Sandy Hausman

WVTF/RADIO IQ Charlottesville Bureau Chief

Sandy Hausman joined our news team in 2008 after honing her radio skills in Chicago.  Since then, she's won several national awards for her reporting from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Society of Environmental Journalists, the Radio, Television and Digital News Association and the Public Radio News Directors' Association. 

Sandy has reported extensively on issues of concern to Virginians, traveling as far afield as Panama, Ecuador, Indonesia and Hong Kong for stories on how expansion of  the Panama Canal will effect the Port of Virginia, what Virginians are doing to protect the Galapagos Islands, why a Virginia-based company is destroying the rainforest and how Virginia wines are selling in Asia.

She is a graduate of Cornell University and holds a Masters degree in journalism from the University of Michigan. 

The Virginia Department of Corrections has more than 30,000 people locked up in state prisons, local and regional jails, each costing taxpayers an average of more than $32,000 a year. 

Those who committed crimes after 1994 are not eligible for parole, but Governor Terry McAuliffe has appointed a commission to study that situation and make recommendations.

Science plays a growing role in crime detection and prosecution, but experts at four universities say a lot can go wrong in the lab, and many people may be wrongly convicted based on bogus claims.  Now, the University of Virginia has launched a blog to share research on the subject.

The analysis of DNA and hair samples, footprints and bite marks may all be used in court to convict people of crimes they did not commit.  Even fingerprints can mislead according to Law Professor Brandon Garrett.

It’s early to be thinking about Thanksgiving and Christmas, but one Richmond company is in full holiday mode.  

On a quiet afternoon, Mark Sauer sits in the large executive office of a company founded by his great, great grandfather.  There’s an old  photo of his uncle delivering products from a donkey cart, and color portraits that underscore the history of the firm.

“This is CF Sauer.  This is CF Sauer, Junior.  That’s my father, CF Sauer, the third, and this is my brother, CF Sauer, the fourth.”

Over the years, each has overseen the manufacture of pure vanilla.

  The late Senator Ted Kennedy was a Washington, D.C. legend, serving 47 years in Congress.  This week, the University of Virginia’s Miller Center will release part of the oral history it compiled on Kennedy, working from 300 interviews it did with him and those who knew him.  

As part of the oral history, Ted Kennedy did 29 interviews that produced about a thousand pages of transcript.  Then, the Miller Center spoke with those who knew him.  

For poor kids in American cities, life can be hard.  Gangs, guns and drugs are part of the landscape, but one historian says things were even worse in Richmond after the Civil War. More than a thousand lived on the streets including at least 100 kids - selling newspapers for a penny apiece and doing battle with rocks.