Ken Armstrong

Senior Reporter

Ken Armstrong joined ProPublica in 2017. In 2018, his reporting with Christian Sheckler on the criminal justice system in Elkhart, Indiana, led to criminal charges against two officers and the police chief’s resignation. Previously, at the Marshall Project, his work appeared in the Washington Post, The New Yorker and The Paris Review. For his collaboration with ProPublica’s T. Christian Miller, about a woman charged with lying about being raped, Armstrong won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting. That story also became a This American Life episode, a book, “A False Report,” and, in 2019, an eight-part Netflix series, “Unbelievable.”

At the Seattle Times, Armstrong won the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting for a series with Michael Berens that showed how the state of Washington steered Medicaid patients and others to a cheap but unpredictable painkiller linked to more than 2,000 deaths. He also shared in two staff Pulitzers for breaking news for coverage of a landslide that killed 43 people and the shooting deaths of four police officers.

He has also written for the Chicago Tribune, where his work with Steve Mills helped prompt the Illinois governor to suspend executions and empty death row. He has been honored with six IRE Awards, a Peabody Award and the John Chancellor Award from Columbia University for lifetime achievement. His book with Nick Perry, “Scoreboard, Baby: A Story of College Football, Crime, and Complicity,” won the Edgar Allan Poe Award for nonfiction. Armstrong, a graduate of Purdue University, has been a Nieman Fellow at Harvard and the McGraw Professor of Writing at Princeton.

Indiana Police Officer Before Punching Handcuffed Man: “If You Spit Again, We’re Gonna Party”

On Friday, the Elkhart, Indiana, Police Department released a 30-second clip of two officers beating a man in custody. Now we have the full 30 minutes, ending with the man leaving the police station on a stretcher.

Two Indiana Police Officers to be Charged After Video Shows Them Beating Handcuffed Man

“A little overboard,” is how the police chief had previously described the officers’ actions. The decision to charge them came only after ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network demanded to see the video.

When Public Records Aren’t Public

In Elkhart, Indiana, even easy records can be hard to get. Trial exhibits? No. Appellate briefs? No. Police reports in the court file? No. And don’t even ask about moving those boxes.

Standing by Their Convictions

The DNA didn’t match. The witnesses weren’t sure. But the prosecution persisted.

For Some Victims, Reporting a Rape Can Bring Doubt, Abuse — and Even Prosecution

False reporting is a crime, one that some police would like to make a priority. But history shows the police can’t always tell the truth from a lie.

An Unbelievable Story of Rape

An 18-year-old said she was attacked at knifepoint. Then she said she made it up. That’s where our story begins.

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