests of 84 suspected illegal immigrants in Rhode Island. According to a lawyer who frequently deals with the federal bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the information they receive is often wrong.

Taking driving test? Some DMV offices are tough

By Serena Maria Daniels

January 7, 2009

The Orange County Register obtained the pass-fail rates of the behind-the-wheel tests at different Department of Motor Vehicle offices in Orange County.

Hall Jail video records inmate’s injury

January 26, 2009

The Grand Island Independent obtained the tape of a 911 call and video and audio recordings from the jail that concern the fatal fall of an inmate.

F.B.I. Kept Tabs on Geoge Carlin

January 22, 2009

The Associated Press obtained the F.B.I. file of George Carlin through Carlin’s FOI request prior to his death. This contradicts earlier requests when the F.B.I. said it had no file on Carlin.

Michigan football coach Rodriguez’s total compensation: $6.6 million

By John Heuser

January 22, 2009

The Ann Arbor News obtained records that show the University of Michigan’s athletic department paid $4.1 million to cover a portion of the buyout owed to another university in addition to a $2.5 million salary and compensation.

Toxic coal ash piling up in ponds in 32 states

January 9, 2009

The Associated Press analyzed documents obtained through the federal Energy Department that showed toxic coal ash is being stored in power plant ponds in 32 states.

Veterans exposed to incorrect drug doses

By Hope Yen

January 14, 2009

The Associated Press obtained internal memos and other documents to sort through a problem at Veteran Affairs health clinics after computer glitches led to incorrect drug doses being delivered.

BART’s shooting probe missteps

By Demian Bulwa

January 30, 2009

The San Francisco Chronicle obtained documents that showed the Bay Area Rapid Transit failed to secure witnesses or radio in that a shooting involving an officer had occurred.

Interior Ignored Science When Limiting Water to Grand Canyon

By Juliet Eilperin

January 28, 2009

The Washington Post obtained memos and other documents from the federal Interior Department that showed officials ignored key scientific findings that could have risked damaging the ecology of the Grand Canyon.

Psychiatric clinic gets poor review

By Yvonne Wingett

January 27, 2009

The Arizona Republic obtained documents containing the findings of health officials when they conducted the review of the Urgent Psychiatric Care Center.

Councilman Kelly helped probe of indicted aide, documents show

By Chris Brennan

January 13, 2009

The Philadelphia Daily News obtained documents that show a city councilman secretly recorded conversations with his chief of staff and a campaign contributor for federal investigators.

Dogs owe Felton $1,483,641

By Chip Towers

February 6, 2009

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show it will cost Georgia nearly a million and a half dollars to pay the Georgia University basketball team coach not to coach.

Treatment of detainees inside U.S. jails detailed

October 7, 2008

The Associated Press obtained Pentagon documents that show military official warned the Pentagon that an American detainee was being driven nearly insane by isolation and sensory deprivation in a U.S. jail.

Bio-lab location political?

By Larry Margasak

October 11, 2008

The Associated Press obtained Homeland Security Department documents that show Mississippi has been chosen as the sight of a $451 million national laboratory despite low security ratings.

Calif. Tunnel was seen as dangerous long before deadly crash

By Michael R. Blood

April 25, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that show that more than a decade before a 34-vehivle crash took place, site was declared dangerous.,4670,TunnelInferno,00.html

New Baghdad embassy’s fire-fighting system is defective

By Warren P. Strobel

January 11, 2008

McClatchy Newspapers obtained documents that show the fire-fighting system in the new U.S. embassy in Baghdad is defective due to a rush to declare the complex completed.

Patti’s fundraising may not save 100-year-old shelter

By Carol Marin and Don Moseley

January 8, 2009

NBC Chicago obtained budget documents and Chicago City Hall memos that show the financial straits of the Christian Industrial League, which hired Illinois First Lady Patti Blagojevich to save a shelter.

