Rina Palta Crime and Safety Reporter

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Contact Rina Palta

Rina Palta is a Crime and Safety Reporter for KPCC.

Rina spent the past few years reporting on California's prisons, jails, and law enforcement agencies, focusing on how crime and the criminal justice system impact communities. She comes to Southern California from the Bay Area, where she launched the Informant, a digital collaboration between NPR and KALW. Her reporting there on juvenile justice earned a PASS Award from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency.

Palta is a graduate of Haverford College and UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism. In her spare time, she's a world-class eater and aspiring surfer.


Stories by Rina Palta

Senate votes down lower drug possession penalties

The vote wasn't very close: 24 against, 11 in favor of reducing possession of small amounts of illegal drugs from a felony to a misdemeanor.

California sued over prison isolation cells

The Center for Constitutional Rights filed suit in federal court Thursday on behalf of inmates in California's most isolated, restrictive prison cells.

Federal control of prison health care will not end this year

Judge Thelton Henderson released an order Wednesday regarding California's plan for getting its prison medical system out from under federal receivership.

Exonerated of rape charges, Brian Banks to try out for NFL

Brian Banks was a star middle linebacker for Long Beach Polytechnic before a rape accusation sent him to prison for over five years.

Report: Gangs turning to child prostitution for income

To most, street gangs are synonymous with the drug trade, but a new report finds they're increasingly turning to juvenile prostitution for income.

Sex offender found dead in LA prison cell

Tuesday's death is at least the third such apparent homicide of a sex offender in a California prison this month and at least the sixth this year.

Packing a punch: The difference between assault and battery

According to Loyola Law Professor Stan Goldman, the choice generally comes down to how much damage was done and how much damage could have been done.

Killer of Orange County teen dies on death row

According to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, death row inmate James Lee Crummel died on Sunday.

California keeps its foreign bought execution drug

California is arguing that it doesn't have to give up its stock of the lethal injection drug sodium thiopental to the federal government.

Brian Banks exonerated: 'I'm here and I remain unbroken'

As Brian Banks stepped on the down escalator of the courthouse, his lawyer presented him with a black sweatshirt with one word on it: "Innocent."

Former Long Beach football star Banks' rape charge dismissed

The rape conviction of once-promising Long Beach high school football star Brian Banks has been dismissed.

Jamiel Shaw's family praises jury's recommendation of death

A jury Wednesday recommended that Pedro Espinoza be sentenced to death for killing high school football player Jamiel Shaw Jr.

Jury recommends death for gang member who killed Jamiel Shaw

The jury has recommended the death penalty for gang member Pedro Espinoza for shooting and killing Los Angeles High School football player Jamiel Shaw Jr.

Poll: Californians want lighter drug penalties

The poll was commissioned by supporters of California State Senator Mark Leno's new bill, SB 1506, which would make simple drug possession a misdemeanor.

No charges filed in Dodger Stadium fight

District Attorney Spokeswoman Jane Robison said the injuries were not serious enough to warrant a felony charge.