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Report on Kentucky legislator spotlights nonprofits’ role

December 15, 2017

CORRECTS TO A PROBABLE SUICIDE INSTEAD OF COMMITTED SUICIDE FILE - In this Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017, file photo, Kentucky State Rep. Republican Dan Johnson addresses the public from his church regarding sexual assault allegations in Louisville, Ky. Johnson died Wednesday night, Dec. 13, 2017. Bullitt County Coroner Dave Billings says it was "probably suicide," and an autopsy is scheduled for Thursday morning. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley, File)

CINCINNATI (AP) — A Kentucky news organization’s in-depth expose this week on a pastor-turned-politician highlights the increasing role of such nonprofit, nontraditional newsrooms in the United States.

The Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting’s series on Republican state Rep. Dan Johnson included the detailed account of a woman who said the pastor sexually assaulted her. Johnson sharply denied the allegations against him, then fatally shot himself Wednesday in a secluded area.

Newsroom surveys have estimated that more than 20,000 jobs disappeared across America in a decade’s time, with mainstream outlets hurt by declining advertising and readership in the digital era.

The executive director of the Kentucky Press Association says donation-supported nonprofit centers dedicated to investigative journalism are “filling a void.”

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