Blackwater Machine Gun Found in Raid on Iraqi Insurgents

By Brian Ross

October 2, 2008

ABC News obtained documents that show a machine gun sent to Iraq by the Blackwater security firm was found during a US operation against suspected insurgents.

Public left in the dark about teacher assaults

By Steven K. Paulson

March 18, 2008

The Associated Press obtained Michigan Board of Education records that detail the suspension or firing of teachers for serious crimes.  The records were previously available online through minutes but now must be obtained at the headquarters in Denver.

Md. panel expected to OK Shore preservation deal

By Timothy B. Wheeler

January 7, 2009

The Baltimore Sun obtained the appraisals used in the consideration of a recent Maryland conservation land deal.,0,4067750.story

Health Alliance projects $18 million loss

By Erin Smith

March 19, 2008

The Cambridge Chronicle obtained internal documents from the Cambridge Health Alliance, which, according to these documents, is set to lose more than $18 million this year and up to 300 workers may be let go.

Chance to save baby missed

By Craig Schneider

July 2, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents from Georgia’s Division of Family and Children Services that show a social worker suspected the mother was lying about her child’s injuries. The agency says that should have contacted the people about the incident.

County director leaves behind a pile of complaints

By Nick Budnick

August 22, 2008

The Portland Tribune obtained documents that show the sudden resignation of the Multnomah County emergency director after the county received complaints from the Portland mayor and county commissioner.

Evel Knievel’s FBI’s File Reveals Possible Crime Syndicate Connections

By Sarah Larimer

October 6, 2008

The Associated Press obtained federal documents that show the government was close to charging Evel Knievel in a string of beatings.

State estimates of student promoted after failing CRCT math test are … JUST GUESSWORK

By Alan Judd and Heather Vogell

May 25, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show while the state keeps track of how many Georgia students fail the mandatory Criterion-Referenced Competency Test, they do not keep track of what happens to these students afterward as progression to the next grade are done on a school by school basis.

Rutgers settles suit, but not without cost

By Kelly Heyboer

March 2, 2008

The New Jersey Star-Ledger obtained documents that show Rutgers University spent more than $1.2 million to fight a nearly decade-long lawsuit filed by former students against school officials.

Nashville added to terror grant list

January 31, 2008

The Associated Press obtained the list of regions considered at high risk of a terrorist attacks from the Homeland Security Department and found that Nashville and Murfreesboro has been added to the list.

Pentagon wants bigger Army, Marine Corps

By Lolita C. Baldor

February 1, 2008

The Associated Press obtained the Pentagon’s proposed 2009 budget, in which is shows the Pentagon is seeking more than $20 billion to increase the size of the army and marine corps.

Aaroné's sibling heard beating

By Carlos Illescas

May 1, 2008

The Denver Post obtained documents from social services in Arapahoe County that confirm “minor sexual abuse” by the ex-boyfriend of a woman accused of abusing and killing one of her foster children.

S.F. supes panel OKs limits on overtime

By Wyatt Buchanan

July 31, 2008

The San Francisco Chronicle obtained documents that show a San Francisco firefighter worked 19 consecutive 24-hour shifts in April and May of 2008.

’98 U.S. strike cemented bin Laden-Taliban ties

By Pamela Hess

August 20, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that show a U.S. attack on an al-Qaida training camp in Afghanistan in 1998 was meant to kill Osama bin Laden but apparently solidified an alliance with his Taliban protectors.

Feds not addressing drugs in water

By Martha Mendoza

April 13, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that show a White House task force on pharmaceuticals in drinking water has not completed the mandated reports and other tasks by its deadline.

Playing a numbers game: What JPS says vs. what the records reveal

By Darren Barbee and Anthony Spangler

February 14, 2009

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram obtained documents and compared the numbers to claims made by the JPS Health Network.

CBS4 Investigates Parking Ticket Increase

By Brian Maass

January 30, 2009

Denver’s CBS4 used FOI to note a 6 percent increase in the number of parking tickets being written in the city and obtained memos that show quotas and time requirements.

