Pam Zekman

zekman Pam ZekmanPulitzer-prize winning reporter Pam Zekman serves on CBS 2 Chicago’s investigative team, a position she has held since 1981. During that time, her thorough investigations have earned every major award in television reporting and resulted in governmental reforms and criminal indictments.

Most recently Zekman, and her producer Dan Blom, have exposed dangerous cab drivers with long histories of moving traffic violations and accidents including some that injured or killed pedestrians or passengers. The reports resulted in a major overhaul in the way the city tracks their driving records and toughened enforcement efforts to suspend or revoke their licenses to drive a cab.

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Another investigation exposed fraud in the federal multi-million dollar free and reduced school lunch program meant to feed low income children. Zekman found Chicago Public School teachers and administrators falsified free lunch application forms to show their children qualified even though their parents’ income disqualified them. Fifty five CPS employees have been suspended or fired.

The owners of million dollar homes taxed for years as vacant land were highlighted in another Zekman investigation that exposed systemic failures by the Cook County Assessor’s office. A review of all vacant land in Cook County was ordered and procedures changed to help ensure that everyone pays their fair share of property taxes. Other stories exposed how property owners claimed exemptions they weren’t entitled to, saving thousands of dollars in taxes. Legislation was proposed to crack down on the abuses.

Towing companies that chase business at car accident scenes, ripping off vulnerable accident victims with fraudulent and inflated charges, were exposed in another investigation. Some of that money was used to pay off cops who steered them accident business, according to a federal undercover investigation that has indicted ten officers so far. New state regulations were passed to protect consumers.

Over the years Zekman’s investigations have exposed government waste by city, county, and state employees who were suspended or fired after they were caught with our hidden cameras at home, in bars, asleep, or playing golf when they should have been at work. Some highly paid pay rollers were misused by their bosses to work as their chauffeurs, run personal errands for their bosses, or as party planners.

Another investigation documented $40 million of waste at the Chicago Board of Education and resulted in sweeping changes in the way contracts are awarded, along with the conviction of contractors and school officials, including a former school board president.

An undercover investigation of Medicaid and Medicare fraud resulted in the convictions of dozens of doctors, pharmacists, and the operators of a chain of medical clinics. Several reports on Dangerous Doctors repeatedly sued for performing unnecessary surgeries, or malpractice that injured or killed their patients resulted in reforms by state regulators.

Zekman’s team worked undercover in restaurants to document disgusting conditions and critical violations that can make customers sick.


Chicago Fire Department Unveils 5 New Ambulances To Address Shortage, Delays

One day after CBS 2 Investigator Pam Zekman reported on the latest victim of the city’s ambulance shortage — the case of a heart attack victim who nearly died waiting for an ambulance — the city added five new ambulances to the streets, but is that enough?


Heart Attack Victim Waited 43 Minutes To Get To The Hospital; ‘That’s Absolutely Awful’

State standards require fire departments to provide advance life support assistance within six minutes.


Heart Attack Victim Waited 43 Minutes To Get To The Hospital; ‘That’s Absolutely Awful’

Minutes count when you are having a heart attack, but it took the Chicago Fire Department more than 40 minutes to get a 56-year-old man to a hospital for help earlier this month.



City Officials Won’t Remedy Smelly Window Problem Near Chicago Airports Until Fall

City officials say they plan to remedy the problem, but won’t start until the fall when additional testing is done.



2 Investigators: Smelly Windows Near Airports Caused By Screen Mesh

Residents near Chicago’s airports say their sound-insulated windows, installed by the city, emit noxious fumes. It is the PVC coated material of the screen mesh is what’s creating the odor.


Questions Remain About Prospect Heights Blaze Displacing Dozens

At least 96 units of the condo were damaged including several that are a total loss.


‘We Got It Done’: After $200,000 In Repairs, New CFD Training Tower Just About Ready

Two years after the 2 Investigators first reported on the million-dollar tower — and after more than $200,000 in repairs — the Chicago Fire Department says the tower is just about ready.


