Ina Jaffe

Ina Jaffe is a National desk correspondent based at NPR West, NPR's production center in Los Angeles. Her reports can be heard regularly on NPR newsmagazines including Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

Covering California and the West, Jaffe has reported on nearly all of the major news events, elections, and natural disasters in the region. She also reports on national stories, such as the 2008 presidential campaign and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.

In addition to captivating and informing listeners, Jaffe's reports have garnered critical acclaim. Her three-part series on California’s Three Strikes sentencing law won the 2010 Silver Gavel Award from the American Bar Association and the Sigma Delta Chi award from the Society of Professional Journalists. For her coverage of California politics, Jaffe received the California Journalism Award in 2002 and again in 2003 for reporting on minority political power in Los Angeles and the historic recall election that made Arnold Schwarzenegger governor.

Before moving to Los Angeles, Jaffe was the first editor of Weekend Edition Saturday with Scott Simon which made its debut in 1985. As Weekend Edition Saturday editor, Jaffe shared a 1988 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for the report "A State of Emergency" which covered racial conflict in Philadelphia.

Born in Chicago, Jaffe and attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison and DePaul University receiving Bachelor's and Master's degrees in philosophy, respectively.

 

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10:01pm

Tue December 20, 2011
Violence At California's Psychiatric Hospitals

How Do You Hold Mentally Ill Offenders Accountable?

Originally published on Wed December 21, 2011 8:35 am

In California, prison inmates who have committed serious crimes and have been diagnosed with a major mental illness can be forced to serve their parole in a state hospital. At Atascadero State Hospital, shown above in this 1999 photo, there are more than 600 such patients. "As a group," says the hospital's director, "the mentally disordered offenders are the most aggressive."
Reed Saxon AP

Part of an ongoing series

Mental health and law enforcement officials in California are trying to find ways to hold violent psychiatric patients accountable without punishing people for being sick. It's a response to escalating violence in the state's mental hospitals, where thousands of assaults occur annually. Only a tiny fraction of them, however, result in criminal charges.

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10:01pm

Mon December 19, 2011
Violence At California's Psychiatric Hospitals

In Calif. Mental Hospitals, Assaults Rarely A Crime

Originally published on Wed December 21, 2011 12:16 pm

Metropolitan State Hospital employees and supporters gathered outside the hospital in Norwalk, Calif., this summer to protest repeated assaults at the hands of mental patients, and what they called dangerous working conditions.
Nick Ut AP

Part of an ongoing series

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2:17pm

Thu December 1, 2011
Election 2012

GOP Candidates Step Up Attacks On Each Other

Originally published on Thu December 1, 2011 5:02 pm

From left, GOP presidential candidates Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Rick Perry and Mitt Romney participate in the Fox News/Google GOP debate at the Orange County Convention Center in September. Since then, the candidates have gotten tougher on each other.
Mark Wilson Getty Images

Once upon a time, the Republican presidential contenders seemed to be mostly on the same page. They agreed on who the real enemies were — as Newt Gingrich explained at a debate in September.

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3:13pm

Thu November 3, 2011
Politics

An Inside Look At The 'Dark Art' Of Politics

Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain wipes his brow during a discussion on health care Wednesday in Washington. The former head of the National Restaurant Association has been under fire in recent days over sexual harassment allegations and his response to them.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

No one seems to be talking about Herman Cain's 9-9-9 tax plan this week — including Herman Cain. Instead, he's had to deal with allegations that he committed sexual harassment when he was head of the National Restaurant Association.

On Wednesday night, he accused Texas Gov. Rick Perry's presidential campaign of planting the story. Perry's campaign flatly denied it, and Cain has backed off.

Regardless, some political consultants have seen the invisible hand of opposition research during this campaign season — what's known as the "dark art of politics."

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7:01pm

Tue October 18, 2011
Environment

Six Miles Offshore: The Wreck Of Montebello

An unmanned ROV (remotely operated vehicle) is launched 900 feet underwater to study the wreckage of the SS Montebello.

Robert Schwemmer NOAA/USCG

A task force is evaluating the risk posed by a sunken oil tanker, the SS Montebello. It went to the bottom after being attacked by a Japanese submarine during World War II. State and federal officials want to know if the ship is still carrying its cargo of oil, and if that oil could escape.

At stake is a coastline known for its stunning scenery and wildlife sanctuaries. The task force was put together a couple of years ago at the urging of state Sen. Sam Blakeslee.

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