Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "drug overdoses" ...

  • They Shared Drugs. Someone Died. Does That Make Them Killers?

    This was a year-long investigation of the prosecution of accidental drug overdoses as homicides. It is the first and only story to attempt to quantify the national scale of this emerging trend using court data. It also involved a review of 82 individual cases in Pennsylvania to examine where defendants fit on the user-dealer continuum and whether they were drug users themselves.
  • Uncounted Casualties

    A three-day series that analyzed causes of death for 266 Texas veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan. The six-month investigation uncovered previously unknown information, pulling data from a variety of federal, state and local sources. The series, which also depended on extensive interviews with family members and fellow service members, revealed the startling number of Texas veterans dying of prescription drug overdoses, suicides and motor vehicle crashes. The newspaper's analysis was hailed by epidemiologists and former Department of Veterans Affairs researchers as an important step in understanding veteran mortality, and led to calls for better government tracking of how veterans are dying.
  • Medicating the Military

    The stories looked at the nature and scope of the use of prescription drugs in the military community, with a focus on psychiatric medications and painkillers. The reporting found that use of psychiatric medications has risen dramatically in the past several years and some doctors suggest it may be a factor in the military's suicide epidemic of recent years. Reporters found that many psychiatric drugs - including powerful anti-convulsants and anti-psychotic medications - were being used "off label", or in ways not formally approved by the FDA. Reporters found that many troops were taking up to 10 medications at a time in so-called drug cocktails that experts say are untested and unproven in these combinations. Reporters also found that deaths caused by accidental drug overdoses had tripled during the past several years and that the Army's specialty care units were quietly conducting internal investigations and making significant changes to hospital protocols to reduce risk of accidental deaths. Finally, they found that psychiatric drug usage was also up significantly among military children.
  • Pain Killers

    The York Daily Record reports about 20 people that have died from a lethal cocktail of prescription drugs between 2001 and 2002. According to the story "the federal government has identify Pennsylvania as one of several states with a substantial prescription drug problem. However the state does not track the specific drugs responsible in fatal drug overdoses." In 11 of the 20 prescription drug cases, "the York County coroner found OxyContin or oxycodone in the people's systems or among the drugs that they were taking."
  • Prison addicts: On Dope Row

    Insight reports on inmates' deaths caused by drug overdoses in state prisons. The story finds that at least 188 prisoners died during the last decade; state prisons lack aggressive and competent drug screening policies; and states are not required to track the number of fatal drug overdoses or confiscated drugs cases. Meanwhile, administrators deny that their prisons have a drug problem.
  • Raving madness?

    WFTS reports on the rave scene in the Tampa Bay area. Undercover cameras document open drug use and drug paraphernalia sales. The investigation found that paramedics were repeatedly called to the club for drug overdoses, that underage patrons were common, but that police seemed to be ignoring the place.
  • (Untitled)

    Syracuse (N.Y.) Herald-Journal reports that rapes, assaults, drug overdoses and narcotics theft occur regularly in the Syracuse Developmental Center for the mentally retarded, June 9 - 12, 1988.
  • Dead wrong

    WBBM-TV (Chicago) "investigated the performance of an examiners office, where (the station) found a pattern of mishandled autopsies in which pathologists failed to detect homicides, drug overdoses and child abuse. The series documents how mistakes at the morgue have thwarted law enforcement investigations and resulted in the police failing to pursue homicides."