Bobby Allyn

Bobby Allyn is a general assignment reporter for NPR.

He came to Washington from Philadelphia, where he covered criminal justice and breaking news for more than four years at member station WHYY. In that role, he focused on major corruption trials, law enforcement, and local criminal justice policy. He helped lead NPR's reporting of Bill Cosby's two criminal trials. He was a guest on Fresh Air after breaking a major story about the nation's first supervised injection site plan in Philadelphia. In between daily stories, he has worked on several investigative projects, including a story that exposed how the federal government was quietly hiring debt collection law firms to target the homes of student borrowers who had defaulted on their loans. Allyn also strayed from his beat to cover Philly parking disputes that divided in the city, the last meal at one of the city's last all-night diners, and a remembrance of the man who wrote the Mister Softee jingle on a xylophone in the basement of his Northeast Philly home.

At other points in life, Allyn has been a staff reporter at Nashville Public Radio and daily newspapers including The Oregonian in Portland and The Tennessean in Nashville. His work has also appeared in BuzzFeed News, The Washington Post, and The New York Times.

A native of Wilkes-Barre, a former mining town in Northeastern Pennsylvania, Allyn is the son of a machinist and a church organist. He's a dedicated bike commuter and long-distance runner. He is a graduate of American University in Washington.

Presidential candidate Joe Biden squared off with a voter in Iowa on Thursday, calling the man a "damn liar" after he accused Biden of helping to get his son on the board of a Ukrainian gas company in an attempt to win access with Ukraine's president.

In the testy exchange at a town hall packed with Biden supporters, the former vice president took umbrage with another accusation from the voter: that Biden is too old to run for president.

Updated at 1:43 p.m. ET

Federal law enforcement officials have announced criminal charges against two Russian nationals who operate a hacking organization known as Evil Corp., a group officials say is responsible for one of the most sweeping banking fraud schemes in the past decade.

The story of the House Democrats' impeachment report has quickly become all about the phone records.

The majority Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday released a 300-page report detailing the evidence it has accumulated in its impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

Updated at 6:47 p.m. ET

A federal appeals court has ruled that two banks must comply with a request from Congress for extensive information about President Trump's finances, a win for House Democrats who have been fighting in the courts for months to obtain the president's banking records.

Trump's lawyer Jay Sekulow said in a statement that the president's legal team does not believe the subpoenas are valid.

The Justice Department says releasing secret grand jury documents from then-special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe to House lawmakers engaged in the impeachment inquiry could discourage future witnesses to presidential abuse from cooperating with grand juries.

Updated at 8:01 p.m. ET

As the House impeachment inquiry moves this week from the fact-gathering stage in the Intelligence Committee to considerations of law in the Judiciary Committee, the White House says President Trump does not intend to participate in a Wednesday hearing.

Updated at 7:30 p.m. ET

President Trump says he plans to designate Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations, a move that is stoking fears in Mexico that American authorities would use the label to justify a military response across the border against the cartels.

Updated at 9:33 a.m. ET Tuesday

A federal judge in Washington has ruled that former White House counsel Don McGahn must testify to House impeachment investigators, despite orders from the Trump administration that he not cooperate with Congress.

The decision by U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson clears the way for McGahn's testimony, sought by House Democrats in exploring Trump's possible obstruction of justice related to the Russia probe.

Updated at 12:24 a.m. ET

The U.S. Supreme Court announced Monday that it will not consider an appeal filed by convicted killer Adnan Syed, the main subject of the first season of the podcast Serial, leaving in place a state appeals court decision keeping him in prison for life.

The high court did not provide an explanation for why justices declined to hear Syed's appeal.

Syed is serving a life sentence after a jury convicted him in 2000 of strangling his former girlfriend, Hae Min Lee, whose body was found in Baltimore.

After two weeks of public hearings, the House impeachment inquiry into President Trump is approaching its next stage: lawmakers are now writing a report that could lead to articles of impeachment.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., made the rounds on Sunday television programs outlining the case for impeachment without outright saying whether Trump will be the third president in United States history to be impeached.

Former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh pleaded guilty to corruption charges on Thursday, a day after federal prosecutors unsealed an indictment accusing her of using a fraudulent children's book business to enrich herself and fuel her political career.

Pugh, 69, a Democrat who took office in 2016, acknowledged her guilt to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to defraud the government and two counts of tax evasion.

A federal jury in Tucson, Ariz., has acquitted a humanitarian aid worker who was charged with harboring a pair of migrants from Central America after Border Patrol agents reported seeing him provide food and shelter in the Arizona desert.

It was the second time federal prosecutors had put Scott Warren of the faith-based border aid group No More Deaths on trial.

Battling criticism over his association with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, Britain's Prince Andrew said Wednesday that he is stepping away from his public duties "for the foreseeable future."

The announcement comes amid public scrutiny that has been building for months around the prince's ties to Epstein, who killed himself in a jail cell this summer.

