Alex Hannaford

Alex Hannaford
Alex Hannaford covers the death penalty and human rights issues. He is a Fellow of the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma at Columbia University.
  • Hohn Road, near the proposed site for the controversial fracking waste pits.

    Pit Stop

    Tiny Nordheim, Texas, is reaping the costs of of the South Texas oil boom but little of its profits. Full Story

  • A shrimping boat docked in Aransas Pass.

    Life in the Dead Zone

    An ailing Texas fishing industry contends with the threat of hypoxia in the Gulf. Full Story

  • Will Swearingen Be Allowed DNA Test Before Execution Date?

    Larry Swearingen's case has been taken on by the Innocence Project, a national litigation and public policy organization dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted people. And in a motion filed today, the group’s lawyers have asked District Judge Kelly Case to allow post-conviction DNA testing in order to prove Swearingen’s innocence. Full Story

  • death row bed

    Letters from Death Row: The Biology of Trauma

    Texas executes more of its citizens—almost all of them men—than any other state. New studies show that trauma biologically alters the brains of young boys in ways that affect their adult behavior, raising the moral implications of the death penalty. Full Story

  • Bible - religion on death row

    Letters from Death Row: Faith Behind Bars

    Solitary confinement forces many inmates to do a lot of soul-seeking, but despite the misconceptions, not all death row inmates turn to religion for solace. In fact, some lose their faith in a prison system that denies their humanity. Full Story

  • Daniel Lopez, 23, waits in Polunsky Unit's visiting room for guards to escort him back to his cell on death row.

    Letters from Death Row: Alone on the Inside

    The Observer found that prisoners often choose a life of permanent isolation, refusing to leave their cages. It’s a catch-22: Mental illness can lead inmates to never leave their cells, never leaving their cells can exacerbate—or even cause—mental illness. Full Story

  • Daniel Lopez, 23, waits in Polunsky Unit's visiting room for guards to escort him back to his cell on death row.

    Letters from Death Row: Books Behind Bars

    As part of an in-depth project for The Texas Observer, I wanted to find out what books inmates on death row read, and what this said—if anything—about their mental state or predicament. Full Story

  • Hohn Road, near the proposed site for the controversial fracking waste pits.

    Pit Stop

    Tiny Nordheim, Texas, is reaping the costs of of the South Texas oil boom but little of its profits. Full Story