Amanda Lee Myers is a breaking news and law enforcement reporter, videographer, and social media curator for The Associated Press in Los Angeles. In addition to reporting and writing some of the biggest stories in the country, from the massacre on the Las Vegas strip to the Oscars, Myers shoots professional-level video and helps deliver news to online users through AP’s social media accounts.
A journalistic acrobat, Myers can dive deep on important stories, find others that aren’t being told and use new technology to tell others creatively, like the time she strapped a GoPro to her head and zipped down a glass slide 1,000 feet above downtown Los Angeles. From filming 360-degree video at the Oscars to writing profiles memorializing the victims of mass shootings and natural disasters, Myers loves creating distinctive content that helps AP stay ahead of the competition.
Myers began her 12-year AP career where she grew up, in Phoenix. She developed beats covering immigration, the death penalty, crime and courts. Myers frequently used her Spanish to tell the stories of underrepresented populations and was one of the first reporters at the scene of the 2011 mass shooting in Tucson that killed six and wounded 13 others, including Rep. Gabby Giffords. She regularly broke news in the days and months that followed and developed key sources among the survivors and in the sheriff’s department, winning her AP’s Beat of the Week award.
In July 2012, Myers moved across the country and began working in the AP’s Cincinnati bureau. There, she delved further into legal affairs, leading coverage of the gay marriage fight in Ohio and how that played into the broader national battle.
Myers moved to Washington, D.C. in 2014 and began working as a breaking news supervisor in AP’s Mid-Atlantic bureau, where she was responsible for writing, editing and filing news to four state wires. She also began developing a law enforcement beat covering 80 police agencies, which included extensive coverage of the officer-involved death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore and the subsequent protests.
Myers enjoys identifying cases of interest that aren’t being covered, particularly those that involve excessive use of police force, wrongful death and discrimination.
Her work led Myers to discover the case of a former longtime Ohio police captain convicted of killing his ex-wife in 1997 largely based on a bite mark found on the woman’s body.
Myers then spent four months working on a national investigative piece about bite mark evidence and its use in the criminal justice system, including interviewing forensic dentists who testify in court cases and had never before agreed to speak with reporters. The result was a story about how the use of bite mark evidence has led to 24 exonerations across the country, including men who had spent decades in prison and on death row.
Slate called the piece “tremendous” and wrote that “stories like these are good reminders that forensic science has made significant progress in recent years.”
More recently, her work on the Las Vegas massacre helped AP win a Sigma Delta Chi award from the Society of Professional Journalists. While Myers was in Vegas, her focus was on telling the story of the survivors. She’s particularly proud of a story she wrote after interviewing a Los Angeles woman who survived a critical gunshot wound to the stomach.
Born in Toledo, Ohio, Myers mostly grew up in Arizona after her parents fell in love with the desert. She graduated with honors from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University in 2005. She has a minor in Spanish.
Myers has run 15 half marathons and is planning to conquer her first full … one day. Her biggest passion outside of work is travel, whether it’s finding a new trail to hike in California or exploring foreign countries.