Presiding member of state board that oversees the placement of violent sex offenders resigns amid controversy. Story to come.
Brandi Grissom is The Texas Tribune's managing editor and joined the staff when the online publication launched in 2009. In addition to editing duties, Grissom leads the Tribune's coverage of criminal justice issues. During her tenure at the Tribune, she was chosen as a 2012 City University of New York Center on Media, Crime and Justice/H.F. Guggenheim Journalism Fellow and was a fellow at the 2012 Journalist Law School at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. Grissom, along with Tribune multimedia producer Justin Dehn, received a 2012 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for investigative reporting for work on the case of Megan Winfrey, who was acquitted of murder in February 2013 after the Trib’s coverage brought statewide attention the case. Grissom joined the Tribune after four years at the El Paso Times, where she acted as a one-woman Capitol bureau. Grissom won the Associated Press Managing Editors First-Place Award in 2007 for using the Freedom of Information Act to report stories on a variety of government programs and entities, and the ACLU of Texas named her legislative reporter of the year in 2007 for her immigration reporting. She previously served as managing editor at The Daily Texan and has worked for the Alliance Times-Herald, the Taylor Daily Press, the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung and The Associated Press. A native of Alliance, Neb., she has a degree in history from the University of Texas.
Deaths from accidental overdoses increased in Texas by more than 150 percent from 1999 to 2007, according to a recent report from the Drug Policy Alliance. Accidental poisoning during that time was the third-leading cause of injury-related deaths statewide, behind only car crashes and suicide.Full Story
Troopers on the border are involved in far more high-speed chases than officers in any other region of the state, according to an analysis of nearly 5,000 Department of Public Safety pursuit reports by The Texas Tribune and the San Antonio Express-News. Nearly 13 percent of the chases (656) happened in Hidalgo County. Of the 10 counties with the most chases, five were counties along the border. The analysis also reveals that troopers use aggressive pursuit tactics — including firing guns and setting up roadblocks — that many other law enforcement agencies prohibit.Full Story
More than 280 inmates in county jails died from illnesses while in custody over a four-and-a-half-year period, according to data provided by the Texas attorney general and analyzed by The Texas Tribune. Many died of heart conditions, some of cancer or liver and kidney problems and others of afflictions ranging from AIDS to seizure disorders and pneumonia. There are no state standards for health care in county jails, but criminal justice advocates and correctional facility experts say the large number of illness-related deaths prove they're needed.Full Story
Rick Perry won his third full term as governor of Texas on Tuesday, defeating former Houston Mayor Bill White by a convincing double-digit margin and positioning himself for a role on the national stage. And he led a Republican army that swept all statewide offices for the fourth election in a row, took out three Democratic U.S. congressmen and was on its way to a nearly two-thirds majority in the Texas House — a mark the GOP hasn't seen since the days following the Civil War.Full Story
The political editor of the respected and influential Rothenberg Political Report on how Washington insiders view the Texas governor's race, who's at risk in the state's congressional battles, what redistricting could mean for the major parties and why Republicans are likely to be happy campers one week from today.Full Story
The political editor of the D.C.-based Rothenberg Political Report talks Texas candidates and elections.Full Story
Marvin Brown is a convicted sex offender who was released from jail in 1999. Today, he's ill and elderly, suffering from diabetes, stage-four renal disease and congestive heart failure. He's had three mini-strokes in the last two months alone. On good days, he walks with a cane. Other times, he gets around with a walker or an electric wheelchair. But according to Gov. Rick Perry, he poses such a threat to society that he has to wear an ankle bracelet so he can be continuously monitored. Brown says that's a violation of his civil rights, and on Tuesday he filed suit in federal court. "They can't give you freedom and then take it away," he says.Full Story
Mentally ill offenders and nonviolent criminals are crowding local jails to the point that the facilities could become health hazards and counties are struggling with the cost of housing and caring for the burgeoning population, according to a new report from the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition.Full Story
The first Hispanic sheriff in Harris County history on growing up as a child of legal immigrants, how his mom helped change his liberal views about illegal immigration and whether Houston is a sanctuary city.Full Story
The co-director of the University of Texas School of Law Capital Punishment Center, currently representing death row inmate Henry “Hank” Skinner before the U.S. Supreme Court, on what it's like to try a case in front of the high court, how Texas has influenced capital punishment law, why Texas juries are more inclined to impose the death penalty and the impact of life without parole.Full Story