Jeffrey Benzing

Reporter | PublicSource

Jeffrey Benzing is a reporter for PublicSource focusing on criminal justice and public safety.

He previously covered foreign bribery and corporate crime at Main Justice in Washington, D.C.

Originally from Texas, he reported on local politics, public safety and business in the Texas Hill Country for the Fredericksburg Standard Radio-Post. His writing and photography earned him first-place honors from the West Texas Press Association.

As a journalism graduate student at the University of Maryland, he covered the state’s congressional delegation, examined juvenile justice in Baltimore and helped report and write an award-winning package on salmonella in poultry that appeared in The Washington Post.

In his down time, Jeff enjoys playing and listening to music (and finding old records), reading fiction and exploring the city.

Elvert Barnes / Flickr

Black health experts want to leverage growing awareness of racial inequality into a fight against cigarettes.

Lung cancer kills black men at higher rates than any other group nationwide, and last week a group of health experts and activists called for President Barack Obama to ban menthol cigarettes, making a direct link between health and social justice.

Jeffrey Benzing / PublicSource

 A subtle breeze and pristine blue sky set a peaceful scene in the Hill District this morning, so the immediate thought might not be on the dozens of young men killed in the span of only a few blocks.

Ryan Loew / PublicSource

    

The street where Carol Speaks grew up is only blocks from where her grandson Antwann died.

At 19 years old, he was shot 17 times, according to Carol, in front of witnesses just down the street from Homewood’s Westinghouse Academy.

Ryan Loew / PublicSource

  Monica Hawkins can still laugh at her son Donté’s sense of humor as she replays it nearly four years later on YouTube. And she can smile at the uncanny resemblance her grandson Jaiden has to his dad. The same smile. The same mischievous energy.

But fresh tears come when she recounts the night Donté died at age 20, the helplessness she felt at the scene, and the hole his loss leaves in their family.