Wis. Tax credits help pay for Depp’s entourage

By Scott Bauer

February 13, 2009

The Associated Press obtained records that show Wisconsin taxpayers contributed $450,000 toward director Michael Mann’s salary and a wide variety of tax credits that paid for a portion of his assistants’ salaries, entertainment, meals and stuntmen’s living expenses.

Scores of city government workers racking up six-figure overtime

By Frank Lombardi

February 14, 2009

The New York Daily News obtained records of the salaries of city government workers and the overtime they make.

EPA wanted tougher C8 limit, memo says

By Ken Ward Jr.

February 15, 2009

The Charleston Gazette obtained an internal U.S. Environmental Protection Agency mem that shows federal government scientists originally wanted a much tougher standard for the toxic chemical C8 that was actually received.

Feds shared info on peaceful protestors

February 17, 2009

United Press International obtained government documents that show the U.S. Department of Homeland Security tracked peaceful protestors and shared that information with the Maryland State Police.

New York bedbug complaints increase 34% in a year

By Adam Lisberg

February 17, 2009

The New York Daily News obtained documents that show New Yorkers called 311 with 33.7 percent more complaints about bedbugs than the previous year.

Records contain pollution portrait

By Tony Bartelme

February 17, 2009

The Charleston Post and Courier obtained documents that show South Carolina state health and environmental regulators have levied about $55 million in fines since 1991 for more than 6,100 violations.

Marvin Schur’s utility bills show history of late payments

By Ryan J. Stanton

February 18, 2009

The Michigan Bay City Times obtained public records that show a Michigan man received at least 6 shutoff notices in the last two years before he was found frozen to death in January.

Disgraced banker Stanford didn’t pay his own taxes

By Daniel Wagner

February 18, 2009

The Associated Press obtained documents that show banker R. Allen Stanford owes millions of dollars in federal taxes.

Valenti’s Sexuality Was Topic For FBI

By Joe Stephens

February 19, 2009

The Washington Post obtained previously confidential FBI files that show, back in 1964, the FBI investigated whether or not Jack Valenti, then top aide to President Lyndon B. Johnson, was gay.

His 13 days cost Schenectady plenty

By Paul Nelson

February 23, 2009

The Times Union used FOI to obtain city financial records that show Schenectady, New York, paid the police union president and police lieutenant more than $125,000 for 13 days of work.

Auto team drives imports

By David Shepardson

February 23, 2009

The Detroit News used FOI to find out what cars the Obama administration’s task force on the auto industry drives, and most of the cars are imports.

Who Is Suspected Hudson Killer Balfour?

By Luchina Fisher and Scott Michels

October 28, 2008 obtained documents that show a person of interest in the investigation of the triple-homicide of members of Jennifer Hudson’s family was arrested in June for drug possession.

Whistle-blower settles case

By Mike Carter and Steve Miletich

July 11, 2008

The Seattle Times obtained documents that show hundreds of emails went between the Boeing company’s legal department and the King County prosecutor’s office concerning a former Boeing employee who leaked company documents to reporters about unsafe airplanes.

WVU panelists stand by report

By Len Boselovic and Patricia Sabatini

June 1, 2008

While the Pittsburg Post Gazette obtained documents that show discrepancies in credit earned through West Virginia University’s MBA program, the school’s panel says there is no problem.

AIG fiddles, Wall St. burns

By David Lazarus

October 8, 2008

The Los Angeles Times obtained documents that show insurance company AIG tried to hide negative information about its condition from auditors and held expensive conferences while the bailout was being drafted.

Drought could force nuke-plant shutdowns

By Mitch Weiss

January 24, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents through utility companies and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that show 24 plants are in areas that experienced droughts. Water is a vital part of the cooling system in nuclear plants.

‘Jihadist’ booted from government lexicon

By Matthew Lee

April 27, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that show federal agencies such as the State Department and the National Counter Terrorism Center are telling their workers not to refer to Islamic extremists as “jihadists” or “mujahedeen” anymore.

