March 3rd, 2014

Drug-trafficking in America

This new map from the Guardian highlights America’s high-intensity drug trafficking areas, demonstrating the reach of the Sinaloa cartel and other Mexican organizations.

On the new Reveal, our investigative radio show with PRX, we take a look at how drugs end up in Chicago, one of the country’s most important heroin distribution hubs. The Feds say that 70 to 80 percent of the narcotics moving through the city comes from a single operation - the Sinaloa cartel.

WBEZ reporters Chip Mitchell and Natalie Moore take you inside their year-long investigation with Chicago Reader on Reveal. Listen to the full story here

December 26th, 2012

We’re posting some of our best investigative reporting from 2012 - in this story from August, we looked at Suburban Junkies in Southern California.

In Orange County, some young prescription drug addicts are turning to heroin for a cheaper high. This growing problem appears to hit hardest in affluent communities around the state.

Watch the video to learn more and see more of our best of 2012 reporting on our website:

August 21st, 2012
A gram of heroin is the price of one pill. A gram of heroin could last you three or four days. One pill could last you a couple of hours. So the calculation is simple. Sell the pills you get, make money and get free dope.
Evan, 23, a resident of Orange County, Calif., who spoke to us about moving from using prescription pain killers to heroin. Read our story and learn more about Evan in our online video.
August 15th, 2012

Prescription painkiller addiction kills 40 people each day in the United States. In California’s Orange County, some prescription drug addicts are turning to heroin for a cheaper high. This growing problem appears to be hitting hardest in affluent communities around the state. Get more information in California Watch’s powerful new video.

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At The Center for Investigative Reporting, we believe journalism that moves citizens to action is an essential pillar of democracy. Since 1977, CIR has relentlessly pursued and uncovered injustices that otherwise would be hidden from the public eye. Today, we are upholding this legacy and looking forward, working at the forefront of journalistic innovation to produce important stories that make a difference and engage our audiences across the aisle, coast to coast, and worldwide. What drives our work isn't profit – it's impact. Learn more at