Martin Austermuhle | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 Contributors

Martin Austermuhle

Web Producer & Reporter

Austermuhle joined WAMU as a web producer and reporter in April 2013. Prior to that, he served as editor-in-chief for DCist.com, and has written for the Washington City Paper, Washington Diplomat and other publications. Born in Switzerland, Martin lived throughout Latin America before coming to the U.S. to attend Penn State University and later Georgetown University, where he received a Master’s degree in Latin American Studies. He lives in Columbia Heights with his wife Carolina, a school teacher, and daughter.


Articles Written by Martin Austermuhle

WAMU 88.5
This post has been updated Judging how safe a neighborhood is can be scientific as much as it can be subjective, but a new app born in D.C. lets users rate streets, corners and blocks based on how "sketchy" they are. SketchFactor, a navigation app launched today, allows its users to submit incident reports for eve...
WAMU 88.5
The votes might be separated by 16 years, but they're on the same issue — and advocates worry that the results could be derailed in much the same way. Come November, D.C. residents will vote on Initiative 71, which would allow residents over the age of 2...
WAMU 88.5
The D.C. Board of Elections today announced that proponents of an initiative to legalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana had collected enough signatures to put the measure on November's ballot. The board ruled that of the close to 57,000 signature...
WAMU 88.5
This post has been updated D.C. Council member Marion Barry (D-Ward 8) has his car back, in part because of the generosity of a ticket adjudicator and sympathetic impound lot owner. Gabriel Robinson, associate director of the D.C. Department of Motor Vehicles, confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that Barry paid $1,779 of the $2,824 worth of fines for various dr...
WAMU 88.5
#PDI_container8225371 .pds-box { width: 285px !important; } #PDI_container8225371 .pds-input-label { width: 225px !important; } @media (max-width: 480px) { #PDI_container8225371 .pds-box { width: 98% !important; } George Lyon has never been a victim of violent crime in D.C., but he does remember the case of Sharon Moskowitz, the 25-year...
WAMU 88.5
As public and charter schools in D.C. fight for students and resources, the talk is often more about competition than collaboration. But in one school in Southeast, a partnership between the two has produced surprising results — and could serve as a model for bring the sectors together. On Thursday, D.C. officials announced that Stanton Elementary School on Alabama Avenue ...
WAMU 88.5
D.C. officials announced today that math and reading proficiency rates were again up for the city's public and charter schools, though some of the gains were modest and others uneven. According to results from annual tests, math proficiency among all students increased by 1.4 percent to 54.4 percent, while reading proficiency rose 0.4 percent to 49.9 percent. The gains were ...
WAMU 88.5
Walk into just about any carry-out in D.C., and you’ll likely be handed your food in a polystyrene foam container, more commonly known as Styrofoam. Walk along the banks of the Anacostia River as it flows through Maryland and D.C., and you might see the remnants of those foam containers floating in the water. But with a new bill signed by Mayor Vincent Gray on Tuesday, env...
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D.C. Attorney General Irv Nathan today asked for a stay of a weekend ruling that tossed out the city's ban on carrying guns outside the home and prohibited police from enforcing it. In the request filed this afternoon, Nathan asked that the ruling be stayed immediately ...
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This post has been updated. Just over six years after the Supreme Court ruled that the District's ban on handguns was unconstitutional, a federal judge has now tossed out the city's laws prohibiting residents from carrying guns outside of their homes. In an opinion published on Saturday, U.S. District Court Judge Frederick Scullin said that the city's rule...
WAMU 88.5
The District has formally dropped a controversial proposal for a 24-hour waiting period for anyone who wants to get a piercing or tattoo. The waiting period was first proposed last September by the D.C. Department of Health as part of a draft set of regulations for tattoo...
WAMU 88.5
D.C. mayoral contender David Catania said today that while he supports the construction of a planned $300 million D.C. United stadium at Buzzard Point in Southwest D.C., he's opposed to a land swap that is at the heart of the deal. Speaking on WAMU 88.5's ...
WAMU 88.5
For the second time in a week, a person was arrested for trying to bring a gun into a congressional office building. According to the U.S. Capitol Police, Ronald William Prestage was arrested this morning after a routine security screening in the rotunda of the Cannon House Office Building revealed a firearm in his bag. Prestage is being charged with carrying a pistol withou...
WAMU 88.5
This post has been updated with comments from a Powell teacher. In 1970, folk singer Joni Mitchell famously sang about paradise being paved over to put up a parking lot. But in the Petworth neighborhood of Northwest D.C., that's exactly what community gardeners say is about to happen. Urban farmers at the ...
WAMU 88.5
Despite a new law decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of marijuana in D.C., the thousands of students that attend local universities and colleges won't be catching a break if they're caught with pot. Due to federal anti-drug laws and the federal funding...
WAMU 88.5
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that sought to stop and reverse the closure of 15 D.C. public schools over the last year. In a 26-page ruling, Judge James E. Boasberg of the U.S. District Court dismissed arguments by five parents that D.C. Public Schools Chanc...
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For the first time since he took office, President Barack Obama has come out in favor of making Washington, D.C. the nation's 51st state. "I’m in D.C., so I’m for it," he said of D.C. statehood during an event in Washington today. "I've been for it for quite some time. I've long believed that folks in D.C. pay taxes like everybody else. They contribute to the overall wel...
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The House of Representative approved an amendment to a spending bill this afternoon that would largely gut the District's restrictive gun laws. The amendment, which was introduced by Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky.) and passed on a voice vote, would prohibit the city from enforcing any of its existing gun laws, including those requiring registration, banning high-capacity magazine...
WAMU 88.5
Starting at midnight tonight, the possession of less than one ounce of marijuana in D.C. will be treated as a minor offense punishable by a $25 fine. Here's everything you need to know about marijuana decriminalization in the nation's capital. Where did this come from? Last year, the ACLU ...
WAMU 88.5
If you call 911 in D.C. from a cell phone, you might expect that even if you don't leave your address, the dispatcher could use your phone's GPS capability to pinpoint your location. But one group says that's not happening in most cases. According to data collected by the Find Me 911 Coalition, which advocates for tougher rules on wi...