The Investigative Unit

  • Investigations

    Thursday, Sep 5, 2019

    Educators Accused of Faking Grades to Boost Graduation Rates

    Educators Accused of Faking Grades to Boost Graduation Rates

    Educators at an east Oakland high school are accused of falsifying transcripts as part of intricate cheating scandal involving top school administrators, teachers, and at least one guidance counselor.

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, Sep 3, 2019

    Stolen FBI Rifle Was Sold to 20-Year-Old Buyer in Santa Cruz

    Stolen FBI Rifle Was Sold to 20-Year-Old Buyer in Santa Cruz

    An assault rifle stolen from the parked vehicle of an FBI agent in July, in Oakland, was sold to a 20-year-old buyer in Santa Cruz for $1,600. It was ultimately recovered later that month, according to an Oakland Police Department...

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, Sep 3, 2019

    Diving Boat Has History of Failed Inspections: Records

    Diving Boat Has History of Failed Inspections: Records

    Coast Guard inspection records show that Conception, the dive boat involved in Monday’s fatal fire, had a history of minor safety violations but did not have any outstanding deficiencies at the time of the accident.

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  • Investigations

    Friday, Aug 30, 2019

    PG&E Bankruptcy Judge Shoots Down $16 Million Bonus Plan

    PG&E Bankruptcy Judge Shoots Down $16 Million Bonus Plan

    The judge in the PG&E bankruptcy case rejected the company’s plan to hand out up to $16 million in executive bonuses this year, saying he saw no basis to give up to a dozen executives more money to “do what they should already...

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019

    68 Buildings at Cal Seriously At-Risk of Collapsing: Report

    68 Buildings at Cal Seriously At-Risk of Collapsing: Report

    Dozens of seemingly safe buildings on the campus of UC Berkeley are in “serious” danger in the event of an earthquake according to seismic assessment documents reviewed by the NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Aug 28, 2019

    $500M Settlement in Legal Fight Over SF's Millennium Tower

    $500M Settlement in Legal Fight Over SF's Millennium Tower

    A San Francisco judge announced a settlement Wednesday in the long-running legal battle over the troubled Millennium Tower high-rise – a deal that sources say is on the order of a half-billion dollars.

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, Aug 27, 2019

    Millennium Tower Fix Gets Approval from SF Engineering Panel

    Millennium Tower Fix Gets Approval from SF Engineering Panel

    A panel of engineering experts on Monday signed off on a $100 million plan to prop up San Francisco’s Millennium Tower, the luxury high-rise that has sunk 18 inches over the last decade.

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  • Investigations

    Monday, Aug 26, 2019

    PG&E Got Insider's Warning About Aging Transmission System

    PG&E Got Insider's Warning About Aging Transmission System

    Back in 2007, PG&E hired a low-key outsider, Ed Salas, to help assess the risks it faced. Although he lacked engineering experience, Salas had a background evaluating corporate risks in the telecommunications industry.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Aug 14, 2019

    PG&E Safety Monitor Alerts Judge of Tree-Trimming Issues

    PG&E Safety Monitor Alerts Judge of Tree-Trimming Issues

    The safety monitor overseeing PG&E has alerted a federal judge that its contractors’ emergency tree trimming decisions are “questionable,” and crews are missing “numerous” potentially hazardous trees.

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  • Investigations

    Monday, Jul 29, 2019

    Garlic Festival Gunman Unknown to Law Enforcement: Sources

    Garlic Festival Gunman Unknown to Law Enforcement: Sources

    The Gilroy Garlic Festival suspect who was shot and killed by police was unknown to federal law enforcement officials, according to sources. Senior Investigative Reporter Stephen Stock reports.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jul 24, 2019

    Navy Documents Raise Questions of Care in Sailor's Death

    Navy Documents Raise Questions of Care in Sailor's Death

    Danyelle Luckey died shortly after departing for her first tour of duty on the USS Ronald Reagan, an aircraft carrier stationed in the Pacific. The Navy’s investigation into her death found she died of natural causes – sepsis.

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  • Investigations

    Monday, Jul 22, 2019

    Questions Surround Palo Alto Police Officers' Use of Force

    Questions Surround Palo Alto Police Officers' Use of Force

    Home surveillance video obtained by NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit shows Palo Alto police officers pulling Gustavo Alvarez from his home in the Buena Vista Mobile Home Park before he says he was beaten and unjustifiably arrested...

