If I really wanted to grow Rogue's readership, this post would be something like "Ten Reasons Do(w)nton Abbey Sucks" (1. All the white guys look alike, can't tell a footman from a nobleman...). But no, we'll stick with the serious stuff in the antique essay form.
Yvonne Wingett Sanchez and Dennis Wagner wrote a fine piece of public-service journalism last week. It shows what the Arizona Republic would be capable of doing if its corporate masters at Gannett would allow it to commit more journalism and do less fad chasing.
It turns out that the FBI gave federal prosecutors all they needed to bring serious criminal charges against the High Sheriff for Life of Maricopa County, the ambitious right-wing county attorney, Andrew Peyton Thomas, and their top stooges.
The three-year investigation of abuse of power produced "found probable cause to recommend felony counts of obstructing criminal investigations of prosecutions, theft by threats, tampering with witnesses, perjury and theft by extortion."
Instead, the feds shut down the three-year investigation in August 2012.
Let me pause to note that this story didn't come from "crowdsourcing," "citizen journalists" or video and slide shows. It came from good, street-smart, shoe-leather investigative journalism, including the newspaper using the Freedom of Information Act to obtain all records of the investigation.