Civil Beat Staff

Brittany Lyte

Brittany Lyte is a general assignment reporter for Civil Beat who specializes in watchdog reporting, narrative storytelling and coverage of neighbor island and social issues. Prior to joining the Honolulu newsroom in March 2018, Brittany lived on the north shore of Kaua’i, where she juggled a freelance writing career while learning to surf, scuba dive, hunt wild pigs, prepare delicious ulu pancakes and perfect the soursop cocktail. Her writing during this period appeared in publications including The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The Atlantic and Hana Hou! magazine. Previously, she worked for Hearst Newspapers in Connecticut. An Upstate New York native, she has a degree in journalism from Boston University.

In a decade of reporting, Brittany has traveled to Russia, Poland and across the U.S., interviewing subjects ranging from the Dalai Lama to Ghostface Killah of the Wu-Tang Clan. Her writing has explored a similarly vast range of topics, from the plight of an accused cannibal on the run from police to an investigation into undocumented toxic waste buried beneath suburban Connecticut homes. Her series on the latter subject earned national accolades and inspired the state legislature to adopt a new real estate disclosure law to better protect homebuyers.

In pursuit of a good story, Brittany has learned to fly an M-26 Air Wolf and chased down a suspected killer while wearing heels and a silk dress.

Feds Indict Two Honolulu Cops For Making Man Lick Urinal Anthony Quintano/Civil Beat

Feds Indict Two Honolulu Cops For Making Man Lick Urinal

They are accused of violating the victim’s civil rights. Four officers were initially disciplined after the January incident.

State Criticized For Cutting Services For The Developmentally Disabled Cory Lum/Civil Beat

State Criticized For Cutting Services For The Developmentally Disabled

Agency representatives say they’ve gotten more efficient with the help of a new budgeting tool, but advocates for patients are filing more complaints.

Honolulu Police Chief Gets High Marks From Commission And Community Anthony Quintano/Civil Beat

Honolulu Police Chief Gets High Marks From Commission And Community

A new cybercrime unit, better training to deal with the homeless and speeding up the hiring process are among numerous accomplishments in the first year.

HPD Chief Ballard Says Allegations Of Doctored Test Scores Are Unfounded Cory Lum/Civil Beat

HPD Chief Ballard Says Allegations Of Doctored Test Scores Are Unfounded

The chief told the Honolulu Police Commission Wednesday the city settled the case for $550,000 for financial reasons.

Creating A Better Life For Hawaii’s Developmentally Disabled

Creating A Better Life For Hawaii’s Developmentally Disabled

Gov. Ige has proposed spending $7.7 million to overhaul the state DD program, which includes offering clients more opportunities for jobs and setting goals for themselves.

Shining Sunlight On The Honolulu Police Chief’s Performance Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Shining Sunlight On The Honolulu Police Chief’s Performance

In contrast to past practice, the police commission solicited input from a wide range of groups and the chief OK’d releasing the details of her annual review.

City Council Approves $550,000 Payment To Cop Who Claimed HPD Doctored Test Scores Cory Lum/Civil Beat

City Council Approves $550,000 Payment To Cop Who Claimed HPD Doctored Test Scores

UPDATED: The payment will settle a lawsuit alleging Police Chief Susan Ballard, while commander of the police academy in 2008, took part in making it easier for recruits to pass.

Bill Focuses On Revolving Door Of Involuntary Psychiatric Treatments Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Bill Focuses On Revolving Door Of Involuntary Psychiatric Treatments

The measure would form a task force to find ways to make emergency mental health admissions more efficient, and better protect the public.

Mother Alleges Police Negligence In Shooting Death Of Her Son Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Mother Alleges Police Negligence In Shooting Death Of Her Son

Pekelo Sanchez was killed inside a stolen pickup in 2017. Eight lawsuits alleging wrongful deaths caused by HPD officers have been filed since 2010.

Lawmakers Propose Fixes For A Broken Psychiatric Care Law Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Lawmakers Propose Fixes For A Broken Psychiatric Care Law

Several proposals would make it easier for families and caregivers to get court orders authorizing long-term intensive treatment and medication for the severely mentally ill.

Judge Releases Potential Juror Who Was Jailed For Shouting ‘He Is Guilty!’ Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Judge Releases Potential Juror Who Was Jailed For Shouting ‘He Is Guilty!’

Updated: First Circuit Court Judge Edward Kubo had dismissed 44 potential jurors and declared a mistrial in a Honolulu trial Wednesday, saying the outburst had “infected” the whole panel.

When Delusions Steal Your Daughter Cory Lum/Civil Beat

When Delusions Steal Your Daughter

Marti Claussen’s search for stable care and housing in Hawaii for her mentally ill daughter Christie has been a long journey of impossible choices and resilience.