Zachary T. Sampson, General Assignment Reporter

Zachary T. Sampson

General Assignment Reporter

I'm a general assignment reporter, which means I cover pretty much anything depending on the day. Think of me like a super utility player. Local, state, national, crime, weather, politics, and so on. I'm fascinated by where we're from -- how places shape us and how we shape them. I aim to tell stories that matter to you now, or will, or should. One day that might involve a police horse that paints, another how county officials spend your tax dollars. I'm from Rhode Island and will talk to you about it. I've coached youth baseball -- yes, the loud one. Okay, maybe I was checking the score on my phone under the table. I'm sorry. Call me with anything. I'm friendlier than my face suggests.

Florida’s new resilience officer doesn’t shy away from saying ‘climate change’

From left: Thomas Frazer, Ph.D., Chief Science Officer, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, Julia Nesheiwat, Ph.D., Chief Resilience Officer, Executive Office of the Governor, and Noah Valenstein, Secretary, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, attend the Resilient Florida: Planning, Policy and Practice workshop on Thursday, August 8, 2019, at the University of South Florida in Tampa. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times
Julia Nesheiwat also says new restrictions on development will be needed to cope with rising sea levels

A Pinellas task force focuses on stolen cars. Why did St. Petersburg police leave it?

St. Petersburg police Chief Tony Holloway, left, and Pinellas Sheriff Bob Gualtieri attend a community event at Tropicana Field in 2015. [DIRK SHADD   |   Times]
Chief Tony Holloway has offered several explanations for why he withdrew from a special unit that the sheriff says has reduced vehicle thefts.

Firefighters respond to gas leak on Central Avenue in downtown St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg fire personnel are seen along Central Avenue near the intersections of 4th Street and 5th Street on Tuesday, July 16 in St. Petersburg. (BOYZELL HOSEY   |   Times)
There were no reports of injuries.

Pinellas Juvenile Welfare Board selects new CEO

St. Petersburg Free Clinic’s Beth Houghton speaks at podium after being honored as one of the “Five Fabulous Females” at Academy Prep Center ‘s “Friends and Flowers” luncheon at the TradeWinds Island Grand Resort on Feb. 4, 2014. (Times | 2014)
Beth Houghton, who is currently the head of the St. Petersburg Free Clinic, will take over the board, which has a $93.4 million annual budget.

Baby grazed by falling bullet in St. Petersburg on Fourth of July

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Officials cited the shooting as yet another example of the dangers of celebratory gunfire.