2 Investigators: Dangerous Intersection In Need Of Traffic Signals

They’ve been asking for a traffic signal for four years, but the intersection is one of the most dangerous in Illinois.


Victim’s Car Vanishes After It Was Towed From Accident Scene

A woman’s car is missing after it got towed from an accident scene.   What happened to it?   2 Investigator Pam Zekman reports.


2 Investigators: Dating Service Heartbreak

They were looking for love, but instead say they got ripped off by dating services charging big bucks for their match making services.  



2 Investigators: CTA Vows To Improve Screening Of Bus Drivers After $60 Million In Settlements

It’s a $60-million problem: That’s the cost of settlements and judgments paid out by the CTA for bus accidents.


Social Security Administration Mistake Leaves Woman On Brink Of Financial Ruin

A government mistake almost ruined a woman financially. 2 Investigator Pam Zekman reports that when she needed it the most, Social Security failed to live up to its promises.


A State Crackdown On Doctors Overprescribing Addictive And Dangerous Drugs

Opioid overdoses are up 60 percent and all too often the source of those drugs are doctors, some using their medical license as a license to deal.


2 Investigators: Did Breeder Sell Sick Puppies?

Experts say getting puppies with parvo symptoms to a vet fast is critical because it’s highly contagious.


2 Investigators: Phones Used To Break Into Bank Accounts

Crooks are now stealing phone numbers in order to drain accounts.


Utility Board Pushes For Consumer Protections For Alternate Energy

A consumer advocacy group is pushing a proposal to protect customers shopping for alternative electric and gas companies.


Two More Men Sue Over Wrongful Murder Convictions

A Chicago police detective has been accused of framing people for murder.


2 Investigators: More Ticket Complaints For Broker

He thought he was getting a special deal for Cubs tickets. But now a suburban man is crying foul.


Ticket Troubles Solved By 2 Investigators

A state legislator is now calling today for tougher regulation of online ticket brokers.


2 Investigators Expose Ticket Sales Traps

When you go online to buy tickets for a play, a concert or sporting event, be sure you know who you are buying from. 2 Investigator Pam Zekman reports that clicking on the wrong link can cost you lots of extra money.


2 Investigators: Shaming People To Vote

“This is a pre-election day stunt to try and drive up voter turnout in that precinct or ward.”


Cabbie Helps Cement Case Vs. Accused Cop Murderer

New video has surfaced showing Shomari Legghette seconds after he allegedly killed Chicago Police Cmdr. Paul Bauer.


2 Investigators: Widow Waits Months On Social Security Benefits

Darlene Groth says her husband told her before he died that she wouldn’t have to worry about money. He was wrong.


2 Investigators: Tow Truck Drivers Follow Accident Victim To Hospital

In Chicago, tales of aggressive tow truck drivers and billing abuses are well known. CBS 2’s Pam Zekman heard a story so incredible she had to check it out.


2 Investigators: ‘Free Trial’ Fraud

Scammers are taking consumers for millions of dollars a year with a simple strategy. CBS 2’s Pam Zekman reports.


First Tests May Put Cracks In ‘Toxic Windows’ Theory Around Airports

Environmental engineers say a sampling of windows don’t trigger any potential “health effects.” CBS 2’s Pam Zekman reports.


2 Investigators: Western Union Offers Refunds To Scam Victims

A settlement deal Western Union made with the feds could put some money back in your pocket, if you were a victim.


Freezing Battery Victim Waits 27 Minutes For Chicago Ambulance

Help is on the way, the Emanuel Administration insists following several reports about excessive waiting times for ambulances. CBS 2’s Pam Zekman has this follow-up report.


Mayor Must Intervene In Ambulance Shortage, Inspector General Says

For years, the 2 Investigators have been reporting on excessive Chicago ambulance response times that can endanger people with medical emergencies.


2 Investigators: 4-Ounce Prescription Cream Costs $645

Federal investigators who are raising questions about possible fraud, abuse and patient safety. CBS 2’s Pam Zekman reports.