Rachel Lippmann


Lippmann returned to her native St. Louis after spending two years covering state government in Lansing, Michigan. She earned her undergraduate degree from Northwestern University and followed (though not directly) in Maria Altman's footsteps in Springfield, also earning her graduate degree in public affairs reporting. She's also done reporting stints in Detroit, Michigan and Austin, Texas. Rachel likes to fill her free time with good books, good friends, good food, and good baseball.

Ways To Connect

The 2006 World's Series was a winner for the Cardinals.
Matt Dimmic | Flickr

A long-running legal fight over who can see the documents generated during an internal police investigation is over.

The Missouri Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to hear the case of 35 St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department officers who wanted to block the release of information from an investigation into the misuse of tickets to the 2006 World Series. That decision lets stand a lower court ruling that said the officers in question had no expectation of privacy around the documents. It was not immediately clear when the documents would be made public.

Ferguson October protesters
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

The American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri and other legal groups are blasting a decision by the attorney for St. Louis County to charge Ferguson protesters, many almost a year after they were arrested.

But St. Louis County's counselor is defending the process for charging dozens of people — including a couple of  journalists.

(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated with comments from attorneys, and the cities of St. Louis and St. Peters.

Getting caught on camera running a red light in St. Louis will no longer result in a fine.

In a 6-1 opinion issued Tuesday, the court called the city's ordinance governing red-light cameras unconstitutional because it assumes the owner of the car was the one driving the car at the time of the violation.

Brittany Ferrell (left) and her wife Alexis Templeton shortly after leaving the St. Louis County jail on August 12, 2015
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Two of the most familiar faces on the front lines of protests in Ferguson and elsewhere are facing several charges for their conduct during a protest Monday on Interstate 70.

Both Brittany Ferrell, 28, and her wife, 21-year-old Alexis Templeton, face peace disturbance and first-degree trespass charges for being part of a group that blocked traffic in both lanes of the interstate near the Blanchette Bridge for 30 minutes on Monday near the height of rush hour. Both of those are misdemeanors.

new stadium, St. Louis Rams
Courtesy HOK | 360 Architecture

Mayor Francis Slay is standing by his decision not to appeal a judge's ruling throwing out a required citywide vote on public financing for sports stadiums, despite a pledge to "vigorously defend the law."

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.



Protesters on West Florissant surround a police car on August 9, 2014. Looting broke out shortly afterward.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Last year’s shooting death of Michael Brown was the end of a police encounter that lasted no more than five minutes.

The aftermath shook the region for weeks. In that time, hundreds of officers from police departments across the region would deploy to Ferguson under what would become known as the Unified Command.

Two members of that command -- Capt. Ron Johnson of the Missouri State Highway Patrol and chief Jon Belmar of the St. Louis County Police Department -- sat down to reflect on what they have learned in the past 12 months.

Gov. Jay Nixon announces that he has asked the state commission overseeing police officer training to update standards around tactical training, cultural competency, and officer wellness on August 6, 2015. Behind him is Mo. State Highway Patrol Capt. Ron
Bill Greenblatt | UPI

Training standards for police officers in Missouri will get an overhaul for the first time in nearly 20 years.

Gov. Jay Nixon announced Thursday that he will ask the Missouri Peace Officer Standards and Training Commission to issue new rules around tactical training, fair and impartial policing, and the well-being of officers.

Mailers distributed by Reinvest STL in support of a $180 million bond issue.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

A $180 million bond to fund capital expenditures and upgrades to buildings in St. Louis has failed.

Proposition 1 received 61 percent of the vote in unofficial results, but the city charter requires a two-thirds majority for bond issues. Turnout was below 10 percent.

Jane Dueker at the Missouri Supreme Court April 8, 2015
Pool photo by Karen Elshout | Missouri Lawyers Media

Updated Aug. 4 with Supreme Court ruling -- The reforms required by the passage of Senate Bill 5 don't start taking effect for another six months. But the municipal reform legislation is already having an impact.

The Missouri Supreme Court on Tuesday chucked the Missouri Municipal League's challenge to the way limits on municipal revenue were enforced, saying the passage of the reform measure made the League's arguments moot.

A sampling of mailers sent by Reinvest STL, a committee supporting the city's $180 million bond issue.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

Voters in St. Louis will go to the polls Tuesday to decide whether the city should borrow $180 million to take care of long-delayed maintenance and other capital needs.

