Jake Pearson


Photo of Jake Pearson

Jake Pearson is a reporter in New York where he has conducted metro, campaign finance and national political investigations for ProPublica since 2018.

He previously worked for the Associated Press, NBC News and the New York Daily News. His work has prompted criminal prosecutions and oversight hearings. He has been recognized with various journalism awards.

States Across the Country Are Reforming Guardianship. New York Is Not One of Them.

New York’s system for caring for the sick and elderly is in shambles, experts say. But while lawmakers in other states are overhauling their approaches to guardianship, New York only budgeted $1 million to address its deep-seated problems.

New York’s Guardianship System Is Broken. Will Lawmakers Pay for a Modest Fix?

As legislators negotiate a budget worth hundreds of billions of dollars, advocates wonder whether Albany will approve $5 million for reforms to the state’s troubled guardianship system.

Lawmakers Ignored Warnings About New York’s Broken Guardianship System for Decades. Here’s How They Can Fix It.

From public funding for guardians to more scrutiny of nonprofit providers, experts say policymakers could take several actions to bolster the state’s foundering system for caring for its most vulnerable.

New York Trusted This Company to Care for the Sick and Elderly. Instead, It Left People Confused and Alone.

Unchanged diapers. Fees collected for care never given. New York Guardianship Services is often tasked with caring for the "unbefriended," but records show more than a dozen cases where it failed to meet the needs of the most vulnerable.

Bedbugs, Rats and No Heat: How One Woman Endured a Decade of Neglect in New York’s Guardianship System

Judith Zbiegniewicz lived in squalor, yet every month, her legally appointed guardian was paid $450 from her bank account. She is one of the thousands of vulnerable New Yorkers left stranded by a system meant to protect them.

This Man’s Conviction Was Overturned After Two Years in Prison. But the City Said He Didn’t Deserve a Dime.

A jury found New York City liable for NYPD rights violations in a case city lawyers fought for years. Critics say the hardball approach helps perpetuate a cycle of police misconduct.

As New York Pays Out Millions In Police Misconduct Settlements, Lawmakers Ask Why They Keep Happening

Decades of costly settlements have prompted some elected officials to question whether the city enables bad policing by aggressively defending against misconduct claims instead of demanding changes to NYPD practices.

He Defended the NYPD in Court. Then They Arrested Him.

For 11 years, Karl Ashanti represented New York City cops in civil-rights cases. Then he was charged with a crime he didn’t commit.

More Than Two Years After George Floyd’s Murder Sparked a Movement, Police Reform Has Stalled. What Happened?

George Floyd’s caught-on-camera murder prompted massive social justice and police reform protests. But a spike in violent crime shifted the narrative around public safety.

Years Before a Police Union Leader Was Raided by the FBI, Local Investigators Didn’t Pursue Allegations Against Him

City agencies were aware of misconduct claims against Sgt. Ed Mullins, the powerful leader of the NYPD’s sergeants union, but did not investigate. Years later, his home and union headquarters were raided by federal agents.

A Union Scandal Landed Hundreds of NYPD Officers on a Secret Watchlist. That Hasn’t Stopped Some From Jeopardizing Cases.

After prosecutors flagged hundreds of cops caught fixing tickets for friends and family a decade ago, the officers’ work was supposed to get an extra level of scrutiny. Some cases fell apart anyway.

Inspector General Urges Ethics Review at Federal Election Commission Following ProPublica Report

The FEC’s inspector general has called for the agency to review its policies and internal controls after ProPublica revealed a key employee’s undisclosed ties to Trump.

“City Hall Put the Kibosh on That”: The Inside Story of How de Blasio Promised, Then Thwarted NYPD Accountability

Bill de Blasio once pledged powerful oversight of the police. Then he became mayor. Insiders reveal what happened next.

A Police Union Contract Puts Taxpayers on the Hook to Defend Officers When the City Won’t

A little-known labor contract provision obligates New Yorkers to help pay officers’ legal bills in lawsuits that city lawyers won’t defend.

Text Messages Show Top Trump Campaign Fundraiser’s Key Role Planning the Rally That Preceded the Siege

Caroline Wren, a Trump fundraiser, is listed as a “VIP Advisor” in a National Park Service permit for the Jan. 6th rally at the Ellipse. Text messages and a planning memo show the title downplays the active role she played in organizing the event.

Who Biden Is Putting in Power

Here’s ProPublica’s running list of Joe Biden’s picks to run the federal government.

Top FEC Official’s Undisclosed Ties to Trump Raise Concerns Over Agency Neutrality

A top Federal Election Commission official, whose division regulates campaign cash, has shown support for President Trump and has close ties to his 2016 campaign attorney, Don McGahn. Experts said the actions raise questions about impartiality.

Before Limiting Ballot Drop Boxes to One Per County, Top Ohio Election Officials Secretly Consulted Promoter of Debunked Voting Fraud Fears

After Black union workers petitioned the state for more secure ballot drop boxes, top election officials called Hans von Spakovsky, a leading purveyor of discredited voting fraud claims, and then put a strict limit on the boxes instead.

No Democrats Allowed: A Conservative Lawyer Holds Secret Voter Fraud Meetings With State Election Officials

Heritage Foundation’s Hans von Spakovsky, whose work about voting fraud has been discredited, has been conducting private meetings for Republicans only.

At This Trump-Favored Charity, Financial Reporting Is Questionable and Insiders Are Cashing In

Charlie Kirk’s nonprofit Turning Point USA has made misleading financial claims and gets its “independent” audits from its co-founder Bill Montgomery’s former business associate. It has enriched several of its top leaders as it pushes Trump’s message.

Follow ProPublica

Latest Stories from ProPublica