Organic farms unknowingly used a synthetic fertilizer

By Jim Downing

December 28, 2008

The Sacramento Bee obtained documents that show a fertilizer labeled as organic was under investigation for being falsely labeled in June 2004, the California Department of Food and Agriculture didn’t complete its investigation and remove the product from the organic market until January 2007.

Officer who responded to bar fights is alleging he was pressured by superiors

By Sean Delaney

July 20, 2008

The Press & Guide Newspapers obtained reports detailing the circumstances surrounding and the complaints concerning a bar fight resulting in an allegation that a corporal violated the rights of a whistleblower.

N.M. paying $2.8M for right-of-way

March 25, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents from the New Mexico Department of Transportation that show the state is paying $2.8 million to private landowners to route a commuter train through their properties.

Mental health plan is big shift privatization

By Alan Judd and Andy Miller

November 30, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show Georgia is escalating previous plans for limited privatization and that officials want to hire private, for-profit companies to build and operate three new psychiatric facilities to replace seven existing ones.

Prison corruption cited

By Greg Garland

March 5, 2008

The Baltimore Sun obtained police reports that show 21 prison guards in Maryland were implicated contraband smuggling and other corrupt activities related to the killing of another corrections officer.,0,3298715.story

Tax liability cut about $5,000: Gibbons tax break questioned

By Sandra Chereb

July 12, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that show Nevada Gov. Jim Gibbons got tax breaks on properties he owns by designating it agricultural instead of residential.

New hospital eyed for New Braunfels

By Tricia Lynn Silva

August 15, 2008

The San Antonio Business obtained the site plans filed with the city of New Braunfels for a new medical campus.

PVCC professor was investigated in 2002

By Mike Sakal

May 2, 2008

Phoenix’s East Valley Tribune obtained documents that show a Paradise Valley Community College professor was required by administrators to complete a sexual harassment course six years before a student was found comatose inside his home shortly before she died.

Mental health spending catch-up costly

By Alan Judd and Andy Miller

July 6, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show Georgia’s spending on mental health care only reaches the national average if one includes two costly federal cases that have force a doubling of Georgia’s mental health budget.

DFCS chief who investigated official is ousted

By Craig Schneider

June 19, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show some Fayette County child welfare workers were told by then-state Division of Family and Children Services to protect a former official who pled guilty to a  felony child cruelty charge.

Awendaw lacking audits

By Jessica Johnson

February 23, 2008

The Charleston Post and Courier obtained documents that show Awendaw’s mayor stopped hiring a private firm to perform audits after 2001, even though state law requires it.

Court reporters investigated for “creative” billing

By Andria Simmons

February 15, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show two Gwinnett court reporters are billing the county far more than other county court reporters, more than double in some cases.

Report: Johnson Utilities’ rates 30% higher

By Jason Massad

June 16, 2008

Phoenix’s East Valley Tribune obtained documents that show a private utility company in the suburbs of Queen Creek charges 30 percent higher than the state average.

Ex-Tech offensive coordinator to join Curry’s staff

By Tony Barnhart

July 7, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show Georgia State’s head coach will have a pool of $450,000 to hire six assistant coaches, a director of football operations and an administrative assistant.

Saban Shows His Value at Alabama

October 12, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that shows how much the University of Alabama’s football program brings in and that last year, it jumped up 19 percent.

DNC lawsuit reveals black vs. gay rivalry

By Kevin Naff and Joshua Lynsen

January 25, 2008

The Washington Blade obtained documents show that there were plans to add gays to the Democrats’ affirmative action plan, but it was thwarted by DNC chair Howard Dean’s chief of staff.

Chesapeake says Southlake ordinance discourages drilling

By David Wethe

May 30, 2008

Fort Worth’s Star-Telegram obtained documents that show Chesapeake Energy offered notes on the proposed drilling ordinance it opposed.

