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

Almost all of the city's murders in 2015 involved guns.
(via Flickr/alancleaver_2000)

A second juvenile will stand trial as an adult for the November death of a Bosnian immigrant.

Appeals Court judge Roy Richter was on the bench in Ferguson for the first time on March 19. Video screens were set up in another building to accommodate those who wanted to watch the court but did not have cases.
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

Ferguson's municipal court has significantly improved its operations since the release of a blistering federal report in March, the office that handles administrative affairs for the courts in Missouri has found.

via Flickr/Arvell Dorsey Jr

The Illinois State Police has become the first law enforcement agency in the state to get permission from the federal government to use drones.

The Federal Aviation Administration authorized the state police's unmanned aircraft system last week. The drone, which is stationed in central Illinois, is available for any department across the state to use, as long as it complies with a 2013 law that limited warrantless surveillance to emergency situations.

traffic ticket
Chris Yarzab | Flickr

The 90 municipalities in St. Louis County are beginning to consider the impacts of new limits on their budgets that would be set by the passage Thursday of Senate Bill 5.

Gov. Jay Nixon is expected to sign the measure into law. The impact of its 23 pages won't be fully apparent for three years, but it's fairly clear already that things will look vastly different come Jan.1.

Chief Sam Dotson stl police 1.27.15
Katelyn Petrin | St. Louis Public Radio intern

St. Louis police chief Sam Dotson plans to develop a new website that would rank judges by how often they give probation to people facing certain lower-level felony gun charges.

Former St. Louis corrections commissioner Gene Stubblefield and his attorney at a 2011 hearing of the city's public safety committee
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

A Missouri appeals court has upheld the 2011 firing of the city’s former corrections commissioner, Eugene Stubblefield.

The Eastern District of the Missouri Court of Appeals affirmed the July 16, 2014, opinion of Judge Robert Dierker without making its reasoning public. Dierker had ruled there was plenty of evidence that the city of St. Louis had just cause to let Stubblefield go.

St. Louis County Crisis Intervention Team officers respond to as many as 60 calls per week involving a person with a mental health issue, according to Sgt. Jeremy Romo.
Jason Rojas | Flickr

Updated at 2 p.m. with comments from Chuck Wexler, local leaders. — A report from a national research group says St. Louis’ fragmented policing is hurting the region in many ways.

The Rev. Starsky Wilson, co-chair of the Ferguson Commission.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio

The Ferguson Commission agreed Monday night by a unanimous vote to adopt a new operating principle that requires its working groups to use a lens of racial equality as they consider their recommendations for the September report. 

Michael Brown's mother, Lesley McSpadden, listens on March 5 as attorney Daryl Parks announces the family's intent to sue former police officer Darren Wilson and the city of Ferguson for her son's death.
Bill Greenblatt | UPI

Updated as of 10:30 pm., April 22, 2015:

The family of Michael Brown will file a wrongful death lawsuit against the City of Ferguson on Thursday, according to a news  release sent Wednesday night.

Adrian Wright, a former mayor of Pine Lawn, says his political opponent used the city's police department as a tool of political intimidation. Adolphus Pruitt of the NAACP is at left.
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

The American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri has sued the city of Pine Lawn for using its police department as a tool of political intimidation.

The federal lawsuit filed Tuesday centers around the 2013 race for mayor between Sylvester Caldwell, who was the incumbent, and challenger Nakisha Ford, who was backed by former mayor and councilman Adrian Wright.

Board president Lewis Reed signs legislation creating a civilian oversight board for St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

More than 30 years of work by city aldermen and activists paid off Monday, as the St. Louis Board of Aldermen approved a civilian oversight board for the city's police department.

Applause broke out in the chambers as President Lewis Reed announced the 17-8 vote. Two members voted present, and one alderman did not vote at all.

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce
File photo by Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

The Politically Speaking podcast team welcomed St. Louis Circuit Attorney Jennifer Joyce as its latest guest for what turned out to be a particularly spirited show.

Joyce is a St. Louis native with deep political roots. Both of her parents – Jack and Nellene Joyce – served as aldermen in the 23rd Ward (the old home turf of Mayor Francis Slay.)

Joyce graduated from  Bishop DuBourg High School in south St. Louis and obtained her law degree from Saint Louis University School of Law in 1987.

Chief Jon Belmar said police questioned three people regarding the shootings but they did not turn up any suspects
file photo by Willis Ryder Arnold/St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis County police are investigating an officer-involved shooting that left a Jennings man dead.

Thaddeus McCarroll, 23, was shot and killed by an officer on the St. Louis County police tactical team around 11:30 p.m. Friday night after allegedly charging at the officers with a knife.

Mayor Francis Slay, left, and St. Louis Metropolitan Police Chief Sam Dotson unveil the new Real Time Crime Center at police headquarters.
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

The St. Louis Metropolitan Police will get a new tool this summer to help battle crime. Media got a preview Thursday of the Real Time Crime Center, on the sixth floor of police headquarters at 1915 Olive.

Jamala Rogers (bottom left) and John Chasnoff (bottom right) after the civilian oversight board they have championed for 30 years received initial approval on April 15, 2015
Katelyn Petrin/St. Louis Public Radio

Legislation that would bring more civilian oversight to the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is a step closer to Mayor Francis Slay's desk.

The St. Louis Board of Aldermen gave the measure creating the civilian oversight board initial approval Wednesday on a voice vote. No exact roll call was taken, though some aldermen did object.

Schweich launches his campaign for governor on January 28, 2015
Jo Mannies | St. Louis Public Radio

(Updated at 10:45 p.m. to reflect that confirmation  of the suicide occurred  on Tuesday, not Wednesday.)

Clayton police say they may never know why Tom Schweich killed himself in February.

The department confirmed Tuesday that Schweich, the state auditor and a Republican candidate for governor, shot himself in the head with a .22-caliber handgun on Feb. 26. His wife, Kathy, was the one to call 911.

Tony Rothert and Mary Bruntrager on February 25, 2015 after oral arguments on the World Series ticket case
Rachel Lippmann | St. Louis Public Radio

Updated with response from Jennifer Joyce.

The Missouri Court of Appeals has ordered the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department to release some of the internal documents of an investigation into the misuse of 2006 World Series tickets.

Paul Sableman | Flickr

Five license plate recognition cameras paid for by the civic booster organization Downtown STL Inc. will be installed in downtown this month.

Missy Kelley, the chief operating officer for the organization formerly known as the Partnership for Downtown St. Louis, would not say where the cameras will be placed, or give an exact date for activation. Downtown STL Inc. spent about $66,000 on the cameras.

Steakpinball | Flickr

Eighty municipal courts in St. Louis County have agreed to levy identical fines and court fees for charges like speeding or driving without insurance.

(via Wikimedia Commons/Glenn Francis, www.PacificProDigital.com)

Updated April 7, 2015 with court ruling allowing Flynt to intervene.

A federal appeals court has given Hustler publisher Larry Flynt the right to ask that certain records in two court cases challenging Missouri's execution process be unsealed.

The unsigned opinion issued Tuesday by a panel of the 8th Circuit does not make the documents public. It simply gives Flynt the right to argue that they should not be kept secret.