Carrie Johnson

Carrie Johnson is a Justice Correspondent for the Washington Desk.

She covers a wide variety of stories about justice issues, law enforcement and legal affairs for NPR's flagship programs Morning Edition and All Things Considered, as well as the Newscasts and NPR.org.

While in this role, Johnson has chronicled major challenges to the landmark voting rights law, a botched law enforcement operation targeting gun traffickers along the Southwest border, and the Obama administration's deadly drone program for suspected terrorists overseas.

Prior to coming to NPR in 2010, Johnson worked at the Washington Post for 10 years, where she closely observed the FBI, the Justice Department and criminal trials of the former leaders of Enron, HealthSouth and Tyco. Earlier in her career, she wrote about courts for the weekly publication Legal Times.

Outside of her role at NPR, Johnson regularly moderates or appears on legal panels for the American Bar Association, the American Constitution Society, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and others. She's talked about her work on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, PBS, and other outlets.

Her work has been honored with awards from the Society for Professional Journalists and the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. She has been a finalist for the Loeb award for financial journalism and for the Pulitzer Prize in breaking news for team coverage of the massacre at Fort Hood, Texas.

Johnson is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Benedictine University in Illinois.

The advice President Obama has offered his successor is mostly under wraps. But the outgoing commander-in-chief made a point of going on the record with this wisdom for President-elect Donald Trump: hire a good lawyer and listen to him.

Trump has selected elections expert Don McGahn as his new White House counsel. McGahn will have a lot of work to do, mostly behind the scenes. Veterans of the office said if the White House counsel is doing their job the right way, hardly anyone knows their name.

President-elect Donald Trump has chosen Donald McGahn, a longtime Washington lawyer who once led the Federal Election Commission, to be his White House counsel, his transition team announced Friday.

"Don has a brilliant legal mind, excellent character and a deep understanding of constitutional law," Trump said in a statement, referring to the lawyer who served as both his campaign and transition attorney. "He will play a critical role in our administration, and I am grateful that he is willing to serve our country at such a high-level capacity."

Updated at 11:45 a.m. ET

President-elect Donald Trump announced his selections today for three key posts: Michael Flynn for national security adviser, Sen. Jeff Sessions for attorney general and Rep. Mike Pompeo for CIA director.

Trump's selections signal that he is prioritizing loyalty as he chooses nominees for top posts — turning to people who were early and outspoken supporters of his campaign.

Advisers to President-elect Donald Trump are considering whether to retain FBI Director James Comey after the agency became an issue in one of the most divisive campaigns in modern history, three sources told NPR.

Comey has nearly seven years left to serve in his 10-year term. The FBI director's position extends beyond the term of any single president to help insulate the bureau from political forces as it pursues sensitive criminal and national security investigations.

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Donald Trump has been elected the 45th president of the United States, the capstone of a tumultuous and divisive campaign that won over white voters with the promise to "Make America Great Again."

Trump crossed the 270 electoral vote threshold at 2:31 a.m. ET with a victory in Wisconsin, according to Associated Press projections.

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The public may soon get its first glimpse at the former National Security Agency contractor who allegedly embarked on a 20-year campaign to take home national security secrets, an effort the Justice Department calls "breathtaking in its longevity and scale."

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Forgive yourself if you've never heard the name Rod Rosenstein.

The U.S. attorney in Baltimore came into public view this week for prosecuting a contractor accused of stealing National Security Agency secrets. But for most of his 11 years in office, Rosenstein has been the opposite of flashy — even as he outlasted all of his counterparts from the George W. Bush years and most of them from the Obama administration, too.

U.S. intelligence officials have identified four major cyber adversaries targeting American businesses and infrastructure, from China and North Korea to Iran. Only one — Russia — has yet to be publicly blamed by the Obama administration in a strategy that national security experts have dubbed "naming and shaming."

But after senior Democrats in Congress pointed the finger at Russia for hacking into the Democratic National Committee and trying to infiltrate the voter registration systems in nearly two dozen states, that may be about to change.

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Newly released FBI data show the number of murders in the U.S. rose nearly 11 percent last year and violent crime increased by nearly 4 percent, but crime researchers said homicides and other violence still remain at low rates compared with a crime wave from 20 years ago.

Law and order has been a major theme this year on the campaign trail. But that means very different things to the two major party presidential candidates.

With just under two months to go before the November election, we're taking a closer look at where Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump stand on issues of crime and policing.

Violent crime is likely to rise slightly this year in the nation's 30 largest cities, and murders will increase too, mostly because of problems in one place--Chicago — according to a new, preliminary analysis by the Brennan Center for Justice.

The center, a nonpartisan group that monitors developments in law and justice, said only Chicago has endured a year-over-year rise in both violent crime and homicides in 2015 and 2016. Overall, analysts said, violent crime remains near record lows.

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Lawyer Abid Qureshi could become the first Muslim federal judge. President Obama nominated Qureshi for an open seat on the federal court in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday.

Over the past seven years, Obama has appointed 138 women and 120 minorities to federal judgeships. He has made this judicial diversity a "major priority" throughout his time in office, says former White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler, who now works with Qureshi at the D.C. law firm Latham & Watkins.

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has been calling for a criminal investigation of his political opponent Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail this year. Trump is angry the FBI probe of Clinton's email server ended with no charges.

Now, he says, an independent outsider needs to look at the Clinton Foundation.

"The Justice Department is required to appoint an independent special prosecutor because it has proven itself to be really, sadly, a political arm of the White House," Trump said in Akron, Ohio, last week.

President Obama shortened the prison sentences of 111 inmates Tuesday, including 35 people who had expected to spend the rest of their lives in federal custody, authorities told NPR.

The decorated former Navy SEAL who penned a best-selling book about the operation to kill Osama bin Laden has reached a financial settlement with the U.S. Justice Department.

Matthew Bissonnette has agreed to forfeit "all of the proceeds" he received from the book, No Easy Day, which court papers peg at $6.64 million. Bissonnette offered a formal apology for failing to submit the book for review by authorities before it was published.

U.S. Justice Department officials plan to phase out their use of private prisons to house federal inmates, reasoning that the contract facilities offer few benefits for public safety or taxpayers.

In making the decision, Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates cited new findings by the Justice Department's inspector general, who concluded earlier this month that a pool of 14 privately contracted prisons reported more incidents of inmate contraband, higher rates of assaults and more uses of force than facilities run by the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

The FBI has shared secret documents from its investigation of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton with members of Congress, fulfilling at least in part a promise the bureau's director made last month.

A spokeswoman for the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee confirmed the panel had received "a number of documents" from federal investigators Tuesday afternoon.

"Committee staff is currently reviewing the information that is classified SECRET," the spokeswoman said. "There are no further details at this time."

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is expected to receive his first briefing from the intelligence community on Wednesday in New York, a source familiar with the plan tells NPR.

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The Baltimore Police Department has disproportionately targeted African-Americans for stops and arrests, a Justice Department investigation has found. After the department took a "zero tolerance" approach to policing in the early 2000s, the report finds, the police department began engaging in a pattern and practice of discriminatory policing.

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