Why Are So Many Inmates Attempting Suicide at the California Institution for Women?

Something is driving female inmates at the California Institution for Women to attempt suicide at a rate five times higher than the state and national averages. Prevention is not a priority.

Source: LA Weekly
Published: Jul 20, 2016
Length: 14 minutes (3,592 words)

Recovery Sham

An in-depth investigation into an exceedingly shady drug rehab mogul: Christopher Bathum built a veritable empire of more than 20 sober-living houses and outpatient clinics in the Los Angeles area, despite being neither a licensed drug counselor nor a therapist. Amidst allegations of sex abuse, drugs, and fraud, he’s now the target of probes by nearly every large insurance company in California, as well as the FBI, LAPD, L.A. County District Attorney and California Department of Health Care Services.

Source: LA Weekly
Published: Dec 17, 2015
Length: 19 minutes (4,982 words)

House of Horrors

First, an LA landlord made a film about murdering his tenants. Then he knifed one.

Source: LA Weekly
Published: Oct 12, 2015
Length: 17 minutes (4,439 words)

The Murdered Mayor of Bell Gardens

Daniel Crespo, the mayor of a small industrial city in southeast L.A. County, battered his wife for 28 years. She shot him the day he turned on their son.

Source: LA Weekly
Published: Jul 27, 2015
Length: 16 minutes (4,180 words)

The Last Freeway

The true story of L.A.’s freeways, and a judge who changed everything.

Source: Slake
Published: Jul 5, 2011
Length: 19 minutes (4,888 words)

Extra, Extra

Inside the strange, often lucrative world of Hollywood background actors.

Source: LA Weekly
Published: Feb 18, 2015
Length: 16 minutes (4,120 words)

The Wage Warrior

A profile of Maria Elena Durazo, Los Angeles’s most powerful labor leader:

Just how much influence does Durazo have in Los Angeles? Anyone who wants to build anything big—a hotel, a skyscraper, a sports stadium, a rail line—must first go through her and the County Fed, providing assurance that the project will create “good union jobs.” In the exceedingly rare instance that a nonunion project does get approved by the labor-friendly city council, it can face protests and even litigation. Developers are said to be frustrated that a single interest group has so much clout, but nobody is willing to speak openly. “I don’t know any developer who would go on record saying anything that would antagonize María,” a consultant told me.

“She’s one of the foremost power brokers in the city—there’s no question about that,” says Jaime Regalado, the former head of the Edmund G. “Pat” Brown Institute of Public Affairs. “Call it a fear factor, call it a respect factor. Those who make decisions in the public sector have to listen to her.”

Published: Dec 23, 2013
Length: 26 minutes (6,682 words)

Longreads Member Pick: The Last Freeway, by Hillel Aron

This week’s Longreads Member Pick comes recommended by Longreads contributor Julia Wick: It’s “The Last Freeway,” a story by Hillel Aron, published in Slake in 2011, about the construction of a freeway interchange and a judge whose decisions shaped its scope.

Source: Slake
Published: Sep 4, 2013
Length: 18 minutes (4,611 words)