Reporters for Tulsa World and The Oklahoman spent six months reviewing more than 40,000 records from federal, state and local agencies on residential care homes and Intermediate Care Facilities for the Mentally Retarded.
Most of the information came from records provided by the state Health Department spanning from 2006 to 2009. Included were thousands of inspection surveys, investigatory reports, letters between home representatives and state officials and details on how the homes planned to fix problems the state discovered. Because the records were provided as copies of the original forms, reporters looked at each document and created a database to determine total violations by each home. Interviews with Health Department officials, nonprofit groups, home owners, residents and law enforcement officials were based on results uncovered by the newspapers.