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  • Investigations

    Thursday, Jul 18, 2019

    BART Taking Regulators to Court Over Track Worker Deaths

    BART Taking Regulators to Court Over Track Worker Deaths

    BART is spending hundreds of thousands of rider dollars on an extraordinary legal challenge of the state Public Utilities Commission’s authority to punish the transit agency for breaking its own safety rules in the deaths of...

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jul 17, 2019

    New Details in PG&E Bankruptcy Bonus Battle

    New Details in PG&E Bankruptcy Bonus Battle

    The federal bankruptcy trustee and the ratepayer group TURN are calling on the federal bankruptcy judge to block PG&E from handing out as much as $16 million in bonuses to a dozen top executives this year.

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  • Investigations

    Monday, Jul 15, 2019

    Muni Video Shows ‘Whiteout’ That Drivers Say Impairs Vision

    Muni Video Shows ‘Whiteout’ That Drivers Say Impairs Vision

    An internal Muni video reflects driver concerns that the new fleet’s rear-view camera system can render them blind to hazards, potentially putting public safety at risk.

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  • Investigations

    Thursday, Jul 11, 2019

    PG&E Ignored Repairs on Aging Power Lines: Report

    PG&E Ignored Repairs on Aging Power Lines: Report

    PG&E had been urged by an outside consultant eight years before the disastrous Camp fire to perform the kind of routine climbing inspections on its aging transmission towers that some experts say could have averted the disaster.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jul 10, 2019

    Less Feces, More Homeless In Breed's First Year as SF Mayor

    Less Feces, More Homeless In Breed's First Year as SF Mayor

    The NBC Bay Area Investigative Unit spoke to San Francisco Mayor London Breed and reviewed thousands of city records to determine what her administration has accomplished, and what it has been unable to achieve over the past...

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jul 10, 2019

    Calls from Congress to Change Pilot Training

    Calls from Congress to Change Pilot Training

    Congressional leaders are calling for the FAA to increase training requirements for pilots, especially foreign pilots, and urge the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to also push for stricter training to emphasize...

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  • Investigations

    Friday, Jun 28, 2019

    PG&E Accused of Disposing of North Bay Wildfire Evidence

    PG&E Accused of Disposing of North Bay Wildfire Evidence

    Nearly a decade after the San Bruno gas explosion triggered PG&E’s conviction for obstructing a federal investigation, state regulators have filed documents accusing the company of two dozen safety violations and the disposal...

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  • Investigations

    Friday, Jun 28, 2019

    Off Track: Examining California’s High Speed Rail Project

    Off Track: Examining California’s High Speed Rail Project

    NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit has spent months examining the reality behind California’s High Speed Rail Project, its promises and its shortcomings.

  • Investigations

    Thursday, Jun 27, 2019

    Simultaneous Air Compressor Failure Blamed in BART Breakdown

    Simultaneous Air Compressor Failure Blamed in BART Breakdown

    BART officials said Thursday the breakdown in the Oakland subway tunnel earlier this week came after the simultaneous failure of air compressor units on separate cars on the same eight car train.

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  • Investigations

    Thursday, Jun 27, 2019

    Family Sues Vallejo Police Over Fatal Shooting

    Family Sues Vallejo Police Over Fatal Shooting

    The family of Willie McCoy, the 20 year-old rap artist shot and killed by Vallejo Police, filed suit in US District Court against city and police leaders as well as the officers involved alleging McCoy's civil rights were...

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jun 26, 2019

    San Bruno Fire Victim: Attorney Holding Back PG&E Payments

    San Bruno Fire Victim: Attorney Holding Back PG&E Payments

    One of the victims of the San Bruno gas pipeline explosion filed a lawsuit Wednesday that claims his high-profile attorney – portrayed in the film "Erin Brockovich" – is keeping too much money PG&E paid to compensate for his severe...

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  • Investigations

    Friday, Jun 21, 2019

    Criminal Investigation Underway Into Santa Rita Jail Death

    Criminal Investigation Underway Into Santa Rita Jail Death

    With no prior offenses, a judge allowed Dujuan Armstrong to serve a month in custody and the rest of his burglary term on weekends in Santa Rita jail in Dublin — so he could support his family and keep his job as a tow truck...

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  • Investigations

    Thursday, Jun 20, 2019

    Rohnert Park PD Liable for $4M in Death of Handcuffed Man

    Rohnert Park PD Liable for $4M in Death of Handcuffed Man

    A federal jury on Thursday found Rohnert Park police liable for the heart attack death of a man officers had held down on the floor of a motel room two years ago, even after he was handcuffed.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jun 19, 2019

    PG&E Inspections Reveal 250K Problems, Trigger Line Shutdown

    PG&E Inspections Reveal 250K Problems, Trigger Line Shutdown

    Pacific Gas and Electric officials announced Wednesday that crews found 1,200 critical threats and took more than 250,000 corrective actions in response to post-Camp Fire safety inspections, leading to the permanent shutdown of the...