The general obligation bond got on the August ballot at the last possible minute. If it passes, bonds will be sold in 2015, and again in 2017. The city estimates the owner of a $125,000 house would pay about $50 more in property taxes each year.

Stadium Approach from the Southeast
HOK | 360 Architecture

Updated with comments from Dave Peacock, John Ammann, and Mayor Slay - A St. Louis judge has ruled that city voters do not have a right to weigh in on public spending for a proposed new football stadium north of Laclede's Landing.

"Judgment shall be, and hereby is, entered in favor of Plaintiff Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority and against Defendant City of St. Louis on Plaintiff’s Petition for Declaratory Judgment. City Ordinance 66509, Chapter 3.91 of the Revised Code of the City of St. Louis, is hereby declared INVALID."

Vanita Gupta, head of the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice
YouTube | Fair Housing conference

Updated 4:30 p.m. with comments from Civil Rights Division and react - A 20-month investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice has found the St. Louis County Family Court violates the constitutional rights of children in its custody.

Andre Anderson, the new interim chief of the Ferguson police department, listens as Mayor James Knowles announces his appointment to the job on July 22. City manager Ed Beasley is to Anderson's left.
UPI/Bill Greenblatt

A 24-year veteran of the Glendale, Ariz., police department will take the reins in Ferguson for the next six months.

Ferguson Mayor James Knowles announced Wednesday that Andre Anderson, who has led Glendale's Criminal Investigations Division, will take over the 50-officer Ferguson department on July 23. He'll have the job for six months, replacing Al Eickhoff, who took over after former chief Thomas Jackson resigned in March.

William Woods, the special agent in charge of the St. Louis office of the FBI, announces the Mission SAVE task force with chief Sam Dotson (L) and Mayor Francis Slay (R) Flanked by St. Louis Metropolitan Police chief Sam Dotson.
UPI | Bill Greenblatt

One hundred five people have been killed in St. Louis so far this year, putting the city on pace for nearly 200 homicides in 2015. Many more than that have been shot or put in danger of being shot.

Now, city officials are looking to a new local-federal task force to slow the pace of violence in the city.

California Department of Corrections

Updated 1:25 p.m. July 17 with the third ruling.

A Missouri judge has ruled that the state Department of Corrections violated the sunshine law when it refused to disclose the name of the pharmacy that supplies drugs for lethal injections.

Leah Gunning Francis, second from left, locks arms with Rev. Karen Anderson, Betty Thompson, Rev. Traci Blackmon and Valerie Richmon of Austin, Tx at the front of the Mother's March on October 18, 2014.,
Camille Phillips/St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis is joining a legal fight to retain a criminal charge officials say is necessary to control the gun violence plaguing the city.

The city, the Archdiocese of St. Louis, SSM Healthcare, the Demetrious Johnson Charitable Foundation, and the St. Louis Regional Chamber are joining together in a amicus curiae brief (friend of the court) to the state Supreme Court. In three cases, St. Louis judges threw out unlawful possession of firearms charges based on their reading of Amendment 5.

Alderman Lyda Krewson has introduced a measure to change the name of Confederate Drive in Forest Park to East Cricket Drive.
Bill Greenblatt | UPI

An alderman from the central corridor has launched an effort to remove a commemoration of the Civil War from Forest Park.

The full text of 28th Ward Democrat Lyda Krewson's measure is just nine lines long. It renames Confederate Drive, an approximate 600-foot-long road that runs past the Confederate memorial near the visitors' center, to Cricket Drive East.

Aldermen Joe Vaccaro (rear standing) and Shane Cohn (front standing) debate the minimum wage increase on July 20, 2015.
Sarah Kellogg/St. Louis Public Radio intern

A measure that would boost the minimum wage in the city of St. Louis for most workers got back on track Friday, following a contentious Board of Aldermen debate that lasted nearly an hour.

The bill appeared dead two weeks ago when the chairman of the Ways and Means committee, Alderman Joe Vaccaro, abruptly canceled all future meetings. He told reporters at the time he saw no way for anyone to achieve a "reasonable compromise" before aldermen went on summer break.

St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay wants to raise the city's minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2020. But the big could run into legal problems if Gov. Jay Nixon doesn't sign a bill authorizing increases before August 28.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

Mayor Francis Slay is throwing his support behind a compromise proposal to raise the city’s minimum wage.

The measure unveiled Thursday is an effort to break a political logjam and pass the legislation in what appears to be a narrow window of time