Federal prosecutors have unsealed an indictment accusing former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh of using her series of self-published children's books to commit fraud, evade federal taxes and illegally boost her own political campaigns.

Updated at 5:18p.m. ET

Two correctional officers who were assigned to guard Jeffrey Epstein on the night he died in his cell have been indicted for allegedly ignoring more than 75 mandatory checks on the wealthy financier then fabricating records to cover it up.

Federal authorities charged Michael Thomas and Tova Noel with multiple counts of falsifying records and conspiracy. The two worked as guards at the Metropolitan Correctional Center, a federal facility in Manhattan that is mostly used for defendants awaiting trial.

Updated at 5:11 p.m. ET

President Trump said Monday that he will "strongly consider" providing written testimony to House impeachment investigators. The president's surprise announcement comes a day after top Democrats invited him to defend himself in the face of accusations that he committed bribery by allegedly using foreign policy as a way to help his 2020 reelection bid.

Updated Monday at 9:35 a.m. ET

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued a stern warning for President Trump on Sunday: Do not try to retaliate against the intelligence community official whose anonymous complaint helped spur the impeachment inquiry.

President Trump often says members of the "deep state" are bent on sabotaging his agenda.

And some of the career civil servants the president is referring to have said they have been retaliated against following reports in conservative media questioning their loyalty to Trump.

After 43 years in the State Department, Anne Patterson got a plum job offer from the Pentagon and thought the opportunity would be an honorable way to cap her long career as a foreign service officer.

But then Patterson's nomination unleashed a torrent of articles in conservative media that painted her as a clandestine partisan or worse. And shortly after the headlines rocketed around the Internet, then-Defense Secretary Jim Mattis withdrew Patterson's nomination, and she eventually left government.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

The FBI has joined an investigation into the killing of three women and six children last week along a mountain road in northwest Mexico, an ambush that has shaken the Mormon community that has lived near the border for decades.

Federal investigators said the Mexican government, which is leading the probe, asked for the assistance of the FBI in examining the deaths of the dual Mexican and U.S. citizens.

A week has passed since lawyers for the anonymous whistleblower who set off the impeachment inquiry extended an offer to House Republicans to make the whistleblower available to answer written questions under oath.

Iraqi security forces launched an aggressive crackdown on anti-government demonstrators on Saturday, killing at least six people and injuring more than 100 others in central Baghdad.

Government authorities used live ammunition, tear gas and stun grenades to disperse protesters and to retake three bridges that cross the Tigris River to the heavily fortified Green Zone, where the Iraqi parliament is headquartered. The bridges were being occupied by the demonstrators demanding sweeping political reforms and an end of corruption.

City officials in Las Vegas have passed a controversial law making it illegal to sleep or camp in downtown and residential public areas as long as there are open beds available at city homeless shelters.

Before the vote, protesters swarmed the Las Vegas City Council chambers with signs that read, "Poverty is not a crime," and chanting, "Housing, not handcuffs!"

Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson is stepping down as the city's top law enforcement officer after more than three years, a tenure that began when his predecessor was removed in the wake of video footage showing a white police officer fatally shooting black teenager Laquan McDonald.

"It's time for someone else to pin these four stars to their shoulders," Johnson, 59, said as he announced his retirement at a news conference Thursday. "These stars sometimes feel like carrying the weight of the world."

In recent days, President Trump and his allies have amplified their calls for the whistleblower who sparked the impeachment inquiry to be identified, presenting the question of whether it would be a crime for the president to unmask the anonymous whistleblower.

According to four former top federal government officials who worked in intelligence and national security, the answer is no.

The anonymous whistleblower whose complaint prompted the impeachment inquiry into President Trump has agreed to answer written questions under oath from House Republicans. The offer came as President Trump called on Sunday for news organizations to identify the name of the whistleblower.

A federal judge on Thursday fired skeptical questions at lawyers for the Trump administration who argued that current and former senior White House aides have "absolute immunity" from being questioned by House impeachment investigators.

The hearing, before U.S. District Judge Ketanji Jackson in Washington, was the first time Trump lawyers tested in open court their attempt to block White House aides from cooperating with the impeachment inquiry into the president.

An armed shoplifting suspect in Colorado barricaded himself in a stranger's suburban Denver home in June 2015. In an attempt to force the suspect out, law enforcement blew up walls with explosives, fired tear gas and drove a military-style armored vehicle through the property's doors.

After an hours-long siege, the home was left with shredded walls and blown-out windows. In some parts of the interior, the wood framing was exposed amid a mountain of debris.

Updated 8:12 a.m. ET

Christopher Anderson, a career foreign service officer in the State Department, will tell House impeachment investigators on Wednesday that President Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani stood in the way of the White House strengthening ties with Ukraine, according to a copy of Anderson's opening statement obtained by NPR.

Pages