April 14, 1998
homas French of the St. Petersburg Times has won the 1998 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing for "Angels & Demons," his portrait of a mother and two daughters killed while on vacation in Florida.
On June 4, 1989, the bodies of Jo, Michelle and Christe Rogers were found floating in Tampa Bay. Angels & Demons is the story of the murders and their aftermath, a story of a handful of people who kept faith amid the unthinkable.
French gathered the information for the series from interviews with Hal Rogers and other family members, detectives and prosecutors, and others involved in this case. In addition, information was gathered in court proceedings and from more than 4,000 pages of police reports, court documents and other records. Some of the quotes and scenes were witnessed firsthand by the reporter or photographer or were taken from police reports or transcripts of official proceedings; others are by necessity based on people's recollections.
During our 111-year history, writers at the St. Petersburg Times have won six Pulitizers. Here is a glimpse at the other five winners:
1964 -- Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service for coverage of the Florida Turnpike Authority and its reckless expenditure of public money. The series, written by Martin Waldron, influenced the state of Florida to change its auditing and bonding practices.
1980 -- Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting for coverage of the Church of Scientology by staff writers Charles Stafford and Bette Orsini.
1985 -- Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting to Lucy Morgan and Jack Reed for coverage of the Pasco County Sheriff's Office.
1991 -- Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing to Sheryl James for her
four-part series, "A Gift Abandoned," about a woman who abandoned
her newborn baby in a box by a dumpster.
1995 -- Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing to Jeffrey Good for his four part series, "Final Indignities," which exposed flaws in Florida's probate system.