The story of a shocking police raid on the wrong home took top honors at the Better Government Association's 2021 Driehaus Foundation Awards for Investigative Reporting in an online ceremony held June 8. The annual awards recognize the region's top achievements in government-related investigative journalism.
This year's theme, "A Remedy for Wrong," highlighted the power of investigative journalism in helping to correct areas in which government and institutions are failing the public.
"My Name is Anjanette Young," produced by WBBM-TV (CBS-2) last December, exposed problematic police work that was leading to wrongful raids on Chicago homes, including to Anjanette Young, who was handcuffed naked in her living room during one such incident. Young is currently pursuing a lawsuit against the city, and Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot has promised reforms to department policy.
"This investigation did not come without its own obstacles," said investigative journalist Dave Savini. "An injunction was attempted by the City of Chicago to stop CBS from airing [it]. Our station and our lawyers stood firm and fought for our right to reveal, for the first time, the body camera footage of what happened to Anjanette Young that night."
"My Name is Anjanette Young" also won the the Reader's Choice Award, a prize awarded to the top vote-getter in an online competition.
Award winners received cash prizes ranging from $1,000 to $15,000. The Driehaus Foundation has supported the awards through a partnership with the Better Government Association for more than a decade.
First Place: "My Name is Anjanette Young," Dave Savini, Samah Assad, Michele Youngerman, Mike Klingele, DeAndra Taylor, Reed Nolan, Don Stanke, Alfredo Roman, Chris McKnight, Dave Kenebrew, Tim Viste, Lana Hinshaw-Klann, Tony Diasio, Tiffani Lupenski and Jeff Harris (WBBM)
Second Place: "COVID-19 Inequities in Chicago," Staff, ProPublica Midwest
Third Place: "Where Banks Don't Lend," Linda Lutton, Andrew Fan, Alden Loury, Aaron Allen, and Ashish Valentine (WBEZ and City Bureau)
Readers Choice Award: "My Name is Anjanette Young," Dave Savini, Samah Assad, Michele Youngerman, Mike Klingele, DeAndra Taylor, Reed Nolan, Don Stanke, Alfredo Roman, Chris McKnight, Dave Kenebrew, Tim Viste, Lana Hinshaw-Klann, Tony Diasio, Tiffani Lupenski and Jeff Harris (WBBM)
Finalists: "During the Pandemic, Who Owns A Nursing Home Can Be the Difference Between Life and Death," Chip Mitchell and Rob Wildeboer, with Katherine Nagasawa and Manuel Martinez (WBEZ); "Thousands of Foster Children Were Sent Out of State to Mental Health Facilities Where Some Faced Abuse and Neglect," David Jackson (formerly of the Chicago Tribune) and Duaa Eldeib (ProPublica Midwest)