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 [email protected] where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "miners" ...

  • Taser safety claim questioned; medical examiners connect stun gun to 5 deaths

    This series of stories examines stun-gun safety and how police are using the weapons. Stun-gun manufacturer Taser International has claimed that the shock of the gun is not lethal, but the Republic found the devices to be linked to at least 11 deaths, according to autopsy reports and interviews with medical examiners nationwide. The Republic's investigation also found that Phoenix area police use the weapon mostly against unarmed suspects in petty crimes. The newspaper's investigation prompted inquires by both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Arizona Attorney General's office.
  • "Doctor Discipline"; "How well do you know your doctor?"

    Over the course of their six month investigation, Gazette-Journal reporters, Frank Mullen and Steve Timko, uncover the truth about a handful of Nevada doctors responsible for the bulk of the state's malpractice lawsuits and settlements. According to this extensive series, many physicians, including the state's most-sued doctor, were going unpunished by the Nevada Board of Medical Examiners and continuing their practices. As a result of this investigation, "the board replaced two of its top officials (executive director and chief lawyer)."
  • Evidence of Injustice

    An exclusive i-team investigation shows how inconsistencies, mistakes and staffing problems are raising serious questions at the Maricopa County Medical Examiners Offices. This is a new forensic science center where coroners perform autopsies on people who have died on unnatural causes in this county. Investigators and legal experts rely on the information provided by this office, but the information is not always correct. Interviewees on this tape say that leads to having innocent people on trial for crimes that do not exist. In one case, the Sheriff's office began using an amended autopsy to defend a mysterious jail death. The Chief Medical Examiner changed his opinion about the jail death two years after the original autopsy, without any new information. Some Medical Examiners are doing many more autopsies per year than what is recommended.
  • Safe Bet? Shield Booster Seats

    Cosco Inc., a subsidiary of Dorel Industries based in Canada in one of the largest manufacturers of child products in the world. Twice in the last ten years, the federal government has caught Cosco covering up injuries and deaths associated with tis products. Dateline NBC has compiled a comprehensive list of serious spinal chord injury and death cases associated with the Grand Explorer child seat and it predecessor, the Explorer. Other companies have discontinued all of their similar models and Cosco is the only company still selling this type of shield booster seat. Dateline talked to state troopers, attorneys, parents of children who died in accidents while riding on the seat, medical examiners, and government sources in this six-month investigation.
  • Bad doctors keep on practicing

    The Law Journal examined a complete archive of the state Board of Medical Examiners (30 years of data) and found out that even when doctors killed their patients, the state allowed them to continue practicing. The journal concentrated on repeated malpractice in order to eliminate "good doctors who made a mistake". The project found 290 repeat offenders, 200 of whom were allowed to go back to medicine.
  • Science Casts Doubt on FBI Bullet Evidence

    This story investigated the validity of a forensics technique, comparative lead bullet analysis, that has been used by the FBI crime laboratory since the late 1960's. FBI scientists determine the trace metal profile of a lead slug and then compare bullet profiles. They found there was not a solid scientific backing for this technique and that new research indicates that the conclusions the FBI examiners drew about relationships between were, at best, unwarranted. There was never evidence to conclude that the fact that two bullets share similar trace element profiles means they are in some way connected, and there is now evidence against that conclusion. This is important because the technique is commonly used in murder cases where traditional ballistics cannot be used and, often where there is little evidence.
  • Death checks due for review

    A follow-up article to The Charlotte Observer's "Grave Secrets" series about the breakdown in North Carolina's death investigations. Following the series, this article relates how state leaders "are calling for a review of the state's troubled medical examiner system and organizing two groups to quickly chart the changes."
  • Bad Doctors

    A Dallas Morning News investigation reveals that the Texas medical board allowed felons to continue practicing as doctors, and let thousands of alleged malpractice cases involving patient death pile in closets and cabinets.
  • My Brother's Keeper

    "Residents of a state-run institution for the developmentally disable and mentally retarded have been physically, emotionally and sexually abused for years. At times medical treatment has been inadequate, and life-threatening. Politics and fear kept employees and families from speaking out. State and federal investigations have been cursory and have not addressed long-term systemic problems." This collection of stories document this abuse and reveal how it was covered.
  • Pocitos: Mexico's Death Traps

    Not too far from San Antonio, Mexico's only coal-producing region can be found. While most of the area is modernized, about 150 "pocitos," primitive vertical-entry mines, are also operating. Around 1500 miners work these mines. The pocitos are dangerous: some are gaseous, they explode. Some are near abandoned mines, and when miners strike adjacent shafts, they flood. In the months before this story ran, 27 deaths occurred in pocito disasters. The San Antonio Express-News investigated the dangers surrounding these mine fields and paralleled the realities of the pocitos with what national law expects. As a result of the story, Mexico started a state office of mine safety specifically to deal with the pocitos.