The Portland Press Herald is partnering with the PBS documentary series “Frontline” to undertake an accountability investigation into Maine’s deadliest mass shooting.

The newspaper is among four newsrooms selected to participate in Frontline’s Local Journalism Initiative, which provides editorial and financial support for newsrooms and shares its expertise on investigative techniques, video storytelling and connecting journalism with diverse audiences.

Maine Shooting

A member of law enforcement walks with a police dog outside a property on Meadow Road in Bowdoin, on Oct. 26, 2023. Steven Senne/Associated Press Steven Senne/Associated Press

Funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Local Journalism Initiative aims to promote sustainable, public interest journalism in communities where local news organizations have been hit hard by financial pressures.

Maine Public will also be involved in the project.

“Partnering with “Frontline,” a powerhouse of investigative journalism, will allow us to devote more resources to accountability reporting, sharpen our continued coverage of the tragedy in Lewiston and develop new skills for future work,” said Steve Greenlee, executive editor of the Press Herald. “We’re all looking forward to getting started with them.”

The partnership will further the work of the Press Herald and the Maine Trust for Local News, which have continued to investigate the Oct. 25 mass shooting in Lewiston that killed 18 people and wounded 13 others.

The Maine Trust newspapers have painted intimate portraits of each of the victims and the families that honor their memories; sat down with survivors who shared the horror, chance encounters and guilt of surviving that night; and continue to press law enforcement to answer questions about why the gunman had not been detained and the extent to which they were aware of the danger he posed.

“Since this initiative began, it’s been an honor to support and amplify our partners’ enterprise reporting, and to shine a light on the immense value of local journalism,” said Raney Aronson-Rath, executive producer and editor-in-chief of “Frontline.” “We are grateful to Knight Foundation for their steadfast support of our Local Journalism Initiative, and we look forward to bolstering the powerful storytelling emerging from the Chattanooga Times Free Press, the Portland Press Herald, The Post and Courier, and The Texas Tribune.”

Erin Texeira, senior editor and director of Frontline Local Journalism Initiative, said, “It was inspiring to receive such a robust pool of applications from journalists and newsrooms across the country. In this election year, investigative journalism illuminating pressing local issues has never been more vital.”

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