Mayoral candidate addresses bankruptcies

By Patrick Johnston

August 15, 2008

Alabama’s Eufaula Tribune obtained documents that show a Eufaula mayoral candidate filed for bankruptcy twice in the last seven years.

No old rules for the new stadium

By Jeremy Redmon

March 30, 2008

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution obtained documents that show there was no open bid process or public review on the proposed minor-league Braves stadium that is to be built with taxpayer money.

IRS latest to scrutinize conservation easements

By Margaret Jackson

June 29, 2008

The Denver Post obtained documents that show the IRS reviewed Colorado’s Division of Real Estate findings on real estate appraiser conduct.

SFFD loses dominance over 911 ambulances

By Jim Doyle

September 13, 2008

The San Francisco Chronicle obtained documents that show state officials have revoked the San Francisco Fire Department monopoly on emergency ambulance services.

Budget proposal could hurt pupils

By Greg Gelpi

June 4, 2008

Georgia’s Augusta Chronicle obtained documents that show a budget cut proposal would weaken the school system’s Early Intervention Program.

Student guilty of assault loses lawsuit, but has chance to graduate (w/documents)

By Carolyn Crist

June 5, 2008

University of Georgia’s student newspaper the Red and Black obtained documents that show a student who pled guilty to a sex offense may get his diploma even though a district court judge allowed the university to suspend him.

State troopers buck hunting laws

By Sheri McWhirter

March 6, 2009

Traverse City’s Record-Eagle obtained documents from Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources that show a state trooper illegally shot a buck from a moving vehicle while on duty.

5 trustees for UCA got breaks on tuition

By Debra Hale-Shelton

February 27, 2009

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette obtained documents that show some trustees for the University of Central Arkansas received 80 percent off their children’s tuition.

Texas bars, restaurants running up alcohol tabs

By Karen Robinson-Jacobs

March 3, 2009

The Dallas Morning News obtained figures from the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission that show the number of restaurants, bars and liquor stores late in payments to alcohol suppliers jumped to more than 18 percent.

3 schools await overhauls

By Ben Fischer

March 9, 2009

The Cincinnati Enquirer obtained documents that show the three elementary schools targeted for overhauls by the city school system were chosen in part due to their poor professional atmospheres.

More than 40 city or school employees suspended last year

By Brian Sharp

March 8, 2009

New York’s Democrat and Chronicle obtained documents that show more than 40 Rochester city or school district employees who were suspended last year for suspected wrongdoing are still getting paid.

Arundel councilmen urge Leopold to address issue

By Tyeesha Dixon and Julie Scharper

March 5, 2009

The Baltimore Sun obtained the phone records of a county-issued cell phones to show a county executive almost exclusively called a county employees cell phone. This follows a report of possible sexual activity in a mall parking lot in which he is being questioned.,0,752245.story

Horse trainers’ names trickle out in track salary probe

By Mike Goodwin

March 9, 2009

The Times Union of Albany, New York, obtained records that name the trainers who are among those who allegedly failed to pay back-stretch workers.

Lawmakers Deny Tax Problems

By Condace Pressley

March 5, 2009

The Associated Press obtained Department of Revenue documents that show thatE 22 lawmakers are listed as owing taxes.

Electronic message boards in county cost $600,000-plus

By Beata Mostafavi

March 2, 2009

Michigan’s Flint Journal obtained documents that show municipalities, school districts and other groups have spent more than $600,000 on electronic signs between 2005 and 2009.

Officials: Overtime pay is justified by services

By Brianna Bailey

February 12, 2009

California’s Daily Pilot obtained documents that show Newport Beach city workers earned more than $6.5 million in overtime pay last year, with some individual employees earning as much as $80,000 in overtime pay.

