Here’s our weekly look at work at other media outlets that attracted our attention.
Not all of the articles have been published yet in Agents’ Secrets: Junk Science, Tainted Testimony, an in-depth, four-part investigation of problems at North Carolina’s State Bureau of Investigation by the Raleigh News & Observer. But from what we’ve seen already, this is a series worth following. On Day 1, the report looked at a discredited confession by a mentally retarded defendant who spent 14 years in a mental hospital before he was released in 2007. Day 2 examines testimony and reports by the SBI’s blood-spatter experts, which one juror described as “fraud.”
Anyone in your house complaining about boredom this summer? You might be interested in a Time magazine story by David Von Drehle, “The Case Against Summer Vacation.” No kidding. For a century, researchers have been documenting the cumulative loss of learning and achievement, particularly among kids with the least advantages, during the long summer break. But it affects middle- and upper-income students, too.
Even though a recent opinion by the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for the release of names on petitions in favor of (or against) ballot referedums, a federal judge in Tacoma declined to release a list of supporters of a 2009 measure that unsuccessfully sought to repeal expanded benefits for gay and lesbian couples, the Seattle Times reported. The state is seeking the release of the names under Washington’s Public Records Act, while Protect Marriage Washington contends that identifying the signers would voilate their First Amendment rights by exposing them to the possibility of reprisals.