Carrie Johnson

Carrie Johnson covers the Justice Department for NPR.

She has spent the last decade and a half chronicling legal affairs in the nation's capital and beyond. Johnson worked at the Washington Post from 2000 to 2010, when she closely observed the FBI, the Justice Department and criminal trials of the former leaders of Enron, HealthSouth and Tyco. Earlier in her career, she wrote about courts for the weekly publication Legal Times.

Johnson's work has won awards from the Society for Professional Journalists and the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. She has been a finalist for the Loeb award for financial journalism and for the Pulitzer Prize in breaking news for team coverage of the massacre at Fort Hood, Texas.

Johnson is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Benedictine University in Illinois. She lives in Washington but always is planning her next exotic trip.

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4:29pm

Tue December 3, 2013
Politics

Obama Offers Second Chance For Missouri Court Nominee

Originally published on Tue December 3, 2013 4:50 pm

Ronnie White, then-chief justice-elect of the Missouri Supreme Court, talks with reporters in June 2003.
Kelley McCall AP

President Obama has made it a priority to choose federal judges who are diverse in terms of race or gender. But for the most part, he's avoided controversy for those lifetime appointments.

That's why the nomination of a Missouri lawyer named Ronnie White has raised the eyebrows of experts who've been around Washington for a while. Old hands remember that White was rejected for a federal judgeship back in 1999 after a party line vote by Senate Republicans.

Now, in what experts say could be an unprecedented step, he's getting another chance.

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3:13am

Tue December 3, 2013
National Security

Why FISA Court Judges Rule The Way They Do

Originally published on Tue December 3, 2013 4:02 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

OK. So federal judges, in secret, have blasted the National Security Agency for years, for violating rules governing U.S. surveillance programs. Then the judges have gone ahead and approved those programs anyway. We know this because of leaks by NSA contractor Edward Snowden, and from documents released by the government. They have revealed new information about how the secret court works. NPR's Carrie Johnson has this report on whether it is possible for the court to control the NSA.

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2:29pm

Thu November 21, 2013
Politics

ATF Chief Faces Tough Challenge At Troubled Agency

Originally published on Thu November 21, 2013 4:54 pm

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms Director B. Todd Jones speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on Aug. 29.
Susan Walsh AP

For the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, nothing seems to come easy.

The agency runs at a fraction of the size of its much larger law enforcement counterparts. Under pressure from gun rights groups, it operated without a Senate-confirmed leader for seven years. And its new leader, B. Todd Jones, only narrowly averted a congressional roadblock to win confirmation this summer after serving more than two years as an interim leader.

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1:04am

Thu November 14, 2013
All Tech Considered

Plastic Guns Made With 3-D Printers Pose New Security Concerns

Originally published on Thu November 14, 2013 10:30 am

An all-plastic gun fires a bullet in this screenshot from a video made by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
ATF

Technology helps police solve crimes every day. But some innovations can also present new public safety concerns — and such is the case with guns built using 3-D printers.

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3:51pm

Thu October 17, 2013
The Two-Way

U.S. Will Disclose Use Of Secret Wiretaps To A Defendant

Originally published on Thu October 17, 2013 5:29 pm

The Justice Department is wrestling with how to disclose to criminal defendants that some evidence against them may have come from a secret electronic surveillance program.

A senior government official told NPR that prosecutors have identified a criminal case in which they will soon tell defense lawyers that they used secret intercepts to help build the prosecution.

The decision to share the fruits of electronic monitoring under section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act has been the source of an internal debate within the department for weeks.

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