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DEADLY DOSE

As companies sell increasingly potent products, a Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals the herb's toll.
As companies sell increasingly potent products, a Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals the herb's toll.
As companies sell increasingly potent products, a Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals the herb's toll.
As companies sell increasingly potent products, a Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals the herb's toll.
A Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals a popular kratom brand’s supply chain, from Indonesia to Florida.
A Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals a popular kratom brand’s supply chain, from Indonesia to Florida.

POISONED

At Gopher Resource in Tampa, workers recycle 50,000 used car batteries a day. Their safety equipment doesn’t always protect them, an 18-month Tampa Bay Times investigation found.
At Gopher Resource in Tampa, workers recycle 50,000 used car batteries a day. Their safety equipment doesn’t always protect them, an 18-month Tampa Bay Times investigation found.
OSHA inspectors haven’t been inside Gopher Resource in five years, even as mechanical breakdowns plagued the Tampa plant and made conditions worse for workers.
OSHA inspectors haven’t been inside Gopher Resource in five years, even as mechanical breakdowns plagued the Tampa plant and made conditions worse for workers.
Gopher Resource promised changes at Tampa's old lead factory. It kept polluting.
Gopher Resource promised changes at Tampa's old lead factory. It kept polluting.

Unprotected

Tampa teens reported a teacher’s sexual comments. Then a student’s life was upended.
Tampa teens reported a teacher’s sexual comments. Then a student’s life was upended.
Tampa teens wanted their school to protect them. Instead, they say, it got worse.
Tampa teens wanted their school to protect them. Instead, they say, it got worse.
Officers sent notices to landlords detailing arrests and encounters with their tenants that put families at risk of eviction even when charges were later dropped.
Officers sent notices to landlords detailing arrests and encounters with their tenants that put families at risk of eviction even when charges were later dropped.
Pasco’s sheriff created a futuristic program to stop crime before it happens. It monitors and harasses families across the county.
Pasco’s sheriff created a futuristic program to stop crime before it happens. It monitors and harasses families across the county.
Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco built a controversial data-driven approach to policing. He also built a wide circle of powerful friends who don’t question his tactics.
Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco built a controversial data-driven approach to policing. He also built a wide circle of powerful friends who don’t question his tactics.
From its headquarters in Boca Raton, GardaWorld has put unsafe trucks on the road, and its workers and unsuspecting motorists have suffered the consequences.
From its headquarters in Boca Raton, GardaWorld has put unsafe trucks on the road, and its workers and unsuspecting motorists have suffered the consequences.

LATEST

  1. Construction continues with more homes being added to the Lennar at Bryant Square subdivision near Bryant Park Drive on Feb. 1 in New Port Richey.
    As Progress Residential has grown, some tenants accuse the company of putting profits over people.
  2. Premium Trainwreck, a kratom product, pictured in the Times Studio on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023 in St. Petersburg.
  3. Dec. 30, 2023• Investigations
    Kratom is virtually unregulated and widely available online and in gas stations and smoke shops across Florida. Researchers say lawmakers and regulators could take several steps short of a ban to protect people who use the herb.
    Researchers detail how lawmakers and regulators could establish key guardrails for selling and using the herb.
  4. The Tampa Bay Times investigation about kratom earlier this month spanned more than 16,000 words.
    The series serves as testament to the value of strong, independent investigative journalism.
  5. O.P.M.S. is one of the most popular kratom brands in the U.S. It relies on a web of two dozen companies for the manufacturing and packaging of its products.
    Two dozen companies and trade names are connected to O.P.M.S. Many are cloaked in secrecy.
  6. A Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals a popular kratom brand’s supply chain, from Indonesia to Florida.
  7. While officials grapple with a “wild west” marketplace, industry-friendly regulations are popping up in Florida and nationwide.
  8. University of Florida researchers tested 20 kratom products provided by the Tampa Bay Times, including leaf powders and concentrated extracts.
    Researchers analyzed powders, pills, capsules and liquid shots. A scientist compared one to “legal morphine.”
  9. As companies sell increasingly potent products, a Tampa Bay Times investigation reveals the herb’s toll.
  10. A Times investigation found more than 580 fatal kratom-related overdoses in Florida.
    Reporters built a first-of-its-kind database of deaths, tested potent products and traveled across Florida.

Send us a confidential tip.

Learn how to securely call, message or email us at tampabay.com/tips.

Our team

Rebecca Woolington, Investigative Editor

Bethany Barnes, Deputy Investigative Editor

Zachary T. Sampson, Investigative Reporter

Hannah Critchfield, Investigative Reporter

Shreya Vuttaluru, Data Reporter, Investigative

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