George Joseph

investigative reporter

George Joseph was an investigative reporter for WNYC/Gothamist, focusing on law enforcement corruption, misconduct, and surveillance technology. He now reports for the New York City news publication, The City.

His first major series uncovered secret lists of police misconduct, maintained by prosecutors' offices across New York City. The series won the New York Associated Press Association's First Amendment award and prompted a federal court monitor to order the NYPD to incorporate such lists into a red flag algorithm for misconduct. Police misconduct records uncovered through that project also contributed to the dismissal of a man's conviction following drug planting allegations.

His next major series investigated allegations of rampant police corruption in Mount Vernon, New York, a city just north of the Bronx in Westchester County. The reporting drew on secret recordings made by a whistleblower and dozens of interviews with police officers, drug dealers, and former prosecutors. The series resulted in the disbandment of the Mount Vernon Police Department’s narcotics unit. It also became the major campaign issue in the 2020 Westchester Democratic District Attorney primary, which resulted in the ouster of a sitting District Attorney.

Joseph's last project examined the role of the New York City court sytem in exacerbating deadly conditions on Rikers Island during the COVID-19 pandemic.

George Joseph appears in the following:

Local Politics: Staw Donors & City/State Migrant Response

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

The latest news from City Hall, including new housing for migrants and 2021 campaign finance questions.

Speculators Target Homes in Black and Latino Neighborhoods

Wednesday, August 02, 2023

An exploration into a group of real estate speculators who have seized the deeds of Black- and Latino-owned brownstones in neighborhoods across NYC

Rollbacks for Trans Inmates in NYC and NJ

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Prison housing placements inconsistent with gender identity in New Jersey and the "collapse" of a unit for trans women at Rikers Island in NYC.

Court Backlogs and the Crisis at Rikers

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

WNYC's Public Safety Unit investigative reporter George Joseph talks about the latest on Rikers Island.

Case Delays Are Helping Drive Up The Population On Rikers Island

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

More than 1,600 people have been incarcerated in city jails awaiting trial for more than a year.


The NYPD Is Seizing a Growing Number of "Ghost Guns"

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

This year, the NYPD has recovered at least 200 “ghost guns,” firearms that lack any serial numbers and are assembled from component parts, usually ordered online. 


Manhattan's First Black District Attorney Lays Out His Plan For His Tenure

Tuesday, November 09, 2021

On the campaign trail, Bragg promised to deliver both fairness and safety to the borough’s residents, particularly those in Black and Latino neighborhoods. 


Elected Officials Call On Staten Island DA To Drop Charges Again Man Following Drug Planting Claims

Thursday, November 04, 2021

Last week, a Staten Island judge vacated the man’s 2018 conviction.


Staten Island Judge Tosses Man's Conviction Citing Prosecutors' Failure To Turn Over Key Evidence

Sunday, October 31, 2021

The evidence included body camera footage showing apparent drug planting.


Thousands of NYPD Officers Still Have No Covid Shot Ahead Of Monday Mandate

Sunday, October 31, 2021

Many of them have applied for religious exemptions.


An Update on Rikers Island

Thursday, October 28, 2021

WNYC's George Joseph talks about his reporting and updates us on the increasingly urgent situation on Rikers Island.

Comments [1]

Hacked Records Show Hundreds Of Oath Keepers Across New Jersey

Thursday, October 14, 2021

The Oath Keepers group has long sought to recruit military and police recruits to further their anti-federal government agenda.


How Hacked Records Revealed Oath Keepers Ties With Police Departments

Friday, October 08, 2021

From New York to California.

WNYC Investigation Finds Potential Links To Far-Right Militia In The NYPD

Thursday, September 30, 2021

Mayor de Blasio promised an immediate investigation into any ties between city employees and the Oath Keepers militia.


Rikers in Crisis: A Rare Visit From the Mayor, What Role Judges Play

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Judges in New York City continue to set bail and send more people to jail. What role do they play in the crisis at Rikers? Plus, the Mayor's first visit to the jail complex since 2017. 

With Deaths Mounting At Rikers, Will Judges Continue With Business As Usual?

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Judges play a major role in driving New York City's jail population, which is mostly made up of defendants waiting for trial.

Comments [1]

42 Year Old Detainee Dies Inside Rikers Island

Monday, September 20, 2021

According to his lawyers, Isaabdul Karim contracted COVID-19 after languishing inside an intake area for ten days.


Mayor de Blasio Offers Controversial Plan To Address Chaos At Rikers Island

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Mayor de Blasio is promising emergency repairs and greater scrutiny of correction officers who duck work. 


Storming of The Gates: 50 Years After Attica, Activists Are Still Fighting To End Coerced Prison Labor

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

One of the Attica prisoners’ key demands, ending forced labor, was never realized. 


A Rise in Suicides at Rikers Island

Tuesday, September 07, 2021

An examination of the problems at Rikers Island and other NYC jails.