In a Feb. 2, 2018 story for the Chicago Reporter, the Data Reporting Lab analyzed 5 years of police recruiting data to explain why, despite a successful push in 2016 to attract more black applicants to the police force, the Chicago Police Department has hired relatively few African-Americans.
The DRL showed that of more than 8,000 black applicants, nearly 30 percent didn’t show up for the written entrance exam, the first step in the recruitment process, while 17 percent failed the test, according to data analyzed by the Reporter. Many applicants who passed the test later dropped out of the process, which includes an extensive background check and physical, psychological and drug tests.
More than 40 years of records detailing civilian complaints against cops led the Chicago Sun-Times and the Data Reporting Lab to find several examples of police officers escaping punishment for infractions for years.
In this Dec. 16, 2016 Chicago Sun-Times story, the Data Reporting Lab looked at food inspection records to show that many food truck vendors have not been inspected as required by municipal laws.
This year, the Data Reporting Lab landed the job of processing the school report card data for both the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times. Here are the Oct. 31, 2016 stories from both papers.
Taxpayers could be out $8.3 million on Little Village warehouse thanks to two costly deals involving two nephews of former Mayor Richard M. Daley. The Data Reporting Lab pulled the needed tax records to unearth the story.
Many people receiving taxpayer-funded housing vouchers live on blocks plagued by violence, according to a Sun-Times Watchdogs report published on Sept. 11, 2016. The Data Reporting Lab analyzed vouched addresses, matching them to addresses in 2016 incident crime reports in Chicago.
On Sept. 4, 2016, Tim Novak reported for the Chicago Sun-Times that more than 5,000 senior citizens and disabled veterans paid no property taxes for 2016. The Data Reporting Lab analyzed the property tax records for the article.
African Americans bear the brunt of marijuana tickets and arrests despite the fact that drug usage is equal across racial lines, writes Chicago Sun-Times reporter Mick Dumke in his August 21, 2016 front page article. The Data Reporting Lab assisted in performing spatial analysis to determine where in the city marijuana arrests were happening the most.
Weed busts out of whack, Aug. 21, 2016