By: Nu Yang
In April, The Blade, in Toledo, Ohio, launched a four-day investigative series titled “Battle Lines: Gangs of Toledo.” Reported by staff writer Taylor Dungjen with photos and videos by Amy E. Voigt, the series featured interviews with active and former gang members, family members, and police officials.
One of Dungjen’s goals was to publish a map of gang territories in Toledo — a map the city’s police department would not share with the newspaper. Last July, the Blade filed a lawsuit against the city of Toledo, claiming the police department’s refusal violated the Ohio Public Records Act. In the absence of an official police map, Dungjen and Voigt spent 10 weeks and an estimated 900 hours to compile their own map, a crucial element of the series.