“Unrelinquished,” a film on domestic violence homicides that Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting produced in partnership with Al Jazeera English’s “Fault Lines” program, has been nominated for a 2022 Emmy Award in the outstanding investigative news coverage: long-form category.
The documentary is part of reporter Jennifer Gollan’s multiplatform project When Abusers Keep Their Guns, examining why so many domestic violence homicides involve illegal weapons. The film focuses on the harrowing case of 22-year-old Jazmine Willock, whose boyfriend, Taris Ford-Dillard, shot and killed her in Tucson, Arizona, in 2018 before turning the gun on himself.
As a convicted abuser, Ford-Dillard was prohibited from having a firearm under federal law. But as Gollan’s investigation found, Ford-Dillard was no fluke; scores of Americans are killed every year by domestic abusers who have weapons that should have been relinquished or seized. The film also pinpointed the biggest systemic factor in such slayings: Federal and state gun bans are largely enforced on an honor system that relies on abusers to disarm themselves. Police, prosecutors and judges routinely fail to take the most basic steps to protect victims and their families from abusers who keep their guns, often with deadly consequences.
A screening of “Unrelinquished” on Capitol Hill last fall drew dozens of lawmakers, gun violence experts and domestic violence advocates and helped drive important changes in federal law. The reauthorized Violence Against Women Act, signed by President Joe Biden in March, includes bipartisan provisions prompted by Gollan’s reporting that give state and local law enforcement broader powers to investigate and prosecute abusers who possess guns unlawfully.
The film previously won the 2022 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award in the domestic television category.
Gollan reported and co-produced the film, with Amina Waheed of “Fault Lines” serving as director and producer. Amanda Pike and Laila Al-Arian served as executive producers. Adrienne Haspel was editor and editorial producer. Joel Van Haren was director of photography. Darya Marchenkova was associate producer and fact checker.
At Reveal, Katharine Mieszkowski served as a consulting producer. Narda Zacchino was a digital editor. Additional help came from Features Editor Nina Martin, Executive Editor Andrew Donohue, general counsel Victoria Baranetsky and Editor in Chief Sumi Aggarwal. Esther Kaplan was editor at large.
Winners of the 43rd Annual News & Documentary Emmy Awards will be announced in September. Also nominated in the long-form investigative news category are “60 Minutes,” FRONTLINE, “Nightline” and Vice’s “The Source.”