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Reveal: Poisoning the Police, Fighting the Death Penalty, and Criminal Charges for Children

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Kayleb Moon-Robinson, who has autism, had barely started sixth grade in Lynchburg, Virginia, when he faced criminal charges for acting out in school.

Listen to this episode of Reveal:

- Saturday, May 2 at 6am on 93.9FM and NJPR
- Saturday, May 2 at 2pm on AM 820
- Saturday, May 2 at 9pm on NJPR
- Sunday, May 3 at 8pm on AM 820

In this episode, Reveal investigates why minorities and kids with special needs face criminal charges for acting out in school, how police are poisoned on the job, and give insight into an elusive character fighting the death penalty in the most high profile of ways.

For over a year, The Seattle Times has investigated how people shooting at dirty gun ranges across the U.S. have suffered from lead poisoning. Police are especially at risk because they have to go to gun ranges to keep their jobs. Hear from a corrections officer who got sick, and the family of an officer who died after a weeklong training session.

Then, have you ever walked or driven by a school with a police officer stationed on campus? That’s probably a “school resource officer.” He or she is there to – ostensibly – keep the criminal element at bay. Increasingly, these officers are being brought in to deal with discipline issues. Some kids aren’t coming home just with suspensions, but also criminal charges. And a disproportionate number of students referred to cops and courts are minorities and special needs children. Hear what's happening in response to this issue in Virginia, where the rate of students referred to law enforcement is almost three times the national rate.

Susan Smith, the woman who drowned her children in 1994; Ted Kaczynski, aka the Unabomber; Jared Loughner, the gunman in the 2011 attempted assassination of Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona; and now Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects – Judy Clarke’s represented them all. She is fiercely opposed to the death penalty and has saved the lives of some of the most notorious criminals in recent history. Author and investigative reporter Mark Bowden spent months digging into her background and shares his insights.