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From the Pentagon to the Police: The 1033 Project

As we saw in Ferguson, and most recently in Dallas and Baton Rouge, every day American police look less like a neighborhood watch and more like a paramilitary force. Here's how and why that happened.

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This week’s round-up (Summer Fun Edition): Detention center down in the dumps, the country’s thirstiest Congressman, and a public records beach brawl in Delaware

This week’s round-up (Summer Fun Edition): Detention center down in the dumps, the country’s thirstiest Congressman, and a public records beach brawl in Delaware

Grab your life jackets as we take a dive into this week’s round-up as we look at the Trump Administration’s plans to turn dumps into detention centers, utility bills that show a Congressman’s unquenchable thirst, and an argument over police misuse of military gear turns a quiet Delaware beach town upside-down.

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Police in Newnan, Georgia had received close to a million dollars in military equipment from the Pentagon

Police in Newnan, Georgia had received close to a million dollars in military equipment from the Pentagon

This weekend, images of a heavily-armed law enforcement presence at a white supremacist rally and counter-protest in Newnan, Georgia again brought the issue of growing police militarization to the forefront. A review of records originally released as part of Shawn Musgrave’s project to track the Pentagon’s transfers of military equipment to local police departments through the infamous 1033 program show that not only did the NPD receive close to a million dollars in gear from the program but also non-lethal ordinance specifically intended for use as crowd control.

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Saying goodbye to Sunshine Week

Saying goodbye to Sunshine Week

As Sunshine Week draws to a close, some of our favorite projects from the week, including tips on collaboration and some awards you might not want to win. But first, how two reporters helped break news by following up on an old story.

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Lead Standing Rock responder wants $19,000 for emails with pro-DAPL PR firms

Lead Standing Rock responder wants $19,000 for emails with pro-DAPL PR firms

Looking to build off our reporting on the National Sheriffs’ Association and their help with linking North Dakota law enforcement with the public relations firms Delve and Off the Record Strategies during the #NoDAPL protests, we filed a request with the Cass County Sheriff’s Office, which took on a central role in law enforcement’s response to Standing Rock. Their reply was shocking: over nine thousand documents were responsive, resulting in a bill of over $19,000.

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Emails show Iraq War PR alumni guided government response to Standing Rock protests

Emails show Iraq War PR alumni guided government response to Standing Rock protests

Behind the scenes, as law enforcement officials tried to stem protests against the Dakota Access pipeline, alumni from the George W. Bush White House were leading a crisis communications effort to discredit pipeline protesters. This revelation comes from documents obtained via an open records request from the Laramie County Sheriff’s Department in Wyoming.

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