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Houston Chronicle Retracts Reports, Issues Corrections Due To Fabricated Information

An outside investigator reviewed reporter Mike Ward’s notes and lists of contacts and found 44 percent of people quoted in his stories didn’t appear to exist.


The Houston Chronicle building is on the Southwest Freeway.

The Houston Chronicle has retracted eight reports and issued corrections in multiple others, saying they were based on fabricated information.

The retractions came after a months-long investigation revealed a reporter allegedly made up some of the people in his stories.

An outside investigator, with a team of researchers, combed through veteran politics reporter Mike Ward's reporting notes and lists of contacts.

They also cross-checked names quoted in his articles for the Houston Chronicle with public databases such as LexisNexis.

The team found 44 percent of people quoted in Ward's stories didn’t appear to exist. For example, one story about changing demographics in West Houston quoted 10 people, six of them could not be found.

Ward resigned earlier this year while the investigation was underway.

Laurie Johnson-Ramirez

Laurie Johnson-Ramirez

Executive Director of Content Operations

As Executive Director of Content Operations, Laurie Johnson-Ramirez leads the strategic vision and initiatives for News, Digital, Radio Operations and Talk Shows on all of Houston Public Media’s platforms. She brings 20 years of experience in journalism and content development to the role. Her focus is on reaching new audiences,...

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