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Chip Mitchell

Chip Mitchell

Criminal Justice Reporter

Based at WBEZ’s studio on Chicago’s West Side, Chip focuses on policing, gun violence and underground business. His investigative and narrative work has earned dozens of local and national honors. In 2017, 2015 and 2013, the Chicago Headline Club (the nation’s largest Society of Professional Journalists chapter) gave him its annual award for “best reporter” in broadcast radio.

He has won two first-place National Headliner Awards, one for 2014 reporting that led to a felony indictment of Chicago’s most celebrated police commander, another for a short 2013 documentary about a Chicago heroin supply chain through Mexico and Texas. Other honors have come from Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Scripps Howard Foundation, the Sidney Hillman Foundation, the Radio Television Digital News Association (Edward R. Murrow awards), the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation/Better Government Association, Public Radio News Directors Incorporated, the National Association of Black Journalists, the Illinois Associated Press and Public Narrative (Studs Terkel award).

He has also reported as part of award-winning WBEZ collaborations with the California-based Center for Investigative Reporting and the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Public Integrity.

Before Chip joined WBEZ in 2006, his base for three years was Bogotá, Colombia. He reported from conflict zones around that war-torn country and from numerous other Latin American nations. Topics ranged from national elections to guinea-pig meat exports to bus rapid transit. The stories reached U.S. audiences through PRI’s The World, NPR’s Morning Edition, the BBC, the Dallas Morning News, the Christian Science Monitor and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

From 1995 to 2003, Chip focused on immigration and U.S. roles in Latin America as editor of Connection to the Americas, winner of the 2003 Utne Independent Press Award for “general excellence” among newsletters nationwide. In 1995, the Milwaukee Press Club named one of Chip’s stories for the Madison newspaper Isthmus the year’s best investigative report in Wisconsin. The story examined a fatal shooting by narcotics officers in a rural mobile-home park. In 1992, he co-founded two daily news shows broadcast ever since on Madison’s community radio station, WORT.

Chip was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. He earned a B.A. in History from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He lives in Chicago’s Humboldt Park neighborhood with his partner and their daughter.

Recent Stories

WBEZ News

Jurors Get Close-Up View Of Chicago Politics In Police Shootings

Deliberations lasted less than an hour before a $2.8 million award to a police misconduct investigator fired by the city.

WBEZ News

For Laughing Courtroom Spectator, Judge Orders Jail Time And Sanity Test

Judge Vincent Gaughan finds man in contempt for odd outburst during murder case against Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke.

WBEZ News

Van Dyke Witness Could Explain Why Police Reports Differed From The Video

A critic of the move said it is an attempt to “take away the sting of a clear video showing there was no justification for the shooting.”

WBEZ News

City Settles Suit In Incident That Put CPD Commander On Trial

Glenn Evans, now a lieutenant, was acquitted of putting a gun down a man’s throat. Now the city is paying $100K to settle the man’s lawsuit.

WBEZ News

City Settles Suit In Incident That Put CPD Commander On Trial

Glenn Evans, now a lieutenant, was acquitted of putting a gun down a man’s throat. Now the city is paying $100K to settle the man’s lawsuit.

WBEZ News

Top Cop: 10 Officers Banned As Witnesses Remain Fit For Police Powers

State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s office says those cops lack credibility, but police Supt. Eddie Johnson says he’s not taking away their badge.

WBEZ News

Prosecutor: Slain Police Commander Was Shot 6 Times

Cook County Assistant State's Attorney Guy Lisuzzo said Thursday tests revealed gun residue on the suspect's right hand and jacket pocket.

WBEZ News

Retired Chicago Detective: Police Diversity Needed To Solve More Murders

Gerald Hamilton, who worked 12 years as a homicide detective, says new police technology is no substitute for street savvy.

WBEZ Updates

Detective Testifies For Inmate Who Says He Was Tortured By Chicago Police

An Illinois inmate who claims Chicago officers tortured him had a detective on the witness stand Tuesday.

WBEZ Updates

CPD's New 2nd-In-Command Receives Praise From Those Who Worked With Him

The pick to become the Chicago Police Department’s new second-in-command is getting praise from officers who’ve worked with him on the North Side.

WBEZ Updates

Judge Throws Out Conviction Tied To Police Detective Guevara

A Cook County judge on Tuesday threw out the conviction of a man who spent more than two decades in prison for a killing on Chicago’s Northwest Side.

WBEZ Updates

Judge Throws Out Conviction Tied To Police Detective Guevara

A Cook County judge on Tuesday threw out the conviction of a man who spent more than two decades in prison for a killing on Chicago’s Northwest Side.

WBEZ Updates

Judge Throws Out Conviction Tied To Police Detective Guevara

A Cook County judge on Tuesday threw out the conviction of a man who spent more than two decades in prison for a killing on Chicago’s Northwest Side.

WBEZ Updates

Van Dyke's Attorney Accuses Former State's Attorney Of Using Him To Fight Off Re-Election Challenger

Officer Jason Van Dyke’s attorney accused former Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez of picking him out for prosecution.

WBEZ Updates

Judge: Reporter Who Broke Laquan McDonald Story Won't Have To Reveal Sources

A Cook County judge says the reporter who broke the Laquan McDonald story won’t have to reveal his confidential sources.

WBEZ Updates

Journalist Testifies In Murder Case Against Chicago Officer Jason Van Dyke

A journalist had to testify Wednesday in the murder case against Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke. But he didn’t have to say much.

WBEZ News

Hearing To Focus On Journalist Who Broke Laquan McDonald Story

The judge in the murder case has ordered Jamie Kalven to ‘establish he’s a reporter’ with the privilege to protect his confidential sources.

WBEZ News

How A Chicago Cop Sentenced To Prison Could Affect The Van Dyke Trial

Marco Proano was sentenced to five years in prison for shooting into a car of black teens. His lawyer is also representing Jason Van Dyke.

WBEZ Updates

Officers With Cases Tied To Corrupt Former Sergeant Put On Desk Duty

Seven Chicago police officers who were put on paid desk duty Thursday could be in hot water for years.

WBEZ Updates

Judge Tosses Out 18 Convictions Tied To Corrupt Former CPD Sergeant

A judge tossed out 18 convictions tied to a corrupt former Chicago police sergeant.

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