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At age 7, Westword reporter David Holthouse was raped by the teenage son of his parents' friends. A year ago, he became obsessed with the idea of finding and killing the man who had darkened his childhood, in order to prevent him from harming others. And then Holthouse's parents discovered one of his childhood diaries, and the secret was out.

Continue ReadingWriter Confronts Man Who Raped Him 26 Years Ago

The Denver weekly's Julie Jargon won an Investigative Reporters and Editors Certificate for her story "The War Within," about two female cadets who were punished and kicked out of the U.S. Air Force Academy after they complained of being raped. IRE judges noted that the article "is a great example of tackling a sensitive story at a powerful institution."

Continue ReadingWestword Wins Investigative Award for Rape Story

The offices of Denver’s alt weekly were transformed into a movie set last week for director John Sayles’ (pictured) next movie, Silver City. Presently lensing in the Mile High City, Sayles' film is about a “George W. Bush-like” character, played by Chris Cooper, who’s running for Colorado governor. Westword Editor Patricia Calhoun will have a small role in the movie if she doesn't end up on the cutting room floor.

Continue ReadingWestword Hosts Film Shoot

New Times writers swept the Newspaper Restaurant Review or Critique category of the 2003 James Beard Foundation Journalism Awards with Jason Sheehan of Westword winning, while Jill Posey-Smith of Riverfront Times and Robb Walsh of Houston Press were finalists. Mark Stuertz of the Dallas Observer was the winner in the Newspaper, Magazine or Internet Reporting on Consumer Issues, Nutrition and/or Health category for his article “Green Giant." Dara Moskowitz, City Pages (Twin Cities) and Walsh were finalists in the newspaper series category.

Continue ReadingAAN Writers Are Winners and Finalists in James Beard Awards

Three AAN papers were awarded first-place in under 200,000 circulation division of the 2002 Association of Food Journalists competition: Robb Walsh of Houston Press for food news reporting; Marty Jones of Westword for food columns and Bonnie Boots, former food editor for the Weekly Planet (Tampa), for restaurant criticism. Willamette Week takes three awards from the foodie group, a second for restaurant criticism for Roger Porter and a second and third for special sections edited by Arts & Culture Editor Caryn Brooks.

Continue ReadingAAN Food Writers Spoon up Awards
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"I'm full of hate and I love it." That's a sample of the secret writings of Columbine shooter Eric Harris, obtained by Westword. The story by Alan Prendergast reveals the explosive rage of a young killer -- and his power to manipulate others. The handwritten pages of Harris' diary "provide glimpses of a teenage terrorist who couldn't wait to carry out his violent fantasies, who was more virulently racist and more acutely psychotic -- batshit mad-dog crazy, in layman's terms -- than previously reported," Prendergast writes. Fully a year before the 1999 shootings at Columbine High School, Harris had the plans for the massacre scribbled in his journal, along with his ambition to crash a plane into a New York City skyscraper, and his efforts to find a girlfriend before the coming apocalypse. Seized as evidence by police hours after the shooting and kept under wraps for more than two years, Harris' secret journal writings first saw light Tuesday on Westword's Web site.

Continue ReadingSecret Writings of Columbine Killer

Steve Jackson serves up a compelling expose of what happens when a sexual predator enters a teen chat room. Mike and Cassandra Harris of Colorado’s Jefferson County District Attorney's Crimes Against Children unit were among the first to set up stings of Internet predators, with Cassandra as bait, playing both boys and girls. “The advantage here, of course, over dailies is that instead of telling readers that these men get online and say bad things to children, I could put down in black-and-white what they say and how they say it ... hit the reader over the head with the reality of it,” Jackson tells AAN News in an e-mail.

Continue ReadingWestword Follows Pedophiles Into Cyberspace