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Target 12 wins Emmy for investigation of Fall River police

Target 12

BOSTON (WPRI) – The Target 12 Investigators won an Emmy Award on Saturday for an undercover investigation that led Fall River’s police chief to step down last year.

The Target 12 investigation “Happy Hour” won Best in Investigative at the 44th Boston/New England Emmy Awards, which were presented virtually due to the pandemic. The story beat out four competing nominees in the category, three from Boston stations WCVB and WBTS, as well as a separate Target 12 investigation on SBA loans that was also nominated.

The Emmy was shared by investigative reporters Tim White and Eli Sherman and videographer John Villella Jr. Target 12 has received multiple Emmys in the past, including several for White and Villella during their decade-plus as part of the investigative team at 12 News.

The original Target 12 report revealed sworn lawmen regularly spent multiple hours drinking at a Fall River bar before filtering out, hopping into cars and driving away. For some, including then-Police Chief Albert Dupere, that often meant getting behind the wheel of a city-issued vehicle.

Before the story aired, Dupere stepped down from his position as chief after Target 12 presented him with the findings of its months-long investigation.

Also winning a Boston/New England Emmy Award on Saturday evening was 12 News This Morning producer James O’Leary, who was honored in the category of medium-market morning newscasts for coverage of last June’s riot in downtown Providence.

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