Julieta Martinelli | Nashville Public Radio

Julieta Martinelli


Martinelli is the 2017-2018 newsroom fellow at WPLN. She began as an intern in summer 2017, where she reported on immigration, social issues and criminal justice, among other topics. Before arriving in Nashville, she split her time between the assignment desk and assisting the investigative team at CBS-46 in Atlanta. She has produced news segments and worked as a production manager for live shows with GSU-TV, her college station, and Georgia Public Broadcasting.  She graduated with a degree in Journalism and a minor in criminal justice from Georgia State University in May 2017. 

Before attaining her degree, Martinelli spent five years managing operations and media for a major Atlanta law firm and also worked as a writer and copy editor for Real Atlanta Magazine, a now-defunct bilingual monthly. She has previously interned at Gwinnett Daily Post and Atlanta Latino, a Spanish-language weekly, where she stayed on to report on immigration, education and issues affecting the immigrant community. Martinelli is a National Association of Hispanic Journalists scholarship winner, a NAHJ-NABJ 2016 Student Projects fellow and in 2017 was named a Chips Quinn Scholar by the Newseum Institute.



For the first time, there is no Christmas tree adorning Veronica Zavaleta’s usually festive home.

“Right now we are in limbo,” says Zavaleta. “I can’t even prepare for Christmas. I don’t have the Christmas spirit in me.”

She pauses. Then adds, “I don’t want to set up my last Christmas tree.”

She says it is too painful to imagine this could be the last holiday with her two teenage sons, whose work permits through DACA expire next year.

Julieta Martinelli / WPLN

Monday was one of the busiest days of the year for the online retailer Amazon. The company says on Cyber Monday, hundreds of people place orders every second. And in Tennessee, this massive production depends on thousands of seasonal workers the company has hired across the state.

DCSO via Facebook

Davidson County's Sheriff says closing Nashville General Hospital's inpatient services could quadruple the amount his agency has to spend on securing inmates while they receive medical care.

Julieta Martinelli / WPLN

Cell phone footage shot by bystanders showing sometimes violent police interactions with civilians has led to more discussions nationwide about whether officers should wear body cameras. In some cities, local law enforcement has resisted that idea.

But that’s not the case in Clarksville, where the police department has actually been one of its biggest supporters.

Julieta Martinelli / WPLN

Members of the local group Justice For Jocques called off a meeting with Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson, taking issue with the audience he was requesting.



A state audit of the Department of Correction released on Tuesday highlights a number of issues plaguing prisons in Tennessee. The biggest issue is a shortage of correctional officers, which could put inmates and other prison staff at risk.


Thousands of immigrant students from all over the country with temporary legal protections through DACA are descending on Washington D.C. That includes a caravan coming from Tennessee.

They will join in others in asking their state representatives to push for a vote on the Dream Act before December.



The care of prisoners’ health across the state will remain in the hands of the embattled current provider — Centurion of Tennessee. But as of next July, it’s going to get considerably more expensive.

Julieta Martinelli / WPLN


Rather than just asking kids what they want to be when they grow up, Nashville’s public schools are experimenting with a new test developed by a local company to help students figure out what they’re naturally good at. Metro Schools have already made a big push to get students thinking about careers early on — this is the next step in also helping them find the right fit.

Police Chief Steve Anderson speaks at Police Academy (archive)
Tony Gonzalez / WPLN


Legislation proposing a community oversight board to investigate police misconduct will make its way to Metro Council for the first time on Tuesday.


The movement gained steam after a damning study on the disproportionate treatment of African American drivers in Nashville and the subsequent death of Jocques Clemmons, an African American man shot to death by a Metro officer after he ran during a traffic stop in February. The officer was not charged.