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  • Investigations

    Friday, Jun 7, 2019

    Shuttered Transbay Terminal Has New Steel Problems

    Shuttered Transbay Terminal Has New Steel Problems

    Recent inspections have uncovered problem welds and crack-prone steel on the now-shuttered $2.2 billion Transbay Terminal transit hub, NBC Bay Area’s Investigative Unit has learned.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, Jun 5, 2019

    Air District Critical of School Built Near Concrete Plant

    Air District Critical of School Built Near Concrete Plant

    The agency responsible for regulating air pollution across the 9-county Bay Area is criticizing the decision to allow an elementary and middle school to be built next door to a longtime concrete plant in Silicon Valley.

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, Jun 4, 2019

    Transbay Terminal Yet to Satisfy Peer Review Panel

    Transbay Terminal Yet to Satisfy Peer Review Panel

    Hopes for a Transbay Terminal reopening this month faded Tuesday as project officials said they are still working to satisfy the expert peer review panel charged with vouching for the integrity of the project that has been...

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, Jun 4, 2019

    Probe Into 'Sweetheart Deals' Tied to CA High Speed Rail

    Probe Into 'Sweetheart Deals' Tied to CA High Speed Rail

    The top private contractor for California's High Speed Rail project now finds itself at the center of a state investigation for allegedly giving sweetheart deals. This is just the latest development in problems between High...

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  • Investigations

    Thursday, May 30, 2019

    CPUC President Michael Picker Retiring

    CPUC President Michael Picker Retiring

    State Public Utilities Commission president Michael Picker announced Thursday he was retiring this summer – ending a tenure marked by two years of devastating wildfires and the recent bankruptcy of the utility blamed for them.

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  • Investigations

    Wednesday, May 22, 2019

    Hackers Steal Millions in Bay Area by Targeting Cellphones

    Hackers Steal Millions in Bay Area by Targeting Cellphones

    A new wave of young hackers, some as young as 15-years-old, have ripped off more than 800 victims to the tune of $50 million since early 2018. Authorities say the Bay Area has been hit particularly hard.

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, May 21, 2019

    Examining Political Battle Over CA's High-Speed Rail

    Examining Political Battle Over CA's High-Speed Rail

    Is it a high-speed train to nowhere? The state filed suit Tuesday against the federal government demanding the feds honor their commitment to fund construction of California's High-Speed Rail. President Trump wants to pull out of the deal because the project has been scaled back and is way behind schedule. Senior Investigative Stephen Stock reports from Sacramento.

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, May 21, 2019

    Silicon Valley Parents Fear Kids at Risk From Dangerous Dust

    Silicon Valley Parents Fear Kids at Risk From Dangerous Dust

    An NBC Bay Area Investigation reveals the approval process to build a private school in Silicon Valley right next to a concrete plant was the result of an unfortunate chain of events, that included inaccurate permit applications...

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, May 21, 2019

    Emails Reveal PG&E Efforts to Avoid Fines Over San Bruno

    Emails Reveal PG&E Efforts to Avoid Fines Over San Bruno

    PG&E paid a one-time state Public Utilities Commissioner as much as $900,000 to influence state regulators in the wake of the 2010 San Bruno gas pipeline disaster – an effort that included the secret coaching of CPUC’s then...

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  • Investigations

    Tuesday, May 21, 2019

    CA Public Advocate Pushes for Backup Power at Cell Towers

    CA Public Advocate Pushes for Backup Power at Cell Towers

    Breakdowns in recent wildfires show that the state’s 911 system is highly vulnerable to power loss and state regulators need to intervene to make sure lives are not at risk in the next disaster, the public advocates branch of...

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  • Investigations

    Friday, May 17, 2019

    Ghost Guns are Everywhere in California

    Ghost Guns are Everywhere in California

    An Investigation by NBC Bay Area in partnership with NBC San Diego, NBC Los Angeles, and the non-profit journalists at The Trace found that law enforcement agencies across California are recovering record numbers of ghost

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  • Investigations

    Friday, May 17, 2019

    Muni Starts Field Testing Door Fix

    Muni Starts Field Testing Door Fix

    San Francisco’s Muni started testing Friday on a fix for the problem doors on its new fleet. Officials are optimistic that now-closed rear doors could get regulatory approval needed to reopen the doors as soon as next week.

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  • Investigations

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