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The Sacramento Bee earns 11 awards in California News Publishers Association contest

The sun rises through a cloud of smoke in the Rincon Ridge area after a wildfire in Sonoma County on Tuesday October 10, 2017 in Santa Rosa, Calif.
The sun rises through a cloud of smoke in the Rincon Ridge area after a wildfire in Sonoma County on Tuesday October 10, 2017 in Santa Rosa, Calif. The Sacramento Bee

The Sacramento Bee has received 11 awards, including two first-place honors, in the California News Publishers Association's 2017 California Journalism Awards contest.

The contest drew more than 3,000 entries from daily, weekly and campus newspapers. The Sacramento Bee competed with daily newspapers with circulations between 35,000 and 150,000.

Writers Ryan Lillis, Cynthia Hubert and Phillip Reese's story "In the killing zone: Why can't we keep them safe?" was awarded first place for coverage of youth and education. The story looked at why Sacramento County has so many teen murders. It also was a finalist in the category of enterprise news story or series.

Writers Anita Chabria and Reese received a first-place award for "Driving (and walking) while black." The writers found that black drivers, especially men, were pulled over for traffic stops more often than other drivers in Sacramento, and have been for years.

Photographers Jose Villegas and Paul Kitagaki Jr. earned second-place honors for their work. 

Villegas placed in the sports action photo category with "Race to the Finish," a shot of runners in the Men's 100 final during the USATF Outdoor Championships at Sacramento State in June 2017. 

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Justin Gatlin outlasted Christian Coleman to win the Men's 100 final during the USATF Outdoor Championships at Sacramento State on Friday June 23, 2017 in Sacramento, Calif. Jose Luis Villegas The Sacramento Bee

Kitagaki was recognized in the artistic photo category for "From the Ashes", a shot of the sun rising through a cloud of smoke in the Rincon Ridge area on Sonoma County after the October 2017 wildfires.

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The sun rises through a cloud of smoke in the Rincon Ridge area after a wildfire in Sonoma County on Tuesday October 10, 2017 in Santa Rosa, Calif. Paul Kitagaki Jr. The Sacramento Bee

Writer Marjie Lundstrom's "Death at Goodwill," placed second in the investigative reporting category. She covered the death of an employee at a Goodwill Outlet on Franklin Boulevard and the aftermath for the whistleblower who had raised safety concerns about operations at the facility.

Writers Taryn Luna and Alexei Koseff's story "Sexual harassment in California politics" placed third in the investigative reporting category.

The Bee's coverage of the Oroville Dam crises by writers Dale Kasler and Ryan Sabalow earned a second-place award for breaking news and third-pace honors for public service journalism.

Sabalow and Reese's story "Why we still kill cougars" was a finalist in the in-depth reporting category.

Bee editorial writers placed third in the editorial comment category.

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