In addition, New Times' Amy Silverman won the 2010 Mental Health America Media Award in the local/regional magazine category for her three-part series "The Lost Kids."
In issuing the Best of the West award, judges wrote that the writers' stories focus "like a laser beam on the controversial law enforcement tactics of [Maricopa County] Sheriff Joe Arpaio." Calling the stories "ambitious and daring" work," the judges went on to say that they were "engaging, dynamic, and crafted with a strong, authoritative voice that only comes from meticulous and deep reporting."
The judges singled out one story by Lemons as particularly "brave" in that it reveals "the relationship between neo-Nazi and extreme right-wing organizations [and] Arpaio."
In "The Lost Kids," Silverman reported on the failures in Arizona's mental-health system for juveniles. She wrote of a boy who has lived in Texas for several years, away from his family in Arizona, because the state has no adequate treatment facility for him here, and of a girl who died in a wilderness-therapy camp after her parents exhausted local options. Finally, Silverman reported on near-miss suicide attempts and other failures at the state's juvenile-detention facilities, where many mentally ill kids wind up.