Mayor Richard Daley and wife flew aboard private jet to Singapore in 2006

By Dan Mihalopoulos

March 5, 2009

The Chicago Tribune obtained documents that show Mayor Daley took nine trips aboard in 2006 and 2007, which were paid for by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Jewish United Fund and the not-for-profit Sister Cities program, which relies heavily on donations from businesses.,0,4109308.story

Slaying suspect denied gun permit 3 times before getting 2007 OK

By Brian sharp and Meaghan M. McDermott

February 19, 2009

The Democrat and Chronicle of New York obtained documents that show a man suspected of multiple murders had prior arrests on his record when he was denied a gun permit. The decision was later overturned.

RTD charges dinner cruise, beachfront hotel to taxpayers

February 19, 2009

Colorado’s Face the State obtained records that show board members of the Regional Transportation District spent more than $54,000 on travel in 2008, including a trip to China, nights in a beachfront hotel and a dinner cruise.

Lottery vendor paid $132,000 to Cahill ally

By Frank Phillips

August 14, 2008

The Boston Globe obtained records that show the Massachusetts State Lottery's largest vendor paid in excess of $132,000 in consulting fees to one of state Treasurer Timothy P. Cahill's closest friends, as Cahill directed tens of millions of dollars in contracts to that company.

Injured inmate spent two days on cell floor

By Roma Khanna

January 24, 2008

The Houston Chronicle obtained documents that show a Texas inmate who died two weeks after a fight with guards said he was paralyzed.

LaValle used work time to campaign for Veon

By Tracie Mauriello

August 16, 2008

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette obtained documents that show a charity director accused of embezzlement campaigned for a former Pennsylvania state House Democratic Whip while she was supposed to be working.

NOPD admits clerical error

By Brendan McCarthy

March 26, 2008

The Times-Picayune of New Orleans obtained police records that shows a discrepancy between what is being said and what the records actually said.

Similar cities, different costs

By David Scharfenberg

March 4, 2008

The Providence Journal did an analysis on records it obtained that shows the city of Warwick spends about $20 million more than a similar city on city and school employees.

Balancing punishment, treatment when crimes are committed

By Carol Smith

December 28, 2008

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer obtained documents that show an individual — who was charged with first-degree and has a history of mental illness– was under supervision but not taking medication. This was part of a larger story of how Washington deals with mentally ill individuals convicted with crimes.

Texas House members spend $140K to renovate lounge

November 19, 2008

The Associated Press obtained documents that show the estimated budget for a new House lounge in Texas is more than $140,000 and includes antique chandeliers and big screen televisions.

County’s mentally ill fade into the system

By Carol Smith

November 16, 2008

The Seattle Post-Intelligencer obtained documents that show two homes for the mentally ill have been cited for violations, most of which are related to housekeeping and cleanliness.

Rescuers dispute response claim

By Nancy A. Fischer

June 15, 2008

The Buffalo News used obtained documents that clarify a situation in which the volunteer fire department was criticized for a response time in a letter to the editor in the Niagara Weekend.

Aide bills software, gadgets to county

By Glenn Blain and Jorge Fitz-Gibbon

June 1, 2008

The Lower Hudson Journal News obtained documents that show a top aide to Westchester County board chairman bought high-tech gadgets with taxpayer money and had them shipped to his home.

Ritter tells Suthers to look into Newsome spending

By Dennis Huspeni

July 28, 2008

The Colorado Springs Gazette obtained documents that shows how much a district attorney has been charging the state.

Rodriguez used WVU cell phone to recruit for Michigan

By Mike Casazza

January 17, 2008

The Charleston Daily Mail obtained records that show the former West Virginia football coach made several calls from his University phone to recruiters within hours of his telling the team he was leaving the University.

Film-tax credit changes considered

By Katherine Gregg

April 12, 2008

The Providence Journal obtained records that show that while Rhode Island provided tax credits to a film being shot in the state, the film only spent 25 percent of what they said they spent within the state.

Pelosi Made Repeated Requests for Military Aircraft, Documents Show

March 10, 2009

Fox News obtained documents from a conservative watchdog group that show House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has repeatedly requested military aircrafts to fly her and her colleagues and family around the country.