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16 Memorable Crime Stories We Published This Year

A high school teacher who abused his students. A Georgia prison allegedly covering up the rape of a trans inmate. The chaotic aftermath of the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson. The brief life and baffling death of an unarmed man shot dead by police in a Wal-Mart. A disappearing wage thief. The downfall of Mississippi’s most progressive prison reformer. Here are a few of the most memorable crime stories published by BuzzFeed News in 2014.

Teacher Leaves Elite LA School After Alleged Student Affair, Inappropriate Relationships — By Katie J.M. Baker

Inside the turmoil at Marlborough, one of Los Angeles’ most exclusive high schools. The teacher left Polytechnic School only after inquiries from a BuzzFeed reporter, and the headmaster also later resigned. Chris Ritter / Via BuzzFeed

How A $50 Meth Deal And A Botched SWAT Raid Left A Baby Maimed — By Michael Hayes

When police raided a suburban Georgia home, looking for drugs and weapons, a stun grenade would leave a 19-month-old fighting for his life and his family facing more than $1 million in medical debt. Chris Ritter / Via BuzzFeed

How Police Caught The Cop Who Allegedly Sexually Abused 8 Black Women — By Jessica Testa

Prosecutors say Officer Daniel Holtzclaw made a mistake after a series of sexual assaults on black women in Oklahoma City — he profiled the wrong woman. His family says he’s a victim of “solicited testimony” from women who have “personal motives” to lie. AP Photo / Via Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office

Michael Brown’s Neighborhood In Ferguson Is Dying — By Joel Anderson

No matter what decision the grand jury makes, the residents of Michael Brown’s apartment complex have made up their minds — they want out. David Goldman / Via AP Photo

The Prison Reform Blues — By Albert Samaha

Chris Epps wanted to reform Mississippi’s harsh, decrepit prison system. Now he’s facing three centuries in the slammer. Rogelio V. Solis / Via AP Photo

The Case Of The Missing Wage Thief — By David Noriega

A restaurant company allegedly owned by the Chinese government was ordered to pay its workers millions in back wages. Then it completely disappeared. Jon Premosch / Via BuzzFeed

The Brief Life And Baffling Death Of John Crawford III — By Michael Hayes and Alison Vingiano

“How does somebody go into a Walmart and not come out alive?” Chris Ritter / Via BuzzFeed

Is A Georgia Prison Trying To Cover Up The Rape Of A Transgender Woman? — By Jessica Testa

Zahara Green’s recent lawsuit against prison officials may reveal how the state is failing to protect transgender people — or even recognize them. Matt Odom / Via BuzzFeed News

What Kind Of Creep Sells A Celebrity’s Naked Photos On The Internet? — By Charlie Warzel

The on- and offline search for the prime suspect in the celebrity nude-photo hacking scandal. Chris Ritter / Via BuzzFeed

Ferguson’s Angry Young Men — By Joel Anderson

Dismissed as “agitators” and “fools,” Ferguson’s young protesters are actually ordinary young black men — and some women — who are leaderless but united by anger. And some don’t think the old civil rights guard achieved much: “I feel in my heart they failed us.” Joel Anderson / Via BuzzFeed News

The Life And Last Days Of Jordan Davis — By Michael Hayes

When Michael Dunn was on trial for killing a 17-year-old in Jacksonville, most didn’t know much more about the victim other than that he was shot over a dispute over “loud music.” But before Jordan Davis became another symbol of Florida’s deeply divisive “stand your ground” policy, he was just a kid. Photos courtesy of Lucy McBath, Ron Davis, and Aaron Johnson / Justine Zwiebel / Via BuzzFeed

In West Virginia, Playing Hooky Can Get You Locked Up — By Katie J.M. Baker

West Virginia has a juvenile incarceration problem that’s costing one of the poorest states in the country millions of dollars. Families say it’s because judges are too quick to take their kids away. West Virginia Division of Juvenile Services

Here’s What Happened When One Soldier Reported Sexual Harassment In The Military — By Alison Vingiano

Katie Rapp, a soldier who reported sexual harassment while she was deployed in Afghanistan in 2011-2012, recorded her four-hour interview with a sexual assault investigator and provided it exclusively to BuzzFeed News. Katie Rapp

Eighty Years Of Fergusons — By Adam Serwer

The story of violent black protest in the U.S. is an old one — it’s self-destructive but it sometimes gets results. AP Photo

The Revenge Porn Fixers — By Ryan Broderick

This year’s celebrity nude photo hack may be the most high-profile example of “revenge porn” — humiliating women by spreading private photos. A dedicated group of activists, led by the mother of a victim, has been pushing for more aggressive laws, but can this really be stopped? Macey J. Foronda / Via BuzzFeed

Facebook For Felons — By Joseph Bernstein

Kamaal Bennett built a social platform for incarcerated gang leaders. It’s already changing how they see themselves, and the outside world. Chris Ritter / Via BuzzFeed News

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/adamserwer/16-of-our-favorite-crime-stories-of-2014

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